Elon By Design Network

We are building a network of students, faculty, staff, and people from businesses, nonprofits, and government who are interested in learning about design thinking and using it to make things happen in the world. We send the network design thinking news, resources, event announcements, and research. Get in touch with us to get involved, receive our newsletter, or schedule a consultation.

Interested in completing an internship with the Center for Design Thinking?

We can specially design internships so they meet your professional, personal, and civic goals!

Design Thinking interns get the chance to explore how design thinking supports their academic, professional, and personal goals while supporting the Center for Design Thinking, the Elon By Design initiative, and students, staff, faculty, and community members.

As an intern, you will assist the Director and other Catalysts in achieving the mission, develop a specialty and lead the team in that area, and serve as a design thinking ambassador to Elon.

Internship opportunities include, but are not limited to:

  • Event Coordinator
  • Communication Catalyst
  • Social Media Strategist
  • Data Analyst and Strategist 
  • Videographer
  • Research Catalyst
  • Special Project Lead

Reach out to the Director, Danielle Lake, at to explore possibilities that meet your goals and check out the Elon Job Network to peruse posted positions.


Elon’s Design Thinking Catalysts are students developing ways design thinking supports their learning and goals while supporting the Center for Design Thinking, the Elon By Design Initiative, and students, staff, faculty and community members.


Creating opportunities for Elon students, faculty and staff to gain the confidence and ability to apply design thinking’s process, methods and mindset to challenges.


Assist the Director and other Catalysts in achieving the Mission; develop expertise and lead the Team in their focus area; diligently pursue the Learning; maintain a presence in the Center; serve as DT ambassadors to the Elon community; participate in delivering workshops and events


Design thinking is less about creativity and more about using discipline to direct and focus creativity. A Catalyst models this disciplined creativity for others. Each Catalyst develops a specialty then owns everything related to their specialty and leads the team in that area.

Our student staff has a wide variety of majors, interests, and backgrounds. Read more about their experiences and work with The Center for Design Thinking and Elon By Design.

Center for Design Interns

Danielle Schall ’22

Research Catalyst

Major: International Business

Minor: French, Finance

Member of: Alpha Xi Delta, French Club, Parent’s Night Out

Projects: Editor and Research Coordinator for Design Internship Team

Meg Boericke ’21

Lead Brand Strategist & Graphic Designer

Program: M.A. Interactive Media

Undergrad: BFA Dance Performance and Choreography, B.S. Strategic Communications (Elon ’20)

Projects: Center for Design Thinking brand identity, marketing, and promotional materials

Emily Prins ’23

Videography Intern

MajorJournalism, Cinema and Television Arts

MinorPolitical Science

Member ofHonors Fellows, Elon Admissions, Elon Tonight, elondocs, Elon Votes, Home is Distant Shores Film Festival

Projects: Videography and photography for the Center and associated collaboratives


Olivia James ’21

Interaction Design Lead

MajorM.A. Interactive Media

UndergradBFA Dance Performance and Choreography (Elon ’20)

Projects: Elon By Design website and Center branding

Katie Murphy ’22

Elon 101 Special Project

Major: Strategic Communications

Minor: Sport Management and Leadership Studies

Member of: Sigma Kappa, Student Union Board, Elon Volunteers!

Projects: Integrate Design Thinking into Elon 101


Katelyn Litvan ’24


MajorStrategic Communications


Member ofHonors Program, Elonthon

Projects: Author articles about events and other updates for the Center

Alexandra Strouse ’22

Communications Intern

MajorDance Performance and Choreography, Strategic Communications

Member of: Elon Dance Company, Elon’s Finest, Alpha Omicron Pi

Projects: Designing and creating visuals to support workshops, Speaker Series 2021, Power and Place Collaborative, Design Thinking research


Courtney Callahan ’22

Event Coordinator

MajorStrategic Communications

MinorProfessional Sales

Member ofZeta Tau Alpha

Projects: Design Forge 2021, Elon By Design website

Ciani Foy ’22

Communications Catalyst

MajorCommunication Design

MinorPoverty and Social Justice

Member ofThe Village Project, Global Education Center’s Communications Team

Projects: Pop-Up & Play

Sarah McDonald ’21

Communications Catalyst

MajorCommunication Design

MinorMultimedia Authoring

Member ofElon Marching Band

Student Design Thinking Catalysts

Mikayla Ford ’22

Major: Communication Design

Minor: Entrepreneurship & Photography

Member of: Limelight and Design For America

My Design Thinking Experience: I use design thinking in my entrepreneurship class to come up with new project ideas. I also use it with the on-campus organization DFA to innovate for social good.

Orlanzel Washington ’22

Photo of Orlanzel Washington

Major: Engineering

Minor: Biology

Member of: Men of Distinction

My Design Thinking Experience: Design Thinking allowed me to think in a different way about exploring more options, helping me navigate toward reaching my goals.

