Seen & heard on campus

Author: John Nagy ’00M.A.


ON EASTER SUNDAY MORNING. NBC will broadcast a one-hour Mass celebrated by Rev. Lou DelFra, CSC, ’92, ’03M.Div., with music led by the Folk Choir at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart. The Office of Campus Ministry was chosen to coordinate the broadcast at the request of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. . . . THE CENTER FOR ETHICS AND CULTURE has established a fund to support pro-life activities on and off campus. Associate director Elizabeth Kirk ’96J.D. says the Notre Dame Fund to Protect Human Life will help educate students in the “rich intellectual tradition supporting the dignity of human life” and prepare them “to transform the culture into one where every human life is respected.” . . . A HEAVYWEIGHT REMATCH at the Bengal Bouts made a two-time champion out of second-year law student Will “The Stimulus Package” Burroughs. The champ plans to fight again, but his opponent may outlast him. Kevin “I Left My Six-Pack in My Gym Bag” Crepeau is a sophomore. . . . THE OLDEST COLLEGIATE BAND program in continuous existence in the United States may be adding a few extra chairs this summer. Notre Dame Summer Band is a new musical outlet for “anyone with past band experience” among ND faculty, staff, students, alumni and South Bend area residents. Eight rehearsals in June will prepare the ad hoc ensemble for an outdoor patriotic concert slated for the Irish Green on July 1. . . . GUATEMALAN NATIONAL MARIANA DIAZ MUNOZ ’08 returned home after graduation to work for Citigroup, but in her free time she has founded HANDS with the help of ND seniors Maria Cristina Bosch and Stephanie Fairhurst. The nonprofit seeks to plug student volunteers into service learning opportunities in the Central American country, where more than half the population lives beneath the poverty line. . . . BOOKSTORE BASKETBALL, probably the best-promoted pick-up tournament in the world, isn’t satisfied with the size of its profile. A faculty/staff celebrity game of “horse,” featuring renowned varsity hoopsters Rev. Edward “Monk” Malloy, CSC, ’63, ’67M.A., ’69M.A., Tom Timmermans ’04 and finance Professor Carl Ackermann, highlighted the inaugural Tipoff event. In the end, Timmermans beat out Malloy with a behind-the-backboard shot. Event organizers say they created Tipoff to drive up registrations and raise awareness of the tournament’s charity, Jumpball, an organization that teaches Jamaican children life skills and basketball fundamentals. . . . WE’RE IN THE TOP FIVE in the world. That’s the boast of Notre Dame’s industrial design program, according to a BusinessWeek magazine tally of Industrial Design Excellence Awards won by ND students over the last five years. Four IDEA wins tied the program for second place with three other schools in California and South Korea. Recent innovative student designs include a car, a kitchen utensil that pours heavy liquids and a device to help blind swimmers navigate the pool. . . . RANDY PAUSCH, the cancer-stricken Carnegie Mellon University computer science professor who unwittingly grabbed the national spotlight in 2007 with his moving farewell lecture about achieving one’s dreams, died last July. His influence has since reached Notre Dame student leaders, who have created a “Last Lecture” series in which students invite professors to share life wisdom as though they had one chance. Through February, students had packed the Coleman-Morse lounge to receive sage advice from anthropology professor and tap-dancing raconteur James McKenna and finance-professor-slash-celebrity-“horse”-veteran Carl Ackermann. . . . SENIOR EVAN SHARPLEY, billed as the “first Irish player to ever throw multiple touchdown passes and hit multiple home runs in the same academic year,” was featured in the February/March issue of Faith & Fitness magazine as one of the “2009 Top Bods on Campus.” . . . THE SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE received a Top 10 ranking from the Design Futures Council, climbing two spots in the organization’s annual poll of leading architectural firms and academic deans and chairs. . . . THE $6 STEAK SANDWICH and soda that has wrapped lines around the Knights of Columbus building on South Quad before every football home game since the early 1980s has done a lot of good over the years. Grand Knight Jim Redden, a junior, told The Observer his group has raised more than $287,000 just since the 2003 season for charities such as Corvilla, Inc., a South Bend group that provides homes for the developmentally disabled. . . . THE HOCKEY TEAM’S STUNNING RISE to NCAA prominence hasn’t kept Coach Jeff Jackson and his squad from having a little fun. An outdoor practice at nearby Mishawaka’s Merrifield Park drew some 250 fans, who received hot chocolate and autographs for braving the severe January cold. . . . THE PROGRAM’S SUCCESS explains plans for the construction of a freestanding, 5,000-seat ice arena projected to open in time for the 2011-12 season. ND officials intend to make the arena available for local youth hockey and figure skating programs “whenever possible.” The team’s current home in the north dome of the Joyce Center seats just over 2,700 and frequently sells out. . . . UNIVERSITY REVENUES HAVE TAKEN A HIT in the recession, but the fiscal 2010 budget calls for what President Rev. John I. Jenkins, CSC, ’76, ’78M.A. termed a “modest but cautious” increase of 5.7 percent that especially favors academic and student life programs, financial aid, graduate student stipends and merit-based employee raises. . . . HEATH CARTER WANTS TO BE A MILLIONAIRE, that’s who, but the doctoral candidate in history had to settle for $1,000 after using two “life lines” on the popular daytime game show to answer a question about pop icon Britney Spears and failing to correctly answer another about Thomas Jefferson’s resume. “I know next to nothing about pop culture,” averred Carter, who is writing his dissertation about religion in Gilded Age Chicago. . . . THE MOREAU SEMINARY BASKETBALL TEAM, composed mainly of undergraduate Old Collegians, crushed three of its four opponents by margins of more than 30 points yet finished fifth out of nine teams in the Mundelein Seminary Shootout. The team’s glory days in the tournament, hosted by the Chicago area school as a way to build fraternity among future priests in the Midwest, ran from 2002 to ’04, when they brought home three straight championships. . . . FILM PRODUCTION PROFESSOR TED MANDELL ’86 celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Student Film Festival with an homage to the 1979 Coca-Cola commercial that featured Pittsburgh Steelers great “Mean Joe” Greene tossing his soiled jersey to a young fan after a tough loss. In Mandell’s version, which introduced the annual showcase for the best of ND students’ short films, his 3-year-old daughter, Emma, similarly greets ND women’s basketball coach Muffet McGraw after a disappointing season-ender and is rewarded with a pair of McGraw’s red, high-heeled pumps. Another festival highlight, “Our Lady’s Bouncers,” took playful jabs at the security gate guards charged with enforcing the University’s prohibitions against student driving on campus. A short retrospective chronicling the festival is available at . . . THE SHIPSHEWANA, INDIANA, ICE FESTIVAL awarded the grand prize in its ice carving competition to Danny Bloss, a University food services chef and member of the National Ice Carvers Association. Bloss won $800 for his creation, a sculpture of two bluegills shaved from a 40-inch by 20-inch by 10-inch block of ice that bested nearly three dozen other entries. . . . THE STUDENT JOURNAL The Scholastic was one of five college news magazines to receive a national Pacemaker award from the Associated Collegiate Press. Judges representing The New York Times Magazine praised the 141-year-old publication as “good, varied and readable, and especially impressive for its frequency.”

Photo of students at a pro-life rally by Matt Cashore.