1. Commitment to Student Success

Mentor students to understand and navigate their transitions into, within, and beyond the university.

Champions: Katie Burr and Joel Harter

  1. Are You Ready: In collaboration with Academic Affairs, continue to develop, assess, expand, and secure permanent resources for the Are You Ready initiative to prepare incoming students for Elon’s academic expectations and co-curricular opportunities. (New Student and Transition Programs; First Year Committee; Spring 2016)
  2. Help New Students Connect: Assess current divisional programming and policies, including revisiting and clarifying rules about organization activity before the Fall Organization Fair, and develop a strategy for helping new students find meaningful connections and community during the first three weeks of the fall semester. (New Student and Transition Programs; Office of Student Activities; Residence Life; Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Fall 2016)
  3. First Year Peer Mentors: Pilot and assess the recommendation of the Student Peer Mentoring Committee to combine the Orientation Leader and Elon 101 Teaching Assistant into the First Year Peer Mentor. (New Student and Transition Programs; Academic Support; Peer Mentoring Committee; Fall 2016)
  4. Refine Common Training for Leaders: Develop, refine, and assess the content and format of the August Common Training for Leaders to deliver effective common training topics appropriate for a large audience. (Student Life Directors; Center for Leadership; Fall 2016)
  5. Student Involvement Specialists: Explore feasibility and benefits of establishing a group of student involvement specialists, and a central location, to connect and mentor students with campus experiences to complement the Elon 101 Teaching Assistants, Orientation Leaders, and Resident Assistant roles. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Office of Student Activities; Moseley Campus Center; Fall 2016) Student Life Five Year Plan 11
  6. Communication with Families: Develop system for regular, strategic, and proactive communication with parents and family members regarding campus events, student transition periods, and appropriate student life information. Explore development of Are You Ready content for parents. (Student Development; Health Promotion; Parent Engagement; Are You Ready Committee; Fall 2016)
  7. Promote Integrative Learning and Critical Reflection: Systematize a process across the division by which departments help students meaningfully integrate their various curricular and co-curricular experiences into their personal, academic, and professional lives. (Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Center for Leadership; Center for Advancement of Teaching and Learning; Spring 2017)
  8. Sophomore Year Experience: Build foundation for a robust sophomore year experience by expanding access to, and participation in, the Life Entrepreneur Program. (New Student and Transition Programs; Center for Leadership; Residential Life; Fall 2017)
  9. Support and Develop Student Leaders: Create a division-wide strategy for supporting and developing student staff in leadership positions throughout the year, expanding the use of peer mentors, and encouraging student leader participation in the LEAD program. (Student Life Directors; Center for Leadership; Student Health and Wellness; Fall 2017)
  10. Strengthen Peer Mentoring: Strengthen student peer mentoring by more clearly delineating and communicating expectations for mentor/mentee relationships, and by implementing the recommendations of the 2014-2015 Peer Mentoring Committee to address training, compensation, and leadership expectations. (New Student and Transition Programs; Student Life Directors; Residence Life; Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Fall 2018)

2. Residential Campus Initiative

Provide a seamless academic-social campus experience.

