Even during fall break, College of Arts and Letters students were hard at work. They toured Latin America to perform sacred music. They gathered to collaborate on senior thesis projects and dissertations. And they traveled to major cities across the U.S. to explore career options and network with Notre Dame alumni.
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More than 30,000 children will benefit from the $6.3 million grant awarded to the University to improve early-grade literacy in Haiti. The grant is a part of a broader national campaign of the Haitian Catholic Church and its partners to improve literacy outcomes in 1,000 Haitian Catholic schools in the next four years.
At the close of Black Catholic History Month, celebrated every November, Notre Dame is preparing major new resources for the ongoing study of religious experiences and social contexts highlighted during the month. Leaders from the National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus (NBCCC) recently presented a unique historical collection to the University Archives of the University of Notre Dame. It promises to significantly augment the documentary record not only for African American Catholic studies, but also for broader scholarship in U.S. religious history.
Through intensive language coursework and daily interaction with native speakers, the Summer Language Abroad experience allows students to rapidly enhance their command of a foreign language—be it Arabic, Cantonese, Chinese, French, German, Irish, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish, or Swahili. About 60 participated in the 2016 SLA program through Notre Dame’s Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures.
Watkins, a native of Blacksburg, Virginia, and Doyle, of Los Altos, California, are two of 32 Rhodes Scholars selected from a pool of 882 candidates who had been endorsed by their colleges and universities. They are Notre Dame’s 18th and 19th Rhodes Scholars and will commence their studies at Oxford University in October.
The Global Religion Research Initiative at Notre Dame, directed by Christian Smith, director of the Center for the Study of Religion and Society and the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Sociology, is a newly launched initiative in the center that aims to advance the empirical study of global religion in mainstream academia. Smith was awarded $4.9 million from the Templeton Religion Trust and will fund more than 150 research proposals by distributing $3.1 million to scholars of global religion through three rounds of applications over the next three years.
Christmas nativity scenes recreated by cultures from around the world are on display in six Notre Dame campus buildings through Jan. 31, 2017. The third annual International Crèche Exhibit and Pilgrimage features 30 crèches on loan from the Marian Library at the University of Dayton. The exhibit is sponsored by the McGrath Institute for Church Life.
Policy research by Reyes Ruiz González, a graduate student in economics and Ph.D. fellow at the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, was recently published by Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, a leading public policy think tank that promotes economic opportunity, prosperity, and peace. The case study, coauthored by Arturo Ramírez Verdugo, analyzes successful subnational approaches to reducing violence related to drug trafficking and organized crime that spiked in two of Mexico’s northernmost states in 2009–11.
King Fok, a a junior majoring in sociology and Arts and Letters pre-health with a minor in international development studies, has been awarded the 2016 Lord Acton Memorial Scholarship for his semester of study at Notre Dame’s London Global Gateway. Launched by the Association of American Study Abroad Programmes (AASAP/UK), the Lord Acton Memorial Scholarship rewards a “deserving student” who “demonstrates an understanding and appreciation of the value of an international educational experience.”
While universality—and unity amid diversity—is a fundamental characteristic of Roman Catholicism, all-too-familiar issues related to gender, sexuality, race, and authority have wrought the church with internal conflict and no clear path to finding middle ground. A new book, co-edited by Mary Ellen Konieczny, intends to start the conversation about the polarization in the Catholic Church through healthy debates and genuine engagement.
A new book by Notre Dame Sociologist Terence McDonnell examines why expensive media campaigns that try to harness the power of culture to change beliefs or behavior often fail. Using AIDS campaigns in Ghana as his central case study, he lays out an argument that carries important implications for diverse types of media campaigns around the world.
Karen Graubart loves a good puzzle. In a Peruvian archive this summer, the Notre Dame associate professor of history and Romance languages and literatures found a piece of a puzzle that reshaped how many scholars view colonial Latin American rule. Her research discovery supports arguments she recently made in her article in Hispanic American Historical Review, which won the Conference on Latin American History’s 2015 James Alexander Robertson Memorial Prize.
James Sullivan, co-founder of the Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Development and Rev. Thomas J. McDonagh, C.S.C., Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Notre Dame, will testify Nov. 4 in Washington, D.C.
When honors medieval studies major Karen Neis ’16 took a class on Charlemagne, the unusual story of the emperor’s prized elephant resonated with her. She recalled that story when it came time to choose a senior thesis, ultimately leading her to produce an illustrated children’s book, Abul Abbas, The Elephant. The book recounts the journey of the elephant a caliph gave as a gift to Charlemagne around the year 800. In the story, a Christian, a Jew, and a Muslim all work together to transport the elephant 3,000 miles from Baghdad to Aachen.
French literature has received a lot of attention lately from an unexpected source—economists. Julia Douthwaite, a professor of French in Notre Dame’s Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, wants to evaluate their interpretations and delve deeper into literary representations of money. Douthwaite has received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities—her second—for her book project on the topic, tentatively titled Financiers We Have Known: A Capitalist History of Literature.
