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Q&A with Leslie Lockett, alumna of the Ph.D. program at the Medieval Institute

Author: Brandon Cook and Karrie Fuller

Categories: Q and A, Graduate Students, General News, Centers and Institutes, and Alumni

In this Q&A, Leslie Lockett, an associate professor of English and director of the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies at The Ohio State University, discusses early medieval concepts of the mind, what initially hooked her on the Middle Ages, and her advice for graduate students who would like to follow her career track.

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How seeing the Hesburgh Library's medieval manuscripts convinced a Notre Dame student to major in theology and German

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Undergraduate News, Research, General News, Catholicism, and Alumni

One visit to the Hesburgh Library’s medieval manuscripts collection, and Luke Donahue ’17 was hooked. “I saw them and thought, ‘This is it.’ This is what I want to study,” Donahue said. “I was intrigued that there are all these manuscripts from the Middle Ages that no one has researched, and I was determined — I wanted to help fill that intellectual gap.” While he initially planned to study physics, Donahue decided to major in theology and German and add a minor in medieval studies.

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PLS major Corey Robinson ’17 on how the liberal arts prepare students for lives of excellence and integrity

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Undergraduate News, Research, General News, and Alumni

When he got to Notre Dame, Corey Robinson ’17 didn’t know what to major in — because he wanted to major in everything. He met with advisers in more than 20 departments, considering everything from Arts and Letters pre-health to Irish language and literature to aquatic biology. And he still wasn’t sure. That’s when his advising dean suggested the Program of Liberal Studies.

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In online course on the Quran, theology professor connects Notre Dame students with perspectives from around the world

Author: Katie Boruff

Categories: Undergraduate News, Research, Internationalism, General News, Faculty News, and Alumni

Gabriel Said Reynolds greets his students on the final day of his Introduction to the Quran course. He is in a small classroom on Notre Dame’s campus. His students are in Orlando, Colorado, Canada, Denmark, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, and beyond. Such arrangements are not uncommon in the world of massive open online courses (MOOCs), but this one is different. It breaks new ground in the online learning space by bringing students participating in the MOOC around the world together with undergraduate and graduate students that Reynolds teaches in a traditional course at Notre Dame.

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Video: Class of 2018 reflects on how an Arts and Letters education prepared them to succeed

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: Undergraduate News, General News, Catholicism, Arts, and Alumni

Congratulations to the Class of 2018! This video, screened at the Arts and Letters Diploma Ceremony, features several seniors reflecting on their time at Notre Dame and in the College of Arts and Letters. In it, the new graduates discuss how a liberal arts education helped them develop skills, shaped their minds, and opened up a world of possibilities for their futures.

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Idzik Computing and Digital Technologies Program prepares students to launch successful careers

Author: Teagan Dillon

Categories: Undergraduate News, General News, Faculty News, and Alumni

Now in its third year, the College of Arts and Letters' Idzik Computing and Digital Technologies Program is helping students supplement their education with technological and programming skills. The program was endowed and renamed this year in honor of its generous benefactors, Paul and Ruth Idzik. Designed to help students obtain skills needed for success in the modern digital world, the CDT minor can be extremely appealing for prospective employers who are already attracted to the communication, organization, and analytical skills honed through the liberal arts.

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How Arts and Letters and FTT formed the foundation for husband-and-wife filmmaking duo’s Hollywood success

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: General News, Arts, and Alumni

Christine Swanson ’94 has written and directed multiple award-winning films. Her husband, Michael Swanson ’93, is an Emmy-winning producer and studio executive who has worked on hit Universal Television shows. The married Department of Film, Television, and Theatre alumni also make movies together through their Los Angeles-based production company, Faith Filmworks. Grounded in their Notre Dame liberal arts education and inspired by their deep Christian faith, the Swansons use their skills to tell the type of uplifting stories they feel are missing from big Hollywood studios.  

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A global education prepares Arabic major for career in U.S. Department of Justice

Author: Eileen Lynch

Categories: Internationalism, General News, and Alumni

For Victoria Braga ’11, a semester in Egypt as an undergraduate gave her a new perspective on the United States — and shaped her future career path. Braga came to Notre Dame with an interest in international relations, but her study abroad experience inspired her to pursue a career as an attorney and a position in the U.S. government. Today, the Arabic and political science major works as a trial attorney in the appellate section of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Immigration Litigation.

