Design students at Notre Dame now have a new place in which to learn, create, and collaborate. The recently refurbished West Lake Hall is now fitted with dynamic classroom spaces, computer labs, offices, and display areas for the graphic and industrial design programs in the College of Arts and Letters.
Latest News » Undergraduate News
If you’re an early riser—4 a.m. or so—chances are good that you could find the dedicated staff of The Observer, Notre Dame’s student newspaper, still hard at work on the day’s paper. When those long nights turn into early mornings, Meghan Thomassen, an honors English major in the College of Arts and Letters and the newspaper’s managing editor, calls upon her experiences studying Japanese, cognitive psychology, and Mozart to get her through—and not just coffee, as you might expect.
Mothers who have experienced childhood abuse, neglect or other traumatic experiences show an unwillingness to talk with their children about the child’s emotional experiences, a new study from the University of Notre Dame shows.
For the third time in the past four years, a student enrolled in the John W. Gallivan Program in Journalism, Ethics and Democracy at the University of Notre Dame is the recipient of the Brook Baker Collegiate Journalist of the Year Award. Andrew Owens, a graduating senior in the Gallivan Program, was named the 2013 Baker Award winner at a recent ceremony of the Indiana Collegiate Press Association on the Indiana University Bloomington campus.
For students participating in the University of Notre Dame’s Washington Program, the semester studying in our nation’s capital offers opportunities to combine coursework with internships in a range of areas, from Congress and advocacy groups to media and cultural institutions.
An engineer with a strong liberal arts background is a valuable asset in today’s business world, says Craig Simon, president and chief executive officer of FedEx SupplyChain and a 1989 alumnus of Notre Dame’s distinctive Arts and Letters/Engineering Dual-Degree Program. “When you get into the business world, you’re going to stand out because you will have the ability to use both sides of your brain,” says Simon, who spoke at a recent event honoring the top students in the program.
Mallory Meter, a psychology major from Beverly Hills, Mich., has been named valedictorian of the 2013 University of Notre Dame graduating class and will present the valedictory address during the University Commencement Ceremony on Sunday, May 19 at Notre Dame Stadium.
Notre Dame junior Kate Squiers wants to be a doctor—and knows that a broad-based liberal arts education can help her become a great one.
Why do you do what you do? This deceptively simple question faced Notre Dame students Bright Gyamfi and Madelynn Green when they arrived at the 2013 Public Policy and Leadership Conference (PPLC) at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government this February.
“If you are interested in Arabic, sate your curiosity,” urges Notre Dame Arabic studies major Owen Cox. “It’s really rewarding. I love it.” In addition to developing solid speaking, reading, and writing skills, students in the Arabic program take a wide selection of courses delving into Arabic literature, history, religion, and culture.
Catherine Reidy, a University of Notre Dame senior majoring in psychology with a minor in anthropology, has been awarded a Clarendon Scholarship for graduate study at the University of Oxford. Reidy, a Rhodes Scholar finalist, will use the scholarship to study for her master’s degree in African Studies starting in October.
What role should government play in society? In religion? These enduring questions are at the heart of Opera Notre Dame’s upcoming performance of The Dialogues of the Carmelites, April 25-28 at the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center.
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.
Notre Dame senior Breanna Stachowski recently placed third at the International Housewares Association (IHA) Student Design Competition, which recognizes excellent industrial design in the housewares industry and provides a venue for the winners to network and sell their finished products.
As a senior in high school, Allan Joseph did not want to go to Notre Dame. That changed in spring 2009 when Joseph attended Reilly Weekend, an on-campus event for high-achieving students, and was invited to join the John and Barbara Glynn Family Honors Program if he chose to enroll at the University. “The honors program wasn’t a huge factor in my mind at first,” Allan says. “Then I went to Reilly Weekend, got to meet the people in the program, saw the opportunities—and just fell in love with the whole thing.
Since the fall of 2010, Notre Dame’s Center for Social Concerns and the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, through a joint faculty appointment, are extending student learning into the Latino community on South Bend’s west side. “Community-based learning brings the curriculum to life,” says Notre Dame senior Michael Thomas, a Spanish and finance major. “It’s an opportunity to put a face to the knowledge and the content that you gain in the classroom.”
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.
“The classes were so interactive and small, I thought this intimate setting is exactly what I would want for a major,” says Elise Murray, a sophomore German major from Lancaster, Penn. “You formulate friendships and partnerships which are so vital, I think, for an undergraduate education.”
From a very young age, junior Marielle Hampe loved to read books. Her very first memory, in fact, is of her mother reading her a story on the porch of their house. It wasn’t until after her first year in the Notre Dame’s Glynn Family Honors Program, however, that she realized she wanted to make a career out of reading and writing—and teaching others to do the same.
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 2013-14 season of the University of Notre Dame’s Department of Film, Television and Theatre will feature four plays, beginning in October with On the Verge. The three remaining plays are Cabaret, November 13-17; Clybourne Park, February 20-March 2; and Blood Wedding, April 9-13, 2014.
A college campus is intended to be a place where exploration, dialogue, and debate are fostered. A prime example of this ethos is the Dean’s Fellows program in the College of Arts and Letters. The program’s mission is simple: provide opportunities and support so that students can become academic leaders on campus.
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.
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.
“People have this idea that Japanese is really hard, that it is difficult to speak” says Matthew Donley, a senior Japanese and psychology major in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters. “But it’s not as hard as you think.” Japanese is a rewarding challenge, says the Houston native.
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.
Alex Coccia and Nancy Joyce, both juniors in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters, have been elected undergraduate student body president and vice president for the 2013-14 academic year. Coccia, an Africana studies and peace studies major, and Joyce, an Arabic and economics major earning a minor in peace studies, will take office on April 1.
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.”