News » Archives » November 2014

In memoriam: Notre Dame Law professor Robert E. Rodes, Jr.

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Robert E. Rodes Jr.

Robert E. Rodes Jr., Paul J. Schierl/Fort Howard Corporation Professor of Legal Ethics emeritus, died Tuesday (Nov.25). He was 87.

A New York City native, Rodes studied at Middlebury College and was graduated from Brown University in 1947 before serving in the U.S. Navy for two years. He earned a law degree from Harvard Law School in 1952 and was admitted to the Massachusetts Bar the following year. He worked in the legal department of Liberty Mutual Insurance Company from 1952 to 1954, before joining the law faculty at Rutgers University for two years during which he spent his summers serving as clerk in the New Jersey Superior Court. In 1956, he joined the Notre Dame faculty, where he has remained ever since, teaching and writing in the areas of administrative law, civil procedure, ethics, jurisprudence, law and theology, legal history and welfare legislation.

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Notre Dame biologist Nora Besansky leads international consortium in sequencing the genomes of malaria-carrying mosquitoes

Author: William G. Gilroy

besansky_mosquitoes_timelapse_200

Nora Besansky, O’Hara Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Notre Dame and a member of the University’s Eck Institute for Global Health, has led an international team of scientists in sequencing the genomes of 16 Anopheles mosquito species from around the world.

Anopheles mosquitoes are responsible for transmitting human malaria parasites that cause an estimated 200 million cases and more than 600 thousand deaths each year. However, of the almost 500 different Anopheles species, only a few dozen can carry the parasite and only a handful of species are responsible for the vast majority of transmissions. Besansky and her fellow researchers investigated the genetic differences between the deadly parasite-transmitting species and their harmless (but still annoying) cousins.

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Rev. David Tyson named as new director of nonprofit programs

Author: Carol Elliott

Dave Tyson

The Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame has named Rev. David Tyson, C.S.C., as the new Luke McGuinness Director of Nonprofit Professional Development, starting July 1, 2015. Tyson takes over the position from Thomas Harvey, who is retiring after a decade leading the department.

Nonprofit Professional Development comprises two arms of nonprofit education – the non-degree Nonprofit Executive Programs (NEP) and the Master of Nonprofit Administration (MNA) degree. The program is one of the few in the nation that offers nonprofit leadership development within a business school setting.

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Robert Jay Malone named AAAS fellow

Author: William G. Gilroy

Jay Malone

Robert Jay Malone, executive director of the History of Science Society and a fellow of the University of Notre Dame’s John J. Reilly Center, has been named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in honor of his efforts toward advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished.

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Notre Dame Robotics featured in new James Patterson book ‘House of Robots’

Author: William G. Gilroy

House of Robots

Prolific bestselling author James Patterson releases a new children’s book today (Nov. 24) and it has a distinct University of Notre Dame feel.

House of Robots, co-written by Patterson and Chris Grabenstein, takes place in South Bend and features illustrations from the University’s annual National Robotics Week event and robotic football tournament. It tells the story of a boy whose college professor mother invents robots, and what happens when one of those robots decides to enroll in school with his flesh-and-blood “brother.”

While robot siblings may be fictional, cutting edge research at Notre Dame is bringing us closer to the day that robots can serve as teammates and helpers in complex human environments. In combination with the University’s robotics outreach programs, this makes Notre Dame an apt setting for a book that aims to get students interested in robotics and STEM.

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Alex Coccia named Rhodes Scholar

Author: Sue Lister

Student Body President Alex Coccia

Alex Coccia, a 2014 University of Notre Dame graduate, has been selected to the American Rhodes Scholar Class of 2015.

A Columbus, Ohio native, Coccia was selected from a pool of 877 candidates who had been nominated by their colleges and universities. He is Notre Dame’s 15th Rhodes Scholar and first since 2002. This year’s 32 Rhodes Scholars will commence their studies at Oxford in October 2015.

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NDFD, nation’s oldest university fire department, turns 135

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Notre Dame Fire Department poses in front of the Administration Building in 1899 (Credit: Notre Dame Archives - not for reuse)

On March 20, 1879, Notre Dame’s founder, Rev. Edward Sorin, C.S.C., was feeling fretful, and he unburdened himself of a persistent worry in a memo to Rev. William Corby, C.S.C., then the University’s president.

“I am glad to find you, as I am myself, terribly afraid of fire,” Father Sorin wrote. Recalling such conflagrations as the fire which had come close to annihilating nearby Chicago a few years earlier, he added thankfully that at Notre Dame “Providence has given us all the securities that can be wished for, but there is no guarantee against carelessness as an Institution. A public habitual dread is our only safety.”

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Political scientist Victoria Hui to testify before Congressional Executive Commission on China

Author: William G. Gilroy

Victoria Hui

Victoria Hui, an associate professor of political science and faculty fellow of the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies at the University of Notre Dame, will testify Thursday (Nov. 20) before a Congressional Executive Commission on China hearing titled “The Future of Democracy in Hong Kong.”

The hearing will examine China’s commitments to Hong Kong and the international community in light of recent pro-democracy protests. It will assess whether an increasingly polarized Hong Kong will be able to find a mutually acceptable plan for electoral reform and how the protests taking will place will continue to shape that debate. It also will focus on what the protests mean for the future of human rights and democracy in Hong Kong and China.

