News » Archives » 2008

Hall portrait: Grace

By Jaclyn Villano ’00, ’05J.D.

gracepix.jpg

21st in a series

Hall Portrait: Grace

Year Built: 1969

Capacity: up to 520

Male or Female: always male until 1996

They Called Themselves: The Grace Lightning.

Named For: Joseph P. Grace, international businessman, philanthropist, and close friend and adviser to Father John F. O’Hara, CSC

Read More

Seen and heard on the Notre Dame campus

By Notre Dame Magazine staff

The founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross, Father Basil Anthony Moreau, CSC, moved one step closer to sainthood in April when the Vatican officially recognized a miraculous healing attributed to Moreau’s intercession. The decree paved the way for the priest’s beatification ceremony in LeMans, France, in 2007. Beatification is the last step before sainthood may be considered. Father Moreau, a French diocesan priest and seminary professor, died in 1873 at age 73. . . . Another potential Holy Cross saint-in-the-making

Read More

A Notre Dame preview

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

precmass.jpg

Jeff Klein is a 16-year-old high school student from Tyler, Texas, but over the next 20 minutes in Siiri Scott’s summer acting class he’s going to try to become Konstantin, the soul-lost playwright in Anton Chekov’s The Seagull.

Klein’s job this early July morning is to convince Scott and 20 of his peers that his feelings for his errant teenage sweetheart are so powerful that he’s ready to shoot himself if she doesn’t return to him. So he begins: “Nina. I cursed you. I hated you.”…

Read More

Soul provider

By Barbara J. Mangione ’89 M.A.

She sits at the gate of the church of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Rome’s Via Aurelia, paper cup in her outstretched hand and eyes pleading with the well-dressed throng hurrying into Sunday Mass. Her clothes are shabby and layered for warmth against the chill of a gray October morning. On her lap is a small child bundled in a too-large coat. It is impossible to tell whether it is a boy or a girl. My steps slow slightly as I pass her. In my pocket is a single euro coin to drop into the collection basket, in my ears the Roman lament about the “gypsies.” “Why don’t they find jobs? They are young. They just don’t want to work.” I keep walking.…

Read More

Dress for distress

By Peggy Duffy

I dislike dresses. It’s not the garments themselves, it’s the stilted shoes that go with them, the pantyhose that bind at the waist and twist in your crotch. I own just one, a sleeveless summer frock I wear only when the temperature is high and my legs are tan, eliminating the need for hose.

So it is out of desperation that one Sunday afternoon I am in my favorite store making my way over to the dress rack. I’ve come in search of black silk slacks to go with the gold shirt I plan to wear to an upcoming gala, a museum opening in D.C. sponsored by a client. An earlier call to the sponsor’s assistant yielded two dreaded words: “cocktail attire.” What does that mean exactly? I had to look it up. “Dresses are advised,” I read. “Slacks are acceptable, but not in any fabric seen in the office. Never wear a business suit.” Alas, in September, as the trusted saleswoman informs me now, black silk slacks are not yet in stock.…

Read More

Double dip

By Gina P. Vozenilek ’92

The kids were still damp in their bathing suits, legs dangling from the red bench under the ice cream shop’s striped awning. They were happy in a subdued way, displaying the kind of excellent behavior that results from a great output of energy in good clean fun at the public pool. They deserved ice cream. Their visiting Florida grandparents seemed delighted to be surrounded by their four curly heads and pleased with how the day was unfolding.…

Read More

Winged Omens

By Elizabeth Dodd

There’s a photograph by Kevin Carter I can’t shake from memory, part of the traveling Pulitzer Prize-winning exhibit from a few years ago. The scene is drought-stricken Africa, Sudan, 1994. A young child, robbed of any specific age by emaciation, can no longer hold up her—or his—heavy head and lies folded on the ground, face down. Her legs are tiny, bent twigs. She seems to wear a white necklace of some sort, but nothing else. The viewer can tell that the child is near death; so, too, can a vulture that is standing nearby, waiting for a meal it knows cannot be long off. By its posture, the vulture appears ready to take another hop closer, then another.…

Read More

Notre Dame’s Pre-College Programs at a Glance

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

The Office of Pre-College Programs at Notre Dame runs four academic summer programs for outstanding high school students who are preparing for their junior or senior year. Three of these programs, the African American Scholars at Notre Dame program, the Latino Community Leadership Seminar and the Global Issues Seminar, last one week, and the University covers the students’ expenses.…

Read More

Letter from campus: Life in the fast lane

By William Schmitt

I recently took my first course at Notre Dame, and it had all the thought-provoking features I would have expected.

