Month: January 2021

Observer wins ICPA awards

first_imgThe Observer won third place in the Division I “Newspaper of the Year” category, and former Editor-in-Chief Jenn Metz won the Brook Baker Collegiate Journalist of the Year Award at the Indiana College Press Association (ICPA) awards ceremony, held Saturday at Ball State University in Muncie.The Observer staff won an additional nine awards, including three first places. Other University publications represented at ICPA were: Scholastic, which won “News Magazine of the Year,” Dome, which won second place in “Yearbook of the Year” and The Juggler, which won third place in “Literary Magazine of the Year.”Metz is the second Notre Dame student to win the Brook Baker Award, which was first awarded in 1999 and is named in honor of the late Vincennes University student.Metz was recognized especially for her role in leading The Observer’s in-depth, breaking coverage of President Barack Obama’s 2009 Commencement address.“I’m very thankful for this award, and I think it reflects the work of the staff, not just my individual achievement,” Metz said. “I’m proud to have received this honor for The Observer.”During Metz’s term, The Observer also redesigned its Web site and provided in-depth coverage of the Notre Dame football program’s head coaching change.“Jenn did a tremendous job leading The Observer over the past year, and I am pleased ICPA chose to recognize her with this award,” current Editor-in-Chief Matt Gamber said.“Her award and the others The Observer received this weekend are a testament to the continued hard work of the many members of our talented staff.”Gamber, the former Sports Editor, won first place in the “Best Sports Column” category for his article remembering Mike Lockert, the Irish hockey radio announcer who died of a heart attack last March at age 43.The Observer staff’s coverage of the University’s firing of head football coach Charlie Weis won first place in both “Best Special Issue”and “Best Staff Editorial.”The eight-page special edition was published on Dec. 1, 2009, the day after Weis’ firing.Included in the issue were player and student reaction, analysis of potential replacements and a timeline chronicling Weis’ five-year tenure. The editorial, titled “Weis’ departure handled respectfully,” ran on Dec. 4, 2009.The Observer also earned second place in the “Best Special Issue” category for the May 15, 2009, “Senior Edition,” which included coverage of President Obama’s commencement speech and full news and sports recaps of the Class of 2009’s four years.Former Photo Editor Ian Gavlick won second place in “Best Sports Photo” for an action shot of Irish wide receiver Michael Floyd making a tough catch in a game last fall.Metz and Gavlick together won second place in “Best Breaking News Reporting Online” for a story and photograph about President Obama’s commencement speech.The March 23, 2009 edition won third place in “Best Single Issue,” highlighted by its coverage of the breaking announcement that President Obama had accepted an invitation to speak at commencement.The Observer also won third place in “Best Standalone/Pullout Section” for the May 12, 2009 “Controversial Commencement” edition, which covered in-depth the circumstances surrounding President Obama’s Commencement address.The Observer’s Web site,, took third in “Best Overall Web site,” the first time the Web site earned an award.The Observer’s award-winning submissions are available on its Web site.last_img read more

Lecture discusses religious freedom

first_imgJorge E. Traslosheros of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México gave a lecture titled “Constitutional Reform and Religious Liberty in Mexico” on Monday afternoon in the Biolchini Hall of Law. The lecture was co-sponsored by the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, the Mexico Working Group and the Notre Dame Law School.Traslosheros discussed the history of religious persecution in Mexico and the ongoing struggle in Mexico to achieve religious liberty for all. “We have gone from calling religion the people’s opiate, as Marxists did, to treating it as the people’s tobacco” Traslosheros said. “[We now] think it has to be eliminated, an evil that has to be fought against and preferably eradicated, at least from public spaces, because it is harmful to one’s health.” After religious freedom was severely restricted by the Constitution of 1917, Mexico became a secular state, he said. This transition from a Catholic government to a secular one helped contribute to 24 years of religious persecution from 1914 to 1938, which was then followed by cultural persecution that still continues to this day, he said.“The constitutional reform of 1992 clarified the legal confines of the different churches in relation to the state, but left unattended the issue of religious freedom as a human right,” Traslosheros said. “Today, in the whole world as in Mexico, there is a huge debate on the relation between society, state and religious freedom.”However, in 2011, after the issue of abortion was brought into the public arena, the protection of religious freedom as a human right was more seriously discussed, he said. “The right to religious freedom stands to every human being, protecting equally unbelievers, agnostics and atheists,” he said. “It is the freedom of professing not-a-religion. It is a right to lead and express our own culture publicly or privately without having to suffer any violence or limitations.”In 2012, Article 24 of the Constitution was amended to ensure religious freedom for all. However, certain things are still withheld from religious institutions, Traslosheros said. “Religious organizations cannot own radio or television stations, and members of the clergy cannot hold office, advocate political views or support political candidates,” he said. The reforms represented a solid first effort at amending the animosity between secularism and religion, he said.“Many things are pending in Mexico … This is a very far-reaching reform,” he said. “We would be lying if we said that the issue of religious freedom has been solved. It constitutes a first step, a very important one, but also a long way to go.” Tags: Mexico, religionlast_img read more

