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first_imgSaint Mary’s students will cast their ballots Thursday to decide on the next team of student leaders for the 2012-2013 school year, as elections for class councils and school boards begin. Voting starts at 8 a.m. Thursday and ends at 8 a.m. Friday. Students can vote electronically, or they can cast their ballots at Student Government Association’s (SGA) booths set up in the Student Center, Spes Unica atriums and the Dining Hall. Senior Emma Brink, SGA executive secretary, said SGA is hopeful these elections demonstrate a high voter turnout. “SGA is so excited about last week’s Student Body election turnout that we hope to replicate the same enthusiasm for the class and big board elections this week,” Brink said.   CLASS OF 2013 PRESIDENT AND VICE PRESIDENT Three tickets are running for class of 2013 president and vice president: Emily Caltrider and Megan Hogan, Meg Brown and Christina Bueno, and Silvia Cuevas and Ambreen Ahmad. Though each ticket has expressed plans to unify the senior class and host a variety of events, the candidates have expressed different means to achieve their platform goals. Caltrider and Hogan, members of the class of 2013 board, are running on a platform focused on offering diverse events, including a barn dance, wine tours and various service activities. Hogan said these events would build on the traditions of the College. “If elected, we plan to incorporate Saint Mary’s rich history and traditions while introducing new ideas,” she said. “I would love to have the opportunity to represent the Class of 2013 and make our senior year memorable.” Caltrider said the pair would look to foster an environment where members of their class could express their thoughts and concerns. “We hope to create a welcoming environment in which our peers can voice their concerns and be heard,” she said. “We also want to focus on better communication and collaboration among the four classes at [Saint Mary’s].” Ahmad said she and Cuevas want to build on Saint Mary’s traditions, while introducing new and exciting experiences to the Class of 2013. “Our slogan is ‘New perspectives on old challenges,’ as Silvia and I hope to bring new ideas on how to have a great senior year, while also requesting feedback from everyone in the class,” she said. “I think it is important that we continuously strive to create a bond, and that should definitely not stop, especially in our last year.” Cuevas, who serves as SGA commissioner, said her ticket is focused on listening to the needs of their classmates. “As seniors, many of us will be taking different paths after Saint Mary’s, so we want to stress to our class that we are here to listen to their ideas and try our ultimate best to put those ideas into action,” she said. Ahmad said her and Cuevas’ involvement with other campus groups makes them qualified to serve the needs and interests of their class. “Silvia and I are involved in many different extracurriculars, making us more well-rounded and representative of the many interests of class,” she said. “We both have experience in leadership and organizing for events through our various endeavors.” Cuevas said their experience in campus activities would benefit their leadership skills if elected to office. “We want our class to know that we know how to get things done and get them done right, since we are both involved in various parts of the College,” she said. Brown and Bueno are running a platform focused on establishing strong alumnae connections after graduation. Brown, who serves as the LeMans Hall treasurer, said relationships with fellow alumnae are crucial. “The senior year is an important year for building connections and preparing for life after graduation,” she said. “We will increase networking opportunities not only within the class, but also with the alumnae network by working to get graduating Belles in touch with their successful predecessors already tasting success in the ‘real world.’” Bueno said she and Brown are also focused on ensuring students have a say in the planning of events. “The opinions and contributions of my fellow classmates is a real focal point for me,” she said. “I really want my fellow class members to be a part of the planning process for senior year events such as Senior Dad’s Weekend, Senior Formal and Senior Week. I want these well known events to be new and exciting, and more attractive to the majority of the class.” Class of 2014 President and Vice President Susie Larson and Carolyn Backes will run unopposed for class of 2014 president and vice president. The ticket’s platform is focused on unifying their class and involving students in more campus activities. The pair is also looking to provide more community outreach programs in the South Bend area. In addition to hosting a memorable Junior Mom’s Weekend, the Larson and Backes are planning a class trip to Chicago and mixers with Notre Dame students. Larson said her ticket also envisions implementing a ring ceremony for the junior class. “Receiving your class ring calls for time to reflect upon who you are as a Saint Mary’s woman and what you will represent to the world when you leave this unique and empowering campus experience,” she said. The ticket also looks to foster a sense of community through the event, as they plan on inviting current students and previous alumnae who were not given this opportunity to participate. Backes said through her and Larson’s varied experiences, students can expect the pair to bring their class together in the next year. “People