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Elon names inaugural Leadership Prize recipients

A new award provides students with $10,000 to research and understand problems of interest to them and then use their leadership abilities to test potential solutions.

Three Elon University juniors have been named recipients of the 2014 Leadership Prize, a top university award that comes with $10,000 to support research into social or community problems and the development of programs to help address those ills.

Sponsored by the Office of the Provost and the Division of Student Life, the prize is open to students of any major. Funding will support projects in a variety of manners such as data collection, travel, pilot programs and leadership development activities. A portion of the award may also be used toward tuition.

The Leadership Prize incorporates intellectual inquiry, the study of leadership theory, proposed solutions and the implementation of those solutions over the three semesters of its application. Applicants should possess a 3.50 or higher GPA, be in good standing with the university, and have sought a faculty member to mentor their work.

Jenna Nelson '16

Rachel Weeks '16 and Tony Weaver Jr. '16
"Our first Leadership Prize awardees stood out from our talented group of applicants by articulating the most novel and sophisticated ways to study their issues and by best describing how their research may direct testable solutions," said Robert Moorman, Elon University’s Frank S. Holt Jr. Professor of Business Leadership and the Leadership Prize coordinator.

The 2014 winners are:

Jenna Nelson
Public Health Studies
Project Title: "Facilitating Sexual and Reproductive Health Discussions between Health Care Providers and Adolescents"
Mentor: Cynthia Fair

Tony Weaver Jr.
Strategic Communications
Project Title: "Producing Diversity: Transforming the Image of African Americans in Television"
Mentor: Naeemah Clark

Rachel Weeks
Project Title: "Active Bystander Intervention as a Means of Reducing Sexual Assault on Campus"
Mentor: Paula Patch

Applications represented academic disciplines such as business and social entrepreneurship, public health and environmental sciences, international business and leadership, communications and African-American Studies, and religion and leadership.

“The selection committee and I were very pleased with our inaugural applications for the Leadership Prize.  All our applicants argued persuasively for the significance of their issue of choice and for why its solution is worthy of study.  We were impressed with the passionate way our applicants sought both to understand their issues fully and then use that knowledge to put real solutions into action.”

Faculty members on the selection committee for 2014-2015:

Lucinda Austin (Communications)
Cynthia Fair (Human Service Studies)
Mary Jo Festle (History)
Eugene Grimley (Chemistry)
Robert Moorman (Business)

Eric Townsend,
12/2/2014 9:00 AM