News » Archives » September 2012

Notre Dame entomologists help discover new species of malaria-transmitting mosquito

Author: William G. Gilroy and Sarah Craig

New mosquito Photo courtesy of Jenny Stevenson, LSHTM.

University of Notre Dame entomologists are part of a team of researchers that recently discovered a potentially dangerous new malaria-transmitting mosquito. The as-yet-unnamed, and previously unreported, mosquito breeds in the western areas of Kenya and has an unknown DNA match to any of the existing malaria-transmitting species.

Although the new species has never been implicated in the transmission of malaria, new discoveries in its biting habits pose a threat because it was found to be active outdoors and prefers to bite people earlier in the evening, soon after sunset, when people are not protected by current malaria control techniques.

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Rev. Brian Daley, S.J., to receive 'Nobel Prize' in theology from Pope Benedict

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Rev. Brian E. Daley, S.J.

Rev. Brian E. Daley, S.J., Catherine F. Huisking Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame, will receive the 2012 Ratzinger Prize in Theology from Pope Benedict XVI in a ceremony Oct. 20 in Rome.

The two winners of this year’s award, which has been nicknamed the “Nobel of Theology,” were announced this morning at a Vatican news conference. The other 2012 Ratzinger Prize will be awarded to French philosopher Remi Brague.

At this morning’s news conference, Cardinal Camillo Ruini, president of the Ratzinger Foundation’s academic committee, praised Father Daley as “a great historian of patristic theology, but also a man entirely committed to the life and mission of the Church, an exemplary model of the fusion of academic rigor with passion for the Gospel."

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New summer programs attract international students to Notre Dame

Author: Ted Fox and Jonathan Noble

iLED program

Now that both the fall semester and football season are in full swing, summer is fast becoming a distant memory at the University of Notre Dame.

However, for the faculty and students who recently participated in three new international summer programs held on campus, that memory is not likely to fade so quickly.

“The success of these programs in their first year shows that Notre Dame can be a very attractive destination for highly talented and academically accomplished students from around the world during the summer months,” says Nick Entrikin, vice president and associate provost for internationalization.

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Community to celebrate Feast of St. Francis of Assisi

Author: Rachel Novick

St. Francis of Assisi

The University of Notre Dame community will celebrate the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, patron saint of the environment, on Oct. 4 (Thursday). The celebration, which has become a tradition at Notre Dame, will be marked by festivities, thought-provoking discussion and opportunities to follow in the footsteps of St. Francis, who was known for his love for nature and the poor.

Mass will be celebrated by Rev. Paul Kollman, C.S.C., at 5:15 p.m. in the Basilica of the Sacred Heart. At 7:30 p.m., there will be a screening of the Academy Award-nominated documentary “Sun Come Up” in Room 101 of the Jordan Hall of Science, followed by a reception and discussion. Dinner at North and South dining halls will feature a nature-themed dessert buffet in honor of the feast day, provided by Notre Dame Food Services.

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Gigot Center, FISH host social entrepreneurship conference

Author: Carol Elliott

Irish Impact Social Entrepreneurship Conference 2012

The Gigot Center for Entrepreneurship at the University of Notre Dame and the Fellow Irish Social Hub (FISH) will bring together some of the foremost social innovators during the inaugural Irish Impact Social Entrepreneurship Conference, to be held Sept. 27 and Sept. 28 (Thursday and Friday) in the Mendoza College of Business. The conference is open to the students, faculty and staff of the Notre Dame, Saint Mary’s College and Holy Cross College communities.

The public is invited to attend the keynote talk by Rishi Jaitly, a director with the nonprofit John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Jaitly is a renowned global expert in digital innovation, public leadership and social entrepreneurship. His talk will take place at 12:30 p.m. Sept. 28 in the Mendoza College’s Jordan Auditorium.

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Notre Dame receives $6.1 million NSF award to advance QuarkNet program

Author: Marissa Gebhard

At work on a QuarkNet experiment

The University of Notre Dame has received a five-year, $6.1 million award from the National Science Foundation to support the continuation of the nationwide QuarkNet program, which uses particle physics experiments to inspire students and provide valuable research, training and mentorship opportunities for high school teachers.