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Alumni discuss how the international economics major prepared them for jobs in consulting, finance, and research

Author: Teagan Dillon

Categories: Undergraduate News, Research, General News, and Alumni

Four alumni of Notre Dame’s international economics program returned to campus in March to speak to current students about their experience with the major, valuable classes they took, and the skills they developed that are now paying dividends in the real world

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Physician relies on anthropology background when treating patients in trauma center

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: General News and Alumni

As an orthopedic resident at Loyola University Medical Center, Daniel Schmitt ’11 sees a wide variety of patients. Schmitt, who majored in anthropology and biology, relies on his liberal arts education to connect with his diverse patient base and treat them comprehensively at the Level I trauma center — a hospital providing the highest level of surgery to trauma victims.

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First Time Fans film series returns for Season 4, featuring work from students and alumni

Author: Ted Mandell

Categories: Undergraduate News, General News, and Alumni

A truly unique production model, First Time Fans brings together Notre Dame alumni filmmakers and pairs them with current students to tell inspiring stories about extraordinary people on an extraordinary campus. A joint venture of the College of Arts and Letters, the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre, and the Athletics Department, First Time Fans is a filmmaking co-op where alumni are given the creative canvas to tell a Notre Dame story through the eyes of someone new to campus, using the backdrop of a Fighting Irish athletic event.

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How a passion for a French painter and a knowledge of violins prepared an art history major to work at Sotheby’s

Author: Teagan Dillon

Categories: General News, Arts, and Alumni

Growing up in South Bend, Carly Murphy ’01 always admired Marc Chagall’s Le Grand Cirque when she saw it in the Snite Museum of Art at Notre Dame. This piece of art sparked a love of French culture in Murphy, who went on to major in French and art history in the College of Arts and Letters. Now vice president of global client development at Sotheby’s international art auction house, Murphy returned to campus last semester to speak to a gathering of students, reflecting on her Notre Dame education and offering advice on entering the art world. 

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Program of Liberal studies alumnus uses big data to fight inequality in education

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: Research, General News, Catholicism, and Alumni

For his entire academic career, Sean Reardon ’86 has sought to use his passions — the humanities and quantitative research — to make a difference in the field of education. One of the nation’s leading experts on educational inequality, Reardon researches how opportunities and outcomes vary in the United States for students of different racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic backgrounds. Reardon’s path to his current position, Professor of Poverty and Inequality in Education at Stanford University, is long and sprawling. It includes stops on a South Dakota Indian Reservation, a New Jersey Quaker school, and further academic work at Harvard and Penn State — but it all began at Notre Dame.

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Notre Dame history and Africana studies alumna wins MacArthur ‘Genius’ Grant

Author: Josh Weinhold

Categories: General News, Undergraduate News, and Alumni

Nikole Hannah-Jones, a 1998 Notre Dame graduate, has won a fellowship from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation — commonly known as a “Genius” Grant. Hannah-Jones, who majored in history and African American studies (now Africana studies), is an investigative reporter for The New York Times Magazine, covering issues of racial inequality, especially in education. In 2015, she produced three Peabody Award-winning radio stories for This American Life illustrating how school desegregation can lessen the achievement gap between white children and students of color, and her first-person article, “Worlds Apart: Choosing a School for My Daughter in a Segregated City,” won a 2017 National Magazine Award.

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Corbett Family Hall: A dynamic mix of academics, community, and technology

Author: Josh Weinhold

Categories: Graduate Students, General News, Undergraduate News, Research, Alumni, and Faculty News

Corbett Family Hall strikes a stunning silhouette rising above the east side of Notre Dame Stadium. But for the Departments of Anthropology and Psychology, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. Below the club seating, terraces, and press box on the building’s top three levels, faculty and students from these two social science departments will come together in the new 289,000-square-foot structure, made possible by a leadership gift from Notre Dame alumnus Richard Corbett. With classrooms, laboratories, and offices all under one massive roof, research and teaching efforts are united in a way that will bring untold benefits.

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One-person play on Notre Dame founder to premiere Aug. 30

Author: Amanda Skofstad

Categories: General News, Alumni, Catholicism, and Arts

The University of Notre Dame will premiere Sorin: A Notre Dame Story, a one-person play about the life and work of the University’s founder, Rev. Edward Sorin, C.S.C., on Aug. 30 (Wed.) at 6:42 p.m. in the Patricia George Decio Theatre of the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center. This production celebrates the 175th anniversary of the University through the collaborative creative work of four notable alumni of Notre Dame's College of Arts and Letters: director Patrick Vassel '07, playwright Christina Telesca Gorman '91, performer Matthew Goodrich '09, and projection designer Ryan Belock '11.

