Group discusses campus safety

first_imgThe members of Campus Life Council discussed on-campus safety at its meeting Friday afternoon. While crime numbers are not high or increasing, student body president Brett Rocheleau said students are still often afraid to walk around campus alone at night. “We should try to minimize that fear,” Rocheleau said. Multiple campus resources are aimed at keeping the grounds safe and comfortable, he said, but the student body does not have a widespread awareness of their presence. “Whatever we do or whatever we have, it’s publicizing it [that is the issue],” Howard rector Margaret Morgan said. She said students need to know Notre Dame Security Police (NDSP), the Quad Squad and Safewalk protect the campus. Rector Maria Hinton of Cavanaugh said the Quad Squad consists of several officers who are assigned to monitor the various quads. “They walk constantly, all night long,” she said. “Their shifts run from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. and they stop in the halls and check their basements.” Night monitors were also recently reinstated in all women’s halls this year. Morgan said these officers sit in the lobbies of the residence buildings in order to instill a sense of security. An additional safety device is the blue light phone. These emergency phones are located in various areas of campus, such as near the lakes and along the edge of campus by Stepan Fields. But chief of staff Katie Baker said NDSP does not advocate the phones as a strong form of crime prevention. “They don’t get used really and don’t deter crime,” Baker said. Rocheleau said one way to perhaps deter crime would be to expand the number of video cameras on campus, although Notre Dame already has several located on buildings overlooking the parking lots. Another idea to improve campus safety was to increase lighting around campus. Junior James Slaven, Student Union Board director of publicity, said the construction area around the Morris Inn is a safe walking area. He said the constant, bright lights allow students to feel safe at night, but the downside is the annoyance they cause to nearby dorms. “We need to find a balance between no lights and floodlights,” he said. Areas specified for increased lighting included God Quad, the crosswalks leading to Saint Mary’s and the paths around the Pasquerilla East and West areas. Baker said these locations deal with a large amount of student traffic even at night. “We mentioned putting reflectors on those crosswalks so they stand out more,” she said. Walsh Hall senator Veronica Guerrero said the issue of safety also requires common sense. For instance, students should not go on midnight runs around the lakes. “You have to be aware of your surroundings,” she said. In order to be fully aware, Rocheleau said it is also important to notice large sidewalk cracks and flooding around campus. Although the climate makes it difficult to maintain quality sidewalks, Rocheleau said the university acknowledges the problem and is trying to address it. “They’ve asked us to talk to people and get a list of specific areas,” Baker said.last_img read more

