Building upon decades of curricular innovation and national leadership in experiential learning, under the Learn theme, we will:

  • Set the standard for engaged learning and mentoring
  • Implement a distinctive model for STEM, engineering, nursing and data competency
  • Innovate teaching and learning across the curriculum and for a lifetime

Engaged Learning & Innovative Teaching

Hands-on, immersive experiences in and out of the classroom deepen students’ understanding of the arts and sciences, inspire their intellectual curiosity and prepare them to become ethical and ambitious leaders in their chosen fields.

Loy Farm leads experiential learning in sustainability

Through years of demonstrated success in hands-on learning and research, Loy Farm has emerged as a dynamic center for the experiential study of sustainable living and agriculture. The farm doubles as the Center for Environmental Studies and will soon be home to the Loy Farm Living Learning Community, a neighborhood of 12 sustainably designed and built student residences, a common building and a community center.

Students in Associate Professor of Environmental Studies Robert Charest’s courses designed and are building the first of those 600-square-foot residences in summer and fall 2023. The remaining 11 homes will be designed and built by outside firms through summer 2025, each using different sustainable principles. The neighborhood will be a showcase for how humans can employ design to live more harmoniously with the environment.

The Green Maker Hub was established in 2022-23 as a place for students and faculty to explore plant propagation techniques, study and preserve indigenous plants and to bring in expert speakers and scientists for campus and community audiences. The hub includes an incubator, a dedicated space for plant grafting and germination, and specialized raised containers for growing saplings like chestnut trees.

Undergraduate research, mentorship shine in the College

Across the College, faculty work closely with students to mentor high-quality research that regularly leads to publications, conference presentations and awards.

All 15 of the 2023 Lumen Prize recipients pose for a photo alongside Elon University President Connie Book and Director of the Lumen Prize, Professor of Physics Benjamin Evans, on the steps in front of the Inn at Elon.

Fifteen rising juniors, representing majors from within each branch of the College, were selected along with their mentors as 2023 Lumen Prize recipients. The Lumen Prize is Elon’s premiere undergraduate research award and comes with a $20,000 scholarship to advance their research projects through their senior year.

A substantial gathering of Elon students and faculty assembles around a monument bearing the word 'Phoenix' while on a visit to Eau Claire, Wisconsin, for the National Conference on Undergraduate Research.

Forty-one Elon students presented at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research April 12-15 at the University of Wisconsin, Eau-Claire. The vast majority of students presenting were mentored by College faculty.

A substantial gathering of Elon students, faculty, and staff congregates in Alumni Gym for one of two poster sessions during the annual Spring Undergraduate Research Forum.

College faculty mentored 204 of 270 projects presented at Elon’s annual Spring Undergraduate Research Forum on April 25.

Three students in lab coats, two peering into microscopes, work diligently in Elon's Biology lab.

Faculty’s exceptional engagement in undergraduate research is also reflected in the number of projects and students they closely mentor. For example:

  • In biology, 17 faculty mentored 47 undergraduates;
  • In exercise science, seven faculty mentored 28 undergraduates; and
  • In mathematics and statistics, faculty mentored seven Honors Fellows and 13 full-time faculty mentored students in 89 semesters hours of research.

Ten of 12 undergraduates selected as 2022-23 Provost Scholars conducted research mentored by College faculty in the Arts and Humanities; Natural, Mathematical and Computational Sciences; and Social and Behavioral Sciences.

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Headshot of Matt Wittstein, associate professor of exercise science.

Matt Wittstein creates podcast around innovative pedagogy

Matt Wittstein, associate professor of exercise science, developed “Limed: Teaching with a Twist” with the Center for Engaged Learning to highlight pedagogy. Each episode features the voices and ideas of diverse faculty, staff, and students who workshop guest’s real challenges and opportunities for their classrooms. Through the podcast, Wittstein featured Elon faculty across disciplines and schools, as well as guest faculty from other institutions. It was the Center for Engaged Learning’s most downloaded podcast in 2022.

Geoffrey Claussen and Pamela Winfield are seated at desks in a classroom, leading a course.

Co-taught Buddhist-Jewish Spiritualities course pioneers inquiry

Led by Professor of Religious Studies Geoffrey Claussen and Professor of Religious Studies Pamela Winfield, Buddhist-Jewish Spiritualities and Encounters explored the rich history of Jewish thought leaders adapting and popularizing Buddhist practices for Western audiences. The course was one of a series of innovative, co-taught courses in the Department of Religious Studies made possible by a gift from John and Kristin Replogle in honor of the mentoring and education their daughter, Tate Replogle ’18, received at Elon. Each year, different faculty partner for a course that investigates how religion impacts culture and society.

Professor of Art History Evan Gatti, conducting a guest lecture within an Art History class, gestures towards a detailed facsimile of a medieval European manuscript, while several students attentively observe.

Medieval art exhibits shape students’ understanding of history

Students in the Art History Program pored over rare, detailed facsimiles of medieval European manuscripts provided by guest speakers, including a facsimile of the Stammheim Missal — an elaborately painted and illuminated 12th-century manuscript created by the Benedictine monastery of St. Michael’s Church in Hildesheim, Germany. Elizabeth C. Teviotdale, an art historian who researched and wrote the facsimile’s commentary, met with students and lectured about the missal in an Art History Speaker Series event Oct. 19, in LaRose Digital Theater.

Two individuals, in silhouette, examine the artwork 'In Memoriam' by visiting artist Katina Bitsicas in Elon's Arts West Gallery.