Brooke Galonek ’21

Photo of Brooke Galonek

Major: Strategic Communications

Minor: Professional Selling

Member of: Tri Sigma, Live Oak Communications, Communications Fellows

My Design Thinking Experience: I use Design Thinking in my classes and, as agency director of Live Oak Communications, to generate new ideas and to problem solve in order to achieve any goal.

Soniyah Robinson ’23

Soniyah Robinson

Major: Journalism

Minor: Entrepreneurship

Member of: Black Student Union Communications Committee and SMART Mentor Program

My Design Thinking Experience: Design Thinking allows me to fully evaluate problems and create innovative and effective solutions. It is useful for me in different areas academically and socially.

Isabel Manella ’21

Major: Strategic Communications

Minor: Business Administration

Member of: Phi Mu, Girls in Motion

My Design Thinking Experience: Design Thinking allows me to create a step by step vision of my ideas that have been helpful towards group projects and personal goals. Being able to use the design thinking process to map out my solution has made the process seem less overwhelming and more manageable. 

Maggie Cox ’23

Major: Engineering

Minor: Spanish

Member of: Alpha Omicron Pi, Danceworks, University Innovation Fellows

My Design Thinking Experience: Design thinking helps me efficiently understand the problem and come up with innovative solutions in my engineering courses. I hope to continue working on applying design thinking to all aspects of my life.

Jackie Baumann ’22

Major: Strategic Communications and Marketing

Member of: Business Fellows, Tri Delta

My Design Thinking Experience: I use design thinking to help visualize my future and create pathways to success in order to envision a life I actually want to live. I also use design thinking in my fellows classes, as collaborative work is essential in being successful.

Rane Parr ’24

Major: Engineering


Member of: Engineering Scholars, Club Swim, oSTEM

My Design Thinking Experience: As a Catalyst, I hope to guide others through the Design Thinking process to meet their goals in the classroom, in the workplace, and in their personal lives. After Elon, Design Thinking skills will help me develop and implement projects as an engineer.

Hannah Miller ’23

Major: Environmental and Sustainability Studies

Member of: Cross Country and Track, Elon Sustainability, Honors Fellows

My Design Thinking Experience: Design Thinking helps me break my problems down into manageable tasks. It also encourages me to be more collaborative and creative in my coursework.

Kait MacIntyre ’22

Major: Strategic Communications and Media Analytics

Member of: Elon PRSSA, Live Oak Communications, Isabella Cannon Leadership Fellows, Kernodle Center for Civic Life

My Design Thinking Experience: I became a catalyst because the process of Design Thinking perfectly mixes realistic action with creative solutions, and I think that skill should be shared with as many people as possible! Design Thinking is so flexible in my life, I use it everyday and am excited to have the opportunity to share it with others.

Danielle DaSilva ’24

Major: Applied Mathematics

Member of: Honors Fellows and Elon Volunteers

My Design Thinking Experience: Design Thinking enables me to see and solve problems in a unique way in order to better the world around me. Design Thinking enables me to set and achieve goals in order to be successful both in the classroom and in life.

Ellie Levine ’22

Major: Marketing


Member of: Sigma Kappa, Sigma Iota Epsilon (Business Fraternity), Challah for Hunger

My Design Thinking Experience: Design Thinking helps me throughout my daily life. With Design Thinking, I am able to look at any problem or roadblock in my life and figure out a creative and efficient solution to those issues. I hope that as I continue to think in this way, it will help me succeed in my academics, but also my social life experiences.

Sonali Schroder ’24

Major: Arts Administration

MinorArt, Spanish

Member of: EMPRESS, Elon College Fellows, El Centro, SMART

My Design Thinking Experience: Design thinking has helped me conceptualize and understand everything from my school assignments to my biggest life goals. By using design thinking, I can craft meaningful experiences and design the life I want to live.

Sarah Gaynor ’24

Major: Engineering


Member of: Club Soccer, Women in Computer Science

My Design Thinking Experience: What I love most about design thinking is that it celebrates creativity, promotes change, and brings people together by valuing differences in thought.


Design for America (DfA) is a student-led and faculty-mentored organization that focuses on tackling social challenges on campus and in the community using the design thinking process. DfA Elon is one of 40 university studios across the U.S. Since its launch in 2019, DfA Elon has led two projects: an accessibility map for visitors to the Elon campus and a YMCA Innovation Project. Currently, DfA is working on a partnership with Elon Academy to support high school students’ mental health. Contact us to learn more or join Elon’s DfA studio team!

Get in touch to learn more about how you can get involved with DfA.

Three Design For America students walking through the Elon University campus.Three Design for America students working in the Center for Design ThinkingTwo Design For America students working in the Center for Design Thinking at Elon University.