Luke Pardue says he was looking for a “sense of family” when considering which college to attend. He found it at Notre Dame through the John and Barbara Glynn Family Honors program. “The opportunities that the honors program offers—from smaller seminar-style classes to summer research funding—made the opportunity to study at Notre Dame that much more attractive,” says the junior economics major.
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From the beginning of their joint research on political participation in rural Mali, Notre Dame political scientist Jaimie Bleck and Kellogg Institute for International Studies Visiting Fellow Kristin Michelitch were interested in the voices of voiceless citizens. Mali had experienced two decades of democratic rule but mass illiteracy, gender inequality, and elite control of political knowledge meant that many rural citizens, especially women, had little real role in the political process.
University of Notre Dame Assistant Professor David Hernández recently received a trio of research awards: a fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS), a Career Enhancement Fellowship from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, and a fellowship from Harvard’s Loeb Classical Library Foundation. “I am honored and thrilled to receive this tremendous help for my research,” says Hernández, who is a faculty member in both the Department of Classics and the Department of Anthropology.
What is the role of religion in rapidly developing societies? It is a hotly contested question among social scientists and theologians alike, with the prevailing view holding that global capitalism either makes religion irrelevant or produces a backlash of fundamentalism. Brandon Vaidyanathan, a graduate student in Notre Dame’s Department of Sociology, is discovering a different reality as he focuses on the world of skilled professionals in multinational corporations in two rapidly globalizing cities—Bangalore, India, and Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Notre Dame Professor of History Christopher Hamlin has been invited to study at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in Princeton, N.J., for the 2013-14 academic year. While at the IAS, he plans to continue his research on the intersection of public health and economic policy in 19th century Ireland and Scotland.
John Van Engen, Andrew V. Tackes Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame, has won the 2013 Haskins Medal for his book, Sisters and Brothers of the Common Life: The Devotio Moderna and the World of the Later Middle Ages. The Haskins Medal is the highest award granted by the Medieval Academy of America, the main professional organization for medievalists.
When senior economics major and peace studies major Melissa Maggart began looking for a summer internship last year, she sought to combine her academic interests with her personal desire to help alleviate poverty. Her search brought her to a new program at the University of Notre Dame—the Lab for Economic Opportunities (LEO).
University of Notre Dame senior Taylor Thomas says she chose to major in psychology because it can help bring order to things that seem incomprehensible. “I’m interested in the ways we can explain systematically the very chaotic aspects of life.” In pursuing this interest, Thomas spent last summer studying how mothers who have experienced trauma engage their children in conversation.
Notre Dame students looking to investigate some of the pressing issues facing our country today can get support for their research through the American Dream Summer Grant program. Offered by the College of Arts and Letters’ Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal Arts, the grant is available to both undergraduate and graduate students to conduct an original research or creative project exploring some aspect of the “American Dream.”
The University of Notre Dame’s Department of English has strengthened its expertise across the historical spectrum and the globe with five faculty appointments that span medieval literature, Modernism, and digital media.
Each year, approximately 30 percent of seniors in the College of Arts and Letters complete a yearlong thesis project, working one-on-one with a faculty member or graduate student to make an intellectual contribution to their chosen field of study.
Every democracy is a work in progress. The degree to which some succeed and others fall short is at the heart of what sociologist Robert Fishman explores in his research and teaching at Notre Dame.
When tragedies strike, how do we recover? Last summer, senior psychology major Benjamin Pfeifer moved closer to an answer, thanks to a research grant from the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters.
Chris Abram, associate professor of English in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters, is interested in the literary cultures of early medieval northern Europe. In this video, he discusses the large body of manuscripts found in Scandinavia written in Old Norse and what the stories within can tell us about pre-Christian culture.
The University’s world-renowned fencing program brought student-athlete Alex Coccia to Notre Dame. By the end of his freshman year, the junior Africana studies major helped bring fencing around the world—specifically, to a group of schoolchildren in Uganda.
Empowered and groundbreaking women are a family tradition for sociologist Joan Aldous, Notre Dame’s first full female endowed professor. Appointed William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of Sociology at Notre Dame in 1976, Aldous retired on December 31, 2012. In that time, she became a leading expert in the sociology of the family and made a significant impact on sociology at Notre Dame.
