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Arts and Letters graduates Jeremy Cappello Lee, Lily Falzon named 2019 Yenching Scholars

Author: Erin Blasko

Categories: Internationalism, Alumni, Research, Undergraduate News, General News, and National Fellowships

Arts and Letters graduates Jeremy Cappello Lee and Lily Falzon, both members of the class of 2018, have been invited to study at the Yenching Academy of Peking University in Beijing, China, as two of approximately 125 Yenching Scholars from across the globe. Established in 2014, the Yenching Academy offers a one-year master’s degree program for students with outstanding academic backgrounds and broad curiosity. The program pushes the study of China beyond the traditional boundaries of the humanities and social sciences.

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Political science and economics alumnus Carlos Lozada wins Pulitzer Prize

Author: Dennis Brown

Categories: Faculty News, Alumni, and General News

Notre Dame faculty member and alumnus Carlos Lozada, the nonfiction book critic for the Washington Post, is the recipient of a 2019 Pulitzer Prize for criticism, journalism’s highest honor. In announcing the award April 15, the Pulitzer jurors cited Lozada “for trenchant and searching reviews and essays that joined warm emotion and careful analysis in examining a broad range of books addressing government and the American experience.”

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Video: Sacred music alumnus on the ‘king of instruments’ and reviving church music in rural communities

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: Arts, Catholicism, Alumni, and General News

“If you can be a strong organist and lead hymns from the keyboard, you can do it all as a church musician,” said Michael Emmerich, ’12 M.S.M. Emmerich is the associate music director for the Archdiocese of Omaha with a particular focus and mission for rural music ministry. He travels the archdiocese to bolster musical and liturgical literacy among the parishes in rural communities. 

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How an experience abroad ignited American studies major Robert Costa’s passion for politics

Author: Joanna Byrne

Categories: Internationalism, Alumni, and General News

For American studies major Robert Costa ’08, the Notre Dame London Program offered him a valuable new perspective on the United States and the world. "You get an appreciation of how American values are not necessarily shared throughout the world,” he said. “My encounters with people from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Russia while in London taught me so much about the world.” Since graduating from the University, Costa has become a national political reporter for the Washington Post, a political analyst for NBC News, and host of television show Washington Week on PBS.

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Internships and athletics led FTT major to top producer job on Jimmy Kimmel Live

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: Arts, Alumni, and General News

Growing up in southern California, Jennifer Sharron Richardson ’01 knew she wanted to go into the entertainment industry. But she had no idea she would one day be co-executive producing an award-winning late night talk show like Jimmy Kimmel Live!. It took a Notre Dame liberal arts education, a passion for softball, and a little luck to get her there.

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‘Ways of seeing and changing the world’: Gender Studies Program marks 30 years of rigorous, interdisciplinary study and a commitment to social justice

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Faculty News, Alumni, Research, Undergraduate News, and General News

Three decades after its founding, the Gender Studies Program is thriving, with more than 70 students currently pursuing gender studies majors, supplementary majors, and minors at the undergraduate and graduate levels, as well as more than 50 associated faculty across campus. Hundreds of students have found a home in the program over the years — including Sarah A. Mustillo ’96, the I.A. O’Shaughnessy Dean of the College of Arts and Letters.

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Alumnus brings together music performance and theory to examine historical piano improvisation 

Author: Emily McConville

Categories: Arts, Alumni, and General News

Music theory and performance are often thought of as separate — you study the structures and history of music, or you master an instrument or your own voice. For Andrew White ’12, a doctoral student at the University of Chicago who studies how pianists practiced their instrument in the 19th century, putting the two together is “very intuitive.” White was able to make the two work in tandem as a Notre Dame undergraduate, where the Department of Music offers a unique blend of music performance and theory.