Champions: Jon Dooley and Rex Waters

  1. Presidential Task Force on Campus Social Climate and Out-of-Class Engagement: Complete a comprehensive study of campus culture, with recommendations to improve student experiences with a climate of belonging, increased intellectual climate, and a vibrant weekend social culture that is not alcohol-dependent. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Fall 2016)
  2. Connect Neighborhoods to Existing Programs: Engage residential neighborhood communities with existing campus programs through collaborative efforts. (Campus Life; Fall 2016)
  3. Faculty/Staff Student Engagement in Dining Locations: Review existing programs and explore providing additional opportunities for students to engage with faculty and staff in dining locations. (Campus Life; Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Fall 2016)
  4. Housing Master Plan: Initiate and complete a Housing Master Plan that projects future facility needs and addresses the question of a possible three-year residency requirement. (Residence Life; Fraternity and Sorority Life; Fall 2016)
  5. Strengthen Current Living Learning Community Program: Develop a specific and actionable plan to strengthen existing Living Learning Communities addressing faculty connections, syllabi, departmental support, programming efforts, assessment, the process to establish new communities, etc. (Residence Life; Fall 2017)
  6. Faculty Involvement in Student Life: Develop a plan within each department on how to engage additional faculty in departmental services, programs, and experiences. (All Student Life Departments; Fall 2017)
  7. Premier Residential Leadership Roles: Strengthen the Residence Life Student Staff as premier leadership roles by addressing student staff compensation and ensuring a layered structure of student staff peer mentoring. (Residence Life; Fall 2017)
  8. Student-Initiated Living Learning Communities: Strengthen residential theme communities with the addition of student-initiated theme learning communities to complement the existing faculty-led communities. (Residence Life; Fall 2017)
  9. First Six Weeks Late Night Weekend Activities: Develop and implement an active “First Six Weeks” initiative that ensures campus-wide social events every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday during the first six weeks of the fall term that provide late-night social alternatives to off-campus parties and help establish positive social habits. (Office of Student Activities; New Student, and Transition Programs; Residence Life; Fall 2017) Student Life Five Year Plan 13
  10. Weekend and Late-night Student Hang-Out Environments: Assess the use of facilities on weekend evenings, including hours, activities, and food, and implement strategies to establish destination locations and increase formal and informal student usage on weekends and late-nights. (Moseley Center; Campus Recreation; Campus Life; Fall 2017)
  11. Improve Communication with Students across Division: Develop a communications plan to articulate and support departments/programs on the best avenues/practices to communicate with the larger student body. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Fall 2017)
  12. Moseley Campus Center Master Plan: Complete final phase of Moseley Center Master Plan to finish remodeling the 2nd floor when WSOE moves out. (Moseley Center; Fall 2017)
  13. Vibrant Campus Crossroads: Develop the intersection west of Speakers’ Corner to enhance the use of this site as a hub for informal student engagement and interaction. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Moseley Center; Fall 2017)
  14. Core Learning Communities: Pilot and expand as appropriate learning communities for first-year students that link Core Foundations courses and Elon 101 for small cohorts of students living in close proximity to each other. (Residence Life; Core Curriculum; Academic Advising; New Student and Transition Programs; Fall 2018)
  15. Neighborhood Academic Programming: Extend neighborhood programs, dinners and other engagement opportunities to all residential neighborhoods. (Residence Life; Fall 2017)
  16. Student Organization Advising: Review existing student organization faculty/staff advising and develop a framework for faculty and staff to meaningfully engage student organizations through advisor roles. (Center for Leadership; Office of Student Activities; Fraternity and Sorority Life; Fall 2018)
  17. Faculty House Affiliate Program: Establish a Faculty House Affiliate program and recruit at least one faculty affiliate for each building (house) in residence hall neighborhoods. (Residence Life; Fall 2018)
  18. Student Organization Late Night Weekend Activities: Create a system for student organizations to sponsor weekend late night programs throughout the year. (Office of Student Activities; Fall 2018)
  19. Aging Residential Neighborhood Renewal: Renovate and upgrade residential facilities to create common spaces and reduce differential in amenities, especially in the Historic, Loy, and Danieley neighborhoods. (Residence Life; Greek Life; Fall 2020)
  20. Outdoor Common Space Environments: Develop outdoor spaces that serve as places for engagement to bring students, faculty, and staff together. (Residence Life; Office of Student Activities; Campus Recreation; Fall 2020)

3. Inclusive Environment

Foster a campus community where all members experience and exercise inclusion and develop intercultural competence across all identities.

Champions: Randy Williams and Jan Fuller

  1. Recruit and Support Students from Underrepresented Religions: Develop a strategy for recruiting and supporting underrepresented religious traditions, including Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist students. (Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Admissions; Fall 2015)
  2. Define Intercultural Competence Language: Define terms related to diversity and distinguish terms from other terms, including intercultural competence, privilege, diversity, bias, etc. (Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Inclusive Community Wellbeing; Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Gender and LGBTQIA Center; Provost Inclusive Community Team; Fall 2015)
  3. Create and Launch an Intercultural Competence Certificate: Develop and implement certificate program that enhances students’ intercultural competence. (Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Spring 2016)
  4. Student Intercultural Assessment: Create and implement an intercultural competence personal assessment for students. (Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Spring 2016)
  5. Expand Multi-faith Engagement Program: Improve and grow the Multi-Faith Engagement Program to increase multi-faith literacy and competence among students. (Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Spring 2016)
  6. Compile a Calendar of Diversity Programs: Map and showcase university wide diversity programs across identities/topic areas, levels, and departments to create a menu of opportunities for campus. (Convening Offices for Diversity Education Team; Provost Inclusive Community Team; Inclusive Community Council; Spring 2016) Student Life Five Year Plan 15
  7. Strengthen Introduction to Social Justice: Update and promote existing programs, including DEEP Impact, Diversity Grants, Intersect, Elon Volunteers!, ADL, etc., to provide an introduction to social justice as initially recognizing differences that exist within our communities. (Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Center for Leadership; Fall 2016)
  8. Create Programming Around Issues of Privilege: Plan and implement educational campus conversations related to privilege. (Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Provost Inclusive Community Team; Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Gender and LGBTQIA Center; Inclusive Community Wellbeing; Fraternity and Sorority Life; Fall 2016)
  9. Increase Programming for ALANAM (African, Latino, Asian, Native American, & Multiracial) Students: Develop and implement programming for racially and ethnically underrepresented students towards increasing social belonging and identity development including expanding SMART program, pre-orientation programs, social gatherings, etc. (Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Residence Life; Fraternity and Sorority Life; Fall 2016)
  10. Reexamine Numen Lumen: Reassess usage of time reserved weekly for Numen Lumen to create a university wide experience. (Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Fall 2017)
  11. Create and offer Staff Diversity Training: Implement a diversity-focused staff development program series for Student Life staff and university staff to build upon Anti-Defamation League Training that deepens staff understanding of self-identity and prejudices, and prepares staff to work effectively with student and student organizations. (Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Inclusive Community Wellbeing; Office of Professional Development and Leadership; Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Gender and LGBTQIA Center; Fall 2018)
  12. Infuse Interfaith Education: Infuse interfaith education into existing programs and leadership positions outside of Truitt Center (Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Center for Leadership; Fall 2018)

