Meet the Staff

Director of New Student & Transition Programs

Katie Burr

Katie Burr currently serves as the Director of New Student & Transition Programs at Elon, a role she began in June 2011.  She completed a Master of Education degree in College Student Affairs Administration in May 2011, and has extensive experience with orientation programming at various institutional types, including small private liberal arts; large public comprehensive, and midsized two-year nonresidential.  Katie is recognized by supervisors and colleagues for her ability to plan, develop and assess quality transition programming as well as foster meaningful, mentoring relationships with students.  Additional professional interests include first year transition programs, student academic success, career development and academic advising.  Katie’s specialty functional areas include training and facilitation, qualitative assessment, career assessment interpretation and program planning and implementation.  She was recognized as the Outstanding New Professional in Elon’s Division of Student Life in May 2012, and SGA’s Advisor of the Year in February 2013.  Katie also enjoys playing piano and running half marathons.

Assistant Director of New Student & Transition Programs and Coordinator of Gap Programs

Elizabeth Coder

Elizabeth Coder currently serves as the Assistant Director of New Student & Transition Programs and Coordinator of Gap Programs. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Auburn University (War Eagle!) and her Master of Arts in Higher Education Administration from Columbia University. After graduate school, she completed three terms of service with AmeriCorps, serving with a state-based program in Alaska and throughout California, Washington, and Utah with the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC). AmeriCorps is where she developed a love of social justice and civic engagement. Having worked in higher education both in the United States and abroad, Elizabeth also brings a wealth of experience in study abroad, service learning, and first year programs. She has been recognized for her civic engagement efforts, receiving the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award for completing more than 4,000 hours of community service. Elizabeth is also a lover of all things international and travel-related, having visited, lived, or volunteered in 46 countries, 6 continents, and 48 out of the 50 states.

Dean of Student Development

Rexford Waters

Rexford A. Waters is the Dean of Student Development and Assistant Professor at Elon University.  He is finishing his 24th year at Elon.  He received both his BS and MS from Virginia Tech.  He has worked at Virginia Tech, West Virginia University, the University of South Carolina, and Elon University.  Rex has played a key role in the development of numerous programmatic areas at Elon most notably the Center for leadership, Campus Recreation and more recently the office of new Student and Transition programs. Rex is a dynamic and insightful leadership educator with extensive experience in the consulting arena.  He has done extensive work with MBTI, the Five Factor Profile, StrenghtsQuest, TAIS and team development processes. His current work involves leadership development and individuals in transition with a focus on teamwork and applied learning. He was recognized as Higher Education Leader of the Year by the National Society for Experiential Education in 2009. As well as leading a successful professional life, he also has a strong family focus.

Program Assistant for Student Development

Felicia Massey

A graduate of Elon College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English/Journalism, Felicia Massey began working at Elon in 1989. Serving most of her years in the Division of Student Life, she also advised Elon’s Phi Psi Cli Yearbook for 13 years. Felicia currently administers the New Student Record, ODK Annual Awards Day Ceremony, Elon Lodge requests and general office management.


Compass Counsel

The Counsel is comprised of students in leadership positions in New Student & Transition Programs.  Recommendations may be submitted by the Counsel for the consideration of the Director of NSTP for alteration or enhancement of current programs.  Participation in the Counsel affords students a greater understanding of the Department and its place within the University as well as experience working in a committee setting. Recognizing the mission of New Student & Transition Programs, the Compass Counsel seeks to support both divisional and institutional goals by facilitating communication and evaluation among the branches of NSTP with the crucial perspective of an active, involved Elon student. The Compass Counsel’s vision is to provide a relevant and reflective commentary on programs offered in order to create the best transition possible for all incoming and current students.

Orientation Head Staff

Head Staff members are a group of 16 student leaders who were previously Orientation Leaders. Each leader has specific responsibilities and duties throughout the school year to help prepare and implement pieces of the Orientation program. They also help with the training and supervising of the Orientation Leaders to assure a smooth Orientation Weekend and transition into Elon University for all new students. Click here to meet the staff!

Head Staff supports New Student Orientation by coordinating programs that will:

  • empower Orientation Leaders to be effective leaders and resources for new students; and
  • build community among first year students during Opening Weekend.


Orientation Leaders

Approximately 100 Elon students are selected each year to serve as Orientation Leaders.  As OLs, these students participate in required spring trainings, spring Orientation weekends, as well as summer training prior to move-in day.  The Orientation Leader team works together to create a welcoming atmosphere for new students and families on Move-In Day and during Orientation Weekend.  Each OL also works closely with a group of 15-20 new students to facilitate small group activities that help new students become more connected to the Elon community.