Through the QuarkNet program, physicists at Notre Dame, Fermilab and 50 other research institutions will continue to mentor teachers in research experiences, enabling them to teach the basic concepts of introductory physics in a context that high school students find exciting. Faculty, students and teachers work together as a community of researchers, which not only develops scientific literacy in students, but also attracts young students to careers in science and technology.

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ND Expert: Authentic or not, Jesus’ wife papyrus sheds light on diversity of opinion in the early church

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Candida Moss

Whether or not it is authenticated, the recent discovery of a purported fourth-century papyrus fragment that quotes Jesus as referring to his wife “has some important ramifications for how we think about the early church,” according to Candida Moss, professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame.

“Even if the text is a modern forgery, it draws attention to a debate about the status of women and the marital status of Jesus himself that scholars know was ongoing in the early church," said Moss, who teaches courses in New Testament and Christian Origins.

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Columnist Kathleen Parker to deliver Red Smith Lecture

Author: Notre Dame News

Kathleen Parker

Syndicated columnist Kathleen Parker, winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for commentary, will discuss “Journalism in the Age of Twitteracy” in a lecture at the University of Notre Dame on Oct. 4 (Thursday).

Parker’s talk, which is free and open to the public, is the 2012 Red Smith Lecture in Journalism and will take place in the auditorium of the Eck Visitors Center, beginning at 7:30 p.m.

A twice-weekly columnist for The Washington Post who is syndicated by The Washington Post Writers Group, Parker also writes regularly for Newsweek/The Daily Beast and appears frequently on television as a commentator. The citation for her Pulitzer Prize commended her for “perceptive, often witty columns on an array of political and moral issues, gracefully sharing the experiences and values that lead her to unpredictable conclusions.”

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ND Expert: NFL wasting money and time, better off with full-time referees

Author: Shannon Chapla


As the NFL referee lockout approaches its fourth month, the league continues using replacement officials while anger mounts over allegedly blown calls, including a controversial call Monday resulting in a Green Bay Packers loss to the Seattle Seahawks.

University of Notre Dame Finance Professor Richard Sheehan, who specializes in the economics of sports, says the NFL is wasting money and time.

“Estimated NFL profits in 2011 were $1 billion,” he says. “The estimated value of the NFL brand is $1.5 billion. The estimated total compensation of NFL referees is $18 million. The difference between the costs of NFL and referee proposals is less than $3.5 million. So, the NFL is willing to risk a substantial part of $1 billion to save a few million? I would like to arrange a poker game with the person who made that decision.”

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The Center for History to honor Notre Dame

Author: Notre Dame News

Main Building

The Center for History will celebrate and honor the University of Notre Dame on the occasion of the University’s 170th year at the center’s annual dinner, to be held Sept. 26 (Wednesday) at the Historic Oliver Gardens of Copshaholm in South Bend.

The event, which will begin with a reception at 6:15 p.m., followed by dinner at 7:30 p.m., is being held in celebration of Notre Dame’s vision, leadership and community engagement, reflecting the University’s faith-based core values since its establishment in 1842.

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Chicago Shamrock Series events to include four academic programs

Author: Julie Hail Flory

Shamrock Series

As Fighting Irish fans descend upon Chicago for the Shamrock Series off-site home football game between the Notre Dame and Miami on Oct. 6 (Saturday), the University will present four academic events highlighting various topics of interest, including the national media, the economy, U.S. foreign policy and the role of religion in politics today.

All events are free and open to the public and will be held at the JW Marriott, 151 W. Adams St., Chicago.

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Presidential candidates invited to speak on campus

Author: Dennis Brown

President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney

The University of Notre Dame’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., and student body president Brett Rocheleau have joined in inviting both President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Gov. Mitt Romney to speak at the University during the fall election campaign.