Alums recall effects of proposed merger in ’71

first_imgEditor’s note: This is the first in a five-day series discussing the role of women at Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s, in honor of the 40th anniversary of coeducation at the University this year. As Notre Dame celebrates 40 years of coeducation, Saint Mary’s alumnae still remember a time when the two schools considered merging to create one Catholic college for both men and women under the Holy Cross order. While the merger fell apart in 1971, College archivist John Kovach said he believes the merger was a good idea at first. “At the time I definitely think it made sense to merge,” Kovach said. “In theory, however, the colleges quickly found out that no one wanted to lose and in situations such as this, one college was going to lose. “When looking at this era of the merger there were over 300 women’s colleges, that number has increasingly gone down. Today, it is a very unique choice to come to a women’s college.” A spring 1983 issue of The Courier, Saint Mary’s alumnae magazine, offered a timeline of the events leading up to the failed merger. Beginning in September 1965, the universities introduced a new co-exchange program through which students could take courses at either college, the timeline stated. This program marked a new beginning for the long-standing relationship of the two campuses since crossover classes for students on the neighboring campuses had not been an opportunity before. By May of 1969, Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame agreed to expand the co-exchange program. The colleges modified the freshman liberal arts curriculum to be consistent across campuses, introduced integrated dining options and seating at athletic events and synced academic calendars. While these measures hinted at a potential merger, both University President Emeritus Fr. Theodore Hesburgh and President Emeritus Monsignor John McGrath, presidents of the respective colleges at the time, issued a joint statement denying any rumors of a merger at the time. Senior Jessica Lopez, who studied the non-merger for over a year for her senior comprehensive project, said she believes the colleges considered the merger primarily for the benefit of Notre Dame students’ gender relations. “I found that it seemed what Notre Dame was interested in was what all-male colleges used in order to combine with a sister school,” Lopez said. “They would say they wanted to use the merger to act as a civilizing influence to prepare for real world interactions with women. Saint Mary’s would have given those benefits to Notre Dame.” In her findings, Lopez saw a diversity of opinions among students and faculty at the time. “There were some strong sentiments from students and some faculty,” Lopez said. “Some didn’t consider it a good option for Saint Mary’s. Even at Notre Dame people were against the merger. Fr. James Burtchaell, provost at Notre Dame during that time, asserted that Notre Dame did not need to merge with Saint Mary’s, but rather the College needed to merge with Notre Dame to survive.” According to the timeline, in May of 1971, the Boards of Trustees at both institutions formally approved plans to seek unification. According to a statement from that time, “the ultimate goal of this unification is a single institution with one student body of men and women, one faculty, one president and administration and one board of trustees.” The statement noted the preservation of Saint Mary’s identity would be by the matriculation of all women undergraduates of the University through Saint Mary’s as the college of record. It also recognized the importance of financial viability of any plan to merge the two institutions. According to a statement from the Board of Trustees from Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s, the ultimate goal of this unification was to form a single institution with one student body of men and women, one faculty, one president and administration and one Board of Trustees. “Unification of all academic departments of ND and SMC should be accomplished by the start of 1972-73,” the statement said. “The academic year 1974-75 is the target date for the completion of unification, but it is hoped that it might be accomplished even before that time.” However, by November of 1971, Mother Olivette Whalen and Edmund Stephan, chairpersons of the Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame Board of Trustees, respectively, issued a joint statement announcing the two institutions would “indefinitely suspend unification negotiation,” because organizers were “unable to solve financial and administrative problems.” Reconciling the financial differences between the two school’s budgets and pay to their employees, as well as the logistics in combining all the schools’ academic programs without losing any employees, became too difficult. Soon after, Notre Dame announced plans to begin accepting women directly. “Things started falling through,” Lopez said. “By December, all negotiations broke down. The administrations sent a letter to female applicants saying they could apply to both Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s or one or the other. There was another attempt to reopen negotiations the next year but nothing happened.” While a second attempt at a merger would be made the following year, Kovach said nothing materialized. “I think for something that is so important to the history of Saint Mary’s, I am surprised that so many decades later there still seems to be this aura of silence around the subject,” Kovach said. “The non-merger, I think, is the most important part of our college. We wouldn’t be here today, at least in this setting. We really bucked a trend and have proved successful. This success, I think is due to the leadership at the college. A merger wouldn’t have been an equal setting at all.” “There was a slow movement and sad decline in interest,” Lopez said. “Overall, there was no climactic point to the merger becoming a non-merger, the outcome just slopes downward.” Many students of the Class of 1975 accepted the offer to come to Saint Mary’s under the assumption the College would be merging with Notre Dame their freshman year, however. This caused for mixed feelings among the student body. “Mostly I remember the anger, disappointment and frustration when the merger didn’t go through,” Mary Meruisse Richardson, a 1975 alumna, said. “I remember the song, ‘There’s a Riot Going On’ wafting out from dorm windows.  I felt betrayed because I had accepted to come expecting the merger to go through and then it didn’t. When the merger fell apart, many of my friends transferred to ND. It split up our class and that was hard.” Mary-Margaret Anthonie Ney, also a 1975 alumna, said emotions ran high after the non-merger went public. “In some old editions of The Observer they covered many protests. We even made national news,” Ney said. “When it first happened, there was lot of resentment. … We never really heard a good explanation for why it was called off. It settled down after a while, though, and people made decisions. I chose to stay at Saint Mary’s as [a] Spanish major, which worked out really well for me. My roommate transferred to Notre Dame because her major found a better fit there.” Class of 1975 alumna Jeanne Murabito said at first she had mixed feelings about the merger cancellation, but later decided she was pleased with the outcome. “I knew I could take classes at Notre Dame and be a part of that social life,” Murabito said. “I chose not to transfer after my freshman year although some of my friends did. At first I was upset about it, but now I realize I had the best of both worlds. I was a humanistic studies major and I couldn’t get that anywhere else. The professors’ personal commitment to the College was extraordinary. I do not regret my decision to stay at the College.” Amy Dardinger, assistant director of reunion giving, said many alumna from the Class of 1975 are overcoming the emotions of the non-merger and are giving back to the College more. “Many of them have come to the point that they appreciate that Saint Mary’s is still here,” she said. Because many women’s colleges merged with brother institutions at this time, most alumnae of these institutions find themselves returning to a fundamentally different college. “Now I think many alums return to the College and think ‘How lucky are we that we are able to return to a single-sex institution?’” Kovach said. “So many women’s colleges at this time merged with partner institutions and I think Saint Mary’s is very lucky to have not merged. I think that time has made some folks open their eyes to what the consequences of the merger really could have been. This really shaped the identity of the College.” Many alumnae of the college and that Class of 1975 said they are thankful Saint Mary’s remained independent. “It worked out very well for me,” Ney said. “I love Saint Mary’s, it’s a great place and I felt like I grew up there and became my own person. I am still very proud of Saint Mary’s.” Contact Jillian Barwick at [email protected] and Kaitlyn Rabach at [email protected]last_img read more

