The Center for Design Thinking launches ‘Mentoring Constellations’ workshop

The workshop is making a difference for Elon and Alamance County communities and is specially designed to help participants generate a mentoring constellation, explore opportunities for enhancing their connections and leave with next-step strategies for cultivating a lifelong network of support.

With 15 sessions reaching more than 150 people this fall, the Center for Design Thinking has officially launched its Mentoring Constellations workshop with support from the ACE Mentoring for Learner Success effort, the Center for Engaged Learning and Relationship-Rich Education outreach efforts.

This workshop highlights the importance of having mentors and positive relationships. It also helps participants explore how they might grow a constellation of mentors and integrate design strategies for their future growth.

As part of its Boldly Elon strategic plan launched in 2020, Elon took the next steps to implement a mentoring model in which all students will learn to build meaningful mentoring constellations that include near peers, staff, faculty and communities beyond the university. As written in the strategic plan, “this lifelong constellation of mentors will emerge as a hallmark of an Elon education, guiding reflection to integrate learning across students’ educational and professional trajectories and engaging all students in developing essential skills and fluencies to shape the future.”

The Mentoring Constellations workshop given by Design Thinking Catalysts has the power to help students, faculty and community members. Commenting on the “ACE Mentoring for Learner Success” study led by Maureen Vandermaas-Peeler, W. Brad Johnson, a professor at the U.S. Naval Academy and John Hopkins University stated, “No other institution is looking at mentoring with this intensity, particularly using the constellation model. This report makes the mentoring work that is already happening at Elon explicit. The Relationship-Rich Mentoring Map also is excellent and should be helpful for prospective mentors.”

The Center for Design Thinking is passionate about utilizing its unique skills to make a difference not only on Elon’s campus, but also across the Alamance community.

In addition to working with Elon students this fall, Design Thinking Catalysts have been working closely with K.I.N.G.’s Academy. K.I.N.G.’s Academy is a local mentoring program for boys aged 9-13 in the local Burlington community. Students Adam Kankowitz ‘24 and Hugh Goldstein ‘23 are exploring the importance of mentors with youth, generating ideas with them on how to build connections, as well as prototyping strategies for failing forward through fun, interactive games allowing the boys to take away key information.

The center has also had the chance to support a range of courses and programs, including Elon’s Freedom Scholars, Elon 1010 and Core 1100.

The center is extremely excited to offer a mentoring constellation workshop adapted to the goals of participants. To find out more about how to request this workshop and what it entails, visit the Elon By Design website.