César Soto wants to know how the spark of political revolution can transform religious concepts of community and inclusion. To better understand the issue, he’s turning to the literature of England, Ireland, and Mexico in the late 1700s and early 1800s. Soto, a Ph.D. candidate in Notre Dame’s Department of English with a graduate minor in Irish studies, has been awarded a Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellowship for 2016-17 to support his project.
Graduate students Filippo Gianferrari and Adriana Monica Solomon have been awarded Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships to delve deeper into the lives and impact of two intellectual archetypes—Dante and Isaac Newton, respectively. Gianferrari, a Ph.D. candidate in the Medieval Institute, is investigating the Latin authors who may have influenced Dante. And Solomon, a philosophy Ph.D. candidate in the History and Philosophy of Science Program at the John J. Reilly Center for Science, Technology, and Values, is shining a light on Newton’s lesser-known contributions to philosophy and science.
An interdisciplinary research collaboration between the University of Notre Dame and Cornell University has awarded more than $344,000 to seven projects in the final year of the program that explores the theoretical, empirical, and practical dimensions of hope and optimism, as well as related states such as pessimism, anxiety, and despair. The project, Hope and Optimism: Conceptual and Empirical Investigations, also announced the winners of its Hope on Stage and Hope on Screen contests, which challenged artists to create both original plays and original films that explored the concept of hope.
1916 The Irish Rebellion was awarded "Best Documentary Series" at the 2016 Irish Film and Television Award ceremony, held on Friday, Oct. 7, in Dublin. Narrated by Liam Neeson, the three-part series tells the dramatic story of the events that took place in Dublin during Easter Week 1916, when a small group of Irish rebels took on the might of the British Empire.
Edward “Ted” Beatty, professor of history, associate dean for academic affairs at the Keough School of Global Affairs, and faculty fellow at the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, has been selected as the winner of the 2016 Friedrich Katz Prize for his book Technology and the Search for Progress in Modern Mexico (University of California Press, 2015). The Katz Prize is awarded annually by the American Historical Association (AHA) to honor the best book in Latin American and Caribbean history.
Notre Dame announces the launch of the Latino Studies Scholars Program (LSSP). The merit-based scholarship and accompanying curriculum for undergraduate students is designed to attract and shape leaders working to support and empower Latino communities. The scholarship was created by the University’s Institute for Latino Studies (ILS) as part of its mission to advance the understanding of the fastest growing and youngest population in the United States and the Catholic Church.
Notre Dame Research has embarked on an initiative this academic year to identify the infrastructure support needs for social scientists across campus and to find approaches to fill those needs. Information gathering has begun and Vice President for Research Robert Bernhard welcomes the thoughts of faculty and students about how the University can advance its social sciences programs of research and scholarship.
After spending part of an undergraduate study abroad trip working with struggling teen mothers in Chile, Lauren Antosz ’16 left with the nagging feeling there was more she could do. She’ll get the chance with a grant from the Fulbright U.S. Student Program, helping to develop a program that supports at-risk youth achieve higher outcomes. Antosz, who majored in Spanish, is one of a record 29 Notre Dame Fulbright Scholars for the 2016-17 year.
More than $650,000 has been awarded to 15 projects in the second year of a research collaboration aimed at building new understanding about how religious and transformative experiences occur and shape lives. The Experience Project, a $5.1 million project supported by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation, aims to answer questions about how religious experiences affect a person’s concept of God; how transformative experiences can affect a person’s identity, values, belief system and behaviors; and how religious and other types of transformative experiences differ.
University of Notre Dame alumnus Robert P. McGrath and his wife, Joan, have made a $15 million gift to his alma mater to endow the University’s Institute for Church Life.
In his second term as poet laureate of the United States, Juan Felipe Herrera will visit the University of Notre Dame on Oct. 5 and 6 (Wednesday and Thursday). Herrera’s stay on campus includes a poetry reading with opening remarks from University President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., as well as a reception and visits and lunch with students.
The seventh annual “Saturdays with the Saints” lecture series sponsored by the Institute for Church Life at the University of Notre Dame will feature seven saints whose lives give witness to the mercy of God.
A study of the Homelessness Prevention Call Center in Chicago by the Wilson-Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities found that such hotlines have a considerable effect on people facing homelessness, and that emergency financial assistance successfully prevents homelessness — if funding is available. The study, published in the Aug. 12 edition of Science, examines the impact of financial assistance for 4,500 individuals and families who called the HPCC between 2010 and 2012.
Thomas E. Burman, an esteemed scholar of medieval Christianity and Islam, has been named the Robert Conway Director of the University of Notre Dame’s Medieval Institute. Burman, currently a professor of history at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, will begin his new role in January 2017.
Peter Casarella, professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame and interim director of Latin American/North American Church Concerns (LANACC), is a scholar of Latino theology. Before joining the Notre Dame faculty in 2013, he served as professor of Catholic studies at DePaul University where he was director of the Center for World Catholicism and Intercultural Theology. In an interview, he discusses his research, Pope Francis, and the future of Latin American/North American Church Concerns, of which he is interim director.