News » Archives » November 2008

Just Doing It

By Mary Kate Malone '08

Knee-deep in the streams of southeastern Alaska. Poring over Thoreau in Hesburgh Library. Examining consumer behavior in the marketplace. Monitoring water quality in Uganda. These are all research projects of undergraduates at Notre Dame—and it’s just a sample of the varied topics being examined by students in nearly every field of study.

Read More

Religion's Reach and the Tide of Change

By Liquid error: internal

Religion has always played a major role in American politics, but for the last three decades faith has been cast as a perennially and inevitably conservative force. There are Republican candidates and political operatives who assume that religion lives on the political right, that religious people care primarily about issues such as gay marriage and abortion, and that these voters will be forever part of the Republican political base. There are liberals, though fewer than conservatives think, who buy this account and write off all religious people as backward, reactionary and obsessed with sex.…

Read More

Presidential Campaigns and Their Dodgy Rules of Engagement

By Robert Schmuhl ’70

“Politics ain’t beanbag.”

More than a century ago, the wisecracking Chicago saloonkeeper Mr. Dooley lampooned the perpetual sport of American democracy. Created by journalist Finley Peter Dunne, Mr. Dooley instructed patrons that the hurly-burly of political gamesmanship could never be confused with the child’s play of beanbag.…

Read More

Driving fast

By Mallory McMorrow '08


A year ago, if you were to Google my name, you would probably have retrieved a couple obscure results: a MySpace page I made when I used to sing in a band and a long-broken link to an article I wrote for a high school journalism class. Google me today, and you’ll get 15,900 different results: articles, blogs, pictures and reviews about me.…

Read More

Seen and heard on campus (Summer 2008)