Alumnus speaks on U.S., India Relationship

first_imgNotre Dame alumnus Tim Roemer spoke Wednesday about the advances in technology that have transformed interaction and communication between the United States and India. Roemer, a Notre Dame alumnus, former U.S. Congressman [D-IN-3] and former Ambassador to India, spoke on the nature and importance of the United States’ interactions with India. The lecture, titled “Twitter, Buffett, and Darwin: India and the United States Relationship,” was the second installment of the Distinguished Lecture Series, co-sponsored by the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. As India’s economy develops and its middle class grows and becomes more and more successful, Roemer said the country is becoming one of the biggest markets in the region for innovative technology. India also is home to a large number of English speakers and maintains a good relationship with the U.S, Roemer said. The region as a whole has an emerging middle class that is bigger than the entire U.S. population, he said. To illustrate the opportunities technology provides to that middle class, Roemer showed a photograph of a woman wearing traditional dress, carrying a metal pot on her head and talking on a cell phone, which he said would have cost $15. The woman, Roemer said, along with a hundred others, was transporting dirt from a construction site. “She is a small-business owner,” Roemer said. “She’s on this phone while she’s working at this job, and she is calling, as a small-business owner who grows flowers – she on that phone is hiring two new people because she just got a text from Twitter that the price of flowers has gone down, and she can afford two new employees. … That phone is life-changing for that woman, as a business owner.” Roemer said the elevation of millions of people from poverty to the middle class has impacted hugely both business and trade. If India’s economy continues to grow – which, he said, is not guaranteed – multinational firms are going to shift their focus to Asian markets. “If you are an international business and you want to succeed in the next 30 or 40 years, are you going to keep selling in the U.S. and EU and depend on 50, 60, 70 percent of your sales there, or are you going to expand into those markets right there?” Roemer said. “That’s this middle-class migration that is absolutely essential for the U.S. to get a hold of, to understand, and to entice our manufacturing companies to create jobs here . . . there is a real incentive, given these trends, to do more and more manufacturing in the U.S. and export these products into these new middle-class markets so you can see the resurgence of American products in the U.S.” Roemer said that the development maintenance of a good relationship between the U.S. and India, especially India’s rising middle class, is crucial. He said the past three U.S. presidents have cooperated closely with India regarding national security as well as trade. The governments of both nations recently have “supported generally a health U.S.-India relationship,” he said. Despite problems like border disputes with Pakistan, inflation, and rising food prices, trade between the two countries is increasing, Roemer said. Roemer outlined three models for companies to emulate in order to take advantage of this relationship. First, he said the “Warren Buffett Model,” is best exemplified by General Electric [GE]. GE CEO Jeffery Immelt often holds board meetings in India to expose members to the country, culture, and market, he said. “Immelt has been very, very smart about teaching his company and getting some of his best leadership to go to some of these places,” Roemer said. “If you want to run the company and you haven’t had one of those tough assignments, … if you have run the company, and you’ve been president of India, of Nigeria, of Indonesia, you really are going to see where the future of GE is.” Second, Roemer said the “Winston Churchill Model,” is best exemplified by Starbucks. CEO Howard Schultz tried to enter India in 2005 but was not successful, he said. In 2010, however, Starbucks returned. But, the company made several fundamental changes, such as partnering with Indian companies and using domestic products.  “He figured it out, and that is the Churchill Model – try it, don’t ever give up, come back again and again,” Roemer said. “That’s Churchill’s great commencement speech – never ever, ever, ever, ever give up. Schultz did not, and I think he’s onto the right thing now, and I think he’s going to succeed in India. Third, the “Darwin Model,” is an “evolutionary model” best exemplified by IKEA, he said. When it entered the Chinese market, Roemer said Ikea changed almost everything about how it presented its products, from its value proposition to its promotions to where it manufactured its products. “You have a completely different model for almost every value network and category from Europe to China. IKEA is just going into India now, and it will be a hybrid of these two approaches,” Roemer said. “It will change again.” The U.S.-India relationship is positive now, Roemer said. This relationship will remain important because India is civically engaged, religiously diverse, and respects the rule of law, he said. “That potential influence in the entire region as India grows in confidence, as India grows in influence, as India grows in articulating its foreign policy and working with other countries is absolutely and potentially profound in the future,” Roemer said. “I’m betting that future presidents are going to see this, see the economic and religious and political advantage and continue to make this one of the most important relationships in the world.” Contact Emily McConville at [email protected]last_img read more