should vote for [us] because we come from different backgrounds including our majors and our hometowns. I think as a team we would be able to bring lots of different people together and unite our class like it should be,” Backes said. Class of 2015 President and Vice President Two tickets, composed of Anna Fanelli and Amy Trahan, and Kelly Gutrich and Maddie Sampson, will run for class of 2015 president and vice president. Both tickets emphasize a passion for student government and staying involved in the Saint Mary’s community. Each woman on the ballot has said she is focused on unifying the class of 2015 and planning a memorable Sophomore Parents Weekend. Fanelli said her ticket is focused on planning fun events for their classmates. “Amy and I are just really stressing what the class wants and needs and (we) want to serve them the best we can,” she said. “We think through these fun activities and hearing their opinions and voice we could do just that.” Trahan said one of the focal points of her ticket’s platform is planning a retreat for their classmates. “Another big idea we have is a sophomore retreat that focuses on empowering one another as a class. The retreat will be a way for all the sophomores to touch base with one another and reflect on how we have all grown academically, socially and spiritually,” she said. “It will also give us a weekend where we can develop stronger friendships within the class.” In addition to developing on-campus volunteer opportunities, Fanelli said she and Trahan would like to facilitate community service for students in the South Bend community. “We thought becoming more active in South Bend missions and food shelters by providing transportation to such volunteering opportunities would give more incentive and accessibility for those without means of transportation,” she said. Gutrich said she and Sampson are focused on planning events that will foster relationships between members of their class. “If elected, some of the first tasks Maddie and I hope to accomplish are the class bonding activities,” she said. “We want to use our ice cream socials, community service and t-shirts to give our class lots of quality time together and to really build on the sisterhood we have here at Saint Mary’s.” With her current position as class treasurer and Sampson’s role as the class of 2015 vice president, Gutrich said she and Sampson are prepared for the job. “[These roles have] prepared me to take on the role of president. I know how the class board operates, and can use the knowledge gained from experiences this year to make next year even more of a success for our class and school,” she said. “We are an awesome pair and have already gained a lot of experience working together.” Sampson said the pair will build off their leadership experience in the coming year if their peers elect them. “I know what can be done, and how to go about getting them done,” she said. “[Kelly and I] have knowledge about how the system works, and genuinely want to make our sophomore year as exciting and worthwhile as possible.”last_img read more

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first_imgNearly 400 University faculty and staff called upon the administration to add protection for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) persons to its non-discrimination policy in a full-page ad in Tuesday’s issue of The Observer. The University publically declined to add sexual orientation to its non-discrimination clause in April. On May 2, faculty members submitted a Letter to the Editor in The Observer asking the University to reconsider that decision. The Tuesday advertisement’s text was taken from that letter but included an expanded list of 366 signees. Sociology professor Richard Williams, who led the effort to collect signatures, said it was important the complete list of signees be made visible to readers, whereas it had been limited to The Observer’s website in May. “When we first put it out there, we put it together in less than a week and we only had 120 people sign, but we thought we could get a much broader and diverse group [if given more time],” he said. “Originally [the list of names] was all online, so I think they got lost in the shuffle. I thought by getting more names and paying to get them all in the paper, it would be a more striking statement.” The tripling in signatures between the issuance of the Letter to the Editor and the running of this week’s advertisement indicates faculty participation in the original letter was limited by lack of awareness, not lack of support, Williams said. Since running of the ad, 20 additional names have been added online. “The biggest reason people didn’t sign is that they didn’t know about it,” he said. “There was no University mailing, it was more listservs and word-of-mouth. I had people telling me today ‘I would have signed if I had known about it.’” One material difference in the secondary issuance is a document posted to Williams’s webpage titled “Catholic Justification for the Notre Dame Faculty/Staff Letter in Support of Notre Dame’s LGBTQ Community,” which refers to Catholic teaching on the treatment of homosexuals. Williams said the addition was inspired by questions he received after running the original letter. “That was prompted by someone emailing me, asking how [the letter] fit with the Catholic mission of the University,” he said. “These statements are not in conflict with Catholic teachings in the least. If there are people out there who think we have to be hostile to [homosexual individuals], they can’t use the