Father Jenkins urges graduates to express beliefs respectfully

Author: Dennis Brown

Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.

In a commencement address Monday (May 7) at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C., Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, urged graduates to hold fast to their convictions but express them in “more skillful, more respectful ways.”

Father Jenkins spoke to Wesley’s 130th graduating class in a ceremony at the Washington National Cathedral.

“We in this country are in the midst of a social crisis, a harsh and deepening split between groups that are all too ready to see evil in each other,” Father Jenkins said. “Each side has never been more eager yet more unable to dominate the other. Both sides call for change, but each believes it’s the other side that must change.”

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Erin Hoffmann Harding to succeed Father Doyle as VP for Student Affairs

Author: Dennis Brown

Erin Hoffmann Harding

Erin Hoffmann Harding, associate vice president for strategic planning at the University of Notre Dame, has been appointed vice president for student affairs at the University, succeeding Rev. Thomas P. Doyle, C.S.C., who will join Notre Dame’s Institute for Educational Initiatives as a faculty fellow focusing on initiatives in Catholic educational leadership development. He also will continue pastoral ministry among students and assist the Office of Human Resources with an initiative related to integrating Catholic mission.

“Erin brings with her to this new position a wide range of extraordinary skills that will serve the University well,” said Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., Notre Dame’s president. “I appreciate her accepting this appointment and look forward to working closely with her and the division to enhance our student life initiatives, which have always been and will remain a distinctive part of Notre Dame’s educational experience.

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Teaching awards honor exemplary work with undergraduates

Author: Shannon Chapla

Joyce and Dockweiler awards

The 20 winners of Joyce teaching excellence awards represent faculty who have had a profound influence on undergraduate students through sustained exemplary teaching. Faculty committees in each of seven disciplinary areas review the peer and student nominations.

The awards are presented by the Office of the Provost, but recipients are selected through a process that includes peer and student nominations.

Dockweiler Award winners are: Ramzi K. Bualuan, associate professional specialist, computer science and engineering; Joshua B. Kaplan, associate professional specialist, political science; and Holly E. Martin, assistant dean, First Year of Studies.

The 20 winners of Joyce teaching excellence awards represent faculty who have had a profound influence on undergraduate students through sustained exemplary teaching. Faculty committees in each of seven disciplinary areas review the peer and student nominations.

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Michael O’Brien named 2012 valedictorian


Michael O'Brien

Michael J. O’Brien, a political science major from St. Charles, Ill., has been named valedictorian of the 2012 University of Notre Dame graduating class and will present the valedictory address during Commencement ceremonies May 20 (Sunday) at Notre Dame Stadium. O’Brien, who also will be awarded an International Business Certificate from Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, earned a 4.0 grade point average.

O’Brien is editor-in-chief of “Beyond Politics: Undergraduate Journal of Politics,” and serves as president of the Notre Dame College Democrats, leading one of the most active College Democrats chapters in the nation.

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Notre Dame enhances support for gay and lesbian students

Author: Dennis Brown

Dome and Clouds

In response to student suggestions, the University of Notre Dame has taken several new steps to better support gay, lesbian, bisexual and questioning members of its community.

The result of meetings between student leaders and members of the University’s administration, the initiatives include improving awareness of existing non-discrimination practices and protections as articulated in Notre Dame’s discriminatory harassment policies and “Spirit of Inclusion” statement, and enhancing the structure and functions of the Core Council for Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Students.

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Notre Dame to award 11 honorary degrees at Commencement

Author: Brendan O'Shaughnessy


Ten distinguished figures in business, education, engineering, law, mathematics, media, medicine and the Catholic Church will join principal speaker Haley Scott DeMaria as honorary degree recipients at the University of Notre Dame’s 167th Commencement Ceremony May 20 (Sunday).

The ceremony will be held in the morning at Notre Dame Stadium in order to accommodate as many guests as possible. Undergraduate diploma ceremonies for each college and school will be held the afternoon of May 20, and the Graduate School ceremony will take place May 19 (Saturday).

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Parents rank Notre Dame No. 4 ‘Dream College’


Main Building

The University of Notre Dame is the No. 4 “dream college” among parents of college applicants, the Princeton Review reported in its annual “College Hopes and Worries” survey. Notre Dame moved up from the No. 9 slot last year.

