Elon University / Today at Elon / Replogles partners with Wolfspeed to support Innovation Quad, scholarships
Elon’s parents, John and Kristin Replogle P’18, of Raleigh, North Carolina, and Wolfspeed, Inc., a world leader in silicon carbide and GaN technologies, have come together to make generous donations to to support Elon’s Innovation Quad. The IQ will lay the foundation for a dynamic, multidisciplinary STEM education at Elon with connections to business, entrepreneurship, science, and humanities. IQ is one of the top priorities of the $250 million Elon LEADS campaign.
In addition to supporting the construction of the Innovation Quad, the donations will establish the Wolfspeed Scholarship to assist students in Elon’s Engineering Scholars Program, a selective, merit-based program for engineering majors. Preference for the scholarship will be given to students who are the first in their family to attend college or who otherwise bring diversity to the Engineering Scholars program and/or Elon’s student body. Scholars will receive a one-time global scholarship and internship opportunities at Wolfspeed after their second year.
Scheduled to open in August 2022, the Innovation Quad’s first two buildings, Founders Hall and IQ2, represent the heart of IQ and the initial phase of Elon’s long-term investment in science, creativity and discovery that will be available to students in any major.
“On behalf of the Elon community, I would like to thank the Replogle family and Wolfspeed for their partnership and investment in Quad Innovation,” said President Connie Ledoux Book. “Providing resources for exceptional facilities, scholarships and internships will enable Elon students to make meaningful contributions to society through STEM innovation.”
As founding chairman and current member of Elon’s Engineering Advisory Board, John Replogle has had a front-row seat to planning the university’s four-year engineering program and IQ. This perspective combined with Elon’s commitment to cross-disciplinary studies between STEM, science and business inspired the couple’s gift.
“How exciting to have a blank canvas to bring a new program and facility to life. For me, it was an exciting and creative process,” Replogle said. “IQ is fundamental to truly elevating Elon’s excellence in STEM. Just as Elon is at the next level in areas such as communications and business, I hope the engineering and IQ program will propel Elon to a higher rung in STEM.
Replogle is impressed with Elon’s growing four-year engineering program, which is the cornerstone of STEM studies.
“With the liberal arts at its core, we will develop a different kind of engineer, a generalist engineer who has the ability to bring interdisciplinary thinking to problem solving,” Replogle said. “I think it’s an exciting brand of engineering that is distinctive to Elon. I also think that engineering at Elon creates better human beings.
Replogle sits on the board of Wolfspeed, formerly known as Cree, and shared his enthusiasm for IQ and engineering at Elon with the company’s CEO, Gregg Lowe. Lowe said he was motivated to join the Replogues to “invest in the next generation of thinkers” at Elon.
“Our company grew out of a lab on a college campus, so we understand the importance of fostering curiosity, risk-taking, and creative thinking in young adults,” Lowe said. “We believe that Quad Innovation’s focus on expanding experiential learning for students will create talented and informed young professionals who will become the next leaders in our industry. We plan to further support these efforts by connecting students and graduates to internships and new grad positions at Wolfspeed, where we know they will add value to our teams through their innovative spirit and enthusiasm. .
Lowe also understands the importance of the Wolfspeed scholarship in expanding access to Elon.
“Higher education is an extraordinary investment and for some, a heavy burden that can impact a student’s ability to take advantage of all the opportunities it has to offer,” Lowe said. “We hope our contribution will enable more students to have educational experiences that might otherwise be unavailable to them.”
Wolfspeed has been a committed corporate partner of the Elon Student Professional Development Center since 2019, providing student internships and participating in university career fairs. Lowe looks forward to deepening this partnership at a time of rapid growth for Wolfspeed, driven by the acceleration of the markets they serve, including electric vehicles, renewable energy, 5G and a wide range of industrial applications.
“In addition to investments in technology and capabilities, we are investing in integrating the people and brains our business will need to realize our vision and succeed,” Lowe said. “We are constantly striving to educate the next generation by increasing opportunities for STEM education students that prepare them for employment opportunities in technology. We look forward to meeting some of Elon’s students personally and learning from their new perspectives and ideas. »
Brooke Buffington, Director of Elon’s Student Professional Development Center, said she was thrilled at the opportunity to deepen her relationship with Wolfspeed.
“Company partners like Wolfspeed are integral to sustaining the success our students achieve after graduation,” Buffington said. “Engineering continues to be one of the most in-demand fields in the country, and internships are an essential part of preparing students for highly sought-after careers in STEM.”
Quad Innovation: A Transformative Investment in Elon’s Future
IQ is located between the Dalton L. McMichael Sr. Science Center, Richard W. Sankey Hall, and the Ernest A. Koury Sr. Business Center, strengthening connections between STEM and science, entrepreneurship, sales, conceptual thinking and analysis.
Founders Hall was made possible by a naming donation from Elon Furman Moseley ’56 alumnus and his wife, Susan Moseley, who are among the university’s most generous donors. The 20,000 square foot building is designed to allow engineering students and professors to turn bold ideas into prototypes. It will include several laboratories, including those for design, advanced prototyping, astrophysics, prefabrication, mechatronics and virtual reality. A two-story assembly space will be a hub for innovation and the backbone of Elon’s engineering program.
The three-story, 40,000 square foot IQ2 will house studies, equipment and interdisciplinary research in biomedicine, computer science, physics and robotics. The facility also includes state-of-the-art flexible classrooms for biophysics and physics, and lab space for basic engineering courses, bioinstrumentation, environmental engineering research, biomedical and environmental labs. Future phases of IQ will include residence halls and residence halls, as well as a series of corporate-sponsored incubators and design centers that will deepen cross-disciplinary study and collaboration.
In addition to being a key priority of the Elon LEADS campaign, IQ is central to the goals of Boldly Elon, the university’s 10-year strategic plan.
Past Presidents of Elon’s Parent Council, Kristin and John Replogle have a long history of philanthropy in education, health care, housing and the arts. In addition to their IQ gift, they contributed to Elon’s greatest needs and donated to name the reception space at The Inn at Elon. In 2020, the couple established the Elizabeth “Tate” Replogle Endowment for Team Teaching in Religious Studies in honor of their daughter, who graduated from Elon in 2018 with a degree in Religious Studies. After making a generous estate donation, the Replogues became members of the Order of the Oak, Elon’s planned giving society.
John is the founder and partner of Raleigh-based One Better Ventures, which advises, invests and grows consumer brands with sustainable business models, including Burt’s Bees and Seventh Generation. He regularly engages with students on campus as a guest speaker and, along with Kristin, has organized summer welcome events for new Elon families in the Raleigh area. Kristin Replogle is president of the Replogle Family Foundation.
Wolfspeed is the market leader in global adoption of silicon carbide and GaN technologies, providing industry-leading solutions for efficient energy consumption and a sustainable future. Wolfspeed’s product families include silicon carbide materials, power switching devices and RF devices for various applications such as electric vehicles, fast charging, 5G, renewable energy and storage, as well as aerospace and defence.
About the Elon LEADS Campaign
With a goal of $250 million, Elon LEADS is the largest fundraising campaign in the history of the university and will support four main priorities: scholarships for the graduates the world needs, access to engaged learning such as study abroad, research and internships, faculty and staff support. mentors that matter and Elon’s iconic campus. As of March 21, donors had contributed $242 million towards the overall goal.
Every donation to the university – including annual, endowment, capital, estate and other planned gifts – for any designation counts as a donation to the campaign, which will support students and strengthen Elon for generations to come. To learn more about how you can make an impact, visit www.elonleads.com.