By Matt Cashore '94

_Compiled by John Nagy '00M.A._ *The Fighting Irish hockey team* nearly delivered its own Miracle on Ice in April, skating its way into the NCAA title game as the lowest-seeded squad in the 16-team tournament before falling 4-1 to heavily favored Boston College. It was the program's first appearance in the Frozen Four, where the team played like it had been there before and beat No. 1 seed Michigan in the semifinal, 5-4. Credit Coach Jeff Jackson, who took his Lake Superior State teams to college hockey's big dance three straight years from 1992 to 1994 and inherited a Notre Dame team that won just five games three seasons ago. . . . *Now regarded as a national power*, the Notre Dame icers will skate at home on the Charles W. "Lefty" Smith Jr. Rink in the Joyce Center's new hockey arena. Smith was the first coach in the modern Notre Dame hockey program, compiling a 307-320-30 record during a 19-year stint that began with the opening of the ACC in 1968. . . . *The eight-year Kevin White era* in Fighting Irish athletics ended May 31 with the athletic director's swift transition to the same post at Duke University. White oversaw dramatic improvements to the school's facilities and its method of paying coaches during his years at Notre Dame. He helped secure an extension of the football rights deal with NBC and a guaranteed revenue stream from the Bowl Championship Series, and supported the expansion of scholarship offerings and pathbreaking on-the-field successes in nonrevenue sports. Turbulence in the football program throughout his tenure occasioned intense fan criticism, but White received the highest professional and personal praise from everyone from University President Rev. John Jenkins, CSC, to legendary Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski. Jenkins tapped Missy Conboy '82, deputy athletic director, to serve as interim AD. At press time, no timetable had been set for finding White's permanent successor. . . . *Coming soon to a science museum* near you may be _Invasive Species_, a documentary filmed at UNDERC-East, the University's environmental studies facility in northern Michigan. The eight-minute movie showcases the high-profile research of biological sciences Professor David Lodge, director of Notre Dame's Center for Aquatic Conservation. It will run for six months at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City and at museums and science centers that subscribe to the museum's film service. It also can temporarily be viewed online as a "Bio Feature" at "": . . . *Harper, Rockne, Leahy, Parseghian, Devine*: Lou Holtz brings to six the number of Notre Dame coaches honored in the College Football Hall of Fame, where he will be enshrined next summer as one of 15 members of the hall's Class of 2008. Holtz's singular achievement was taking six different programs to bowl games, but Notre Dame fans remember him as second only to Knute Rockne in wins and the last coach to lead the Fighting Irish to a national championship (1988) and bowl victory (1993). Now a motivational speaker and ESPN college football analyst who flirts with the idea of a return to coaching, the 71-year-old Holtz delivered a pep talk to University staff in the Leighton Concert Hall in April and got his biggest laugh when he said he would have "to get a restraining order" against fellow analyst and Notre Dame scourge Mark May. . . . *The Physics Department gained international stature* for its research in relativistic atomic structure theory based in no small part on the work of Walter R. Johnson, 79, the Frank M. Freimann chair of physics since 1992. Retiring from teaching after 50 years on the Notre Dame faculty, he has published more than 250 papers, directed 21 doctoral dissertations and has twice won the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation's prestigious awards for senior American scientists. In April, a gathering of some of the world's most respected physicists paid tribute to Johnson at a symposium in the Jordan Hall of Science. But Johnson says he is proudest of his research collaborations at Notre Dame and his contact with more than 10,000 "very bright undergraduate and graduate physics majors in courses on electromagnetism, classical mechanics, atomic physics, and numerical methods." . . . *Global positioning devices* are one beneficiary of technological applications emerging from Johnson's research. So are the golfers who use such devices to navigate challenging courses such as Notre Dame's Warren Golf Course, which, along with the on-campus Notre Dame Golf Course installed a GPS system in its carts in April. . . . Police are still investigating the abduction and beating of Keough Hall sophomore Timothy Clarke on April 20. Clarke, 20, had left a sports bar on Ironwood Road around 3 a.m. and got into a car with two or three men. Police responded to a 911 call and found Clarke at 6:45 a.m. lying on the side of Primrose Road, seven miles northwest of campus. He was taken to South Bend's Memorial Hospital, where he was treated for a concussion, a broken right hand and lacerations on his head, chest and elbow. . . . *A bus crash in Thailand* that killed seven passengers and injured 31 also claimed the life of Zahm Hall junior Andrew Bunikis, 20, in April. The accountancy major from Phoenix had spent last summer teaching English to local children in a service program coordinated by Notre Dame's Student International Business Council. He had taken a leave of absence during the spring semester to resume his volunteer work in the southeast Asian nation. . . . *The magic fingers* of an earthquake centered in southern Illinois gently shook students' beds for several seconds in the early morning of April 18. The 5.2-magnitude quake nearly matched the most powerful on record for the region but caused no damage on or near campus. . . . *Victory in the first Battle of the Bend* went to the South Bend Silver Hawks, the city's minor league baseball team, which defeated the Fighting Irish 5-3 in a preseason exhibition game downtown at The Cove on April 2. A portion of the proceeds were donated to research on Niemann-Pick disease, a metabolic disorder. The two teams fielded a total of 50 players, including former Indiana governor and Silver Hawks owner Joe Kernan '68, who, according to the team's website, had been signed to a one-day player contract. The former Irish catcher played second base and struck out on four pitches in the third. . . . "Honk if you're against _The Vagina Monologues!_"…

Read More

Cleaning Up Guatemala

By Don Wycliff '69

Mario Domingo came to Notre Dame to teach and learn about international human rights — and also because his fight for justice in his native country had his enemies wanting him dead. Should he go back?

Read More

Center for Justice with a Global Reach

By Notre Dame Magazine staff

In 1972, fed up with complaints about his civil rights record by critics within and outside his administration, President Richard M. Nixon decided to fire one of the most influential: Notre Dame President Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, CSC, then chairman of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

If Hesburgh was bitter, he didn’t let on about it. What he did do was come home to the Notre Dame campus and in 1973 create the Center for Civil Rights in the Notre Dame Law School. Later renamed the Center for Civil and Human Rights (CCHR

Read More

Editor's Note: What's a person to do?

By Kerry Temple ’74

It’s always bothered me that we’ve never used recycled paper to produce the print issue of Notre Dame Magazine.