Catholic Church to justify those beliefs and behaviors.” While the end of the letter encourages the University to add LGBTQ persons to its non-discrimination policy, Williams said he hopes readers will not overlook the first paragraph, which pledges signees’ “offices and classrooms will be safe and open spaces, where anti-LGBTQ discrimination, harassment or violence will not be tolerated.” “We aren’t just trying to influence the University. … We can’t control what other people do, but we can control what we do ourselves,” he said. “We wanted to show the members of the LGBTQ community that we support them, that we will not discriminate against them.” Whether or not the declaration of support affects the University’s decision on the non-discrimination policy, Williams hopes it will impact individuals’ views and behaviors toward LGBTQ people. “Maybe we’ll influence someone in their personal behavior,” he said. “We don’t know what will come of this, but we hope some good will.”last_img read more

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first_imgThe Saint Mary’s chapter of Stand Up to Cancer will sponsor the second-annual Zumbathon from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. this Friday in the Angela Athletic Center with the local Party in Pink organization to raise money for cancer research and the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Senior Devon Graham, who organized the event, said Stand Up to Cancer ensures that all funds raised go directly to cancer research. “Stand Up to Cancer is different from other organizations that raise money for cancer because 100 percent of anything you donate goes to cancer research,” Graham said. “All donations go to ‘dream teams,’ or research teams, that research many different types of cancer, including the rarer forms.” While student donations go to Stand Up to Cancer, donations from the general public are sent to the Susan G. Komen Foundation, Graham said. “We’re working together in that way and both collaborating with each other,” she said. Though the donations will be separated, Graham said the event is an opportunity to combine awareness for both organizations. “It’s pretty awesome. It’s a really good way to raise awareness for both organizations. Susan G. Komen is obviously a very well-known one. Stand Up to Cancer … it is getting much greater now in the public,” Graham said. “We’re all really looking forward to it. It worked in October for breast cancer awareness so we’re really excited for it.” About 200 people attended last year’s Party in Pink event, and Graham said she expects an increase in attendance this year for the Zumbathon. Graham said local Zumba instructors will lead the event, and the space will be decked out for a dance party. “It should be a really good time,” Graham said. “They’re bringing in a DJ. They’re going to turn it kind of into a club with lights.” Besides Zumba, guests can expect to learn new moves from Polynesian dancers, belly dancers, hip hop dancers and even one woman who created her own type of dance. “There will be a lot of variety, and the bleachers will be down so people can sit or walk and see the vendors,” Graham said. In addition to the dancing, vendors will be selling pink glow stick bracelets for Stand Up to Cancer and Zumba clothing. Attendees can also try samples from Avon and eat free food. The general public is very excited for the event, Graham said, and students should prepare to match their enthusiasm by being loud and wearing pink clothing. “Apparently, these people really get into it,” she said. “You’ll see 70-year-olds out there shaking it to Zumba … They get the loudest. They get the most into it.” The event will offer students the opportunity to interact with the public and work together toward a common goal, Graham said. Many Saint Mary’s alumnae are expected to attend the event as well, including some who will travel from Chicago. “Everyone looks silly, except for the instructors. You just have to have fun with it,” Graham said. “You’re not there to look a certain way … you’re just there to be lively with everyone else.” If one night of Zumba is not enough to satisfy your desire to dance, Graham said Stand Up to Cancer hosts several Zumba events throughout the year, as well as a prom dance in the spring for cancer patients and survivors. Tickets for this Friday’s Zumbathon are $5 in advance and $10 at the doo, and will be sold in the Saint Mary’s Student Center during lunch and dinner this week. Notre Dame students may email Graham at [email protected] to reserve tickets and pick them up at the door. Ticketholders must also bring their student ID to the event.last_img read more

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first_imgWho they are: Presidential candidate Michael Masi is a junior from Siegfried Hall and current director of University Affairs for student government. His running mate, Tim Scanlan, is a sophomore from Morrissey Manor, current president of Sophomore Class Council and former Freshman Class Council president. Masi hopes to leverage his student government experience to effectively tackle a wide range of goals relating to diversity, student life and community engagement. “This campaign is really about fostering a community that is welcoming and inclusive. We believe in the Notre Dame family a lot,” he said. “We’re seeking a Notre Dame that fosters and develops habits of the mind, body and spirit.” First priority: Masi said his first plan of action is to ensure his team within student government is cohesive and efficient. “The first priority I