The Literary Societies of Elon College

Randall Bowman
December 13, 2013

Clio Society, 1920s

Clio Society, 1920s

In 1913, the first yearbook was published at Elon College, the PhiPsiCli.  The name was derived from the three literary societies that existed at Elon during its early years; the Philologian, Psiphelian, and Clio Societies.  These three organizations were founded soon after the college opened its doors; like most college literary societies, they no longer exist. Literary societies were a mainstay of college life from the colonial era to the early twentieth century.  Often just called “societies,” they usually had names derived from either Latin or Greek.  Societies organized debates and social events, and members wrote original compositions such as essays, poetry, and music.   Since most college graduates were men who went into law, the ministry, or teaching, literary society activities supplemented the classical education students received.   Their debates gave members the chance to practice their oratory and rhetorical skills. Continue reading

State of the art: The Carol Grotnes Belk Library

Randall Bowman
December 6, 2013

Belk Library, 2002

Belk Library, 2002

By the mid-1990s, it was very obvious that the Iris Holt McEwen Library was woefully inadequate to serve as Elon College’s library.  The college was growing and progressing as an institution; the student body was not only increasing in size, but in quality.  Planning began to build an innovative library that would be a key component of Elon’s increasing emphasis on engaged learning.  Fundraising for the new library was part of the Elon Vision, a five-year, $40 million strategic plan for strengthening academic programs.  An Elon Vision brochure established that this library would be something new.  “The new library will be located at the center of campus, serving as a dynamic intellectual hub between instructional facilities to the south and residential halls to the north.  This 75,000 square foot facility will combine the traditional library collection with the latest electronic information capabilities and an array of services that support students and faculty.” Continue reading