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Why Mark Winkler ’11 took a nontraditional path from an economics major to a career in medicine

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: Internationalism, Alumni, and General News

Taking a traditional path never much interested Mark Winkler ’11. He knew he wanted to go to medical school, but he sought something beyond a strictly science-based course of study. He says his majors in economics and Arts and Letters pre-health led to him to where he is now — a graduate of the Duke University School of Medicine and a resident physician in radiology and biomedical imaging at the University of California, San Francisco. 

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‘Cultural maintenance’: 2017 art history alumna restores classic works at Vatican Museums

Author: Andy Fuller

Categories: Arts, Internationalism, Alumni, Research, and General News

Sophia Bevacqua ’17, an art history major now serving a five-year fellowship at the Vatican Museums, works with seven laboratories dedicated to preserving and restoring the site’s vast collections. She works with the laboratories to determine which works of art will be restored, which methods will be used to do the work, and how much each project will cost. She then works to match upcoming restoration projects with benefaction from the museums’ pool of approximately 2,400 donors.

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Video: Tech entrepreneur Dan Peate ’00 on majoring in philosophy and how the liberal arts prepare students for robot-proof jobs

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: Alumni and General News

“A lot of people ask me, ‘Philosophy — do you even use that in business?’ And I actually do all the time, especially in the world of Silicon Valley,” said Dan Peate ’00. Peate is the founder of the technology companies DRIAV and Hixme, and is the managing director of Peate Ventures LLC, a venture capital fund. He credits his success in business to the skills he gained in asking foundational questions as a philosophy major. He seeks new employees who can demonstrate flexible thinking and thinks all students should broaden their abilities to work creatively.

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Sounds like home: Department of English alumna embraces music and songwriting in Dublin

Author: Colleen Wilcox

Categories: Arts, Internationalism, Alumni, and General News

Julia Steiner ’14 writes songs and plays them in a Chicago-based rock band called Ratboys. She grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, before attending Notre Dame, where she graduated  with a degree in English. During her third year at the University, Steiner studied abroad in Dublin and attended Trinity College. She returned in summer 2014 to intern in the sports department at RTÉ, Ireland’s National Broadcaster. Here, Steiner reflects on her time in Dublin and the influence it had on her music.

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Medieval studies Ph.D. alumna reflects on postdoctoral fellowship at London Global Gateway

Author: Joanna Byrne

Categories: Internationalism, Centers and Institutes, Alumni, Research, and General News

After receiving her Ph.D. in medieval studies from Notre Dame in 2017, Megan Welton spent a year as an Arts and Letters postdoctoral fellow at the University of Notre Dame’s London Global Gateway in England. She is now a researcher on the NWO-VICI project, “Citizenship Discourses in the Early Medieval World” at Utrecht University.

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Ph.D. and MFA alumna shortlisted for T.S. Eliot Prize in Poetry

Author: Mary Hendriksen

Categories: Arts, Internationalism, Centers and Institutes, Alumni, General News, and Graduate Students

Ailbhe Darcy’s new volume of poetry, Insistence, has been shortlisted for the prestigious T.S. Eliot Prize in Poetry. Darcy, who now lives in Wales, received an MFA in creative writing from Notre Dame in 2011 and a Ph.D. in English with an Irish studies graduate minor from the University in 2015. A poet, critic, and professor, she teaches contemporary Irish poetry and literature at Cardiff University.

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Bower Doctor of Musical Arts program empowers students to re-energize sacred music in church and academy

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Faculty News, Catholicism, Alumni, Research, General News, and Graduate Students

Music has the power to inspire, to sustain, and to build community. And students and alumni of Sacred Music at Notre Dame’s Calvin M. Bower Doctor of Musical Arts program are playing a vital role in re-energizing the church and the academy through sacred music. With tracks in choral conducting and organ, the program offers an academically rigorous curriculum with a wide range of opportunities for performance, academic, and community engagement. The latest step forward for the DMA program is a generous gift from James and Molly Perry to endow and rename it in honor of Calvin M. Bower, professor emeritus of musicology.