think takes place before we get into office,” Masi said. “It’s about putting together a team and uniting the Student Union,” Masi said. “By putting together the team that can accomplish the vision that we set out here.” Top priority: Scanlan said the ticket’s most important goal is also the one they are most passionate about. “I think our social justice forum which we have planned is absolutely one of the more time-intensive things,” Scanlan said. “That brings students into an academic setting where they can truly present what they’ve been working on. Students here at Notre Dame and across the area are very passionate about what they do [addressing social concerns] and we want to give them a formal opportunity to present that.” Best idea: The Intercollegiate Forum on Social Justice is intended to bring students from other colleges to campus for student-led presentations on social concerns projects. If instituted, this could be a meaningful opportunity for connecting like-minded students and facilitating collaboration across universities. Worst idea: Potentially establishing freshmen sections within dorms. Most feasible: Individual student tickets to basketball games, Domer Dollars in dorm restaurants. Least feasible: Guaranteed housing for transfer students, additional chain restaurants on campus. Residence halls are dealing with forced triples as it is, and bringing restaurants on campus often takes years. Notable quote: “It’s a comprehensive vision [and we have] all the experience to do it. We want to come together as one family with one mission and create one Notre Dame and be united, inclusive and supportive.” – Masi Fun facts: Masi is from Greeley, Colo., described in a “South Park” episode as the exact opposite of Hawaii and referenced in “Fast Food Nation,” which claims you can smell the town before you can see it. Scanlan is from New Orleans and had never missed Mardi Gras before coming to Notre Dame. Bottom line: The Masi-Scalan ticket has by far the most experience within student government. If elected, the duo would likely hit the ground running. While many of their goals are lofty and broad, much of their platform is rooted in specific and achievable policies.last_img read more

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first_imgOn Thursday, the Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s campus communities will unite in the annual Take Back the Night event to break the silence about sexual violence. Steph Wulz | The Observer A “We Stand United” banner will be visible Thursday leading the way down Saint Mary’s Road to the Grotto at Notre Dame. Senior co-chair of the Student Advisory Committee for the Belles Against Violence Office (BAVO) Galicia Guerrero said Take Back the Night is an event that stems from the Take Back the Night national foundation, which is dedicated to promoting awareness of sexual violence. She said Take Back the Night is hosted nationally on the last Thursday in April on college campuses across the country.Amanda Downey, director of educational initiatives at the Gender Relations Center at Notre Dame, said the event will begin with a candlelight vigil service, followed by a march around campus. The night will conclude with a speak out.“A march and a speak out are standard components of [Take Back the Night] for many campuses and organizations,” she said. “The Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame community have included a candlelight vigil as part of the event because it is a meaningful way to begin the evening in prayer and reflection. “The dinner following the speak out was started last year. We wanted the opportunity for us to gather as a community and share a meal after the sharing of stories.”Guerrero said Take Back the Night provides both campuses an opportunity to stand in solidarity about an issue that affects them both.“[Take Back the Night] shows that, together, both Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame students are committed to taking a stand against attitudes and behaviors that perpetuate violence,” Guerrero said.Sophomore Ashley Watkins serves as a BAVO Ally on the Events and Campaign Committee. She said the purpose of Take Back the Night is to end the silence surrounding issues such as rape, sexual assault, sexual abuse and domestic violence. “These crimes are often labeled as ‘crimes of silence’ because the report rates for these crimes are low,” she said.Take Back the Night would provide a sense of unity between the two communities and allows for open dialogue, Watkins said.“It is also a chance for survivors of these crimes to share their story and bring awareness to these serious crimes,” she said.Campus Ministry, Notre Dame Security Police (NDSP), Safe Walk, Men Against Violence, PrismND and Shades of Ebony also participated in planning the event, Downey said. She said all groups united in their goal to stand against sexual violence.“We are seeking to raise awareness about sexual violence and to stand in solidarity with survivors of sexual violence,” she said. “Sexual violence affects everyone — survivors, friends of survivors, roommates, classmates — we are a community, and we need to stand in solidarity to express that we will not stand for sexual violence in this community.” Connie Adams, director of BAVO at Saint Mary’s, said Take Back the Night is one of the few events on campus annually where students could share their own stories.“I hope that it provides healing for both individuals impacted by sexual assault, but also our larger Holy Cross community,” she said.Take Back the Night at Saint Mary’s will kick off at 5 p.m. near Lake Marian, Adams said.