Adam Cowden, a 2012 graduate of Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters, has been selected as a Gates Cambridge Scholar. With the award, he will pursue a master’s degree at the University of Cambridge this fall. Cowden is one of only 40 students in the U.S. to receive the prestigious scholarship, from an initial field of approximately 800 applicants.
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Laura Miller is part of an international team of psychologists seeking to design effective treatments for children and adults who suffered trauma in the wake of the Arab Spring, the wave of demonstrations, protests, and civil wars that swept the Middle East beginning in December 2010. Miller is an assistant professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Psychology and Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies. Along with four other psychologists from the United States and Egypt, she is working to identify the clinical needs of the region by studying the psychological underpinnings of the Arab Spring and its impact on the mental health of people and communities.
University of Notre Dame Associate Professor "Asher Kaufman’s latest book was born out of a coincidence. A research trip in 2001 for his previous book, Reviving Phoenicia, led the historian to diplomatic archives in Nantes, France, where he stumbled upon what he described as “an archival bonanza” of documents, sketches, and maps that told the convoluted story of a decades-long border dispute between Israel, Lebanon and Syria. The discovery eventually led to a new book, Contested Frontiers in the Syria-Lebanon-Israel Region: Cartography, Sovereignty and Conflict.
“I started questioning the idea of ‘What do art and literature give to philosophy?’ at the same time as ‘What does philosophy give to the arts?’” says James Martell de la Torre, a sixth-year student in Notre Dame’s Ph.D. in Literature program. He chose to explore those ideas within the Ph.D. in Literature program because of its broad scope. “I was really thrilled by the interdisciplinary approach,” Martell de la Torre says, “and also by all the opportunities with different institutes to travel and to learn languages and to just keep enriching my whole experience.”
Notre Dame’s Department of Anthropology made a strong showing at the 2013 conference of the American Anthropological Association (AAA) in Chicago. Thirteen faculty members, along with seven undergraduate students, were invited to present at the annual event. This year’s theme was “Future Publics, Current Engagements.”
Building on the momentum of its recent Strategic Research Investment—which committed $80 million in internal resources to 14 research projects—the University of Notre Dame has announced the winning proposals in a new strategic hiring initiative. The initiative, which is a key component in the University’s Advancing Our Vision (AOV) program, will create approximately 80 faculty positions in 10 key areas of research across campus, drawing on $10 million in annual funds that have been reallocated from lower-priority expenditures to this academic priority.
Daniel Philpott, professor of political science and peace studies, has been appointed director of the University of Notre Dame’s Center for Civil and Human Rights (CCHR), effective Jan. 1. “Professor Philpott brings an ambitious vision for building the CCHR into a leading center for impactful research to his new role,” said J. Nicholas Entrikin, vice president and associate provost for internationalization. “He is a highly accomplished scholar who will support and enhance the center’s position as a beacon for civil and human rights, guided by the tenets of Catholic social teaching.”
Notre Dame’s Department of Economics is at the forefront of several initiatives that exemplify the University’s commitment to innovative research that can make a difference in the developing world.
The Italian Research Seminar, a series directed by Notre Dame Professor of Dante and Italian Studies Zygmunt Barański, continues to grow in its third academic year, bringing scholars from around the world to the University. Jointly sponsored by the Devers Program in Dante Studies and Italian Studies at Notre Dame, with support from the Office of Research, the series aims to provide a regular forum for faculty, postdoctoral scholars, graduate students, and colleagues from other universities to present and discuss their current research.
Notre Dame junior Farrell Sheehan is a pre-medicine major with minors in theology and in Brazilian and Portuguese studies who doesn’t believe in the term “limits.” A Hesburgh-Yusko scholar from Rockville, Md., Sheehan is passionate about researching global health issues and exploring Latin American languages and cultures. In less than three years at the University, he has already gained experience learning, serving, and working in Chile, the Dominican Republic, Brazil, and Spain.
Fourteen Notre Dame students, along with two of their professors from the College of Arts and Letters, traveled to northern Spain over fall break to experience the Camino de Santiago—one of the most important Christian pilgrimages during medieval times. History Professor Olivia Remie Constable, the director of the University’s Medieval Institute, and Danielle Joyner, an assistant professor of medieval art history, say it was an academic adventure they won’t soon forget. And their students agree.
University of Notre Dame juniors Breanna Thomas and Brianna Leon have been named winners of the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, a nationally competitive award that will provide funding for them to study abroad during the spring 2014 semester.
Notre Dame International (NDI) has awarded nine grants through its new Global Collaboration Initiative (GCI) program to Notre Dame faculty engaged in research with colleagues at partner institutions around the world. Five of the projects involve faculty from the College of Arts and Letters.
In her groundbreaking new book, Shaping the Motherhood of Indigenous Mexico (Vanderbilt University Press, 2013), Notre Dame anthropologist Vania Smith-Oka examines the impact of the widely praised Mexican cash-transfer program Oportunidades on women in the country’s marginalized indigenous communities.
