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Academics: Class Projects

Many courses at Elon include a project related to sustainability. Some focus on sustainability issues on campus or in the local area while others investigate sustainability on a broader scale.

If you would like to add to this list, please email us.

BIO 103 Reinventing Life
Ecosystem analysis of a local forest that involves researching individual species in the local forest ecosystem, developing models of the entire ecosystem and observing the effects of various environmental changes on the models. (Instructor: J. Coker) 

ECO 335 Environmental Economics
Review of Elon’s Sustainability Master Plan to identify areas that need further exploration to provide support for implementation. Topics have included green purchasing, construction, recycling, transportation and alternatives, education, land use, water conservation and energy alternatives.  (Instructor: D. Redington)

GST 110 The Global Experience
Major research paper presenting scholarly research addressing a global problem or issue related to sustainability. Topics have included water scarcity, dietary practices, pollution, the effects of globalization, consumerism, environmental policy, agricultural practices, sustainable practices, cultural and/or religious differences in relating to nature. (Instructor: J. Coker)

Written report detailing the progress toward sustainability of a country chosen by the student. Reports include an in-depth analysis (including trends over time) of six or more sustainability categories that span the three pillars of sustainability – environmental, economic and social. (Instructor: M. Kleckner) 

PHL 115 Ethical Practice
Collective class project to raise awareness of an environmental issue on Elon University’s campus.  The spring 2007 class increased awareness of recycling and waste generation with “Lighten Up, Elon!”  The project included two food waste audits at Harden Dining Hall and campus awareness events such as Landfill on the Lawn.  (Instructor: A. Weston)

PHL/REL 348 Environmental Ethics
Collective class project addressing an environmental issue on Elon University’s campus.  (Instructors: A. Weston, T. Peters)

The fall 2008 class explored the expansion of local food in Elon’s dining services.

The fall 2007 class conducted a “Shrink Your Footprint” campaign to educate the campus community on the impact personal choices make on the environment.

The fall 2006 class proposed the creation of a community garden on campus to foster education, spirituality, service, community discussion and sustainability. The Elon Community Garden was created and continues to be managed by students through the Center for Environmental Studies.

The fall 2005 class piloted the first local/seasonal food initiative with dining services.

PHY 110 Energy and Environment

As a final project for this course,students brainstorm on ideas for “Making Elon a more sustainable campus”. The purpose of the assignment is for students to look at their local surroundings and see where improvements could be made to the overall efficiencies and sustainability of Elon’s campus. Students collaborate as a group to research their ideas, then present their findings, solutions and methods of implementation to the class. Ideas have included installing a centralized heating and cooling system for the campus, installing geothermal heat pumps, reducing the carbon impact of the food obtained on campus, increasing bikes and decreasing cars on campus, phasing-out plastic bag use on campus and modifying class schedules to allow for energy reduction. (Instructor: E. Pratson)