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Through her lens: Art alumna captures untold story in Kylemore

Author: Colleen Wilcox

Categories: Catholicism, Internationalism, Alumni, Research, Undergraduate News, and General News

It was a New Year’s Eve celebration that Mary McGraw '17 will never forget. McGraw was ringing in the new year with eight Benedictine nuns at Kylemore Abbey in Galway, Ireland. This intimate moment isn’t something that most study abroad students get to experience while in Ireland. In fact, most people will never know what it’s like to see these nuns behind closed doors. It took several months in Kylemore for McGraw to develop trust with the nuns and, ultimately, a relationship that allowed her to gain a unique perspective into their everyday lives. A studio art major with a photography concentration, McGraw was able to pull back the curtains and capture even more intimate moments through her camera lens — a project that led to her senior thesis.

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For history major Micah Johnston, a year of service was a ‘master class’ in relationship building 

Author: Emily McConville

Categories: Catholicism, Alumni, and General News

Now a senior program office for IREX in Washington, D.C., Micah Johnston '06 spent his first year after graduation volunteering for the Little Brothers Friends of the Elderly in Chicago. He spent his days visiting the homes of elderly individuals who did not regularly see friends or family. “Spending a year in service helps other people, but it can also be a master class in learning about the world, learning about other people, incorporating that into the education you get at Notre Dame,” he said.

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Q&A with Leslie Lockett, alumna of the Ph.D. program at the Medieval Institute

Author: Brandon Cook and Karrie Fuller

Categories: Centers and Institutes, Alumni, General News, Graduate Students, and Q and A

In this Q&A, Leslie Lockett, an associate professor of English and director of the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies at The Ohio State University, discusses early medieval concepts of the mind, what initially hooked her on the Middle Ages, and her advice for graduate students who would like to follow her career track.

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How seeing the Hesburgh Library's medieval manuscripts convinced a Notre Dame student to major in theology and German

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Catholicism, Alumni, Research, Undergraduate News, and General News

One visit to the Hesburgh Library’s medieval manuscripts collection, and Luke Donahue ’17 was hooked. “I saw them and thought, ‘This is it.’ This is what I want to study,” Donahue said. “I was intrigued that there are all these manuscripts from the Middle Ages that no one has researched, and I was determined — I wanted to help fill that intellectual gap.” While he initially planned to study physics, Donahue decided to major in theology and German and add a minor in medieval studies.

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PLS major Corey Robinson ’17 on how the liberal arts prepare students for lives of excellence and integrity

Author: Carrie Gates

Categories: Alumni, Research, Undergraduate News, and General News

When he got to Notre Dame, Corey Robinson ’17 didn’t know what to major in — because he wanted to major in everything. He met with advisers in more than 20 departments, considering everything from Arts and Letters pre-health to Irish language and literature to aquatic biology. And he still wasn’t sure. That’s when his advising dean suggested the Program of Liberal Studies.

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In online course on the Quran, theology professor connects Notre Dame students with perspectives from around the world

Author: Katie Boruff

Categories: Faculty News, Internationalism, Alumni, Research, Undergraduate News, and General News

Gabriel Said Reynolds greets his students on the final day of his Introduction to the Quran course. He is in a small classroom on Notre Dame’s campus. His students are in Orlando, Colorado, Canada, Denmark, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, and beyond. Such arrangements are not uncommon in the world of massive open online courses (MOOCs), but this one is different. It breaks new ground in the online learning space by bringing students participating in the MOOC around the world together with undergraduate and graduate students that Reynolds teaches in a traditional course at Notre Dame.

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Video: Class of 2018 reflects on how an Arts and Letters education prepared them to succeed

Author: Todd Boruff

Categories: Undergraduate News, General News, Catholicism, Arts, and Alumni

Congratulations to the Class of 2018! This video, screened at the Arts and Letters Diploma Ceremony, features several seniors reflecting on their time at Notre Dame and in the College of Arts and Letters. In it, the new graduates discuss how a liberal arts education helped them develop skills, shaped their minds, and opened up a world of possibilities for their futures.