With support from the Arts and Letters Summer Internship Program (ALSIP), students from Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters gain experience and explore career options in a variety of real-world environments, from the U.S. Consulate in Japan to the set of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. The grant program, administered by the University’s Career Center, provides Arts and Letters students with funding to defray cost-of-living expenses for both paid and unpaid internships in any industry or geographic location. In the four years since it began, ALSIP has given more than $400,000 in funding to approximately 200 students in the College.
The University of Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development (NDIGD) was recently awarded a $375,000 contract from the Millennium Challenge Corp. (MCC) to conduct an evaluation of MCC’s water project in Ghana. Among the many faculty involved in the project is Joseph Kaboski, the David F. and Erin M. Seng Foundation Professor of Economics in the College of Arts and Letters.
Notre Dame’s Department of Economics has bolstered its strengths in development economics and healthcare policy with two new hires, who bring with them the invaluable experience of being advised by major figures in the field. Assistant Professor Kevin Donovan comes to Notre Dame from Arizona State University where his faculty adviser was Nobel laureate Edward Prescott, while Assistant Professor Ethan Lieber’s adviser at the University of Chicago was Steven Levitt, winner of the John Bates Clark Medal and author of Freakonomics.
The University of Notre Dame ranks fifth nationwide in percentage of undergraduate students participating in study abroad programs among U.S. doctoral/research institutions, according to the Open Doors report released Monday, November 11 by the Institute of International Education (IIE).
Timothy J. Roemer, former U.S. ambassador to India, will give a lecture titled “Twitter, Buffett, and Darwin: India and the United States Relationship,” at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 13 in the Jordan Auditorium of the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business. The event is free and open to the public. The lecture, which is co-sponsored by the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, is part of the Liu Institute’s Distinguished Speaker Series and Notre Dame International’s International Education Week.
The prevalence of HIV and AIDS in South Africa is an issue that continues to define the country and its citizens. It is estimated that more than six million South Africans live with HIV/AIDS. This is more cases than any other country in the world. In spring 2013, Robert Sedlack ’89, associate professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Art, Art History, and Design, traveled with a team of 11 students to Johannesburg, South Africa to gain first-hand perspective on the problem and collaborate with South African community organizations.
When Caitlin Myron ’13 first came to Notre Dame she had an interest in the Irish culture from her childhood, but never imagined it was something she would have the opportunity to study. Four years later, she is beginning a master’s degree in Modern Irish at the National University of Ireland.
An ambitious international research effort to illuminate why democracies around the world succeed or fail has been awarded approximately $5.8 million over six years by the Swedish foundation Riksbankens Jubileumsfond. The Varieties of Democracy project, based in the U.S. at the University of Notre Dame’s Kellogg Institute for International Studies and in Europe at the University of Gothenburg’s Varieties of Democracy Institute, promises to make entirely new kinds of democracy research and policy assessment possible by quantifying democracy in all countries from 1900 to the present.
Vittorio Hösle, Paul Kimball Professor of Arts and Letters at the University of Notre Dame, has been appointed by Pope Francis to the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences. “We were very gratified to learn of Professor Hösle’s appointment to this truly distinguished body,” said Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., Notre Dame’s president.
On Wednesday, November 13, Carlos Eire, the T. Lawrason Riggs Professor of History and Religious Studies at Yale University, will give the inaugural lecture in the Transformative Latino Leadership Lecture Series, sponsored by Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies (ILS). Eire, author of the National Book Award-winning memoir Waiting for Snow in Havana: Confessions of a Cuban Boy (2003), will speak at 7 p.m. at the Hesburgh Center Auditorium, followed by a reception and book signing.
Rev. Gustavo Gutiérrez, O.P., the University of Notre Dame’s John Cardinal O’Hara Professor of Theology, will deliver the 2013 Annual Human Dignity Lecture on “Poverty and Human Dignity” Wednesday (Oct. 30) at 7:30 p.m. in the McKenna Hall auditorium. “Gustavo Gutiérrez’ influence on the last 40 years of Catholic theology has been profound and fundamental,” said John C. Cavadini, director of Notre Dame’s Institute for Church Life (ICL).
Donald and Marilyn Keough have made a $30 million gift to the University of Notre Dame to underwrite the construction of a new building for its international institutes. To be named in honor of Notre Dame’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., the structure will be conjoined to Nanovic Hall, a recently announced facility to be built on Notre Dame Avenue south of the Hesburgh Center for International Studies.
“With the Program of Liberal Studies (PLS), you get to engage with the great books and have stimulating conversations every day,” says Arnav Dutt ’13, a PLS major from South Bend, Ind. At the core of the program’s undergraduate curriculum are six Great Books seminars, in which small classes study and discuss major texts from ancient Greek literature to the 20th century.
Two professors in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters—medievalist Tim Machan and political scientist Benjamin Radcliff—recently received grants from the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program, which will allow them to travel to Europe to study their respective topics of interest.
Charles Leavitt, who received his Ph.D. in literature from Notre Dame in 2010, has accepted a position at the University of Reading as a lecturer in Italian studies—equivalent to assistant professor in the American university system. Located in Reading, England, the school is ranked in the top 1% of universities in the world.
“The thing that I like the most about political science is to be able to analyze things that are going on in our world right now and that are really relevant to our lives and what’s going to happen in future generations,” says Monica Torres ’14, a political science and Arabic major from Winter Springs, Fla.