Continuing a long-standing tradition, Father Jenkins and Rocheleau addressed letters to each of the presidential aspirants, offering Notre Dame as a “forum for serious political discussion” on important issues facing the nation. The intent of the invitations, which include the candidates’ running mates, is to provide the campus community a firsthand impression of the contenders and their messages.

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Notre Dame MBA named ‘Military Friendly’ for fourth year

Author: Carol Elliott

2013 Military Friendly School

U.S. Army Major Sean McCaffery was commissioned as an officer in 2001, one month before the 9/11 terrorist attacks. McCaffery had been raised with the belief that he needed to give back to society in return for the many freedoms and privileges he enjoyed as an American. But when the twin towers fell, that belief solidified into a plan to serve in the military for a 20-year career.

Now, a decade later, the married father of two small sons has been deployed overseas multiple times, to Afghanistan, Iraq, Kyrgyzstan and Mali, Africa. For all he gained in military experience, he also set a new goal for himself — getting his MBA.

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Event to focus on multidisciplinary research

Author: Gene Stowe

A woman working in a laboratory

The University of Notre Dame’s Office of the Vice President for Research and the Multidisciplinary Research Committee are hosting a public discussion, “Promoting Multidisciplinary Research: Building Successful Teams and Programs,” from 9:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Sept. 27 (Thursday) in the Eck Visitor’s Center auditorium.

The event, the second in a series on multidisciplinary research, focuses on how to promote collaborative groups and approaches. Jeannette Colyvas, an assistant professor of human development and social policy and of learning sciences at Northwestern University; and Nancy C. Andreasen, M.D., the Andrew H. Woods Chair of Psychiatry and Director of its Neuroimaging Research Center and the Mental Health Clinical Research Center at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine, will speak.

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ND Expert: Netanyahu needs to back off, 'stay out of American domestic politics'


Michael Desch Michael Desch

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has expressed outrage at the refusal of the Obama administration to set “red lines” for Iran’s progress on its nuclear program. But according to Political Scientist Michael Desch, it is Americans who ought to be incensed with Netanyahu.

“By insisting on ‘red lines’ and threatening to launch a unilateral strike on Iran’s nuclear infrastructure, Netanyahu is trying to commit the United States to fighting a preventive war on Israel’s behalf,” says Desch, an expert on international security, foreign and defense policies.

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A conference on music 'that nurtures whole human persons'

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Choir rehearsal for Masters of Sacred Music students

More than 100 musicians gathered last week on the campus of the University of Notre Dame for its inaugural Sacred Music Conference.

The conference, titled “James MacMillan and the Musical Modes of Mary and the Cross,” was organized by Margot Fassler, Keough-Hesburgh Professor of Music History and Liturgy, and Carmen-Helena Téllez, professor of music at Notre Dame, to coincide with the celebration of the feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, the patronal feast and 175th anniversary of the founding of the Congregation of Holy Cross. Composers, conductors and scholars of sacred music came together to discuss, share and perform their work. Among them were the Scottish composer and conductor MacMillan, the former conductor of the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra who had composed the music for Pope Benedict’s 2010 visit to England.

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Notre Dame to host national high school debate competition

Author: Notre Dame News

Ronald Reagan debates his 1984 Democratic rival for presidency, Walter Mondale Ronald Reagan debates his 1984 Democratic rival for presidency, Walter Mondale.

The University of Notre Dame will host a national debate event for regional high school students competing in a tournament to win college scholarships. Sponsored by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and the Annenberg Foundation, the Great Communicator Debate Series celebrates Reagan’s role as a “Great Communicator” and encourages civic engagement among high school students.

The public forum-style debates will take place on Sept. 29 (Saturday) in University classrooms, and the debate topic will be whether national service should be mandatory for all U.S. citizens. Notre Dame seniors and law students will serve as judges, evaluating students on how well they develop persuasive arguments and communicate their ideas to a general audience.

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Notre Dame hosts sixth annual energy week

Author: Claire Stephens

Closeup of a wind turbine

The University of Notre Dame will host its sixth annual Notre Dame Energy Week Sept. 23-27 (Sunday-Saturday) at various campus locations.