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Idzik Computing and Digital Technologies Program prepares students to launch successful careers

Author: Teagan Dillon

Categories: Faculty News, Alumni, Undergraduate News, and General News

Now in its third year, the College of Arts and Letters' Idzik Computing and Digital Technologies Program is helping students supplement their education with technological and programming skills. The program was endowed and renamed this year in honor of its generous benefactors, Paul and Ruth Idzik. Designed to help students obtain skills needed for success in the modern digital world, the CDT minor can be extremely appealing for prospective employers who are already attracted to the communication, organization, and analytical skills honed through the liberal arts.

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How Arts and Letters and FTT formed the foundation for husband-and-wife filmmaking duo’s Hollywood success

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: Arts, Alumni, and General News

Christine Swanson ’94 has written and directed multiple award-winning films. Her husband, Michael Swanson ’93, is an Emmy-winning producer and studio executive who has worked on hit Universal Television shows. The married Department of Film, Television, and Theatre alumni also make movies together through their Los Angeles-based production company, Faith Filmworks. Grounded in their Notre Dame liberal arts education and inspired by their deep Christian faith, the Swansons use their skills to tell the type of uplifting stories they feel are missing from big Hollywood studios.  

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A global education prepares Arabic major for career in U.S. Department of Justice

Author: Eileen Lynch

Categories: Internationalism, Alumni, and General News

For Victoria Braga ’11, a semester in Egypt as an undergraduate gave her a new perspective on the United States — and shaped her future career path. Braga came to Notre Dame with an interest in international relations, but her study abroad experience inspired her to pursue a career as an attorney and a position in the U.S. government. Today, the Arabic and political science major works as a trial attorney in the appellate section of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Immigration Litigation.

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Alumni discuss how the international economics major prepared them for jobs in consulting, finance, and research

Author: Teagan Dillon

Categories: Alumni, Research, Undergraduate News, and General News

Four alumni of Notre Dame’s international economics program returned to campus in March to speak to current students about their experience with the major, valuable classes they took, and the skills they developed that are now paying dividends in the real world

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Physician relies on anthropology background when treating patients in trauma center

Author: Jack Rooney

Categories: Alumni and General News

As an orthopedic resident at Loyola University Medical Center, Daniel Schmitt ’11 sees a wide variety of patients. Schmitt, who majored in anthropology and biology, relies on his liberal arts education to connect with his diverse patient base and treat them comprehensively at the Level I trauma center — a hospital providing the highest level of surgery to trauma victims.

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First Time Fans film series returns for Season 4, featuring work from students and alumni

Author: Ted Mandell

Categories: Alumni, Undergraduate News, and General News

A truly unique production model, First Time Fans brings together Notre Dame alumni filmmakers and pairs them with current students to tell inspiring stories about extraordinary people on an extraordinary campus. A joint venture of the College of Arts and Letters, the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre, and the Athletics Department, First Time Fans is a filmmaking co-op where alumni are given the creative canvas to tell a Notre Dame story through the eyes of someone new to campus, using the backdrop of a Fighting Irish athletic event.

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How a passion for a French painter and a knowledge of violins prepared an art history major to work at Sotheby’s

Author: Teagan Dillon

Categories: Arts, Alumni, and General News

Growing up in South Bend, Carly Murphy ’01 always admired Marc Chagall’s Le Grand Cirque when she saw it in the Snite Museum of Art at Notre Dame. This piece of art sparked a love of French culture in Murphy, who went on to major in French and art history in the College of Arts and Letters. Now vice president of global client development at Sotheby’s international art auction house, Murphy returned to campus last semester to speak to a gathering of students, reflecting on her Notre Dame education and offering advice on entering the art world. 

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