300 people run Fr. Ted’s 5K

first_imgMore than 300 students, faculty and South Bend citizens laced up their tennis shoes and stretched their legs yesterday morning in preparation for the seventh annual Fr. Ted’s 10K. Melissa Lindley, the race director, said the TRiO Upward Bound Program put on the race. TRiO is a scholarship program at Notre Dame for low-income and first-generation college-bound youth. According to the TRiO website, participants could run a 5K or 10K, decide to do the family fun walk or “fitness” walk. All donations from the race supported TRiO’s students, Lindley said. “Fr. Ted’s 10K is more than just a run … it is an investment in our community,” Lindley said.  “I think it’s unique as well because our students are involved in the event, so the runners can see who they are there supporting. Most of us call Notre Dame and South Bend home, and this race funds scholarships for South Bend youth to go to college. These kids are the future of our community.”Sophomore Olivia Fernandes said she ran the race for the second time this year because she loves the cause. “The proceeds go to TRiO Upward Bound in South Bend … I volunteer at a local elementary school here in South Bend, and equality of education is important to me, so the cause really resonates,” Fernandes said. Lindley said University President Emeritus Fr. Theodore Hesburgh brought TRiO programs to Notre Dame in the 1960s as a part of his fight against poverty. She said he used to come speak at the event, but as years have passed he now tapes a video for the participants. She said the race was, however, still well attended and enjoyed.  Fernandes said despite bad weather, the race turned out well. “The trail consists of two three-mile laps around campus. The best part of the race is by far the supporters all along the way,” Fernandes said. “It was quite windy, but the high school students’ enthusiasm rocked. Their inspirational signs got me going, and the bagpipes player was legit. Hard not to smile at all the support.” “We were very satisfied with this year’s event … with 300 pre-registered participants and some great personal and corporate sponsorships, we will be able to fund our student scholarships, and that is the number one priority,” Lindley said. “A big thank you to Notre Dame students who consistently come out and support Fr. Ted’s 10K.”Tags: 5K, Hesburgh, runlast_img read more

