Seen and Heard

Author: Notre Dame Magazine

Is Notre Dame becoming the place to go? The University had to add instructors and sections of core classes this fall because of a surprise windfall of freshmen. The Class of 2005 was expected to number 2,035 — the largest ever — because a record 61 percent of admitted applicants elected to enroll. All universities admit more applicants than they have room for because they know many will choose to enroll elsewhere (or nowhere). The percentage of admitted students who actually enroll is called the “yield.” Notre Dame’s yield has been climbing gradually the past six years, from 49 percent in 1995 to 57 percent in 2000. A 58 percent yield was forecast for this year. The surprise jump to 61 percent resulted in an unanticipated 100 extra freshmen. Enough dorm space existed to accommodate them all (with study lounges converted to rooms), but some transfer students had to be sent apartment hunting. Only four other universities are known to have yields higher than 60 percent: Harvard, Princeton, Yale and Stanford. . . .


No, Regis Philbin ’53 hasn’t secured a faculty appointment (wouldn’t he wish). What you’re looking at is a mock-up of Notre Dame’s existing faculty ID cards. The University’s card office created it to show the contrast between the old design and a new, more stylish one (not shown here). . . .They Might Be Giants, the quirky pop rock band that performs the theme to the Fox network’s Malcolm in the Middle, headlined a free four-band concert the first weekend of fall semester. Organized by Flipside, the student group devoted to planning social activities for non-drinkers, the show was titled Flipstock. It was intended to be held outdoors on the field behind Stepan Center, but rain the night before forced the stage to be set up inside the Joyce Center field house. . . . Popular Irish rock band U2 was tentatively scheduled to play the Joyce Center in October. . . . More than 40 percent of Irish student athletes made the Dean’s List (3.4 grade-point average or better) spring semester, and the football team had its best semester ever with an average GPA of 2.793. Five football players were on academic probation during the season last year, compared with an in-season average of 14 players per year the past six years. No freshman footballers were placed on academic probation last year and none failed a course, which also was a first. Of all Irish teams, women’s cross country had the best average GPA (3.492) last spring, followed by men’s cross country and women’s golf. Football was last. . . . Big changes are in store for campus over the next couple of years as construction moves ahead on the Marie P. DeBartolo Performing Arts Center at the south end of campus and work starts in 2003 on the Science Learning Center next to the Joyce Center. Now comes word that the days may be numbered for three campus landmarks: the post office, the University Club and the headquarters of the Security Police, originally the ROTC building. University planners say those buildings are sitting on the preferred locations for three new high-priority projects. The law school wants to expand into the area of the post office. An additional engineering building would take the space of the University Club. And a new luxury hotel, supplanting the Morris Inn, would occupy the position of the police HQ. One plan being discussed entails construction of a multi-use facility to house the post office, police and a computer store. No preferred location has been identified for that building, but one of the sites being talked about is near Stepan Center. When the new hotel opens, what will become of the Morris Inn? Nothing has been decided, but it could end up as student residences or faculty offices. If faculty move in, the dining room (“Sorin’s”) would be a logical location for the replacement University Club. . . . Construction has begun on a two-story, collegiate-gothic-style addition to the decidedly modern-looking Stepan Chemistry Hall. Because the addition is on the building’s north side, the styling aims to mesh with the older North Quad residence halls like Breen-Phillips and Cavanaugh. The Stepan addition will house a large nuclear magnetic resonance imaging lab, four smaller research labs and 10 faculty offices. . . . Two student firsts this past year received scant attention. One was senior Reggie McKnight becoming the first African-American athlete (he played soccer) to be a Rhodes Scholar candidate from Notre Dame. The other was another senior, A. Stephen Smith, becoming the first African-American president of the Glee Club. . . . The Bush administration recruited one of Notre Dame’s law professors, Jimmy Gurulé, to serve as Treasury Department undersecretary of enforcement, the department’s principal law enforcement post. Gurulé, who is taking a leave of absence, will oversee efforts to prevent drug smuggling, counterfeiting and the criminal use of guns and bombs. In 1990-92 he served as assistant attorney general in the Department of Justice. . . .


At the end of every school year students graduate or go home, but many leave their bikes behind. According to campus Security Police, about 800 bikes are abandoned each year. Some are simply left for the summer — in violation of dorm rules — by students who intend to return in the fall. Many others are simply scrapped. Some are left by bike thieves who ride onto campus on clunkers and “trade up.” You’ll sometimes see abandoned bikes rusting with flat tires or missing a wheel locked to a bike rack. Those attached with heavy-duty U-bolt-style lock require a blow torch to remove. Bicycles confiscated by the police that go unclaimed after 60 days can be resold at the twice-yearly auctions. . . . Zahm and Keenan, two halls that traditionally are rivals, put aside their differences last year to raise $7,000 for Dismas House of Michiana. The donation was a “living prayer” for Wally Poirior, the 2000 grad who disappeared in Bolivia earlier this year while on a Peace Corps mission. He lived in Zahm for three years and volunteered at Dismas House, a transitional home for recently released offenders. Keenan residents have cooked dinner at Dismas House on Monday nights for the past 13 years. The $7,000 will help pay for an exterior renovation of the 103-year-old house on Saint Joseph Street. Thousands more are needed, so contact the organization ( if you want to help. . . . The University has launched an on-line magazine about research, scholarship, creativity and teaching at the University. It’s called Lumen and the address is (see Links). . . . At age 25, M. Brian Coughlin ‘95 became the University’s youngest-ever hall rector when he took over Carroll Hall in 1998. Now he’s been promoted to director of Student Activities and the LaFortune Student Center. Coughlin was also only the third layman to serve as a rector in a male residence hall. . . . Will the honors never cease? Earlier this year President Bush appointed Father Hesburgh to the Commission on Presidential Scholars — the 16th presidential appointment for Notre Dame’s president emeritus. The commission meets annually to select some 140 high schools students from across the nation for recognition as Presidential Scholars. In late July the Indiana Historical Society honored Father Ted as an Indiana Living Legend, a designation honoring Hoosiers who have made significant contributions to the state or society through personal or professional endeavors. . . . Former Irish and NFL great Dave Duerson ‘83 was among three new trustees elected to the Notre Dame board in May. Duerson is president and chief executive officer of Fair Oaks Farms of Kenosha, Wisconsin, an international supplier of hamburger and sausage products. The other new trustees were attorney Robert F. Biolchini ’62, who also heads PennWell Corporation, a publisher of 46 business-to-business magazines, and W. Douglas Ford ’66, chief executive of refining and marketing for BP Amoco. . . . A story in the Chicago Tribune earlier this year quoted President Malloy as telling students in a dorm Mass that he started out at Notre Dame intending to major in chemical engineering — and nearly flunked out. He switched to English, where he fared much better. Monk remarked to the students, "It’s nice to be the president of a university I almost flunked out of."


They Might Be Giants


Glee Club