‘Diabetes Sidekicks’ busts myths on campus

first_imgSaint Mary’s senior and co-president of the Saint Mary’s-Notre Dame Diabetes Support Group Becky Walker has made it her goal to dispel myths about diabetes on both campuses.“There is a very popular myth about diabetes,” Walker said. “People think that you can develop diabetes by eating too much sugar, and that simply isn’t true. We’re here to raise awareness and hopefully dispel those myths.”The consequences of diabetes personally affect Walker, as she deals with the condition of type 1 diabetes daily. The process of self-care includes checking blood sugar multiple times a day and administering her own shots, she said.Walker said type 1 diabetes affects many students on both campuses, whether they have the condition or know someone who suffers from it.“50 percent of Saint Mary’s students [are affected by] type 1 diabetes,” Walker said. “… There are the connections with roommates, friends and relatives.”Though the organization is formally called the Diabetes Support Group, members affectionately refer to it as “Diabetes Sidekicks,” Walker said. It exists mostly as a resource for those on both campuses who suffer from type 1 diabetes.“The goal of the club is to promote awareness about diabetes and participate in service work associated with the condition,” Walker said.As part of its service work, the club participated in the Michiana Walk to Cure Diabetes on Sept. 14th.“Seven of us went [on the walk],” Walker said. “We managed to raise $380 dollars, which is pretty good for seven people.”As far as this year’s activities go, Walker said the club is looking forward to another walk, on which the members hope to bust even more myths about diabetes, and World Diabetes Day.Walker said it is her job as co-president to handle the organization of meetings and activities, responsibilities which entail sending out e-mails for upcoming events and updating the “ND Diabetes Sidekicks” Facebook page.“We are looking to possibly start up a Twitter account as well; however, that would have more diabetes-related information rather than club updates.”For those looking to get involved, the group meets at 6 p.m. in South Dining Hall at Notre Dame every Sunday.“I hope we can spread enough awareness this year to make sure it stays afloat,” Walker said.The Diabetes Support Group can be reached at [email protected]: awareness, diabetes, diabetes awareness, diabetes sidekicks, type 1 diabetes, walk for a curelast_img read more

‘These are our brothers and sisters’

