Abortion and ND, Act 2

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

Catholics believe God draws the good from all things, so I wonder: At what other university did an entire student body receive a seminar on the Catholic Church’s teaching on the sanctity of human life — and specifically on the “intrinsic evil” of abortion — of the quality that Notre Dame’s students got this spring?

Read More

How the other 28.1 percent lives

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

You are a graduate student at the University of Notre Dame. This is your Notre Dame experience. If you’re anything like most of your peers, you hate it sometimes, just a little. Mostly, though, you love it.

Read More

Sunshine on South Bend's foreclosure file

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

On the first day of her Legal Aid & Ethics class, Judith Fox typically hands her students a mortgage file that contains a complicated subprime loan of the kind with which her clients are often saddled. And in five years of doing that,” the ND law professor reports, “I have had only one student, who happened to be a former loan broker, who could read the paperwork and tell me what it said.”

Read More

For some at ND, violence in Lebanon hit home

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

bualuan.jpg

Nearly a million people fled the destruction caused this summer by the fighting between Israel and Hezbollah militants in Lebanon; most were Lebanese civilians who returned to find their homes and lives destroyed. Among the estimated 60,000 who left the country altogether were several people with close ties to the Notre Dame community.…

Read More

Honor exam to put brakes on cheating

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

Sad to say, but it’s not hard to find evidence of cheating these days in America’s high schools and colleges. A 2005 study conducted by the Center for Academic Integrity at Duke University polled 50,000 undergraduates on more than 60 campuses and found that 70 percent of the participants had engaged in some form of cheating.…

Read More

Wanted: Catholic scholars

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

Why don’t more Catholic scholars apply for faculty positions at Notre Dame?

A Notre Dame student asked historian Brad Gregory that question after a talk last year, and the associate professor recalls going straight, though affably, to the point.

“Because,” Gregory said, “students like you at Notre Dame decide to go to law school or medical school or business school. You guys are the ones who, in numbers, are going to have to commit to scholarship not only as a career but for broader reasons such as serving the faith and a commitment to the truth, to knowledge and the Church.”…

Read More

Civilizing kids sports one Catholic at a time

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

power.jpg

If you’re a red-faced hockey dad in Massachusetts, a high-strung cheerleading mom in Texas or some other species of overzealous sports parent, be warned. A Notre Dame educator is deploying a small army of coaches to change the tone of kids’ sports—starting with Catholic youth leagues—and they agree that you are a big part of the problem.…

Read More

ACE teachers cycle across America

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

If you’ve ever wondered whether it’s harder to bike up the Rocky Mountains after battling the flu or to teach high schoolers for a day, you might ask Tony Hollowell ’04, ’06M.Ed.

“Oh, teaching, any day,” says a laughing Hollowell while standing in a steady rain at the foot of the Main Building’s front steps. “Absolutely. I feel much more tired after a day of teaching than I do after riding a bike.”…

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

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

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

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

Season tickets secure stadium’s salvation

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

Put the words “Notre Dame” and “historic preservation” into the same sentence, and Notre Dame Stadium, as buildings go, won’t likely make most people’s A list. The “why” is simple: It looks like a stadium. The architecture isn’t a standout—the building was but one of many designed by an engineering firm that specialized in large stadium projects during the 1920s.…

Read More

Daughters trades polarizing politics for sobering dose of reality

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

Sexual assault is an exceptionally difficult problem to talk about on the campus of a conscientiously Catholic university. Academic panels and “awareness” weeks have broached the topic in the past but did little to break the culture of silence on sexual matters that, according to many students and some professors, perpetuates some real problems. Then there was the matter of the polarizing play The Vagina Monologues

Read More

Jilted scholar finds academic home at Oxford

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

Muslim scholar Tariq Ramadan resigned his appointment to teach at Notre Dame in December 2004 because the U.S. State Department refused to grant him a work visa, but it did not take him long to find a new job. Two new jobs, in fact.

After an additional year and a half of legal wrangling, the State Department dropped its initial grounds for rejecting Ramadan this past summer.…

Read More

Oasis of hope

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

It’s an odd setting for an interreligious discussion of Christianity and Islam: a barroom on the campus of a Catholic university 11 days into the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Alcohol, after all, is forbidden to Muslims, and the man whom Campus Ministry has invited to lead this session of its Theology on Tap speaker series is one of Notre Dame’s leading scholars of Islam and an imam at the local mosque.…

Read More

Prayercasts package ND spirituality

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

Campus Ministry is good at keeping up with changes in communication technology. Now it is inviting Domers to keep up with the prayer of the Church by visiting ndprayercast.org.

On Ash Wednesday—February 21—Notre Dame spirituality became downloadable from the new website in 20-minute “prayercasts.” The audio-only files, accessible through most computers and MP3 players, include readings, psalms, a homily from a Holy Cross priest and the kind of sacred music many will remember from the 11:45 Sunday Folk Choir Mass at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart.…

Read More

Student Film Lampoons Roseland Politics

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

A piece of local political circus generated more than the usual buzz around the annual Notre Dame Student Film Festival.

Welcome to Snyderville, which took its name from the greeting on the road sign for Roseland’s Pizza King restaurant, captures the zero-tolerance approach to municipal governance espoused by Roseland Town Council member David Snyder and his wife, former town council president Dorothy Snyder, who works at University libraries.…

Read More

Scrabble Club channels a passion

By John Nagy ’00M.A.

scrabble.jpg

Take your time on this one—up to 25 minutes if you like: What’s a “cooee"?

According to the Oxford English Dictionary online, it’s an attention-getter, a call beckoning others to come, a Down Under colloquialism that out in the bush can take the place of “hello.” Word lovers dazzled by the flexibility of English may like to know that the word derives from the language of the Australian aborigines and found our tongue shortly after James Cook claimed New South Wales for the crown. To Americans, it would mean something like “within shouting distance.”…

Read More