Released Tuesday (March 27), the rankings are, in order, Stanford University, Princeton University, Harvard College, Notre Dame, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University, Duke University, Yale University and University of Southern California.

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Alumna Haley Scott DeMaria to deliver 2012 Notre Dame commencement address

Author: Dennis Brown

Haley Scott DeMaria

Haley Scott DeMaria, the University of Notre Dame alumna who made an inspiring recovery from critical injuries suffered in a tragic 1992 bus accident involving the Fighting Irish swimming team, will be the principal speaker and the recipient of an honorary degree at Notre Dame’s 167th Commencement Ceremony on May 20.

“The courage, perseverance and faith Haley has demonstrated over the past 20 years have been remarkable and are a shining example for us all,” said Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., Notre Dame’s president. “She has spoken to scores of groups across the country of the many challenges she faced in recovering from injuries suffered in the accident, always with a focus on God’s grace and the love and support she received from her family, friends and Notre Dame. I’m sure that her words will be as inspirational to our graduates as they have been to so many others.”

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Notre Dame named with distinction on 2012 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll

Author: John Guimond

2012 President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll

The University of Notre Dame has been named with distinction to the 2012 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in recognition of the role it plays in solving community problems; achieving meaningful, measurable outcomes in the communities it serves; and placing students on a lifelong path of civic engagement.

Notre Dame is one of four Indiana colleges and universities to be selected with distinction. The Corporation for National and Community Service releases the Community Service Honor Roll annually.

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Taoiseach awards Hesburgh Irish citizenship at St. Patrick's Day dinner

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Father Hesburgh holds Irish passport

Despite the fact that four Irishmen were among the seven brothers who arrived in northern Indiana with him in 1842, Notre Dame’s founder, Rev. Edward Sorin, C.S.C., had misgivings about the Irish, and struggled, with notable lack of success, to repress celebrations of St. Patrick’s feast day during Notre Dame’s early years.

That irony in Notre Dame’s history became all the more agreeably pronounced when offset by the glowing bonhomie of a dinner reception for Enda Kenny, Taoiseach (or prime minister) of Ireland, on the 14th floor of the University’s Hesburgh Library Saturday evening.

Shortly before the dinner, Kenny, meeting privately with Sorin’s successor, Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., had given Notre Dame’s 94-year-old president emeritus an Irish passport, officially recognizing him as a citizen of Poblacht na hÉireann, the Republic of Ireland.

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Notre Dame’s Mendoza College ranks No. 1 for third consecutive year

Author: Carol Elliott

Businessweek Best B-Schools

The University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business ranked No. 1 in the country for the third consecutive year in Bloomberg Businessweek’s seventh annual survey of “The Best Undergraduate Business Schools.” The ranking was announced today (March 20).

“We consider this a tremendous achievement,” said Roger Huang, Kenneth R. Meyer Professor of Global Investment Management and interim dean of the Mendoza College. “To us, it speaks to the collective effort and spirit of our faculty, staff and students. We also are deeply appreciative of our alumni, the Notre Dame Career Center, the University, and friends of the College for their constant, enthusiastic support.”

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Ken Hackett, former CRS president, to receive 2012 Laetare Medal

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Ken Hackett

Ken Hackett, former president of Catholic Relief Services (CRS), will receive the University of Notre Dame’s 2012 Laetare Medal, the oldest and most prestigious honor given to American Catholics, at Notre Dame’s 167th University Commencement ceremony May 20 (Sunday).

“Ken Hackett has responded to a Gospel imperative with his entire career,” said Notre Dame’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C. “His direction of the Catholic Church’s outreach to the hungry, thirsty, naked, sick and unsheltered of the world has blended administrative acumen with genuine compassion in a unique and exemplary way.”

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Notre Dame to host conference on the theology of Pope Benedict XVI

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Pope Benedict XVI

Before he was Pope Benedict XVI, before he was a cardinal and a Vatican bureaucrat, and before he was archbishop of Munich, the German priest and professor Joseph Ratzinger taught theology at the Universities of Freising, Bonn, Munster, Tubingen and Regensburg, served as a theological consultant at the Second Vatican Council and wrote several widely acclaimed and influential books of theology.

Touching on nearly every imaginable theological topic, that career, uninterrupted and even magnified by the theologian’s election to the papacy, will be the subject of a conference, “God is Love: Explorations in the Theology of Benedict XVI,” to be held at the University of Notre Dame March 25-27 (Sunday-Tuesday).