“By beginning the event with a candlelight vigil, our efforts are centered in prayer and faith,” she said. “I believe it truly deepens our solidarity and reignites our commitment to prevention. I have witnessed survivors empowered through their participation.”Sophomore Grace Adair will speak at the kickoff, Guerrero said, and then the group will walk over to the Grotto, holding a sign that says “We Stand United.” Guerrero said she and all of those involved with BAVO hoped for a good turnout from students, faculty and staff.“[Take Back the Night] is an important event for Saint Mary’s students to attend because it shows that together as a community we are responsive and want to show support for those who have been impacted by violence,” she said. “Further, by having a strong presence of Saint Mary’s students it shows just how important these issues are in our community and further spreads awareness.“We know that this event really has the potential to have a great impact on our community and is such a great opportunity to spread awareness as well as build a community healing and support,” she said.Watkins said students would be impacted by the remarkable stories and experiences planned for the evening.“Even though this is an event that lasts one night, it truly can make a big impact on the community by bringing awareness to these issues,” she said.Other events taking place this week include the Clothesline Project and Denim Day. A national initiative, the Clothesline Project invites survivors of stalking, abuse or sexual violence to write a message of hope on a T-shirt that will be displayed on campus. The Notre Dame Clothesline Project will hang in front of O’Shaughnessy Hall, providing a show of solidarity and hope, a University press release stated.Denim Day, a national movement to raise awareness about the consequences of victim blaming in sexual assault cases, occurred Wednesday to commemorate a sexual assault case in Italy that was overturned due to the fact that the victim’s jeans were tight. The judge concluded that the victim must have removed her jeans herself, thus inferring consent, the press release stated. Students were invited to wear jeans on this date to show their dedication to the idea that clothing choice does not indicate consent, a press release said. Downey stressed the importance of these events and the awareness they raise.“[These issues] impact men and women as survivors but also our entire community,” she said. Tags: BAVO, GRC, saint mary’s, sexual assault, Take Back the Nightlast_img read more

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first_imgTags: 2014 sunset international film festival, best short documentary, frances shavers, FTT, Katie Mattie, neurological disease, notre dame chief-of-staff, suicide disease, the suicide disease story, TN, trigeminal neuralgia, Vincent Moore, William Neal Katie Mattie, Vincent Moore and William Neal — 2014 Notre Dame graduates — won “Best Short Documentary” at the 2014 Sunset International Film Festival in May in Los Angeles for their film “The Suicide Disease.”“The Suicide Disease” tells the story of Frances Shavers, former Notre Dame Chief-of-Staff, who suffers from Trigeminal Neuralgia (TN), a neurological disease that causes extreme facial pain, according to a Notre Dame press release.“Our film is about Frances Shavers’ struggle with the disease and her extraordinary story of hope and courage,” Mattie said, describing Shavers as “remarkable” and “larger than life” despite her disease.In the spring of 2013, Professor Ted Mandell, associate professional specialist for the FTT department, inspired the three filmmakers to tell Shavers’ story after showing them footage of Shavers suffering from a pain attack as a result of her condition.Upon seeing the footage, the trio of students teamed up to tell Shavers’ important story, Mattie said.“Frances suffers from 100-150 pain attacks daily, which can last anywhere from 20 seconds to 2 minutes,” she said. “My heart breaks when I think of Frances’ battle … and the amount of pain she endures because of it.”The three filmmakers spent three months gathering footage for the documentary, even traveling to the Cleveland Clinic to meet with Shavers’ doctors.“It was during that filming session [in the Cleveland Clinic] that we learned how severe her condition is, and [saw] what the emotional toll that TN has taken on Frances,” Mattie said.Despite the severity of the disease, Shavers was a joy to work with, Mattie said.“She really embraced the process of making the film and was fearless in sharing her vulnerability to the world,” Mattie said.But it was Shavers’ sense of humor amongst the seriousness of the filming process that was most memorable for Mattie.“One part of the film that I wish we could show more is Frances’ sense of humor and all of the moments when she would crack a joke, or just be adorable.”Mattie said showing “The Suicide Disease” at the Sunset Film Festival and the trio’s experience was “incredible” and “a whirlwind.”“We were in awe of the diversity of the films we saw at the festival, and the level of support from the directors of the event,” Mattie said.The overall production of “The Suicide Disease” had a profound impact on the three filmmakers, Mattie said.“What I took away … is the incredible capacity Frances has to love, hold onto faith, be vulnerable and courageous,” she said. “[Frances and her husband, George] have shown me a new level of love and support that I’ve never seen before.”Mattie said that she hopes the film will provide hope to those with TN, as well as inspire others to help.“Our goals [with this film] were to raise awareness [for] the disease, share Frances’ incredible faith and strength, connect with others living with chronic pain and if at all possible, be a call for someone to help Frances,” Mattie said.last_img read more