4. Holistic Well-being

Enhance and support the physical, mental, spiritual, and interpersonal health and well-being of students.

Champions: Jana Lynn Patterson and Debbie Norris

  1. Early Promotion of Well-being to Incoming Students: Enhance messaging and educational opportunities which promote well-being for incoming students within the first six weeks of each term. (New Students Transition Programs; Health Promotion; Campus Recreation; Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Fall 2015)
  2. Integration of Chaplains in Emergency Response Staff: Formalize chaplain staff’s role in student life emergency response to best respond in times of crisis. (Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Student Health and Wellness; Fall 2015)
  3. Expand Mental Health Outreach: Develop strategy and resource plan for expanding Counseling Services outreach to campus, including integrating greater presence in residential neighborhoods, facilitating more informal interactions with counselors, lowering stigma around counseling, and delivering training for other staff and students to recognize students in crisis, etc. (Counseling Services; Spring 2016)
  4. Educate about Consent: Enhance education programs around consent, including outreach to parents to understand and engage in conversations with their students around consent. (Health Promotion; Fall 2016)
  5. Comprehensive Wellness Program: Work with Health & Human Performance and the School of Education to develop a comprehensive wellness program that spans students’ four years and includes curricular offerings, co-curricular, and, extra-curricular with consideration for a certificate or non-credit wellness requirement. (Campus Recreation; Health Promotion; Alliance for Healthy Elon; Fall 2017)
  6. Mindfulness Offerings: Increase opportunities to students, faculty, and staff to learn about and participate in mindfulness practices. (Counseling Services; Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Faculty/Staff Wellness; Fall 2017)
  7. By-Stander/Up-stander Intervention: Create comprehensive educational programs that emphasize skills and action strategies to increase by-stander/up-stander intervention in high risk situations, such as hazing, high-risk drinking, and sexual assault. (Health Promotion; Center for Leadership; Fraternity and Sorority Life; Fall 2017) Student Life Five Year Plan 17
  8. Review and revise the Club Sports Tier System: Review the tier system and make necessary changes to provide clubs greater access to higher tier levels, growth within their sport, and opportunities to compete at the highest level. (Campus Recreation; Fall 2017)
  9. Additional fee-for-service health providers: Expand fee-for-service specialist offerings to expand mental and physical health services. (i.e. psychiatry, nutritional counseling, eating disorders) (Counseling Services; Fall 2017)
  10. Facility plan for Campus Recreation: Create a long term facility plan which includes the expansion of Campus Recreation into the space vacated by athletics in the Koury Athletics Center following the construction of a university convocation center as well as satellite facilities. (Campus Recreation; Fall 2017)
  11. Ensure Student Services Align with Healthy Lifestyles: Create a student, faculty, and staff group to evaluate on-campus operations, including hours of operation, food offerings, and other services, to better align with healthy lifestyle choices and activities. (Alliance for Healthy Elon; Fall 2018)
  12. Expand Athletic Training Capacity: Increase availability of athletic training services for club sports, performing arts, and the general student population to reduce wait times. (Student Health and Wellness; Campus Recreation; Fall 2018)
  13. Integrate Technology Resources into Student Health and Wellness: Expand utilization of available technology resources (student portal, electronic check-in, on-line education and assessment, tele-psychiatry) for health and counseling services to better meet needs of students. (Student Health and Wellness; Fall 2018)
  14. Review Student Conduct Process for Alcohol/Drug Violations: Evaluate current student conduct process and implement scaffolded student conduct process for different levels of severity for alcohol/drug violations. (Office of Student Conduct; Residence Life; Spring 2016)
  15. Change the Student Culture of High-risk Drinking: Develop and implement a plan to reduce high risk drinking. Elements to evaluate and address include supporting abstainers, teaching low-risk drinking strategies to students who choose to drink, reducing high-risk drinking at student residences in the local community, and scaffolding honor code sanctions. (Health Promotion; Office of Student Conduct; Faculty Fellow for Alcohol Education; Fall 2019)