first_imgFor months, the Islamic State group commonly referred to as ISIS has made shockwaves in the Middle East and around the world with its swift, merciless and religiously-motivated violence. On a recent trip to the Middle East, Notre Dame professor of theology Fr. Dan Groody witnessed the human face of the victims of the Islamic State group’s brutality so he could share their story with Catholics in the United States and the Notre Dame community.Photo courtesy of Fr. Dan Groody ‘Christ gives me peace’“When we were in a Bulgarian refugee camp, this guy came up to me and said ‘I’m a Christian.’ … I didn’t have my clerics on, but he said ‘I’m a Christian,’ and so I said, ‘Tell me more,’” Groody said. “And he said ISIS asked him if he was a Christian and he said yes, and they asked him why he was a Christian and he said, ‘I don’t find peace in Islam. I want to find peace. I’m tired of the fighting, I’m tired of the violence, I’m tired of all the hatred. I want to find peace and Christ gives me peace.’“He said he came back later than evening and [ISIS] killed his mother, his father, his sister and his two brothers. He said ‘I have no one else left in the world.’ He was very much alone in the midst of Bulgaria. He couldn’t go back to his homeland, and he really couldn’t go forward at this point, either.”Groody travelled to Bulgaria, Turkey and Greece from Sept. 21 to Oct. 3 with a delegation of six people from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) that focuses on migrant and refugee ministry.As Christians visiting the region, Groody said the delegation faced some of the same threats the refugees they encountered did, but nothing compared to their reality.“There’s always a risk. Life’s a risk,” he said. “I didn’t feel threatened at any time, but we were aware that some of the towns we were in, ISIS was there, and even some of the houses we were in it wasn’t clear who we were dealing with.“But still, our job was not to play it safe. Our job was to find out what was happening, and unless we were able to hear the stories of the people where they work, we really couldn’t offer anything substantial. But whatever risks we took, they were nothing compared to what people we were talking to were going through. … Anything we faced was just so miniscule in comparison.”Groody said members of this committee travel to different parts of the world with pressing migrant and refugee issues each year. In the past two years, they have been to Central America to examine the issue of migrant children coming to the U.S. and the Middle East to address the overflow of refugees from the Syrian Civil War.On each trip, Groody said delegation members meet with high-level United Nations (U.N.) and government officials, aid workers with groups such as Catholic Charities and the Red Cross and with refugees themselves.Groody said these encounters with refugees were the most moving aspect of the experience. He said a medical student from Syria fleeing ISIS violence with his brother, both of whom Groody met in Greece, told him a particularly powerful story.“I asked, ‘Was God present at any point’ and the one brother, who was Muslim, said, ‘Yes, absolutely. We were constantly looking death in the face, and death was in front of us everyday,’” Groody said. “This is someone who was a medical student in Syria and now a refugee in Greece. I said, ‘What did you say to God or what did you hear from God?’ And he said, ‘I prayed everyday, and it was this: you are my God, my life is in your hands, help me.’ It’s those kinds of stories, for me, that are particularly important.”‘These are our brothers and sisters’Unlike the United States, Groody said countries such as Turkey, which has about 1.7 million refugees, willingly accept large volumes of refugees.“I’ve often asked the government leaders — we’ve met with Prime Ministers and Secretaries of State on previous visits — why is it that you accept [the refugees],” he said. “I mean, [the U.S.] goes crazy over 60,000 children coming across the border.“So I said, ‘Why do you accept them?’ They said ‘These are our brother and sisters.’ So it’s really rather striking to see the level of humanitarian commitment they have, even with the political costs that are involved. And that was one of the things I paid close attention to. If you look at the calculus between humanitarian costs and political costs in both Turkey and in the United States, Turkey — even though I’ve got a lot of issues with Turkey — Turkey has really said, ‘We will welcome these people even if there’s nothing to gain politically because they are our brothers and sisters,’ whereas we’ve said, ‘Because we have something to lose politically, we will not do anything for these people.’”Groody said United States and the USCCB still do accept and help resettle millions of refugees, making the delegation an important tool for understanding where the refugees come from.“The United States resettles more refugees than any other country in the world, and the Bishop’s conference resettles more refugees than any other organization in the United States,” he said.“If you just took the number of resettled refugees that the Bishop’s conference resettles, it would be larger than any other country in the world other than the United States. So it’s a tremendous amount of work that the Bishops do, so these kinds of delegations are important because they give us firsthand accounts of what’s going on with the refugee situation in various parts of the world.”‘What more can Notre Dame do’Though he travelled with the USCCB and continues work with them, Groody said he also made the trip to the Middle East as a Notre Dame faculty member with an eye towards the University’s role, or lack thereof, in the refugee crisis.“While I went as a member of the Bishop’s conference, and while I went as a member of the committee, I actually also went there as a member of the faculty, and I can’t help but go to these places and continually ask, ‘What more can Notre Dame do, and what can we do as human beings, as Christians, as Catholics,’” Groody said.When he visited a school on the border of Turkey and Syria, overflowing with 3,000 refugees, Groody said a classroom full of young girls told him what they would want to tell the U.N.“They looked at me and said, ‘First of all, don’t forget about us, but secondly, what we really want is an education, and we want to have a future with hope. We want to have a peaceful place to live,” he said. “What I heard again and again is they want an education. I ask what can we do to contribute to that.”Groody said he could envision Notre Dame playing a role in establishing satellite learning opportunities for refugees. He also said he thought the Alliance for Catholic Education could help give migrant and refugee children an education in the United States.Overall, Groody said the refugee crises in the Middle East, Central America and other parts of the world call Catholic communities such as Notre Dame to examine their role as advocates for the marginalized.“I think the presence of the refugee crisis is very significant right now,” he said. “We live in age of migration and we live at a time when there are pressing human needs. And I think it’s a time when our government is doing something — it is trying to respond to some of these issues — but it raises the question of how much of a responsibility is upon us to not be indifferent and to really rise up to the humanitarian challenge that’s there, and I think even more so from a Christian perspective, to see how central that is to our own life of faith.”Tags: Bulgaria, Fr. Dan Groody, iraq, ISIS, Migrant, Refugee, Syria, turkey, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCBlast_img read more