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first_imgJazz bands from colleges and universities across the country visited Notre Dame this weekend to play at the University’s 57th annual Collegiate Jazz Festival.The festival, which has become less competitive and more educational since it began in 1958, has always been entirely student-run, assistant director of bands and director of jazz studies Larry Dwyer said.“Primarily, most of the major decisions are made by the students who run the festival,” Dwyer said. “And that does make a difference. Overall, it makes the Festival a lot more fun.“I’ve had some of the judges talk to me at times, because some of them have been back to Notre Dame multiple times and say, ‘We like to come back here just because of the spirit and vibe at your festival. Sometimes we go to other college festivals, and it’s all run by the adults … and it’s just not the same.’ So that’s one of the other elements that makes this a really good festival.”Festival committee member and junior Mia McReynolds said the students involved in planning the jazz festival had been working since this summer to ensure the event ran smoothly. Planning the festival was a great opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes look at Notre Dame’s art scene, especially because the festival has so much history, she said.“It’s got a lot of history, but students aren’t very aware of it,” McReynolds said. “It’s a great chance for South Bend community members and Notre Dame students to stop by to hear different styles of jazz and see a different side of this school.“To me, helping out with the festival was a chance to take a break from my normal studies and get involved with the music scene.”McReynolds said the show ran smoothly, bringing together both Notre Dame students and South Bend residents in the audience.“The audience is historically mostly South Bend residents with a few students; this year was the same,” she said. “There were a lot more people in attendance the first night because of the Judges’ Jam. The five judges [for the festival] went onstage to play together, and it was awesome to see the pros perform.”Sophomore and festival committee member Holly Backstrom said the festival was “a big success,” and the audience response was positive, even though attendance from Notre Dame students was lower than she hoped it would be.“I do wish we could draw a larger amount of student interest and attendance, but with so much going on this past weekend, from Bengal Bouts to hockey, we had to expect that the numbers would be on the lower side since there were so many events to choose from on campus,” Backstrom said. “That being said, I still saw a good number of students in the audience and have gotten a lot of positive feedback from those I’ve spoken to about the festival.”Tags: Collegiate Jazz Festival, Holly Backstrom, Larry Dwyer, Mia McReynoldslast_img read more

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first_imgUniversity President Fr. John Jenkins received the Spirit of Francis National Award at the Metropolitan Club in New York on Oct. 22, according to a University press release. Jenkins was honored “for his role in supporting and encouraging future leaders of the Catholic Church throughout his career at Notre Dame,” the release stated.The award was given by Catholic Extension, a national fundraising organization which support Catholic dioceses throughout the United States, the release stated. Catholic Extension has partnered with the University on a variety of initiatives.“Since its founding over a century ago, Catholic Extension has served the most isolated and poorest places in America, and now most ably under the leadership of its president, Fr. Jack Wall,” Jenkins said in the release. “Notre Dame is proud of its association with Catholic Extension and honored to be recognized by so revered an organization.”According to the Catholic Exchange website, the award was established in 2014 to honor individuals and groups that have significantly aided the Catholic Church in the United States, “in the spirit of St. Francis of Assisi, Pope Francis and the founder of Catholic Extension, Fr. Francis Clement Kelley.”Tags: Fr. John Jenkins, Spirit of Francis National Awardlast_img read more

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first_imgThe Not-So-Royal Shakespeare Company’s (NSR) performance of “Pericles, Prince of Tyre” opens Thursday night at 7 p.m. in the Washington Hall Lab Theatre.Senior Liz Konicek, the club’s president, said the production has been a group effort from the beginning.“This semester we took applications and then collaboratively decided as a group, with our new freshmen, as well, what play we wanted to do,” she said. “We got a lot of response from ‘Pericles’ which was, I think, surprising to all of us because it’s not a well-known play.”The group hopes because the play is less famous than some other Shakespeare works, more people will to come to the show and learn more about it, Konicek said. “We just hope that people will be interested because, quite frankly, I think most of us hadn’t heard of ‘Pericles,’” she said. “I think that’s going to be the more pervasive view on campus … which we’re hoping means people are going to want to try something new.”Junior Cassidy Leyendecker, co-vice president of NSR, said the club prides itself on making Shakespeare accessible for actors and audiences.