Alma Mater emphasizes student unity

first_imgOne of the most hotly contested debates surrounding the 2013 Notre Dame football team leapt once more to the forefront of conversation Monday as team leaders and representatives from student government met to finalize the players’ decision to sing the Alma Mater after every home game, regardless of outcome.“The fact that this decision was not made by football players alone or by the students alone is a testament to how unified we can be as a student body,” Irish sophomore receiver Corey Robinson said. “The Alma Mater is as an avenue where we can stand together as a unified body and celebrate our common bond: love for Notre Dame.”Observer File Photo Robinson and Irish senior cornerback Matthias Farley represented the Unity Council, a group of football players elected from all class years that acts as liaison between the team and its coaching staff, Robinson said. They met with student body president Lauren Vidal, vice president Matthew Devine and Campus Ministry representative Grace Carroll, all seniors.Robinson, who also represents athletics in student government, said the Unity Council voted unanimously to sing the Alma Mater after every game, a decision that was “nearly unanimously” supported by the team as a whole and reflected the team’s desire to continue a relationship of mutual respect with fans in the student section and beyond.“We were really thinking of the entirety of Notre Dame nation when we made the decision,” Robinson said. “We chose to sing because we appreciate that it’s bigger than just us football players, even us students.“The bottom line is the Notre Dame community is a family,” he said. “Regardless of whether we are celebrating a win or grieving a loss, the most important thing is that we stay together. I can think of no better way to demonstrate this unconditional bond then singing the Alma Mater together after every home game.”The Unity Council made its decision independent of Irish coach Brian Kelly and Director of Athletics Jack Swarbrick, Robinson said. He said Kelly, Swarbrick and the coaching staff “encouraged” him to collaborate with student government in a “joint student effort” to address the issue.“Coach Kelly, his staff and Jack Swarbrick empowered us to make the decision as players,” Robinson said. “They were in communication with us throughout the decision making process and supported our decision as a team.”Farley said the team’s ability to freely determine this season’s Alma Mater policy demonstrated the commitment of players, coaches and administrators to honor the tradition as a way of connecting student-athletes to their peers.“I … think it’s incredible that Coach Kelly and Jack Swarbrick allowed us to make the decision for ourselves,” Farley said. “In my opinion, it makes the decision to continue singing the Alma Mater much more genuine and real coming from the team, especially when there could have been a lot of division amongst us.”Vidal, Devine and Carroll presented Robinson and Farley with a booklet containing student opinions on the Alma Mater to keep the players informed of their peers’ perspectives, Vidal said.“The books contain about 100 quotes from the students — each quote represents that student’s interpretation of the alma mater and what it means to them and our University,” she said.The statements in the booklet mirrored the enthusiasm for the tradition that Robinson and Farley expressed, often lauding the Alma Mater as a symbolic reminder of the values and community within the University as a whole.“Notre Dame values family, faith and community,” senior Shannon Hagedorn said in the booklet. “The players on the team are part of the family and the score at the end of a game played on a Saturday in the fall doesn’t change that fact.“… The Alma Mater is a symbol of our connection, our spirit and our strength in the light and in the dark. Allow the players to sing and sway with their brothers at the end of the day. We belong together.”Senior Kristen Parkinson, president of the Leprechaun Legion, likened the Alma Mater to “a celebration of the Notre Dame family.”“The Legion welcomes the return of this tradition, and we look forward to standing as a united student body, on- and off-the-field, on Saturday,” she said in an email.Controversy surrounding the singing of the Alma Mater first arose after several players left the field of Notre Dame Stadium following the team’s loss to Oklahoma on Sept. 28 without stopping at the student section to sing. The action sparked intense debate among students, alumni and fans, many of whom saw the former policy as equating community with winning alone.“To my understanding, the official policy last season was to not sing the Alma Mater after home losses,” Robinson said. “It was an issue that may have even been decided much earlier than last year, but since we hadn’t lost at home in two years, the policy was not well-known or practiced.”In a press conference Tuesday, Kelly said he raised the issue with the Unity Council and invited its members to revisit the policy.“I addressed it last year with the Unity Council,” he said. “We decided as a team that’s not what we wanted to do. This year we brought it back up to the Unity Council, and they voted that’s something that they wanted to do, so I’m all for what my team wants to do, and we will make that work.”Robinson said some players had expressed concern regarding previous incidents of students booing the team and throwing objects on the field, such as frozen marshmallows during the Nov. 23 game against BYU.“We understand that this is a intense game, but we hope to be treated with respect when we sing the Alma Mater with the student body and fans,” he said.Farley said the Unity Council primarily sought to promote “the respect of both the team for the fans and the fans for the team.”“I would hope that the student body will understand, just as we have, that the singing of the Alma Mater is bigger than all of us and really bonds us together,” he said. “I know that I can speak on the behalf of the team, and there won’t be any behavior issues on our part.”Tags: Alma mater, Brian Kelly, Corey Robinson, football, Jack Swarbrick, Lauren Vidal, Matthew Devine, Matthias Farleylast_img read more