Three University of Notre Dame professors have been awarded National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) fellowships for 2013-14, bringing Notre Dame’s total number of NEH grants to 49 since 1999, more than any other university in the country. The University of Michigan is second to Notre Dame with 36 fellowships, followed by Harvard with 28, Princeton with 23 and the University of California at Berkeley with 21.
Jaehyun Jung spent the summer of her sophomore year interviewing Koreans who had lived through colonization, civil war, dictatorships, and democratization. It was not just a great academic experience, she says, it was also a personal journey. “I’m definitely even more proud of my heritage now.”
Researching, exploring, and seeking to understand other cultures are essential to anthropology—and a key part of a Notre Dame liberal arts education. Junior Greg Yungtum had the opportunity to do all of these things during a trip to Africa this past summer.
University of Notre Dame economist Joseph Kaboski has been awarded a $415,000 grant by the National Institutes of Health to lead a research project that will explore the poor’s motives and reasons for saving in developing countries. The study, now underway, is called “Unlocking the Black Box of Savings: Using Quantitative Theory and Microfinance” and will focus on the nation of Uganda, combining structural theory with experimental data.
Sandra Botero, a Ph.D. student in Notre Dame’s Department of Political Science, has won two prestigious fellowships to support her research on the policy outcomes of judicial decisions in Colombia and Argentina. Botero received an International Dissertation Research Fellowship from the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) and a Dissertation Research Improvement Grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for her project, “High Courts and Socioeconomic Rights in Latin America.”
Deborah Tor, an assistant professor in Notre Dame’s Department of History, has recently been awarded fellowships from the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in Princeton, N.J., and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Both awards recognize her research on the reign of the Great Seljuq Dynasty in the Islamic heartlands.
Notre Dame faculty member Stephen Dumont, a professor in the Department of Philosophy and a fellow of the Medieval Institute, has been awarded a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) for his book project, The Two Affections of the Will: From Anselm of Canterbury to John Duns Scotus.
University of Notre Dame Sociologist Elizabeth McClintock studies the impacts of physical attractiveness and age on mate selection and the effects of gender and income on relationships. Her research offers new insights into why and when Cupid’s arrow strikes.
“The day of studying the New Testament text alone is over—as well it should be,” says John Fitzgerald, a professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Theology. “As important as the New Testament text is, it comes to life only when it is placed within a community and a society of other people.” In this video, Fitzgerald discusses his research on early Christian society, including issues such as unemployment and domestic violence.
The Winston Churchill Foundation of the United States has selected MurphyKate Montee as a Churchill Scholar for the academic year 2013-2014. Montee, a senior mathematics and music (voice) double major in the Glynn Family Honors Program, is one of just 14 students in the United States to receive this honor.
As French forces continue battling Islamist militants in Mali and the international policy community debates additional foreign intervention, the voices of those most affected by this political instability are rarely heard—until now. University of Notre Dame Political Scientist Jaimie Bleck, who specializes in Malian politics, has completed extensive research in Mali where she interviewed some 600 Malian villagers living on the border of rebel-claimed territory.
Catholics are less generous than other American Christians, according to a study recently published by the University of Notre Dame’s Catholic Social and Pastoral Research Initiative (CSPRI). “Unleashing Catholic Generosity: Explaining the Catholic Giving Gap in the United States,” by Brian Starks, director of CSPRI, and Christian Smith, William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Sociology at Notre Dame, compares the religious giving of Catholics with that of other religious communities in America and concludes that Catholics, on average, give less than other Christians.
University of Notre Dame Associate Professor Daniel Hobbins is a historian of high and late medieval Europe, with a particular interest in the cultural and intellectual history of the period from 1300 to 1500. Under this broad heading, his research has focused on late medieval authorship (through the example of Jean Gerson), Joan of Arc, and backgrounds to print. In this video, Hobbins discusses his research on the tremendous changes in book production in the late Middle Ages, before the advent of print.
“If you only like philosophy, then be a philosopher. If you only like history, then be a historian. If you only like mathematics, then be a mathematician. But if you like all of those things, you should be an economist,” says Timothy S. Fuerst, the William and Dorothy O’Neill Professor of Economics at the University of Notre Dame. One of the most-cited economists in the world, Fuerst also serves as senior economic advisor at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. His research interests include monetary theory and policy, with a special focus on business cycles.