You might say it was interdisciplinary, with elements of philosophy, sociology, psychology, physics and biology, along with practical tips for the business world. It was timely, reflecting current trends but drawing lessons from history. It was multimedia and interactive, with the basic lecture approach enhanced by two short films and workbook exercises. The instructor had intensive hands-on experience in the field, and his comments reflected a genuine desire, you might say, to point his students in the right direction.…

Read More

Letters to the Editor:

By Readers

Editor’s note: The letters that appeared in the autumn 2006 print issue are marked with a double asterisk (**).

Leader

** I have always disagreed with the sentiment that every alumnus wants to see campus exactly as it was when he graduated, but I must admit that future students will be the poorer for missing one of the sterling advantages my peers and I were afforded—the opportunity to learn from and get to know Professor Robert Leader, who passed away this spring.…

Read More

Domers in the news

By Notre Dame Magazine staff

Notre Dame graduates who recently made the news

Jerry Kammer ’71, a correspondent in the Copley News Service’s Washington bureau and a frequent contributor to this magazine, was a member of the team of Copley journalists who received a 2006 Pulitzer Prize for their investigative work that uncovered the bribery scandal involving former California Congressman Randy “Duke” Cunningham. . . . Some detective work by U.S. Marine 1st Lieutenant Jake Cusack ’04

Read More

The Village Well

By Erik Ness

At the end of a dirt road, on a rickety bus parked in a teak grove, Tchomi-Kandi Mondja keeps her eyes on a small jar of liquid. With a team of fellow students from the University of Notre Dame and the Université d’Abomey-Calavi (UAC) in the West African country of Benin, she’s helping filter a single liter of water, but each step in the process is moving slowly. The air in the bus is still and heavy. Moisture beads on foreheads. Outside, a gaggle of children gawk and giggle.…

Read More

Lesotho

By Ken Storen ’92

The 18-month-old boy named Tiisetso weighed 6 pounds, struggled to breathe and was covered in sores. His legs were pencil-thin. My friend, a local government social worker, told me she had found him in an old grain hut. He was sitting alone in the dark, shivering. She was told that he survived on scraps of food tossed to him by his 4-year-old cousin. His neighbors reported that they would hear him outside on cold rainy nights, left there by his uncle to die, only to find him huddled, whimpering, against the hut wall the next morning.…

Read More

Alicia Lachiondo’s Widening Circle of Influence

By Ryan Millbern

(Editor’s note: The premise was simple: Select a student who could talk about his or her Notre Dame experience and the people most influential to him or her. Bring them together for a conversation that would reveal something about the student and the character of the institution. This “Circles of Influence” approach was proposed to the magazine by Rick Bailey, who teaches in the Mendoza College of Business and heads Richard Harrison Bailey/The Agency, a marketing communication firm that has done this for clients from coast to coast. The student emerged when we sought someone to represent the kind of educational experience to be fostered in the new Jordan Hall of Science.)

Read More

Platform for tomorrow

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

It might make science majors cringe, but a useful metaphor for understanding the extraordinary change in undergraduate science education taking place in the opening this autumn of the Jordan Hall of Science is to call it a quantum leap.

planetarium.jpg

Properly, this would mean the smallest possible change as electrons zipping around in an atom shift from one energy level to another. But the conventional use of the term is most appropriate to the Jordan—progress that is sudden, enormous and illuminating.…

Read More

If we fail to act, page 2

By Paul Farmer, M.D.

The situation in Haiti is no less dire. Again, we need to understand history if we are to understand how human values, and which ones, come into play. Haiti, once France’s most lucrative colony and born of greed and slavery, became an independent republic 200 years ago. Haitians should have much to celebrate. The country is the birthplace of many values that we celebrate as modern, as it was the first nation in the world to outlaw slavery, the source of vast European profits. A slave revolt, unprecedented and unequaled since, transformed the colony of Saint-Domingue into Latin America’s first sovereign nation.

Read More

If we fail to act

By Paul Farmer, M.D.

As a physician who has battled infectious diseases in Haiti, Rwanda and elsewhere, I know we are in the midst of a staggering wave of killing, one that brings to question all notions of moral values. The numbers alone are telling. Even if we consider only the big three infectious killers—AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria—we are faced with tens of millions of preventable deaths slated to occur during our lifetimes. A recent document from the United Nations suggests, for example, that more than 80 million Africans might die from AIDS alone by 2025. A similar toll will be taken, on that continent, by tuberculosis and malaria. Adding other infectious killers to the list, the butcher’s bill totals hundreds of millions of deaths over the next few decades.

Read More

Editor's Note: Living globally

By Kerry Temple ’74

It’s always a gamble having too much of any subject in one issue of the magazine. You risk losing those readers who aren’t interested in that topic—especially this one, when readers are apt to tune out stories about the plight of Third World nations. Those countries are far away and practically irrelevant to us. We’ve heard about “the starving children” of Africa or India all our lives. We’ve seen so many images of drought, starvation and disease in Ethiopia, Somalia and Rwanda, Bangladesh, Darfur and Haiti to make us jaded, callous or hopelessly overwhelmed.…

Read More

Listen to Mrs. Murphy

By Jeannette Cezanne

On a Sunday afternoon this past October, I was back in New Haven, more than 20 years after graduating from the Yale Divinity School. I wasn’t back for a reunion—I’ve never quite gotten the point of those—but rather for a memorial service.

