Notre Dame’s Catholic character and commitment to the humanities endow the University with a unique perspective, and role, in leading an international conversation about addressing the global crisis of climate change, said Roy Scranton, an associate professor of English who directs the Initiative.
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“As an institution committed to both education and the arts, Notre Dame is proud to host the Fischoff Competition and partner with organizers to promote music education around the globe,” said Tim Sexton, associate vice president for public affairs at Notre Dame. “Fischoff introduces hundreds of young musicians to Notre Dame each year, providing innumerable benefits — social, cultural, economic — to campus and the surrounding community. We congratulate them on 50 years and look forward to the next 50.”
Adriana Fazio ’19 went from watching her idol on TV every day to working alongside her. A fan of The Today Show since childhood, it was no surprise that the American studies and film, television, and theatre major chose to explore the career of Katie Couric for her senior thesis. By studying Couric’s career, Fazio set her own in motion — the opportunity to interview the famed journalist ended up leading to a job with Katie Couric Media, where she’s worked across a variety of media projects.
For senior film, television, and theatre major Kiera Russo, taking Cinema of Portugal and Lusophone Africa was a highlight of her sophomore spring semester. Despite not knowing Portuguese, she relished being able to engage in deep discussions with classmates about cinematic productions from Portugal, Angola, Mozambique and Cape Verde. In this Q&A, she discusses what the class' most thought-provoking moments, the strong relationship she developed with the professor, and how it changed her understanding of film.
Robert M. Conway, a member of the University of Notre Dame’s Board of Trustees for more than three decades, died Sunday (Jan. 15) in New York City. He was 78. “Bob was an accomplished business leader, a generous benefactor, a Trustee and loyal alumnus of Notre Dame and, above all, a true gentleman,” University President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., said. “He was also to many of us a dear friend, whom we will miss deeply.”
Notre Dame economist Jing Cynthia Wu’s paper that details a new model to examine economic effects of unconventional monetary policy in the Euro area has won the Richard Stone Prize in Applied Econometrics from the Journal of Applied Econometrics. The journal awards the prize every two years for the best paper with substantive econometric applications. Econometrics uses economic theory, mathematics, and statistical inference to quantify economic phenomena.
The de Nicola Center for Ethics and Culture at the University of Notre Dame will mark the 50th anniversary of Roe v. Wade in Washington, D.C., on Thursday with an expert roundtable discussion on how best to care for and protect mothers, babies, and families in the wake of the Dobbs v. Jackson Supreme Court decision. “Building a Civilization of Love” will bring together experts in law, medicine, social science, public health, and social service to discuss the most important opportunities for and challenges to protecting the intrinsic equal dignity of every member of the human family following the Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Dobbs.
For Grace Song Swihart, learning helps her understand life’s complexities. She’s used photographs, flags, and other visual sources in her research, teaching, and an internship at Notre Dame’s Snite Museum of Art to show how cultural representations have impacted foreign relations between the U.S. and Korea, as well as Americans’ understanding of Koreans. Comprehending the cultural history of the U.S-Korea relationship is necessary to contextualize Korean culture and people, said Swihart, who grew up in Koreatown in Los Angeles then earned a B.A. in history and an M.A. in historical studies at The New School. In this interview, she discusses her research and how it has helped her better understand her own family and begin the process of healing after recent anti-Asian violence in America.
Notre Dame anthropologist Catherine “Cat” Bolten has been awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship to support the writing of her book that examines links between food insecurity, human population growth and wildlife depletion, land politics and degradation, and climate change in Sierra Leone. The associate professor of anthropology and peace studies is one of 70 scholars — from among more than 1,030 applicants nationwide — to be awarded the competitive fellowships.
Notre Dame historian Darren Dochuk has started his five-year term as co-executive editor of Modern American History, the go-to journal for researchers exploring any facet of 20th-century United States history. He is prioritizing the journal’s commitment to graduate students and new Ph.Ds, he said, as their scholarship is often the most innovative and path-breaking and their need to be published is critical. Ph.D. students at Notre Dame will have opportunities to work as editorial assistants, as the University is serving as MAH’s host institution during Dochuk’s five-year term.
