Call to Honor celebrates Elon values of honesty, integrity, responsibility and respect

The annual program for first-year Elon students held Oct. 4 includes a pledge to uphold these four virtues that are central to the Elon Honor Code. 

The Class of 2022 gathered Thursday to affirm their commitment to four values that are central to the Elon Honor Code — honesty, integrity, responsibility and respect — during the 13th annual Call to Honor ceremony.

These newest Elon students learned about the impact that adhering to these core values can have on their academic careers as well as their professional and personal lives after they leave Elon from speakers including Student Government Association President Kenneth Brown Jr., youth trustee Caroline Dean ’18 and President Connie Ledoux Book. At the conclusion of the ceremony, first-year students signed their names to pledge thir commitment to uphold the code in the years ahead and received a coin inscribed with “honor” as a reminder of that pledge.

SGA President Kenneth Brown Jr. 

“Today we come together to celebrate our commitment to academic citizenship and to the values that bind us together as members of the Elon University community,” Brown told the students gathered in Alumni Gym during the Oct. 4 event. “Elon’s academic and social honor codes have been joined into a unified code to remind us that Elon’s principles of honor apply to us both on and off the campus.”

Caroline Dean ’18

In her remarks, Dean noted that during her time as an Elon undergraduate, she herself faced the daunting task of living up to the high standards of the Elon Honor Code. Looking at each element in its simplest form and striving to impart them into all aspects of your life make the entirety of the Elon Honor Code easier to live up to, Dean said.

“While it may seem like a daunting, implausible code of ethics, you can make a small checklist of simple ways to have a little more honor each and every day and eventually, almost unconsciously, it will start to come naturally to you,” Dean said.

That includes not lying, striving to live a complete life, not exempting yourself from the people and challenges around you and not being rude, Dean said. “Do not disservice yourself by existing as an island while you live within walking distance from all of your closest friends,” she said. “Take ownership of your place within this community and enjoy the good company.”

Each class at Elon is linked to one pillar of the Elon Honor Code, with student leaders from each class rising during the ceremony to sign their names to the Honor Code book as a sign of their commitment to these values.

The Class of 2022 is now specially bound to the honor code pillar of “respect,” with Class President Lauryn Adams explaining that “respect is an essential component of living in community and is foundational to living an honest, ethical life in which we accept responsibility for the effects of our behavior on others. Without respect, none of us can reach our full potential and the community  as a whole suffers.”

Lauryn Adams, president of the Class of 2022

President Book led the students in the recitation of the “Call to Honor”:

Student leaders from the Class of 2022 signing Elon’s Honor Code book during the ceremony.

Today we are entrusted with the honorable legacy of Elon University, dedicated to the intellectual, personal and spiritual growth of all its members, to the advancement of knowledge for the good of all, and to the service of local, national and global communities. To that end, we affirm our commitment to the core values of our university:

  • We commit ourselves to honesty, being truthful in our academic work and in our relationship with others. 
  • We commit ourselves to show integrity, being trustworthy, fair and ethical. 
  • We commit ourselves to responsibility, being accountable for our actions and for our learning. 
  • We commit ourselves to respect, being civil, valuing the dignity of each person, and respecting the physical and intellectual property of others.

With these commitments we join generations of Elon students as bearers of its honor.  

“We have pledged our commitment to live these Elon values,” President Book said. “On behalf of the university, I pledge to you that Elon will do its part to challenge you to grow intellectually, socially and spiritually.”