Elon law and undergraduate students collaborate to explore social justice

On Oct. 8, Elon Law's Leadership Fellows hosted a forum for more than 30 undergraduate Leadership Fellows from Elon University to discuss social justice issues. The theme of the forum was,"Think Globally, Act Locally."

Elon Law Leadership Fellow Jason Senges

The day long event involved identifying social problems in local communities and developing action plans to address these problems, as well as looking to examples in history of those who made a difference globally by acting locally.

“Using the first-year winter term leadership course as model, the fellows created a program that would allow undergraduates working with law students to think about and discuss social justice and the means to achieving large scale change on a local level,” said Jason Senges, a member of the Class of 2013 and a Leadership Fellow at Elon Law.

The event began with an introduction by law school dean George R. Johnson, Jr.

“Dean Johnson spoke about the importance of identifying and addressing social issues in our society,” said Senges. “He emphasized the impact individuals can have on social justice through local action.”

“Dean Johnson’s greeting and welcome of the undergraduate fellows set the tone for the long-term ambitions of this event, which was to establish a connection with and to the Elon family at large,” said Karima Grady, also a member of the Class of 2013 and a Leadership Fellow at the law school.

Heather Scavone, Clinical Practitioner in Residence at Elon Law, gave a keynote speech in the afternoon about the Humanitarian Immigration Law Clinic at the law school. She described the clinic’s creation and the needs of the people it assists.

Elon Law Leadership Fellow Karima Grady

Following Scavone’s remarks, the forum consisted of breakout groups identifying local means to address global issues. All breakout groups created an action plan addressing the issue they identified and how to affect change in their community. These action plans were then presented to all participants in the forum for feedback and discussion.

“We chose this program because we wanted to open the door to consistent and content-rich collaboration with our counterparts at the undergraduate level,” said law school Leadership Fellow Chantelle Lytle L’13. “The forum was my first exposure to undergraduate Leadership Fellows. Through the program, I was able to interact with young rising leaders, and as a group, we were all able to learn something valuable from each other.”

Elon Law Leadership Fellow Chantelle Lytle

Senges said that the law school’s Leadership Fellows are hoping to bring undergraduate Leadership Fellows to the school every fall for similar events.

Click here for information on the Leadership Fellows program at Elon Law.

Click here for information on the Leadership Fellows program at Elon University.