Salon Series continues in Snite Museum of Art

first_imgOnce a month, Notre Dame students, staff and faculty gather in the Snite Museum of Art after hours to analyze a selected piece of artwork. Aimed at creating a relaxed space to view and discuss the works in the Museum, the Snite Salon Series began in January 2013, Bridget Hoyt, curator of education and academic programs for the Snite Museum, said.“The purpose is to give people the opportunity to dialogue with each other and dialogue with a work of art. … It’s an opportunity to get to know works of art in the Snite’s collection in a pretty intimate way, to build a relationship with a work of art over time and in conversation with others,” she said.The group focuses on a single work in the Snite’s collection each month, Hoyt said.“People can take a slow and long look at one work of art,” she said.“Through conversation, people end up with a different understanding of the work than they started with.”Hoyt said she leads the program every month but tries to remove herself from the conversation as much as possible in order to allow the group to come to its own conclusions.“I encourage the conversation to be driven by the viewers’ observations,” Hoyt said. “The more diverse the group, the more interesting the conversation.”The series attracts a wide array of undergraduate and graduate students from an array of majors and professors from all disciplines, Hoyt said.Catherine Mary Barr, a freshman engineering major, said she attends the event for the intimate setting in which to view the paintings and for the chance to learn from others.“If I were to just come here on my own and look at them, I would not get the rich insight that the other students bring to it — especially students who take art history or art in general, who know all the different techniques and uses of lighting,” Barr said. “Every time I come here, I walk away with really deep insights, not only on the painting but also on the time period, the artist and the theme and messages.”Hoyt said the series began as a way to engage students with the museum, but the Snite also holds other events to help immerse students in the museum.“We have a student advisory group that runs programming primarily for students,” she said. “We also have a group of student gallery teachers who teach other Notre Dame classes that visit the museum, and we have a student collecting group that acquires contemporary photography for the museum. …We also do yoga in the galleries and guided meditation in the salons.”The Snite Salon Series meets the last Tuesday of every month at 5 p.m. in the lobby of the Snite Museum of Art.Tags: art history, Snite Museum of Art, Snite Salon Serieslast_img read more

Notre Dame students help Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s DNC chair campaign