On our pages, many writers have expressed an appreciation for the environment, its beauty and its gifts. Some of these authors have gotten us to think seriously about the spirituality of the universe and a kind of theology of the natural world. I have a deep love of the land, too.…

Read More

Crossing old borders

By Emily Dagostino '02


In the back room of The California Clipper Lounge, the rumble of Chicago traffic crept inside against the softly spoken word of poetry. Sheryl Luna, dark hair draped around her face, spoke sideways into a microphone a tangle of words alluding to the desert Southwest:

“And I remember that it is good to be born of dust, / born amid cardboard shanties of sweet gloom. / I remember that the bare cemetery stones / in El Paso and Juárez hold the music, and each spring / when the winds carry the dust of loss there is a howl, / a surge of something unbelievable, like death, / like the collapse of language, like the frail bones / of Mexican grandmothers singing.”…

Read More

Documentary treasure hunt

By Carol Schaal '91M.A.


Notre Dame graduates have been busy with documentaries. They’ve also been busy showing them at film festivals, from Sundance to Slamdance—and, when they’re lucky, scoring a deal to release the film to theaters. When you can’t catch them at your local multiplex, we suggest an Internet search for the following films, which generally are available on DVD

Read More

Working hard on virtual play

By Carol Schaal '91M.A.


Jeff Spoonhower, a 1999 Notre Dame graduate, designs video games, but his son doesn’t play them. That’s because Sean is a toddler. Even as Sean’s coordination improves, he’ll have to wait to play the cool stuff his father has helped create—including Saints Row, Syphon Filter: Logan’s Shadow

Read More

Cafe Choice: Creative work by Notre Dame people

By Carol Schaal '91M.A.

Mighty Big Broom, Loose Caboose Band. Brothers Bill Carey ’77 and Joe Carey ’79 are back with a second CD of kid-pleasing original songs, from “My Very First Haircut” to “Legoland” and “Wake Up Sleepy Daddy.” The brothers use a variety of instruments and styles, from pop to jazz to country and blues on the 14-track CD.…

Read More

Deaths of ND alumni

By the Notre Dame Alumni Association

Alumni class year 1932–48
Jerome S. Surdyk, M.D. ’33, 05/30/2008, Dayton, OH
Anthony W. Brown ’35, 12/05/2007, Bronx, NY
Irwin F. Schwien ’36, 04/13/2008, Claremont, CA
John M. Cavalier ’38, 07/05/2008, Uniontown, OH
Hubert J. Kirchman ’38, 06/07/2007, Dinuba, CA
Robert T. Hooffstetter ’40, 06/10/2008, Columbus, OH

Read More

The million-year questions

By John Monczunski

Since nuclear energy is a source of clean, virtually limitless power, many people see it as a key to solving the planet’s greenhouse gas problem. Unfortunately, it’s a solution with its own serious problem: radioactive waste. How do you safely store something that will remain toxic for a million years? To answer that challenge, a host of basic scientific questions must be answered first.…

Read More

Power to the computers

By John Monczunski

The era of all-pervasive computing is rapidly approaching—some would argue it already has arrived—in which countless computers run unnoticed in the background of everyday life, making it more convenient and manageable.

In the not-too-distant future, for instance, clothing may have sensors embedded for medical monitoring. Automobiles may be equipped with computing systems that find the timeliest route to your destination, steering you there based on traffic patterns monitored by remote sensors.…

Read More

The ionic solution to pollution

By John Monczunski

The best way to reduce greenhouse gases in the atmosphere is to stop burning fossil fuels. Realistically, that won’t happen soon. Therefore, a bridge strategy is needed until clean, renewable energy becomes the dominant form in the world. That’s where CO2 capture and ionic liquids may come in, says Edward Maginn.…

Read More

Green power from rainbows

By John Monczunski

Nearly three-fourths of America’s electricity is produced by burning fossil fuels that pump 2.5 billion tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year. One of the most promising ways to cut those numbers and go green, Prashant Kamat believes, is through the rainbow, as in rainbow solar cells.