Students reflect on Fr. Ted’s achievements

first_imgPhoto courtesy of the University archives For the students who met him, University President Emeritus Fr. Theodore Hesburgh was a powerful and memorable presence.Sophomore Andrew Lehmer met Hesburgh, who died Thursday at the age of 97, during his freshman year after attending a Latino retreat.“It was crazy how impactful his presence was,” Lehmer said. “You could sense every word meant something bigger.”Lehmer said he asked the former University president, civil rights activist, diplomat and priest what he could do to make his own life as meaningful as Hesburgh’s.“He told me ‘be a good Catholic,’” he said. “Obviously, that can be taken a lot of ways, but I’m trying to figure it out by actively pursuing the faith and keeping what he said in the back of my mind.”Sophomore Mary White, the president of Pasquerilla East Hall (PE), said a group of PE residents were supposed to meet with Hesburgh on Thursday afternoon. She said the dorm-wide response to the invitation to see Hesburgh was so overwhelming that the coordinators limited the visit to upperclassmen, though the meeting was eventually cancelled.To meet Hesburgh was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, White said.“It served as an integral Notre Dame experience,” she said. “It was something you would go on to tell your children about.”Junior Diego Valenzuela visited Hesburgh with his section of Stanford Hall last year, to talk with Hesburgh and hear his stories.“Just being in his presence was just unbelievable because this man has accomplished so much and done so many great things for Notre Dame and the United States and Catholics everywhere,” Valenzuela said.Late in his life, Hesburgh lost most of his sight as well as most of his mobility, but his mind remained sharp and his speaking powerful. Junior Jesse Hamilton said each time Hesburgh spoke to his ROTC class, he would be slowly led onstage.“It was such a slow, ginger process to get him up to the podium, and as soon as he spoke, he spoke with such clarity and sharpness,” Hamilton said. “It was incredible just to see how all of his mind was there and all the love he had for us. Any words that came out of his mouth, you knew were genuine, and just the couple times I met him, he inspired me to be the best Christian I can be, the best leader I can be. He will be greatly missed.”But for all his accomplishments — as a University president, as a leader in civil rights and Catholic education — and gravitas, students were struck by his congeniality and concern for each individual student.Junior Anthony Barrett also visited Hesburgh with his section from Stanford Hall. Barrett said the former president asked for each person’s name, hometown and major.“He would say something kind to each person,” Barrett said. “He’s done so much for us as a school, on a large level, and he also still took the time to get to know people on an individual level. That’s the kind of person that we should all aspire to be.”Junior Paul Coletti said he first met Hesburgh in front of the library named for him during a scavenger hunt in his freshman orientation weekend. Hesburgh stopped and spoke with the group.Later, Colletti became a University tour guide. During a tour Thursday, the day Hesburgh died, he told a group about Hesburgh’s accomplishments.“I told the girl who I was touring about how students are sometimes even called up to read to him, if they’re studying on the upper floors of the library, and she turned to her dad, and she was like, ‘I want to come here,’” he said. “… Little did I know.“He was a great University president. He was probably the closest thing to a living saint that I ever was in a picture with and shook hands with. He was certainly good for the University, but also good for Catholics everywhere.”Many students who never met Hesburgh also felt his influence. Junior Erin Bishop said in the days after his death, she kept thinking about his decision to make Notre Dame co-educational.“Without him, none of us would be here,” she said. “There would be no women here. That thought just keeps going through my head, you know? Without him, this wouldn’t be my life, and this is such a big part of my life. The University is really going to miss him. And I hope that they choose to celebrate his life rather than mourn his loss.”Junior Bryan Ricketts, student body president-elect, said he went to the 13th floor of the library after Hesburgh’s death to see his office. He said Hesburgh was instrumental in making Notre Dame co-ed and a premier research institution, and he looks to him for inspiration as a leader.“I hadn’t had the chance to speak to him after being elected; it was something I was hoping to do with the team,” Ricketts said. “He’s such an inspiration and left such a legacy.”Freshman Gabriel Gaspar never got the chance to meet Hesburgh, but when he heard of his death Thursday, he, like dozens of other students, headed to the Grotto to pay his respects.“He’s really affected a lot of people here,” he said. “Everyone I talk to, like my first week here, Fr. Hesburgh came up, like, ‘you should definitely meet him.’ He’s someone who can change your life. He’s someone who truly represents Notre Dame and really brings the meaning of it to this entire school.”Grotto candles were rearranged to spell “TED,” and people left a cigar and notes in candle holders. The gathering at the Grotto on Thursday also included an impromptu rendition of the Alma Mater. Freshman Will Lederer, who attended the event, said Hesburgh inspired a sense of community among Notre Dame students.“For the six months I’ve been here, I don’t think I’ve felt this way yet,” Letterer said. “Just the community, the service and the gratitude we owe Fr. Hesburgh, and the outpouring of support is just truly inspiring. It’s really heartwarming. I’m glad I was here.”Tags: Remembering Father Hesburgh, Student reactionslast_img read more