first_imgSouth Bend mayor Pete Buttigieg announced he was joining the race for Democratic National Committee (DNC) chairman Jan. 5. On Feb. 25, 447 members of the DNC will vote in Atlanta for the new chair. Until then, a group of 15 to 20 students from Notre Dame are working with members of the South Bend community on Buttigieg’s campaign. “I think you can tell that he’s genuine, and you know that he has your best interests at heart,” fifth-year student Bryan Ricketts said. “ … He did that with South Bend and the business community, he did it with college students and he did it with the communities that were disadvantaged. Generating action is what makes him such a compelling person and why I think he’d be great in the DNC chair.”Some of the students traveled to the Detroit Forum on Feb. 3 and 4 to support Buttigieg and talk to DNC members about why they were rallying for him. Senior Andrew Galo said they focused on “visibility” and relaying Buttigieg’s story and message. “[The forums are] exciting; they’re fast-paced; they’re high-energy,” he said. “Basically, [they are] day-long events with panel debates with all the candidates for the various offices. … The whole day consists of them debating. “Each campaign will have a table or a booth. We had South Bend goodies to hand out and platforms and buttons and stickers and all that. It’s basically a glorified school council election throughout the whole day.” The next forum students attended was in Baltimore on Saturday. Galo, who attended both the Detroit and Baltimore forums, said seeing a young person make a difference in the Democratic party was inspiring. “[Buttigieg is] so accessible, and he’s really sought out every member of our community to bring them together and work for the city,” he said. “ … For us, as college students, it’s really great to have a member of our generation moving forward with the party. We’re millennials and we’ve got a bad rap; he’s a millennial too, and he’s looking to bridge that gap.”Sophomore Prathm Juneja, who interned with Buttigieg as a freshman, said his story is “so inspiring”: Buttigieg attended Harvard as an undergraduate before being named a Rhodes Scholar, served in the U.S. Navy Reserves and was the first openly gay executive in Indiana.“[On Sunday], he had two fundraisers in Chicago, and he asked me if I could get four volunteers,” he said. “We went up to Chicago, and it was great. We basically just help out in anyway possible. That was organizing the events and getting them ready and decorating them and greeting people when they enter — anything to show how incredible [Buttigieg] is.”If Buttigieg wins the chair, Ricketts said he has high hopes and expectations for the mayor to revitalize the Democratic party. “One of the biggest struggles of the Democratic party is clearly connecting to voters,” he said. “There were huge losses and it’s not just about the presidency — it’s about the Congress, it’s about the state governors and the state legislators and even the local races. “I think [Buttigieg], being a local guy, understands that winning the mayor’s race and winning the clerk’s race and winning the treasurer’s race, the sheriff, the school board; those are all important. … If we can build a party that recognizes it starts [locally] rather than in Washington, we’ll be much better off.”Tags: College Democrats, DNC chair, Pete Buttigieglast_img read more

Sociology professor dies at age 58

first_imgMary Ellen Konieczny, the Henkels Family associate professor of sociology, died Saturday at the age of 58 due to complications from cancer, the University announced in a press release Monday.Konieczny served as a faculty fellow of the Center for the Study of Religion and Society and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. She was working on a book called “Service before Self: Organization, Cultural Conflict, and Religion at the U.S. Air Force Academy” and developing a research project in Rwanda on connections between post-genocide reconciliation and religion.“Mary Ellen Konieczny was a distinguished sociologist of religion in a department known as a national leader in that area,” Dean of the College of Arts and Letters John T. McGreevy said in the release. “Her scholarship on Catholic parishes helped us better understand tensions and strength in individual congregations just as her uncompleted work on religion in the military probed the overlap between religious and civic identity.”Konieczny graduated from Notre Dame in 1981 and earned a Master of Divinity from Weston Jesuit School of Theology before working in ministry for the Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago and eventually pursuing a Ph.D. in sociology at the University of Chicago.“We will remember Mary Ellen for that scholarship, but perhaps even more for her high spirits and sense of joy, which undergirded her teaching and research and proved a constant source of inspiration to colleagues and students,” McGreevy said.Tags: College of Arts and Letters, kellogg institute for international studies, Mary Ellen Konieczny, Master of Divinitylast_img read more