“When you’re getting people involved, having Shakespeare is awesome because there are so many people who love Shakespeare, but then you also have a lot of people who are afraid of Shakespeare,” Leyendecker said. “We want to get people involved. It seems super daunting at first, but once you get into it, our club does a really good job of trying to ease people into it and understanding.”Konicek also said in order to make the performances fun and entertaining, the club builds off of the foundation Shakespeare himself laid when writing his plays.“Shakespeare seems daunting and it seems pretentious, maybe, but Shakespeare himself, he made crass jokes all the time,” she said. “He was not a pretentious guy. … If you see a boring production of one of Shakespeare’s comedies, they’re doing it wrong.”One of the club’s biggest advantages, Leyendecker said, is the huge amount of collaboration and effort that goes into the productions.“NSR has a group of people that so much care about the club. The people right now want the club to succeed so much, which is really cool,” she said. “It’s kind of a different environment to be in than if you’re doing another show where it’s just the director and the stage manager being involved. This, you have all the officers in it, and everyone is creating events every week to get [the] cast together.”The club has come together to put on an enjoyable show, Konicek said, and has experimented with different ideas to make it unique.“We try and push the envelope and try new things, and a lot of it comes down to the fact that we pride ourselves … on being collaborative and being a team of students,” she said. “This is really a chance for us all to show our talents creatively and to work together and really forge a tight-knit bond. … It’s Shakespeare as performance, yes, but also Shakespeare as coming together.”The club’s size this year has made it easier for NSR to push boundaries with the more creative aspects of the show, Leyendecker said. “Our cast is huge,” she said. “We have 18 people, which is big for fitting in the Washington Hall black box, so what we’re trying to do is focus so much on the cast. … We’re trying to really make it a story. … We just kind of want this drama and this excitement that hopefully get more people involved and excited about coming to see it.”She also said the group has enjoyed playing with some of the more outlandish aspects of the play itself.“Basically, this show is Shakespeare’s ‘Game of Thrones,’” she said. “There are just the craziest things [in it]… and we’ve had a blast doing it for the past month and a half. I’m more excited about the process of it than even performing it.”Konicek said the combination of Shakespeare’s writing and the company’s creative collaboration has allowed then to craft an exciting and entertaining production.“You shouldn’t be afraid of Shakespeare, and if you are, then I think the people who’ve been teaching you about it or performing it for you might not be doing it right,” she said. “It may be weird, it may be odd, and unusual and strange as a play, but it’s not boring.”Tags: Not-So-Royal Shakespeare, Shakespeare at Notre Dame, Washington Halllast_img read more

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first_imgSaint Mary’s Residence Hall Association (RHA) announced in a campus-wide email Friday it will not be hosting its annual fall formal. Instead, RHA will be collaborating with the Student Government Association (SGA) to plan and host this year’s Navy Ball on Nov. 15.“The Saint Mary’s College Administration and RHA have decided to reevaluate formal and work on making positive changes to improve the experience for students,” senior Grace Kelly, RHA President, said in an email.Midshipmen from the United States Naval Academy will be in attendance, the email said, but Saint Mary’s students will also be welcome to invite and bring a date of their own. Additionally, RHA announced the event will be able to accommodate a larger number of guests than in years past.“We have re-evaluated the fire capacity for the venue and determined that there is legal capability for us to accommodate more students than we have in the past,” Kelly said.Students who wish to attend the Navy Ball will be required to sign a waiver outlining the expectations for attending this year’s event, the email said. These guidelines are similar to those upheld at past formals, Kelly said.“The expectations for attending Navy Ball are the exact same expectations that have been stated in the past for attending formal,” she said. “Students will be expected to follow the well-known rules of not participating in drinking or substance use prior to the event and during it, as well as behaving maturely and respecting the venue property.”RHA has not yet decided whether it will be hosting a spring semester formal, Kelly said.“We highly encourage students to attend Navy Ball as we are making suggested changes and implementing them at this event to see how receptive these changes would be for the foreseeable future,” she said. “We’ve got a great event planned and the members of RHA and SGA have great experience in planning events such as Navy Ball.”More information will be provided and ticket sales will open within the next few weeks.Tags: Fall formal, navy ball, Residence Hall Association, Student Government Associationlast_img read more

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