Humans of Etown: Elise Stendal

Meet Elise

The first year of college brings feelings of nervousness and excitement as students embark on a new chapter of their life. Elise Mohr Stendal is finishing up her first year and has gained more confidence not only as a student, but as an individual.


Stendal is from Chambersburg Pennsylvania and is a psychology major. She hopes to become a clinical psychologist after she graduates from college. This would allow her to work with adults with any mental health disorder. “I want to help them express themselves and relieve their pain,” Stendal said. She also currently has a minor in Peace and Conflict because she is very passionate about inclusion and love.

Stendal is also passionate about music. She reflects on how music has affected her life. “Well, music has played a role my life because it has helped me get though anxiety, I’ve been able to play with my dad, that’s a way we connect, I like using it to bring joy to other people,” Stendal said. However, music isn’t her first priority. She plays in her free time while focusing on getting a psychology degree. She does not want to peruse music as a career, but if “something happens, it happens.”

A quality about herself that she values is her ability to be nonjudgmental. “I’m very sensitive and it’s really hard for me to think badly of you, it would take a lot for me to think badly of you,” Stendal says. This can be seen by her friend Andrea Grey. “Before we meet new people, she is also very optimistic and opened minded. She is a very accepting person. She has inspired me to try to be more like that and not hold people to expectations before even meeting them,” Grey said.

Time at Etown

She came to Elizabethtown College because she liked the fact that it is a liberal Arts school. Going along with her minor of peace building, Stendal enjoys how Etown was built for equality. Receiving a scholarship was also a factor when it came time to choose a college. Her favorite aspect about Etown is how beautiful the campus is. “It’s pretty on the outside and on the inside,” Stendal said.

One of her favorite memories since she has been at Etown was when she participated in Etown’s Got Talent. She performed an original song and got second place. She enjoyed playing for people, including her parents who came to watch her perform. “Rising,” the song that she performed, is written about how she overcame her anxiety. A professional music video of her song can be found on YouTube.

Fun Facts

Some fun facts about Stendal include that fact that she is Norwegian. She really values her heritage and visits her family often. She enjoys traveling and has been to Europe more than ten times. She is very close with her family. Her dad is a pilot and her mom is a behavior consultant. Her mom works with kids at their homes and at their school. Along with guitar, she plays the piano and ukulele. She plays all of her instruments by ear.

Looking at the different people of Etown, Stendal’s positive personality stands out as she brightens the lives of those around her.

HUMANS OF ETOWN: Justin Sutton

Why did you decide to come to Elizabthtown College to play basketball?

“I chose to play basketball at Elizabethtown College because it had a quiet, calm, laid back setting that was conducive to how I navigate my regular everyday life. I knew Elizabethtown was going to be temporary, but the athletics at this school taught me a lot.”

How was your transition from Philadelphia to here?

“Academically, the transition went pretty smoothly since the college academic schedule is easier than high school. Athletically, however, I had a bit of a rough transition even though I learned fast. I learned that college basketball plays are not easy to remember and that regardless of the level you play on, you still have to be in top condition and give a consistent effort.”


Maddie Lasko, a junior Psychology major, works on homework in the fourth floor of High Library.

“My favorite Etown memory was when I became the top 200 breaststroker on my swim team. I had only swam the 200 breaststroke twice before and I was going to have to swim being the only member of my team since one of my teammates was sick. I was super nervous but it was better that no one else from the other team wanted to swim it either. After I finished the race I didn’t understand why my teammates were so excited since I was in so much pain I thought I did terrible. But I actually ended up dropping ten seconds off my best time. This time had me ranked as the top girl on my team for 200 breaststroke which had never happened before and it made me super excited.”


Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania Citizen Journalism