5. Positive Social Change

Develop students to demonstrate socially responsible leadership and civic engagement.

Champions: Jodean Schmiederer and Mary Morrison

  1. Leadership/Change Summit: Pilot change summit designed to teach students advocacy/ civic engagement strategies by guiding them through the process of identifying campus issues or areas of concern then working with peers to take action and create the desired positive social change. (Center for Leadership; Student Government Association; Fall 2015)
  2. Engage Students in the Political Process: Work with Council on Civic Engagement to increase student participation in local, state, and national voting and election initiatives. (Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Center for Leadership; Department of Political Science; Council on Civic Engagement; Fall 2016)
  3. Divisional Leadership Definition and Learning Outcomes: Establish a common definition and learning outcomes for socially-responsible leadership to be utilized throughout the division of Student Life. (Student Life Assessment Committee; Center for Leadership; Spring 2016)
  4. Speakers Corner: Increase awareness and use of Speakers Corner for social action and civic engagement. (Moseley Center; Spring 2016)
  5. Utilize 2015 Multi-institutional Survey of Leadership Data: Explore and analyze the 2015 MSL data to develop actionable items and improve various campus life and related academic programs. (Center for Leadership; Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Faculty Fellow for Leadership; Institutional Research; Spring 2016)
  6. Deliberative Dialogue Team: Formalize a deliberative dialogue team to select topics and hold one campus dialogue per year designed to allow students to gain and demonstrate democratic and public discourse skills. (Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Council on Civic Engagement; Inclusive Community Programs; Spring 2017) Student Life Five Year Plan 19
  7. Connect Student to Leadership Education Opportunities: Map student life and select university leadership education experiences to division definition of leadership, learning outcomes, and competencies to identify gaps or redundancies in developmental pathways, develop a plan to address findings, and use information to communicate with and coach students through their leadership development experiences. (Center for Leadership; Spring 2018)
  8. Restorative Justice Training/Program: Explore creating a restorative justice program to help students connect their behavior/actions with the impact on the campus community. (Office of Student Conduct; Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Residence Life; Inclusive Community Programs; Spring 2018)
  9. Social Justice Framework: Create a framework, including existing and new programs, to engage groups of students in discussions and initiatives to develop students’ understanding of social justice as a process to create positive change in our communities.  (Center for Leadership; Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education; Summer 2018)
  10. Peer Mentoring Course: Develop a course or co-curricular option to immerse students serving in roles that involve extensive peer mentoring in the literature on, and the practice of, peer mentoring. (Associate Dean for Leadership and Honor Code; Fall 2018)
  11. Infuse In-depth Service Learning Experiences into Department Programs: Increase the depth and strength of community partner relationships based on the needs of department goals. (Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Center for Leadership; Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life; Fraternity and Sorority Life; New Student and Transition Programs; Residence Life; Spring 2019)
  12. Promote Campus Citizenship: Build upon the commitment to community to promote student awareness of being good campus citizens through exploring reward systems for behaviors that contribute to an overall positive climate of campus. (Office of Student Conduct; Residence Life; Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement; Center for Leadership, Fall 2019)
  13. Elevate the Student Honor Board: Assess and reevaluate the student honor board including membership, selection process, training, and responsibilities to increase student-to-student accountability for honor code violations. (Office of Student Conduct; Center for Leadership; Fall 2019)

6. World-class Student Life Division

Cultivate a division culture that supports and equips all staff to perform at the highest level, collaborate across the university, and contribute to the student affairs profession.