Co-sponsored by the Center for Sustainable Energy at Notre Dame Student Advisory Board (cSEND SAB) and GreeND, Energy Week aims to educate the Notre Dame community about energy research and issues in a fun and interactive way, and will include energy awareness events both on and off campus, including academic talks, networking events and tours.

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Research could provide new insights into tuberculosis and other diseases

Author: William G. Gilroy

Champions bacteria research

Researchers Patricia A. Champion and Matthew Champion from the University of Notre Dame’s Eck Institute for Global Health have developed a method to directly detect bacterial protein secretion, which could provide new insights into a variety of diseases including tuberculosis.

The Champions demonstrated that their new method is applicable to the study of other bacterial protein export systems that could not be effectively studied under previous methods. Their method could also help in the identification of compounds that can inhibit bacterial protein secretion.

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Senior film student wins Princess Grace Award


Kathleen Bracke Kathleen Bracke

When Kathleen Bracke got the call, she dropped the phone out of shock, then picked it up and asked the caller to repeat the news. On the other end was a representative of the Princess Grace Foundation-USA announcing that Bracke had won a 2012 Princess Grace Award.

“They were giving me all this information and the whole time I was thinking, ‘Is this a mistake?’” says Bracke, a senior in the University of Notre Dame’s Department of Film, Television, and Theatre (FTT) and one of only two winners of this year’s Princess Grace Undergraduate Film Scholarship.

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Initiative for Global Development teams with Accenture to develop electricity, connectivity in Uganda

Author: Notre Dame News

An employee of BOSCO-Uganda adjusts an antenna An employee of BOSCO Uganda adjusts an antenna.

The University of Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development (IGD) and Accenture — a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company — are taking the lead to empower disconnected communities in northern Uganda by harnessing solar energy to generate electricity for Internet and communications technologies, education and training centers, and new locally developed ventures.

This pilot solar energy project will provide communities in Uganda with clean and efficient renewable power and Wi-Fi connectivity. Entrepreneurial training also will be offered at several sites in Uganda to help create businesses and jobs that can take advantage of this new source of electricity. IGD evaluation experts and Accenture will conduct research to measure the impact that these efforts have on the Ugandan communities.

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ND Expert: Pope Benedict’s Lebanon visit has 'symbolic value'

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Gabriel Said Reynolds Gabriel Said Reynolds

Pope Benedict XVI is in Beirut today, beginning a three-day visit to Lebanon and a Middle East region convulsed by religious violence ignited by the release of an online movie trailer which mocks the Prophet Mohammed. Gabriel Said Reynolds, Tisch Family Associate Professor of Theology, believes that the Pope’s visit couldn’t be more timely.

“On the one hand the Holy Father’s visit to Lebanon is pastoral,” said Reynolds, whose scholarship largely concerns interactions between Christians and Muslims. “Lebanon is a country in the heart of the Arab world with over a million Christians from a rich diversity of traditions and rites, both Catholic and Orthodox, and a country whose saints are venerated throughout the world. On the other hand the visit has a particular symbolic value.

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Historic building being renovated for Notre Dame Center for Arts and Culture

Author: Brendan O'Shaughnessy

An artist's rendering of an aerial view of the Hansel Center An artist’s rendering of an aerial view of the Hansel Center.

The University of Notre Dame will open a new center for the arts and culture in January in a renovated historic building, bolstering a growing museum district just west of downtown South Bend.

Located in the former Hansel Center, the Notre Dame Center for Arts and Culture will house the University’s Community Relations Department, its Crossroads Art Gallery and the Segura Fine Art Print Studio — a renowned print studio formerly based in Arizona. The new facility will continue the activities and programming of the department and gallery, as well as provide new opportunities for youth and adult programming.

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Templeton Foundation awards Notre Dame $1.58 million for interdisciplinary study


Donald Stelluto, left, and Vittorio Hösle Donald Stelluto, left, and Vittorio Hösle

Two scholars from the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Advanced Study (NDIAS) recently were awarded a $1.58 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation for a three-year program to promote dialogue across academic disciplines.