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Michelle Whaley is 2014 Indiana Professor of the Year

Author: William G. Gilroy

Michelle A. Whaley

Michelle A. Whaley, a teaching professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Notre Dame, has been named the 2014 Indiana Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE). She will be announced as the award winner at a luncheon Thursday (Nov. 20) at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

“Michelle is extraordinarily dedicated, innovative, impactful and successful, and clearly among the very best teachers in the College of Science and the University of Notre Dame,” Gary A. Lamberti, professor and former chair of the Department of Biological Sciences who nominated Whaley for the award, said. “She is the undisputed leader of undergraduate initiatives in our department, especially those surrounding undergraduate research. Simply put, she is the heart and soul of undergraduate scholarship in biology.”

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Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., welcomes Archbishop Cupich

Author: Paul J. Browne

Blue and gold academic seal

University of Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C. said Tuesday (Nov. 18), “On behalf of the University of Notre Dame, I extend congratulations and best wishes for success to the Most Rev. Blase J. Cupich as the ninth Archbishop of Chicago. He brings to one of the hemisphere’s most important dioceses a caring pastoral approach with rigorous theological thought and visionary leadership in line with Francis’ transformative papacy."

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Jimmy Gurulé testifies before U.S. House committee on sources of Islamic State funding

Author: William G. Gilroy

Jimmy Gurulé

University of Notre Dame law professor Jimmy Gurulé, a terrorist financing expert, testified before the U.S. House Financial Services Committee Thursday (Nov. 13) on the principal sources of Islamic State funding. Gurulé, who also is a former assistant U.S. attorney general and former undersecretary for enforcement for the U.S. Treasury Department, also offered recommendations for enhancing the response by the U.S. Treasury Department and the Department of Justice to the Islamic State threat.

Gurulé told the committee that Islamic State, commonly known as ISIS, has up to $1 billion in its reserve and is “the wealthiest terror organization that the world has ever known.”

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New paper explains methods that may lead to new insights about dark matter

Author: Stephanie Healey

Illustration of dark matter falling into a neutron star, forming a black hole and radiating out (Courtesy of NASA)

A new paper, co-authored by University of Notre Dame astrophysicist Joseph Bramante, discusses how detecting imploding pulsars may lead to insights about the properties of dark matter. The paper, “Detecting Dark Matter with Imploding Pulsars in the Galactic Center,” was recently published in Physical Review Letters, the flagship journal for the American Physical Society.

Pulsars, or pulsating stars, are rotating neutron stars that emit pulses of light visible to astronomers on Earth. Pulsars are created from the collapsing cores of supermassive stars that have exploded into supernovae. These supermassive stars, 10 to 40 times the mass of the sun, have been found at the center of the galaxy, leading astronomers to predict a certain number of pulsars should also reside there, but that predicted number of pulsars has not yet been observed.

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Notre Dame physicist among 2015 Breakthrough Prize winners

Author: Marissa Gebhard

Peter Garnavich

University of Notre Dame physics professor Peter M. Garnavich shared in the $3 million Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics announced Sunday. Garnavich was a member of the High-Z Supernova Search Team, led by Brian Schmidt of the Australian National University. The award was also shared with the Supernova Cosmology Project, led by Saul Perlmutter of the University of California, Berkeley. The teams were honored for their 1998 discovery that the expansion of the universe is accelerating and that dark energy dominates the contents of the universe. Schmidt, Perlmutter and Adam Riess of Johns Hopkins University received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2011.

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A hymn to wake the world

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Steve Warner Steve Warner

Preaching in the fourth century, St. Augustine is supposed to have said that a person who sings prays twice. Scholars have quibbled about the attribution over the centuries since, but whether or not the words are truly Augustine’s, Christians at worship have always taken them as true.

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Notre Dame network physicists create model to predict traffic patterns

Author: Gene Stowe

Zoltán Toroczkai

Researchers at the University of Notre Dame have designed a simple, yet highly accurate traffic prediction model for roadway transportation networks. They have recently published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

“Transportation networks and in particular the highway transportation network are like the body’s circulatory system for the nation,” says Zoltán Toroczkai, professor of physics at the University of Notre Dame, who co-authored the study with physics graduate student Yihui Ren and national and international collaborators.

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Financial experts may not always be so expert, Notre Dame study reveals

Author: William G. Gilroy

Andriy Bodnaruk

When in doubt, an expert always knows better. Except in the case of mutual fund managers. There may be some room for doubt in their case, according to a study by Andriy Bodnaruk, an assistant finance professor at the University of Notre Dame, and colleague Andrei Simonov from Michigan State University.

Bodnaruk and Simonov studied 84 mutual fund managers in Sweden to determine how well they manage their own finances.

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2014 ND-GAIN results show that Norway is most prepared for climate change

Author: William G. Gilroy

Lofoten, Norway

Norway is the best prepared country for climate change, and has been so for almost 20 years, according to data released Wednesday (Nov. 5) by the University of Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index (ND-GAIN).

ND-GAIN is the world’s leading annual index that ranks more than 175 countries based on their vulnerability to climate change and their readiness to adapt to the droughts, superstorms and natural disasters that climate change can cause.

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Campus Crossroads: A state-of-the-art facility for music

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Campus Crossroads rehearsal hall

Among the most noticeable features of the Campus Crossroads Project’s design to enhance and harmonize the University of Notre Dame’s academic, athletic and student life programs will be the South Building, a six-level structure connected to the south side of Notre Dame Stadium, on which work will begin in November 2015.

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