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Notre Dame MBA ranks in U.S. News top 25 B-schools

Author: Carol Elliott

Mendoza College of Business

The University of Notre Dame MBA program jumped 12 slots to earn a No. 25 ranking in the U.S. News & World Report 2013 survey of “Best Graduate Schools.”

The Notre Dame MBA, located in the Mendoza College of Business, was noted by the publication as one of the “most improved” schools in the ranking for moving from a tie for 37th to the 25th rating, which it shares with four other schools.

“We’ve continued to emphasize ethics-based leadership throughout the program, but at the same time, we’ve pushed ourselves to innovate and improve,” said Roger Huang, interim dean of the Mendoza College. “The significant move in our ranking is welcome news for the program and the College.”

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$6 million scholarship gift is largest ever for Notre Dame engineers

Author: Notre Dame News

Engineering students in classroom

The College of Engineering at the University of Notre Dame has announced a $6 million gift from the Fotsch Family, to establish the William E. Fotsch Family Undergraduate Scholarship in Engineering.

“This is by far the largest scholarship gift for engineering students in the history of Notre Dame,” said Peter Kilpatrick, the Matthew H. McCloskey Dean of the College of Engineering. “The Fotsch family’s generosity will enable numerous aspiring young engineers to attend Notre Dame, undeterred by finances.”

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Congregation of Holy Cross celebrates its 175th birthday

Author: Michael O. Garvey


The Congregation of Holy Cross, the international Catholic religious order whose members founded the University of Notre Dame, celebrates its 175th birthday March 1.

The Congregation was established in France on that day in 1837, when Blessed Rev. Basil Moreau, C.S.C., and six other priests of the diocese of Le Mans joined with 54 Brothers of St. Joseph, a religious community founded by Father Jacques Dujarie, the pastor of a rural parish in the diocese, to form a single community of priests and brothers. They were later joined by a community of sisters, the Marionites of Holy Cross.

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Father Jenkins makes staff changes in president’s office

Author: Dennis Brown

Notre Dame Blue Seal

Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C. president of the University of Notre Dame, has made three staff changes in his office, effective over the next month.

Frances L. Shavers, chief of staff and special assistant to the president, has been appointed to the newly created position of chief diversity officer; Ann M. Firth, most recently associate vice president and counselor to the president and previously associate vice president for student affairs, will become chief of staff; and Rev. William M. Lies, C.S.C., executive director of the Center for Social Concerns, will take on the new position of vice president for mission engagement and church affairs.

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Robinson Center I-Robotics team to compete in Germany


The team is coached by assistant vice president of student affairs, David Moss, and graduate assistant Lionel Pittman

The Robinson Community Learning Center ’s LEGO Robotics team, in only its fourth year, is heading to Mannheim, Germany, to compete in the Open European Championship June 7-9 (Thursday-Saturday).

The team, comprising 10 students ages 10-15 from South Bend area schools, went to Fort Wayne, Ind., in December to participate in the state tournament. Out of 52 teams statewide, the RCLC’s I-Robotics team earned the top prize and the opportunity to travel abroad.

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Nobel Prize winner in physics to speak at Notre Dame

Author: Marissa Gebhard

Brian Schmidt

Brian Schmidt, a winner of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics, will deliver a public lecture at 7 p.m. Feb. 27 (Monday) in Room 101 of the Jordan Hall of Science at the University of Notre Dame. The talk, titled “The Accelerating Universe,” is part of the John A. Lynch Lecture Series coordinated by the Department of Physics and is free and open to the public.

Schmidt was awarded the Nobel Prize jointly with Adam Riess and Saul Perlmutter for their research in the 1990s that revealed the expansion of the universe is accelerating. An accelerating expansion implies that most of the universe is made of a mysterious dark energy.

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Spring Notre Dame Forum events to bring K-12 education thought leaders to campus

Author: Julie Hail Flory

Reimagining School: To Nurture the Soul of a Nation

A number of events exploring important issues in K-12 education will be held this spring on the University of Notre Dame campus as part of the 2011-12 Notre Dame Forum, “Reimagining School: To Nurture the Soul of a Nation.”

A yearlong discussion of the profound and challenging questions that shape the national debate about K-12 education, the Forum features a series of panel presentations, symposia and workshops spanning the entire academic year. Fall events included addresses by notable speakers including former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

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