Core Courses

Criminal Justice:  Is Justice Blind? (Prof. Sandra Reid)
This course will lay the ground work for the study of criminal justice by analyzing and describing the agencies of justice and the procedures they use to identify and treat criminal offenders.  The course will also cover issues such as race, gender, economics and mental health and how these issues may play a part in the delivery of justice.  Scholars will have the opportunity to experience firsthand different criminal justice agencies such local district and civil courts, local law enforcement agencies and juvenile justice correctional facilities, and will hear from experts who work in the field.  You will read, write response papers, and lead discussions on relevant issues and diverse views that shape the criminal justice field.

Ethical Practices (Dr. Stephen Bloch-Schulman)

Three women still remain in their economically devastated town, San Jerónimo Xayaclatlán, Pueblo, Mexico.  Their daughters, however, now live in Staten Island, New York. In the soon-to-be-published book, The Women of the Rain, we learn why the children had to leave and how it impacted both groups. In this class, we consider the role of the border and immigration laws on such family separations and learn about a program that supports reunions. Scholars will have the unique chance to talk with the authors of this new book and give them feedback on what they read, so that they can use scholars’ feedback to craft the book prior to publication!

Rise Up & Speak Out: Collective Voices for Social Change (Dr. Darris Means)

How do we use our voices to create social change in our communities and in our world?  Explore this question together as we examine the historical and current struggle for equity and social change on the local, state, and national levels. Scholars will have the opportunity to choose a social issue that is important to them and consider ways to rise up and speak out on the topic using visual and/or performing arts.

Let’s Talk Math! (Prof. Edgar Zamora)

Mathematicians are always considering multiple perspectives when solving problems. In this seminar, scholars will learn about the value of productive mathematical discussions. We’ll seek connections between both quantitative and abstract approaches to challenging problems from a wide scope of high school math concepts, all while discussing the value of mathematical engagement, perseverance, and collaboration. Open to all scholars — especially those who find math difficult!

The Brain: A User’s Guide (Dr. Mat Gendle)
This course serves as an introduction to the functions of the brain. Scholars will learn about the workings of their brain through a multi-disciplinary approach that includes insights from the fields of biology, chemistry, physics, psychology, clinical medicine, sociology, computer science and philosophy. You will develop an understanding that individual uniqueness is the result of a complex mix of biological, social and environmental factors. This course is designed to promote the notion that science is fun and cool and is intended to encourage scholar interest in, and excitement about, science and medicine.

Critical Carnivores (Dr. Kim Pyne)

People are fascinated by predators like tigers and wolves, but these animals are rare in the wild and uniquely difficult to study & protect. This introduction to wildlife science highlights carnivorous creatures (mostly mammals) —their biology, ecology and conservation challenges. You’ll experience some of the methods used to study them in wild and captive environments, both living and as bio-artifacts, and explore the dilemmas of trying to conserve animals that compete with humans for space and resources. This class may spend some time outdoors and around animals. No experience needed.

Forever Chemicals & Your Health: A Case of Environmental Justice (Dr. Jessica Merricks)

Did you know that, unlike pharmaceuticals, industrial chemicals can be manufactured and used in the US without first proving they are safe for humans or the environment? A class of over 10,000 compounds known at “Forever Chemicals” have been circulating the globe for decades. Only recently are scientists realizing the health and environmental consequences of these compounds that are now found in 99% of all Americans. Using a small NC community as a case study, scholars will investigate the impact of Forever Chemicals on the human body, and discuss how this problem is changing the way we think about environmental justice.

College Planning & Communication

Rising Sophomores

Elon Academy 101 (first half of summer with Mr. Pickett)
EA 101 is your introduction to college life, college lingo, and thinking about college for your future. Our focus will be on what you can do now to ensure that you are on the path to college. You will learn valuable strategies for maximizing your strengths and overcoming areas of challenge in both your academic and personal life. You will begin to think consciously about what choices are best for ensuring your journey to college, as you become an expert on how to be successful in achieving your goals.

Present Yourself I! (second half of summer with Prof. Shaina Jones and Prof. Stacy Saltz)

Scholars will work intensively on their ability to present themselves and their stories to others, including how to represent themselves verbally, textually, and visually to prepare for a final presentation give to family and community members at the conclusion of the summer.

Rising Juniors

Elon Academy 201 (1st half of summer with Ms. Winterich-Knox)
Bring your Future College Student self to this crash course in navigating college pathways as a high school junior. You’re going to be looking closely at YOU—your personal strengths, interests, and goals. How might these impact your choice of college, major, and future career(s)?  What ARE your current strengths and how can you build on them? We’ll expand your college possibilities list, demystify the application process, examine some of upcoming stepping stones, and visit 3 more colleges to broaden our view of what schools can offer and practice assessing them for personal match.

Present Yourself II! (2nd half of summer with Prof. Shaina Jones and Prof. Staci Saltz)
Building on the basic presentation skills developed in Present Yourself I last summer, scholars will work intensively on their ability to present themselves and their stories to others, including how to represent themselves verbally, textually, and visually.

Rising Seniors

College Admissions Essays (first half of summer with Prof. Michael Groce & Prof. Greg Hlavaty)
Rising seniors will plan, draft, and revise at least one major college application essay – choosing from among a small set of typical essays that can be used to apply to various colleges. As a final step, they will prepare to share their essay aloud, concentrating on voice, demeanor, and skillful reading for an audience, as well as learn to respond thoughtfully to audience questions.

Elon Academy 301 (2nd half of summer with Mr. Evans)
The capstone class for college planning, including all the critical nuts-and-bolts like finalizing your college choices and seeking scholarship opportunities.