Vittorio Hösle, Paul Kimball Chair of Arts and Letters and director of NDIAS, and Donald Stelluto, associate director of NDIAS, won the award for their proposal, “Pursuing the Unity of Knowledge: Integrating Religion, Science, and the Academic Disciplines.”

The program will foster inquiry into the “great questions” in an environment that considers secular and spiritual knowledge as mutually beneficial ways of learning, rather than rivals in a winner-take-all competition.

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Feeling stressed by your job? Don’t blame your employer, study shows

Author: Shannon Chapla


Work stress, job satisfaction and health problems due to high stress have more to do with genes than you might think, according to research by Timothy Judge, professor of management at the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business.

The lead author of “Genetic influences on core self-evaluations, job satisfaction, work stress, and employee health: A behavioral genetics mediated model,” published in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Judge studied nearly 600 twins – some identical, some fraternal – who were raised together and reared apart. He found that being raised in the same environment had very little effect on personality, stress and health. Shared genes turned out to be about four times as important as shared environment.

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New study contradicts official poverty numbers


A shopping cart filled with fruit

Despite official government statistics showing a rise in the number of poor in this country, poverty actually has fallen by 12.5 percentage points in the past 40 years, according to a new study by University of Notre Dame economist James X. Sullivan, whose research examines the consumption, saving and borrowing behavior of poor households in the U.S., and how welfare and tax policy affect the well-being of the poor. The paper was presented Sept. 13 at the Brookings Institution’s fall 2012 conference on the Brookings Papers on Economic Activity.

In “Dimensions of Progress: Poverty from the Great Society to the Great Recession,” Sullivan and co-author Bruce Meyer of the University of Chicago show that, unlike the findings of previous studies, poverty has improved over time, with considerable progress having been made at reducing severe deprivation.

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Notre Dame to join Atlantic Coast Conference; football stays independent but brings 5 games annually to ACC

Author: Dennis Brown

Atlantic Coast Conference

The University of Notre Dame accepted an invitation today (Sept. 12) to become a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) in all sports except football.

Most Notre Dame athletics programs have been members of the Big East Conference since 1995 after previously competing in the Midwestern Collegiate Conference, North Star Conference and as independents. Jack Swarbrick, vice president and director of athletics at Notre Dame, said the University will work with the Big East and ACC on a timetable to transfer athletic membership.

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DeBartolo Performing Arts Center to host world premiere of Augusta Read Thomas’ ‘Resounding Earth’

Author: Leigh Hayden

American composer Augusta Read Thomas Augusta Read Thomas

The University of Notre Dame’s DeBartolo Performing Arts Center will host the world premiere of “Resounding Earth” by renowned composer Augusta Read Thomas at 2 p.m. Sept. 30 (Sunday) at Leighton Concert Hall, to be performed by the Chicago-based ensemble Third Coast Percussion. Tickets for the concert are $20, $18 for seniors and $15 for students.

Commissioned by the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center and the Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts, with additional funding from Chamber Music America Classical Commissioning Program and Endowment Fund and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, “Resounding Earth” is a 28-minute work for a percussion quartet featuring more than 125 bells from a wide variety of cultures and historical periods. Thomas and the Third Coast Percussion will be in residence at Notre Dame for the week prior to the premiere concert, providing youth education outreach in local schools.

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Building peace in Colombia

Author: Michael O. Garvey

The crucifix in Moreau Seminary chapel

The recently revived peace talks between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) are scheduled to begin Oct. 8 in Oslo, Norway.

Whatever progress the government and FARC, the country’s largest guerrilla group, will be able to make in bringing to an end the war that has afflicted Colombia for half a century, the Catholic Church of that country is likely to play a crucial peacebuilding role.

On Aug. 20, a week before Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos announced the new negotiations, the University of Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and the Catholic Peacebuilding Network (CPN), Catholic Relief Services and the Colombian bishops’ Secretariado Nacional de Pastoral Social/Caritas Colombiana (SNPS) co-sponsored a meeting of 17 Catholic bishops from Colombia to discuss peacebuilding strategies and to hear from specialists in the field.

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