Junior Nick Huls gained knowledge, confidence, and perspective taking part in the six-week Summer in Berlin Program offered by the Department of German and Russian Languages and Literatures, which resumed operation in 2022 after being halted for two years due to COVID-19. In addition to taking two courses, the economics major enjoyed traveling; attending plays, concerts, and art exhibits; and sampling food from across the region. “No matter how much you think you know or how many places you go, there are always more perspectives to be appreciated,” he said.
When Opera Notre Dame’s first film production made its debut last year, it was immediately recognized as a novel way to safely create and share a musical performance during the height of the pandemic. Now, Please Look: A Cinematic Opera Experience has won the inaugural Award for Digital Excellence in the university/conservatory category from Opera America, the hub of the national opera community. The award highlights how supporting the creative vision of faculty and students has made the University a pioneer in the future of an art form as it wades into the new entertainment reality of streaming video.
Notre Dame historian Margaret Meserve’s book Papal Bull: Print, Politics, and Propaganda in Renaissance Rome has won the American Catholic Historical Association’s Helen & Howard Marraro Prize in Italian History for being the most distinguished work in the field published in 2021. Papal Bull explores how Renaissance popes used the printing press in its early years to promote traditions, pursue alliances, excommunicate enemies, and lure pilgrims to Rome.
Sophomore history and political science major Michael Donelan considers Moby-Dick & 19th-Century America with Jake Lundberg to be one of the most exciting courses he has taken while at Notre Dame. In this Q&A, he discusses the appeal of the small, seminar-style class in which students explore Herman Melville’s 1851 masterpiece as a gateway into learning about life in 19th-century America as a whole.
The College of Arts & Letters has added a minor in international security studies (ISS) to help students understand root causes of war and other violent conflicts in order to pursue paths to peace. Based in the Notre Dame International Security Center (NDISC), the minor will seek to help students deepen their knowledge about national and international security as well as develop an awareness of past and present global conflicts, and access tools to evaluate security arguments.
Students sometimes laugh nervously on the first day of class when professor John Duffy tells them that his goal is to change their lives. It’s not an ego-driven statement; Duffy thinks every class at Notre Dame should expand their vision, at least somewhat. The English professor and former director of the University Writing Program and College Seminar Program has been achieving that goal for more than 20 years now, making a genuine and lasting impression on students and colleagues.
“Almost two decades on, I am still uncovering the many ways John Duffy changed my life and, by extension, the lives of the hundreds of thousands of teachers and students with whom I have had the honor of working,” a 2006 alumna wrote in recommending Duffy for the 2022 Sheedy Excellence in Teaching Award, the highest teaching honor in the College of Arts & Letters. “John taught us how to engage others — especially those whose voices have been suppressed or excluded — in the ongoing human conversation of words and ideas.”
In collaboration with Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross Colleges, Marian University, the Bard Prison Initiative and the Indiana Department of Correction, Notre Dame Programs for Education in Prison reorganizes a number of new and existing education programs under a single umbrella within the Center for Social Concerns.
Notre Dame anthropologist Luis Felipe R. Murillo is helping launch a collaborative project focused on climate change issues with funding from the National Science Foundation that aims to promote the principles of open science. The NSF is investing $12.5 million in 10 projects to “foster catalytic improvements in scientific communities,” including two that will be led by University faculty.
Notre Dame alumna Tess Gunty ’15 has won the National Book Award for fiction for her debut novel, The Rabbit Hutch. Born and raised in South Bend, Gunty majored in English with a concentration in creative writing. “My writing professors from Notre Dame uprooted my literary preconceptions and planted far better ideas in their place,” Gunty writes in the book’s acknowledgments. “I cherished their generosity as an undergraduate, and I continue to cherish it now.”
When the College of Arts & Letters launched a new major that allows students to pair computer science with another liberal arts discipline, Grace Conners was one of the first to apply. Now a senior, she has taken extensive computer science coursework in engineering while also having room in her schedule to pursue a supplementary major in peace studies. Along the way, she’s had four internships that have helped her consider what her future career will look like — one that, ideally, involves using computer science as a tool for peacebuilding.
