#ElonGrad 2020 Spotlight: Jacob Hayward, Sociology and Policy Studies

In this series, Elon College, the College of Arts and Sciences is shining the spotlight on distinguished members of the Class of 2020 from a wide array of disciplines.

Jacob Hayward

A sociology and policy studies double-major with minors in criminal justice studies, anthropology and political science, Hayward earned the Sociology and Anthropology Department’s Outstanding Senior Award for the Class of 2020.

What drew you to sociology and policy studies?

I was drawn to my majors by a desire to understand how the relationships between people shape our world and how they can be used to create change.

What was your research topic and how did you choose that subject?

My sociology research project was an examination of emotion management among parents at Walt Disney World, inspired by my J-term trip there with the Science of Happiness course. I was scheduled to present the research at the Southern Sociological Society conference, but it was canceled due to COVID-19.

What has been your proudest accomplishment while at Elon?

My proudest accomplishment is serving as president of our mock trial team, as that organization really helped me develop a passion while at Elon.

Who was your mentor, and how did that relationship enrich your education?

My mentor was Associate Professor of Sociology Alexis Franzese, and she was a big help in making me feel like I was competent in discussing sociology.

What are your future plans?

I will be attending Northeastern University School of Law starting this fall and I hope to work as a post-conviction attorney in the future.

What advice would you give to future Elon students?

I would recommend every Elon student complete some type of research project, as it is a very informative and rewarding experience.

What is your favorite Elon tradition?

My favorite Elon tradition is probably the luminaries, because I have fond memories of attending them with my mock trial teammates every year.