Nobel Prize winner discusses work in microcredit

first_imgMuhammad Yunus, the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize winner, spoke at the 2017-2018 Notre Dame Going Global Forum on Thursday night, addressing his work in social business. Yunus, who has been a pioneer in the realms of human development and microcredit, was named as this year’s recipient of the Ford Family Notre Dame Award for International Development and Solidarity.Prior to the presentation of the Ford Family Award, University President John Jenkins praised Yunus not only for his work in microcredit and microsavings, but also for his interest in social entrepreneurship.“Professor Yunus teaches us that a new way of doing business is possible,” Jenkins said. “One that leaves room for selflessness, for social concern and mutual responsibility. Economic development must not come at the expense of human dignity.”Ray Offenheiser, director of the Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development in the Keough School of Global Affairs, led the conversation with Yunus.Yunus discussed how his upbringing in Bangladesh exposed him to the economic and social issues he has fought to change throughout his life. Yunus said he saw how banks and the wealth distribution did not enable poor people to prosper.“What good is economics if it doesn’t solve the problems of the people around them,” Yunus said.Yunus felt overtaken by the concept of loansharking and the poor people who were victimized by the act, so he decided loan small amounts of money to these people himself in the form of a microloan.There are some academics who are skeptical of microfinance, Offenheiser said. However, Yunus said the system is very effective — the microloans are always eventually paid back by the borrowers.“The bank is owned by the borrowers themselves,” Yunus said. “This is the most well-managed bank in the whole country [of Bangladesh].”Despite Yunus’ development in microcredit, there is a “right” and “wrong” type of way to conduct this business, he said. Yunus warned against those who have taken his practices and ultimately used it for loansharking.“Economic services are like oxygen,” Yunus said. “If we don’t have oxygen, we cannot breathe, we cannot function. That’s what happens when we don’t have financial services. If you don’t have connection to the financial services, people cannot function. And then we call them poor people.”Yunus encouraged people to change the wealth distribution system. In order to aid human development, he said, it is necessary to make sure that wealth flows downward rather than upward.Tags: ford family notre dame award, going global forum, Keough School of Global Affairs, Muhammad Yunuslast_img read more

Author Robert Schmuhl shares the story behind the iconic Hesburgh-King photo

first_imgIn June 1964, University President Emeritus Fr. Theodore Hesburgh was sitting at his desk when he received a phone call. The civil rights movement was in full swing, and the Catholic priest’s services were needed at a rally in Chicago. According to a report from Notre Dame Magazine, then-Chicago mayor Richard Daley and a series of officials from the Catholic Church had all declined to attend.“Hesburgh received a call at his office in the Main Building that he was needed to speak at the civil rights rally in Chicago,” Robert Schmuhl, an American Studies professor who has written a book about Hesburgh, said in an email. “Without hesitating, he decided to go, and his only question was to ask what time he had to arrive to participate.”Rev. Theodore Hesburgh stands arm-in-arm with Martin Luther King Jr., both singing in what is now an iconic image of the two men participating in a march.On June 21, 1964, Hesburgh took the stage at the Illinois Rally for Civil Rights at Chicago’s Soldier Field, according to a Notre Dame Archives webpage on Hesburgh’s life. Per the webpage, anywhere between 57,000 and 75,000 people attended the event. The rally took place at a tense moment in the civil rights movement: the same day the rally took place, three young activists were murdered in Mississippi while participating in “Freedom Summer,” an effort to register African American voters, according to the archives.While at the rally, Hesburgh joined hands with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who was also present at the rally. The result was the now-instantly recognizable photo of Notre Dame’s president singing while standing arm-in-arm with King. According to Notre Dame Magazine, the figures were singing “We Shall Overcome” when the photographer snapped the picture.Hesburgh was no stranger to the civil rights movement — he was a longtime member of the federal government’s Civil Rights Commission, ultimately serving on the commission under four different presidential administrations.“Hesburgh was one of the original members of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission that was established by President Dwight Eisenhower,” Schmuhl said. “He also served on the commission during the Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon administrations.”While the photo is well-known today, it did not become famous until well after it was taken. Schmuhl said, to his knowledge, it is unknown who took the photo. Hesburgh himself was unaware the image even existed until years after the fact.“[Hesburgh] was presented with the photo after a lecture he delivered at Emory University in Atlanta,” Schmuhl said. “Previous to that, he was unaware of the picture.”Tags: Civil Rights, Fr. Ted Hesburgh, Martin Luther King Jr.last_img read more

Man Arrested After Allegedly Attempting To Rob Falconer Bank

first_imgShare:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window),idiot Image by Justin Gould/WNYNewsNow.(File photo of the Community Bank in Ellicott)ELLICOTT – A man is facing charges after allegedly attempting to rob a bank in Ellicott on Monday morning.Town of Ellicott Police report Jason Maisonet, 38, enter the lobby of the Community Bank around 11:50 a.m. and told the clerk to open the safe.Police say a customer in the lobby told Maisonet to leave and when he refused the citizen took control of the man and pushed him out the front door. Officers later arrived on scene and took Maisonet into custody.He is charged with third-degree attempted robbery.Police say Maisonet was taken to UPMC Chautauqua Hospital for evaluation.last_img read more