Read More

Bonus copy: Reflections

By Notre Dame Magazine staff

nieuwland.jpg

The dedication of the new Jordan Hall of Science held special meaning for Laetare Medal recipient and former board of trustees chairman Thomas P. Carney ’37. “Now Notre Dame has a classroom building worthy of the level of science education it provides,” he told his daughter, Janet Carney O’Brien ’77. Himself a recipient of that science education, the chemical engineering graduate fondly recalls the often odiferous atmosphere of the research lab in his paean to an inventive professor in Synthetics and Smells: Memories of Father Nieuwland, CSC

Read More

He speaks for the fishes

By Ann Hardie ’82

diem.jpg

As Jason Diem ’92 roves the galleries of the Georgia Aquarium, the world’s largest fish tank, he passes by the orange sea nettles pulsating to mood music. He passes under the acrylic river, steeped in catfish, sturgeon and longnose gar. He passes by the spotted whale shark, the biggest fish on earth, plying the water with giant grouper, largetooth sawfish and hammerhead shark.…

Read More

A Passion for the Pipes

By Carol Schaal '91M.A.

vitacco.jpg

Joe Vitacco ’90 cringes over horror movies. It’s not the gore or the overwrought villains—it’s the ghoulish organ music he despises. “It’s a stereotype that Hollywood has created about the organ,” he says.

Creepy chords are not what you’ll hear on the pipe-organ CDs released by his label, JAV

Read More

Producer has eye for the story—and the budget

By Ruth Keyso-Vail

schmiedeler.jpg

Like any good adventure, Mike Schmiedeler’s odyssey to Russia began with a bit of danger.

“I was standing in [the Moscow airport] holding room in my underwear with $16,000 strapped to my shins,” says Schmiedeler ’94, vice president of production with Towers Productions in Chicago.…

Read More

Tiny tubes increase solar power

By John Monczunski

Incredibly tiny carbon tubes might one day lower the cost and increase the feasibility of solar power, according to some promising preliminary research by a Notre Dame chemist. Actually, “incredibly tiny” may be an overstatement since it would take more than 25 million carbon nanotubes lined up side-by-side to equal an inch. The unusual tiny chemical structures, however, have some curious electronic properties that seem to enhance the efficiency of photovoltaic cells.…

Read More

Nasty ads win

By John Monczunski

Remember all those negative political ads on TV last fall? The ones that made you say you’d scream if you ever saw another one? Well, clear your throat and buy some lozenges, because it looks like they’re here to stay.

Based on the amount of negative advertising employed by candidates, last fall’s midterm election may have been the most negative in U.S. political history. An estimated $2 billion was spent on “issue” TV commercials, and in the last two months of the campaign 90 percent of those ads were negative. As outrageously high as those numbers are, they’re likely to stay high for one simple reason: Nasty works.…

Read More

Moon shakes

By John Monczunski

The 6.7-magnitude earthquake that jolted Hawaii this past October lasted about a minute, but on the moon a similar quake might continue shaking for several minutes, according to Clive Neal, ND associate professor of civil engineering and geological sciences.

“Most earthquakes last a minute or two. Shallow moonquakes can last up to 10 minutes,” says the Notre Dame geologist, who is part of a research team assessing quakes’ effect on any potential manned moon base.…

Read More

Skin cancer defense

By John Monczunski

Each year some 1.3 million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the United States. Unfortunately, the only way to protect yourself right now is by slathering on sunscreen or covering exposed skin. But scientists are working to develop improved “morning after” treatments to repair sun-damaged skin before it turns cancerous, and some recent research by Notre Dame Professor of Chemistry Olaf Wiest and his colleagues may significantly help that effort.…

Read More

When news becomes old

By John Monczunski

If news is posted on the Internet, it is considered old after 36 hours, says Albert-Lászlo Barabási, Notre Dame professor of physics. With colleagues in Hungary, he conducted a study of how people acquire information from the web.

In an article published recently in the journal Physical Review E, the Notre Dame expert on complex networks and his co-authors report that within a day-and-a-half of an article’s posting, half of its total readership will have read it. While that may seem like a short shelf life, it’s much longer than the two to four hours conventional wisdom would predict.…

Read More

Notre Dame offers virtual classes

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

Alumni who yearn for the kind of intellectual stimulation they received during their days on campus have reason to celebrate. Notre Dame has joined a growing educational endeavor that holds significant potential benefits for alumni, faculty and students and self-guided learners the world over.

Read More