Patriarch of Jerusalem discusses conflict and Christianity in Palestine

first_imgDespite the desire for peace in Palestine, neither peace nor security has been won by the myriad of negotiations and wars of the past 70 years, Fouad Twal, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, said.Twal delivered a lecture titled “Middle East Christians’ Future: In Whose Hands” on Tuesday at Hesburgh Center Auditorium as part of the 2015-2016 Notre Dame Forum “Faith, Freedom and the Modern World: 50 Years After Vatican II.” The talk was hosted by the Center For Civil and Human Rights, and Twal was introduced by University President Fr. John Jenkins.Twal ministers in a part of the world where Christians feel oppressed and was trained as a Christian diplomat, Jenkins said.  Twal brings a message of peace, reconciliation and charity. Twal first addressed the parlous state of the Christian minority in the Middle-East, with special attention to the situation in Palestine.The Christian population of Palestine is a small minority, Twal said, and thus it cannot function effectively in isolation. The Catholics in Palestine alone operate over 115 schools, some of which have a majority Muslim student body. “We cannot have a ghetto just for us Christians. … Our mission cannot know borders,” Twal said.He said there are many perils for the Christian community of the Levant, such as the Israeli bureaucracy’s mistreatment of Christian and many Muslims’ apathy towards the welfare of the Christian community, calling the Church of Jerusalem a Church of Calvary. In spite of all the suffering of the Christian community, it is impossible to live, love and work in Jerusalem without Jesus and the vision of the cross, Twal said.“In Jerusalem, He prayed, He worked and He wept,” Twal said.Twal said although the Christian community of Jerusalem is often subject to persecution, it is also unmistakably a church of resurrection, empowered by its proximity to where He rose.“I too am anxious for the future but [also] hope for a bright future,” Twal said, referring to the future prospects of the Christians of Palestine. Twal’s lecture also spent time on the consequences of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, a conflict that fatally undermines Israel’s claims of democracy so long as the occupation continues, Twal said. “The vast majority of Palestinians are fighting for the same things Jews did,” Twal said.The rights Palestinians seek are the rights of democracies, such as dignity, respect and justice, he said. These were the same values his Patriarchate has upheld and promoted for years. While he expressed pessimism about the viability of a two-state solution, the fundamental problem is still occupation, particularly while Jerusalem is still occupied territory, Twal said. “Much is spoken [of peace], yet we have none,” Twal said. “ … In Palestine, there is no more credibility in the speech of politicians, and thus, changes requiring great sacrifice must come.”“In Palestine, one thing is clear: the cycle of degradation and violence must be broken,” he said.Twal said, the Middle-East is beset by politic without ethic and the dangerous rhetoric of extremists, lack of education, and the reckless profiteering of arms dealers are all contributing to the current disorder in the Middle-East“In Jerusalem we are closely watching the events in the Arab World…our hearts are filled with sorrow with our brothers and sisters who are victims of violence,” Twal said, “In Jordan we have 1,400,000 Syrians…last year we received 8,000 Iraqi Christian people…for sure Syria needs reform, but 200,000 [were] killed because they want to change this regime, and the regime is still in good health.”Twail said the Middle East is beset by a dark past and dark present, and he prays for the emergence of a genuine leader. Although he believes an educated population is one key step towards justice and peace, it’s clear the road to peace in the Holy Land is a long and difficult one. “[Being] fair and balanced … I’m not sure that’s possible when we speak about the Holy Land,” Twal said.Tags: Father John Jenkins, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, Middle East, Notre Dame Forum, Palestinelast_img read more

Microbiologist Rita Colwell to receive honorary degree

first_imgNotre Dame will confer seven honorary degrees at this year’s commencement ceremony, the University announced in a press release Thursday. Rita Colwell, a molecular microbiologist, will receive a doctor of science honorary degree. Colwell, whose work focuses on global infectious diseases, water and health will join six previously announced honorary degree recipients.Colwell is a Distinguished University Professor at the University of Maryland and Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, the release stated.“A highly sought-after counselor on science policy and education matters, she has held advisory positions within government, nonprofit science policy organizations, private foundations and the international scientific research community,” the release stated. “The author or co-author of 17 books and more than 800 scientific publications, she has been awarded 61 honorary degrees.”Tags: Honorary degree, Rita Colwelllast_img read more

