The vision for the Noel Studio for Academic Creativity began when a plan to relocate the Writing Center (WC) to Crabbe Library was an intended outcome of an internship between the former WC Director and the former Dean of Libraries (2002-2003). This collaboration led to the formation of a taskforce of dedicated faculty members from the Department of English & Theatre, the Department of Communications, and EKU Libraries committed to replacing the traditional writing center with a studio approach integrating writing, research, and communication services in EKU’s Crabbe Library. The studio idea garnered immediate support from all University departments and the President, and planning began to take place among campus leaders.

In 2006, the Studio became a part of the University’s QEP (Quality Enhancement Plan) through the SACS (Southern Association of Colleges and Schools) accreditation process. A generous donation from EKU Alumni Ron and Sherrie Lou Noel in 2008 transformed the initiative from idea to reality, and construction began on the unique 10,000-square-foot space at the heart of the Crabbe Library the following year.

The Noel Studio opened to serve the EKU community on September 20, 2010.  Staffed by highly trained student employees, the Noel Studio began offering consultations, workshops, and interactive sessions on subjects ranging from integrating creativity into the classroom to writing for the web and conducting academic research.

The Noel Studio continues to grow, in 2013 expanding its programs to include a Minor in ACT (Applied Creative Thinking), the OUR (Office of Undergraduate Research) and the TLC (Teaching and Learning Center).