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2017 graduate named one of top five industrial design students in U.S.

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: General News, Undergraduate News, Alumni, and Arts

Erin Rice ’17 has been named one of the top five graduating industrial design students in the nation by the Industrial Designers Society of America. Rice is the seventh student in the last 10 years from Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters to win the Student Merit Award at IDSA’s Midwest District Design Conference.

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Video: After full-time service work, political science alumna excels in job at Facebook

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: General News and Alumni

“The liberal arts education is one of the best things Notre Dame offers,” said Kaitlin Sullivan ’10, now a product policy manager at Facebook. Sullivan majored in political science and minored in philosophy, politics and economics. After graduating, she completed two years of service with Jesuit Volunteer Corps working in a rape crisis center. While working on a master's degree in public policy at George Washington University, Sullivan interned at Facebook and started a small project addressing gender-based hate speech on the social media platform, ultimately leading to her current job.

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Peace Corps experience inspires Spanish and anthropology major to pursue career as immigration lawyer

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: General News, Alumni, and Internationalism

Libby Hasse ’08 always knew she wanted to join the Peace Corps. She just didn’t realize what an impact it would have on her career. The experience still resonates today in her work as an attorney at the Tahirih Justice Center — a national nonprofit that provides pro bono legal services to immigrant women.

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Record 30 Arts and Letters students and alumni receive Fulbright Awards for 2017-2018

A record 30 College of Arts and Letters students and alumni have been awarded grants by the Fulbright U.S. Student Program to study abroad in 2017-18. The Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program, offering students grants to conduct research, study and teach abroad. 

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Video: Economics and political science major Carlos Lozada ’93 finds a home at The Washington Post

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: General News and Alumni

Carlos Lozada ’93, an associate editor and nonfiction book critic at The Washington Post, majored in economics and political science in the College of Arts and Letters. “What the liberal arts education at Notre Dame really did for me was it helped me to learn how to think, how to marshal my arguments, and how to learn from people around me,” he said. “To be a journalist you have to have this inherent curiosity and inherent skepticism, and I think those two qualities were really stoked and inspired at Notre Dame.”
 

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Renowned author Barry Lopez ’66 returns to Notre Dame, urging students to commit to social responsibility

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: General News and Alumni

Barry Lopez believes we are on the verge of global upheaval — in the way democracies function, in the way economies work, in the way countries cope with unprecedented numbers of refugees and the effects of climate change. But he also believes that Notre Dame students are “unusually qualified to do something about it.” A renowned essayist, fiction writer, and former Department of American Studies faculty member, Lopez received his bachelor’s degree from Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters in 1966 and a master’s degree in 1968. He returned to his alma mater last month to give a lecture on sustainability — and to offer his encouragement to current students.

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Video: Katie Fallon ’98 on working at the White House, her new corporate role, and her liberal arts education

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: General News and Alumni

“It's very easy to lose track of how to form arguments in a way that can really change minds. At Notre Dame, this ability is really drilled into you from day one,” said Katie Beirne Fallon ’98, senior vice president and global head of corporate affairs at Hilton Worldwide. A governemnt and international studies major at Notre Dame, she previously served as director of legislative affairs at the White House for President Barack Obama, working to improve the relationship between Congress and the Office of the President. 

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When faced with decisions of life and death, doctor relies on ethics and values forged studying the liberal arts

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: General News and Alumni

The decisions Dr. James Gajewski ’78 makes are often ones of life and death. Over the course of his nearly 35-year medical career, the Portland, Oregon-based hematologist has specialized in stem cell and bone marrow transplants and cancer treatment, where anywhere from 30 to 70 percent of his patients may die. When he’s faced with difficult decisions, though, he relies not on his medical training, but on his College of Arts Letters education.

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Video: English and Italian alumna on turning a passion for language into a career abroad

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: General News, Alumni, and Internationalism

“Do what you feel naturally inclined to do, where your skills and abilities are taking you, what you're best at. It really has helped me to narrow down and find the right career,” said Elizabeth Simari ’08. An English and Italian major in the College of Arts and Letters, Simari studied abroad in Rome during her junior year. Her interest in the language, history, and culture of Italy developed into a passion, leading her to move to Sicily after graduation. After teaching English for a year and then earning a master's degree in literature, she wrote for L'Osservatore Romano, the Vatican’s English-language newspaper, and now teaches at the University of Loyola Chicago's campus in Rome.

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