Department of Art hosts renowned artists

Four national and international visiting artists presented exhibitions and talks in Arts West and worked individually with students. Guest artists included Amos Kennedy, considered by many as America’s most influential and politically active African American book artist. Kennedy’s exhibition involved him and 20 community members installing over 6,000 prints in Gallery 406.

Advancing STEM

In response to the global demand for more engineers and STEM-related skills, the Boldly Elon strategic plan for 2030 aims to advance a distinctive and cross-disciplinary STEM program. Graduates of these programs, grounded in the liberal arts and experiential learning, will be sought after as problem-solvers focused on the common good.

Innovation Quad becomes hub of multidisciplinary collaboration

The first two buildings in Elon’s Innovation QuadFounders Hall and Innovation Hall — opened in August. They are home to the Department of Engineering and Department of Physics, and a hub for multidisciplinary collaboration. Their combined 65,000 square feet include state-of-the-art labs and fabrication spaces. By early fall, faculty and students were embarking on environmental and biomedical research projects that wouldn’t have been possible in previous spaces.

The buildings were awarded LEED Gold Certification for efficiency and sustainability by the U.S. Green Building Council. The Association of University Interior Designers recognized designers Holly Hodge and Jenny Gonzalez with the Best in Show at the AUID Design Competition Awards.

The revitalized common space on the 2nd floor of Elon's McMichael Science Center features a vibrant seating area, complete with tables and chairs, and two rows of framed photographs adorning the wall.

McMichael renovations build community

The first phase of renovations in McMichael Science Center was completed in summer 2022, refreshing and expanding common areas where faculty and students meet, as well as faculty offices. The new gathering areas were well used by study groups, student-faculty meetings and student clubs. Second and third phases will update and expand teaching and research labs and classrooms.

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Hwayeon Ryu, accompanied by two students on each side, stands proudly behind the sign for Elon University's Duke Building, home to the Computer Science and Mathematics & Statistics departments.

Ryu awarded $300K National Science Foundation grant to study COVID

Assistant Professor of Mathematics Hwayeon Ryu received a three-year, $299,998 National Science Foundation grant to research mathematical modeling of immune responses to COVID. The study aims to elucidate the mechanisms responsible for disease severity exhibited by some patients and advance treatment. Ryu, who has completed previous mathematical studies of the virus, will involve undergraduates in the research and collaborate with other institutions. Ryu also co-organized a special session at the American Mathematical Society’s annual Joint Mathematics Meetings, “Understanding COVID-19: Three Years of Mathematical Models to Address the Global Pandemic.”

Headshot of Associate Professor of Chemistry Justin Clar.

Consumer Product Safety Commission grants Clar $125K for materials testing

Associate Professor of Chemistry Justin Clar received a $125,000 grant from the Consumer Product Safety Commission to develop a standardized method to test the safety of materials. Clar will work with undergraduate research to test the transfer of nanoparticle-based coatings from various surfaces, including things like drywall, hardwood flooring and plastics. They will use a surface-wiping method to simulate hand or skin contact. The yearlong study will help the commission develop a methodology with the International Standards Organization and standardize product testing.

Other highlights:

Associate Professor of Statistics Laura Taylor guides students in acquiring proficiency with statistical software within the Statistics in Application course.

The A.B. in Data Analytics program grew to 29 majors in its second year. The interdisciplinary program led by faculty in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics is at the forefront of Elon University’s Data Nexus Quality Enhancement Plan and is integral to the Love School of Business’ 3+1 Master of Science in Accounting program.

Assistant Professor of Computer Science Pratheep Paranthaman observes a subject, wearing a virtual reality headset, as they navigate the Elon Health Sciences lab.

Assistant Professor of Computer Science Pratheep Paranthaman and mentee Logan Lamont ’23 collaborated with faculty in the School of Health Sciences’ Doctor of Physical Therapy program to research the use of mixed reality in studying human movement and rehabilitation methods. Paranthaman and Lamont developed software for virtual and mixed reality environments used by students and faculty in the School of Health Sciences.

Elon students strike a pose behind oversized yellow letters 'A,' 'C,' and 'S'.

The Department of Chemistry was reaccredited by the American Chemical Society following analysis of instrumentation, depth and breadth of courses taught, faculty backgrounds and research outcomes, and support from the institution.

Students and faculty gather for a photo in front of a brick building on Elon's campus during the National Science Foundation-funded 2022 North Carolina A&T State University and Elon University Joint Research Experiences for Undergraduates in Mathematical Biology.

Elon’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics hosted ten students and faculty mentors in the National Science Foundation-funded Joint Research Experiences for Undergraduates by N.C. A&T University and Elon University. The experience is directed by Professor of Mathematics Karen Yokley and N.C. A&T Professor of Mathematics Nicholas Luke. It was the second of a three-year joint REU that continued in summer 2023.

Headshot of Svetlana Nepocatych.

Professor of Exercise Science Svetlana Nepocatych was part of a team of collaborators in the School of Health Sciences awarded a $10,000 grant from the American Physical Therapy Association Academy of Pelvic Health to investigate improving female athletes’ health during pregnancy and postpartum.

A group of student and faculty attendees of the Integrating Research in Science conference come together for a photograph in the lobby of Elon University's McMichael building.

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics hosted Integrating Research in Science (IRIS), an innovative student-led conference bringing together STEM and STEM-related fields. More than 60 undergraduates and professors from 15 institutions attended and promoted their research, networked among peers and attended expert panels.