Champions: Janis Baughman and Steve Mencarini

  1. Recruit and Retain a Diverse Staff: Develop guidelines for recruiting and hiring new diverse staff to ensure a consistent and streamline process. Assess and follow up on divisional staff diversity. (Recruitment and New Staff Orientation Committee; Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Fall 2015)
  2. Revisit Statement of Flexibility:  Review the Statement of Flexibility and how it is to be encouraged and implemented at the beginning of each academic year. (Vice President’s Council; Fall 2015)
  3. Assess Annually Divisional Climate: Building off the Great Place to Work findings, administer an annual divisional climate assessment to assess satisfaction among staff. (Vice President of Student Life’s Office; Spring 2016)
  4. Improve Individual Professional Development: Re-examine the distribution of professional development funds by benchmarking with peer divisions, auditing current engagement in professional development, and developing new guidelines and initiatives based on findings. Provide guidance for strengthening professional development plans including, but not limited to, examples of strong plans and models for supporting plans as part of annual performance appraisals. (Professional Development Committee; Spring 2016)
  5. Support Presentations, Writing, and Leadership Positions: Provide support for presenting at local, regional, and national conferences, authoring publications, and holding leadership positions in professional organizations at state and national level. (Professional Development Committee; Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Spring 2016)
  6. Clarify Professional Development Fund Usage: Standardize existing policies and practices related to usage of departmental and professional development funds for memberships, certifications, and/or required trainings. (Professional Development Committee; Spring 2016)
  7. Institutional Presence at Annual ACPA/NASPA National Conference: Intentionally plan each year which staff will be attending national conferences, coordinate staff recruitment efforts, and when appropriate arrange an Elon gathering of friends/staff recruitment social to increase the division’s visibility and re-connect with multiple stakeholders. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Spring 2016)
  8. Increase External Funding: Establish and implement a systematic process to identify potential fundable project in Student Life and partner with University Advancement to explore funding. Provide grant writing workshops and encourage deans and directors to explore grants to fund initiatives. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Spring 2016)
  9. Review Divisional Committee Effectiveness: Develop a plan of initial committee programs and costs and long-term aspirational funding needs and designate division money to be collaboratively allocated by committee chairs to fulfill committee charges. (Division Committee Chairs; Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Spring 2016)
  10. Support University Programs Outside Division: Support division staff serving on university committees, develop plan for formal liaisons with other divisions/departments, and encourage staff to attend and collaborate on programs sponsored by departments and divisions outside of The Division of Student Life including Elon Day, Family Weekend, Campus Conversations, Admissions Weekends, etc. (Vice President’s Council; Fall 2016)
  11. Improve Divisional Communication: Create regular avenues for divisional communication, including, but not limited to, minutes following various meetings (VP Council, Deans and Directors, committees, etc.), and distribution of abridged end-of semester or -year reports. Create division end-of-year report and share divisionally and institutionally. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Chairs of Standing Division Committees; Fall 2016) 22 Student Life Five Year Plan
  12. Audit Under-Performing Initiatives: Determine one initiative from each department which is producing the smallest positive impact on students when compared to the amount of money, time, and/or resources utilized and propose a plan to remove, re-purpose, or reinvent the initiative. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Fall 2016)
  13. Institutional Profession Membership: Become institutional member of ACPA and/or NASPA, and continue to be members of departmental national organizations such as ACUI, NACA, etc. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Fall 2016)
  14. Celebrate Divisional Successes: Create process for regularly celebrating and sharing successes within Student Life. Further contacts with University Communications to better identify and market areas of impact. Encourage division staff to nominate others for divisional, campus, and professional association recognition. (Community Building Committee; Professional Development Committee; Fall 2016)
  15. Increase Budget Process Transparency: Improve transparency of new budget request process by creating a training session on budget requests, sharing of divisional prioritized initiatives and following up on individual departmental budget requests. (Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Fall 2016)
  16. Outreach to University Partners: Increase communication of divisional initiatives to others at the university outside of the Division of Student Life and seek out faculty and staff to participate in Division of Student Life activities. (Student Life Directors; Spring 2017)
  17. Centralize New Staff Recruitment and Orientation: Establish The Recruitment and Orientation Committee as the central place for new staff recruitment. Streamline orientation process to potentially include mentorship program (among other possible initiatives), with a focus on mid-year hires. (Recruitment and Orientation Committee; Spring 2017)
  18. Host Local, Regional, and/or National Conferences: Lift Elon’s national recognition by serving as host site for local, regional, and national conferences. (Professional Development Committee; Fall 2017) 6. World-class Student Life Division (continued) Student Life Five Year Plan
  19. Increase Average Years of Staff Retention: Market and promote Program Assistant / Coordinator / Assistant Director positions as 3+ year positions, Associate Director positions as 5+ year positions, and Director positions as 8+ year positions. Track average length of stay to ensure these targets are met. (Staff Recruitment and Orientation Committee; Vice President for Student Life’s Office; Spring 2019)
  20. Comprehensive Department Reviews: Create a departmental five-year program review cycle and process to include internal, university, and/or external reviews. (Assessment Committee; Spring 2020)