Latest News

Experiencing joy: Department of Irish Language and Literature’s new 1-credit dance and tin-whistle courses give Notre Dame students the ‘keys to unlock Irish culture’

Author: Beth Staples

Categories: Undergraduate News, Internationalism, General News, Faculty News, and Arts

For 75 minutes every fall Tuesday afternoon, junior Grace Ryan​​ steps, slides, marches, smiles, and laughs. The business analytics major who’s pursuing a career in aerospace was hesitant to sign up given her already busy schedule, but she eventually agreed to try it out. Now she’s hooked — and that combination of having fun while becoming proficient in Irish traditions is exactly why the Department of Irish Language and Literature began offering 1-credit old-style Irish dancing course and tin whistle courses this year.

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NEH awards three fellowships and a digital scholarship grant to Arts & Letters faculty, continuing Notre Dame’s record success

Author: Beth Staples

Categories: Research, General News, Faculty News, and Centers and Institutes

Three faculty members in the College of Arts & Letters — philosopher Sara Bernstein, theatre scholar Tarryn Chun, and historian Katie Jarvis — have won National Endowment for the Humanities fellowships, extending Notre Dame's record success with the federal agency committed to supporting original research and scholarship. The University also received a significant grant for a digital scholarship project that will develop a new platform that makes digital archives easier to analyze, present, and reuse. Since 2000, Arts & Letters faculty have received more NEH fellowships than any other private university in the country.

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Through research and service, history and neuroscience major examines the past and prepares for a future focused on helping communities build resilience

Author: Beth Staples

Categories: Undergraduate News, Research, and General News

The image of Black inmates working in fields where enslaved African Americans once toiled has been seared into Notre Dame senior Aysha Gibson’s mind since she went on a high school field trip to the Louisiana State Penitentiary. Gibson, a history and neuroscience and behavior major, is now writing her senior thesis about the prison to provide a deeper understanding of America’s penal system. The independent research project, advised by associate professor Rebecca McKenna, considers race, morality, state law, labor, and geography — and is the culmination of an undergraduate career full of academic and service experiences that helped her consider how to support communities experiencing hardship. 

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Notre Dame receives nearly $1 million Lilly Endowment grant to help Department of Theology expand summer immersion and Spanish language programs for master’s degree students

Author: Beth Staples

Categories: Graduate Students, General News, Faculty News, and Catholicism

The University of Notre Dame has been awarded nearly $1 million from Lilly Endowment Inc. to equip students in the Master of Divinity Program (M.Div.) and Master of Arts in Theology program to better serve in and learn from a diverse, ever-changing world. The grant will support cultural immersion programs and Spanish proficiency courses for 13 to 18 lay and seminarian students, as well as opportunities to meet with and learn from peers at other colleges.

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New ISLA grant program to increase underserved students’ access to research opportunities

Author: Beth Staples

Categories: Undergraduate News, Research, and General News

The College of Arts and Letters’ Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal Arts is dismantling financial barriers to help a wider range of students take part in faculty-mentored summer research.Starting this May, ISLA’s Research Access Mentoring Program (RAMP) grant will provide awardees from the College of Arts and Letters with a stipend of $3,500, room and board, and a research allowance of up to $1,500 to take part in 10-week, on-campus projects of interest. Recipients also will receive tuition for a 3-credit summer course.

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Kathleen Sprows Cummings, 2021 Sheedy Award for Excellence in Teaching recipient, lauded for making history ‘come alive with connections from today’

Author: Beth Staples

Categories: General News, Faculty News, Centers and Institutes, and Catholicism

On her first day teaching at Notre Dame in the late 1990s, then-doctoral student Kathleen Sprows Cummings asked her undergraduates in Ethnicity and American Identity to share why they were taking the course. “Nothing else was open,” was the first reply. It wasn’t the only one.

Times change. Cummings, now the Rev. John A. O'Brien Collegiate Professor of American Studies and History and director of the Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism, is the winner of the 2021 Sheedy Excellence in Teaching Award, the highest teaching honor in the College of Arts & Letters. “She has shaped me into a better student, Catholic, woman, and member of society,” one senior wrote in her letter recommending Cummings for the award. “I strive to become the type of woman and professional that she is.”

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How a PLS professor’s research on the lives of medieval nuns inspired the bestselling novel Matrix

Author: Beth Staples

Categories: Research and Faculty News

Lauren Groff’s bestselling historical novel Matrix captures a medieval world that Notre Dame Program of Liberal Studies assistant professor Katie Bugyis has always imagined. “It’s an extraordinary gift,” said Bugyis, a historian of Christian theology and liturgical practice who reconstructs the lived experiences of religious women in the Middle Ages. “She saw what has been in my mind and that I always hoped other people might see.” Bugyis’s research on routines and rituals of medieval nuns might not seem like an obvious storyline for a National Book Award finalist, but it immediately garnered Groff’s attention.

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