SafeBouND replaces O’SNAP

first_imgOne of Student Government’s early initiatives this year was to help phase out Notre Dame Security Police’s (NDSP) old evening transport system, Student Nighttime Auxiliary Patrol (O’SNAP) and replace it with a new service that brought the focus back to safety instead of just giving rides to students.“No one really knew what O’SNAP stood for,” NDSP captain Tracy Skibins said. “[So] Student Government and I got together over the summer and we tried to figure out a way to bring the safety piece back to it.”Student Body President Corey Robinson said students’ failure to use the program for its intended purpose also contributed to the desire for change.Robinson said Student Government and NDSP wanted to “make sure this project towards those who it’s intended to help — individuals who feel unsafe heading back to their dorms and not necessarily a party shuttle.”Student Body Vice President Becca Blais also said the golf carts, which had been central to O’SNAP, weren’t working as well as hoped.“It was a big failure,” Blais said. “None of them worked in the snow gear and they didn’t charge and it was a mess.”The result of Skibins and Student Government’s work to improve safety transport was SafeBouND. “SafeBouND is a safety escort service for evening hours,” Skibins said. “We assist those students who feel unsafe crossing campus by walking or giving them a ride from one point of campus to the opposite side of campus or wherever they might be going during the evening hours, seven days a week.”According to Skibins, approximately 60-70 students use SafeBouND each week, with Wednesday night seeing the heaviest traffic. Skibins said SafeBouND expanded upon the services O’SNAP offered.“We have students on walking patrol,” Skibins said. “They wear reflective vests, they carry radios, and they have constant contact with NDSP, and they will check more isolated areas in their down time. … If they find a problem like maybe a student who needs a ride or an overly intoxicated student or they see something suspicious, they use their radios to contact NDSP and our officers go to assist them.”Robinson said the initial transition from O’SNAP to SafeBouND was met with disappointment from the student body.“I think a lot of people were really disappointed with the golf cart services being taken away but I think there was a misunderstanding in terms of marketing. … There was a lot of miscommunication about the service and what it offered and what we were doing,” Robinson said.Despite this initial push back, Blais said “within a two-week period it blew over, and I haven’t heard anything recently about problems with it.”Skibins said she believes the overall transition has been successful in creating a service that truly values student safety.“I have no doubt in my mind now that when people use SafeBouND they know it is a safety service because safe is in the title of the program, so I think that’s helpful,” Skibins said.Skibins credits some of the success to Student Government’s efforts.“Student government has done a great job of promoting the service this year as a safety service,” Skibins said.Tags: 2016 Student Government Insider, NDSP, O’SNAP, SafeBouNDlast_img read more

NDCAC to celebrate Dia de Los Muertos with community event

first_imgThe Notre Dame Center for Arts and Culture (NDCAC) will be hosting a celebratory event for El Dia de Los Muertos on Thursday starting at 5:30 p.m. in the NDCAC building in South Bend.El Dia de Los Muertos, or The Day of the Dead, is a Mexican holiday held to remember and honor deceased loved ones, taking place during the first few days of November.“The celebration is a great way to celebrate being part of the larger South Bend community and for many to learn about Dia de los Muertos,” Alex Schaufele, the art coordinator for the Crossroads Gallery at the NDCAC, said.Schaufele said the celebration will include performances by campus groups, including Ballet Folklorico Azul y Oro and Mariachi ND. Taqueria Chicago also will provide free food for those with a student ID, and traditional Pan de Muerto and hot chocolate will be available for all attendees.The event will also feature an exhibition of altars created by 20 community members or groups to honor the lives of the deceased. Schaufele said the NDCAC wanted the altars at the celebration because of the sense of community and celebration of life they represent.“In years past there was just one altar and it was built by an invited artist,” Schaufele said. “Through bringing multiple groups and individuals together the exhibition has helped to create a new relationship within the community. Instead of one person being honored, we have twenty different ofrendas this year.”Schaufele said a bus doing a continuous, round-trip shuttle service will transport students from McKenna Hall to the NDCAC for free starting 15 minutes before the celebration.Idalia Maldonado, the events coordinator for the Institute for Latino Studies, which is co-hosting the event, said El Dia de los Muertos shows deceased family and friends that they’re still remembered and recognized.“Unlike Halloween, the actual tradition itself is really more of a recognition that these people at one time lived,” Maldonado said. “It’s not a celebration that they’re gone and that they’re dead but it’s in remembrance that they once lived here and they’re not forgotten.”Maldonado said in accordance with the holiday, student altars displayed at McKenna Hall were dedicated on Wednesday to those that died in Puerto Rico and Mexico City from recent natural disasters while another more traditional altar was dedicated to loved ones who have passed.“This will be the fifth year that a group of students have come in and built their own altars,” Maldonado said. “They dedicate it from year to year to different entities or different groups and this year they’re going traditional.”Junior Leslie Vergara, president of Notre Dame’s Ballet Folklorico Azul y Oro group, said the group will be dancing to “La Bruja,” a solemn piece from Veracruz, Mexico, and “El Buey” from Nayarit, Mexico, an upbeat song intended to evoke the happiness of the remembrance that takes place on El Dia de Los Muertos.“The wardrobe for this region calls for vibrant colors,” Vergara said. “This adaptation, though not traditonal, helps convey the message that this is a celebration.”Vergara said performing for Dia de los Muertos is a reminder of the traditions within her family.“When I lived in Mexico, I recall going to my great-grandmother’s house and seeing the altar she had put together for our loved ones that had passed away,” Vergara said. “Now that I live in the U.S., this is my way of keeping my culture alive and remembering all my loved ones that have passed away.”Tags: Ballet Folklorico Azul y Oro, El Día de Los Muertos, Institute for Latino Studies, NDCAClast_img read more