A recent breakthrough by the Notre Dame professor of chemistry and biochemistry has moved this next-generation photovoltaic power cell a step closer to reality. Kamat and his colleagues have demonstrated that quantum dots, incredibly tiny nanoscale structures, can be used to create more efficient power cells that create electricity directly from sunlight.…

Read More

Burn hot, burn clean, by design

By John Monczunski

If power plants could burn coal above 1,500 degrees Celsius, experts estimate they could increase generating efficiency 10 to 15 percent. It’s not now possible because turbines made of conventional materials can’t stand the heat. At those intense temperatures parts break down and fail. Notre Dame aerospace and mechanical engineering professors John Renaud and Vikas Tomar, however, are working to find a way around this roadblock to the promised land of clean coal technology.…

Read More

Echoes: Holy Cross Hall

By Andrew Pauwels '09


The inscription on the easily overlooked stone pays tribute to the brothers and priests of the Congregation of Holy Cross and marks the spot where Holy Cross Hall once stood. Few passersby stop to read this monument on Holy Cross Hill between Saint Mary’s and Saint Joseph’s lakes, so few current students know that a residence hall once home to hundreds of Notre Dame alumni stood there less than 20 years ago.…

Read More

Cool ideas to cut energy use

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

The mercury hit 88 degrees outside Building 110 at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore on July 11, but inside the converted military blast shelter the thermostat was set at a cool 71 and a fan was blowing in the empty shower room.

Tom Furlong says he often found the temperature in that building set as low as 65.…

Read More

A new eye black

By John Nagy ’00M.A.


Brian Farkas ‘03 received a tryout with the Notre Dame football program this summer, and it didn’t even cost him a day of his unused NCAA eligibility. The 6-foot, 200-lb. former lineman for Detroit’s Catholic Central high school even made a little money on the deal.

No need to worry about NCAA

Read More

Zorich back as the mentor he never had

By Jason A. Kelly '95


From his small, out-of-the-way office in the Joyce Center, Chris Zorich ’91, ’02J.D. serves as a confidant to athletes in need of a candid conversation.

It’s an entry-level position.

At least it is to Zorich, 39, who’s new to the complex business of college athletic administration but not to its potential entanglements.…

Read More

An AMERICAN TEEN finds herself at Notre Dame

By Yonika Willis

Autumn 2008

While many Domers can still recall the butterflies fluttering in their stomachs as they tore open the envelope informing them of their fate among the Fighting Irish, few if any have actually relived this moment on the big screen.

Probably no one, that is, except for Megan Krizmanich.…

Read More

Strong bodies fight; strong bonds fight better

By John Nagy ’00M.A.


Another hot day in northern Bangladesh, the coming monsoon already heavy in the June air, and Father Leonard Shankar Rozario, CSC, was visiting a school in one of the rural parishes administered by the Congregation of Holy Cross. As a teacher by trade, Father Rozario’s task this day was familiar: Stand in the front of a large room bursting with children who strive daily to survive extreme deprivation, malnourishment, an often hostile climate and inadequate medical care, and present a lesson.…

Read More

Letter from campus: Gift of life

By Edward A. Malloy, CSC


In the mid-1970s when I first joined the theology faculty at Notre Dame, I designed undergraduate courses that took up some of the hot issues of the day, including in the field of bio-medical ethics. One topic that I consistently covered was organ transplantation, particularly kidney and heart transplants. The latter received more regular attention in the press because of the symbolic connection of the heart with the center of the self. However, even kidney transplants, in which one human person was harmed in order that a relative (or other patient) might have health restored, required appropriate ethical analysis.Little did I know that over 30 years later I would move from the theoretical to the practical, that I would become a kidney donor myself.…

Read More

Crossing the River of My Own Tears

By D. Cameron Lawrence

It was just before midnight on a clear June night. Once again, I could not sleep. I got up, pulled a sweater over my nightshirt, put on a pair of jeans then nudged my feet into a pair of sandals. As my husband, John, slept, I slipped out the front door and walked quickly down the sidewalk to the end of the street. As the last streetlamp fell away, my heart beat faster. I’m still a little afraid of the dark.

Read More

The Right of a Catholic To Be President

By Jay Dolan

While voters were mulling over the war, the economy and the environment, the presidential primaries also cast light on an entirely different issue: our nation’s religious tolerance. Were too many voters making choices based on stereotypical views or were their concerns legitimate?

People questioned whether Mitt Romney, a Mormon, could be president. Then along came Mike Huckabee, an ordained Southern Baptist minister, who proudly spoke about his Baptist roots. Soon there was the uproar when Barack Obama’s former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, embarrassed the candidate with his fiery pulpit rhetoric. And John McCain became entangled in the religion issue because of his association with Rev. John Hagee, a conservative evangelical Protestant known for his anti-Catholic, anti-Semitic views.…

Read More