Notre Dame theology and psychology professors are using science and technology to understand how people respond to sacred art. Robin Jensen, James Brockmole, and G.A. Radvansky received a nearly $1 million grant award from the Templeton Religion Trust for five related research studies that assess sacred art’s impact on viewers’ individual experiences, memories, and spiritual understanding. The grant will help the research team expand upon research done thanks to a previous award from Templeton. In 2020, the interdisciplinary trio began exploring ways in which looking at sacred art informed and enhanced spiritual growth and whether that changed based on time and place.
A new Italian language course led is empowering Notre Dame students to educate students of their own — African refugees who must learn basic Italian before they can relocate to Italy. Through leading online class sessions, five undergraduates from a range of majors and one graduate student sharpened their Italian skills, learned how to teach others, and developed global awareness and empathy for the refugee experience.
The University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business and the Department of Economics in the College of Arts and Letters hosted the semi-annual conference, “Midwest Economic Theory and International Economics Meetings.” About 100 attendees participated in the three-day event last month, which featured parallel sessions in economic theory and international economics.
As political scientists, Rachel Porter and Erin Rossiter know the importance of being fluent in several languages. Porter understands R, Stata, and Python, while Rossiter is adept in R, C++, SQL, and Java. Their tech skills make the assistant professors of political science two of the top young quantitative data scientists in political science today, greatly improving and expanding the research opportunities and course offerings for graduate and undergraduate students.
Mary Katherine Tillman, a professor emerita in the Program of Liberal Studies, died at Wellbrooke Senior Care Residence on Oct. 21, of complications associated with esophageal cancer. She was 81. Tillman was a scholar of St. John Henry Cardinal Newman, writing a book and several extended commentaries on the works of the19th-century English priest, as well as the history and philosophy of liberal education.
A new graduate minor in visual and material culture has been created for Notre Dame students interested in gaining foundational knowledge in global art and architecture history and conducting image-centered interdisciplinary research. The minor was added to enrich the experience of Arts and Letters students in Master of Arts, Master of Fine Arts, and Ph.D. programs through Department of Art, Art History & Design (AAHD) courses in ancient, medieval, early modern, modern, and contemporary art.
John P. Meier, University of Notre Dame professor, Catholic priest, and renowned biblical scholar, died Oct. 18, at age 80.
Meier, the William K. Warren Professor of Theology emeritus, published nearly 80 articles and 18 books during his distinguished career, including the acclaimed A Marginal Jew: Rethinking the Historical Jesus series.
At Notre Dame, students in a course called the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act Clinic have drafted dossiers to the U.S. government to request sanctions against the perpetrators of those crimes. Led by faculty member Thomas Kellenberg, the practicum course is framed around a federal law that allows nongovernmental organizations to request U.S. sanctions against foreign persons who have committed serious human rights abuses or corruption.
The latest video in the "What Would You Fight For?" series show how students who have taken the course gain valuable experience that prepares them for careers in human rights or anti-corruption. Their investigations have caught the eye of the U.S. State and Treasury Departments and have made a real impact in the effort to fight international corruption.
Hate crimes, discrimination, and harassment against Asian Americans in the United States have risen rapidly in recent years, and Notre Dame psychologist Lijuan (Peggy) Wang wants to know how that has impacted adolescents’ mental health and what factors can be leveraged to protect and promote their mental health. To lay the groundwork for building evidence-based and urgently needed interventions, Wang is part of a research team developing the first longitudinal study to fill research gaps and learn about how racial discrimination affects adolescent Asian Americans’ mental health.
Kenneth M. Sayre, a University of Notre Dame professor emeritus of philosophy and an early leader in the study of artificial intelligence, has died at age 94. A member of the faculty for 56 years, he was known for his teaching and research across a broad range of areas, including cybernetics, information theory, philosophy of mind, environmental philosophy, Plato, and epistemology. He authored 14 books, edited or co-edited five more, and published more than 50 articles in scholarly journals.