Notre Dame News https://news.nd.edu/ Notre Dame News gathers and disseminates information that enhances understanding of the University’s academic and research mission and its accomplishments as a Catholic institute of higher learning. en-us 2018-10-18T11:54:30+0000 Researcher to improve assessment testing for high school students https://news.nd.edu/news/researcher-to-improve-assessment-testing-for-high-school-students/ news_91598 2018-10-17T14:30:00-0400 Brandi Klingerman Ying Alison Cheng, associate professor of psychology and fellow of the Institute for Educational Initiatives at Notre Dame, will lead a project funded by the Institute of Education Sciences to develop the intelligent diagnostic assessment program for high school statistics education. 

Researcher to improve assessment testing for high school students

Brandi Klingerman

Ying Alison Cheng, associate professor of psychology and fellow of the Institute for Educational Initiatives at the University of Notre Dame, will lead a $1.4 million project funded by the Institute of Education Sciences to develop the intelligent diagnostic assessment program (i-DAP) for high school statistics education. 

With the four-year award, Cheng will work with Indiana high school students and teachers to develop and analyze data collected from the cloud-based program. The goal of the i-DAP is to provide real-time feedback for high schoolers in non-advanced placement (AP) statistics courses and improve student engagement and learning of statistics.

In discussing the tool, Cheng said, “The i-DAP will allow students to see their results immediately, including individual strengths and weaknesses. Additionally, the program will also show teachers how their class performed as a whole so they can apply the results to adjust their own pace or teaching strategy.”

To create the system, Cheng will work with Notre Dame’s Center for Social Research, a part of the Center for Research Computing, to develop elaborate back-end algorithms and use state-of-the-art data mining techniques to allow the tool to relay fine-grain feedback. One aspect of the program will connect students to learning module recommendations based on their test performance through deep-learning neural networks, similar to how streaming services recommend movies and television shows based on previously consumed content.

This project developed out of previous research funded by Cheng’s Faculty Early Career Development Program award from the National Science Foundation. With that support, Cheng created the AP Computerized Adaptive Testing program, a testing system aimed at assessing students taking AP statistics courses. 

However, Cheng and her team found that AP students are less likely to need the engagement piece of testing that will be important for the i-DAP system. Therefore, it is critical to understand whether and how providing real-time diagnostic feedback and instant recommendation can improve student engagement, and examine if improved student engagement translates into better learning outcomes. 

“With this new project, we will be able to assess the diversity of ability that the non-AP population provides as well as identify how more engaged students are, since the AP population is already considered a highly motivated group of students,” said Cheng. “Additionally, it’s important that our assessment looks at a variety of students since statistics is a field that is vital to today’s labor force for both STEM and non-STEM industries.” 

Collaborators for the i-DAP include Cheng Liu, data scientist at the CSR; Jarek Nabrzyski, director of the Center for Research Computing; and Jennifer Kaminski, assistant professor of mathematics and statistics at Wright State University. Matthew Kloser, director of the Center for STEM Education, serves as an advisory board member for this project. 

To learn more about Cheng and her research, visit https://psychology.nd.edu/faculty/ying-alison-cheng/

Contact: Brandi Klingerman, research communications specialist, Notre Dame Research, 574-631-8183, bklinger@nd.edu@UNDResearch

Originally published by Brandi Klingerman at research.nd.edu on Oct. 15.

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Heather Reynolds named inaugural managing director of Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities https://news.nd.edu/news/heather-reynolds-named-inaugural-managing-director-of-wilson-sheehan-lab-for-economic-opportunities/ news_91602 2018-10-17T13:00:00-0400 DJ DiDonna Heather Reynolds, a nonprofit leader with extensive expertise in poverty alleviation, will join the Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities (LEO) at Notre Dame as its inaugural managing director in January.

Heather Reynolds named inaugural managing director of Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities

DJ DiDonna

Heather Reynolds, a nonprofit leader with extensive expertise in poverty alleviation, will join the Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities (LEO) at the University of Notre Dame as its inaugural managing director in January.

 

Reynolds has served as president and CEO at Catholic Charities Fort Worth (CCFW) for the past 14 years. Under her leadership, Catholic Charities grew tenfold locally and catalyzed an unprecedented expansion of its programming across several states. CCFW currently serves more than 40,000 people each year at its four locations across 28 counties and has grown to become one of the largest Catholic Charities organizations in the country.

 

“Heather is a once-in-a-generation leader in the social service provider sector,” said Jim Sullivan, LEO co-founder, professor of economics and Gilbert F. Schaefer College Chair. “Her passionate dedication to serving the poor and vulnerable, combined with her commitment to evidence-based solutions to poverty, make her uniquely qualified to lead LEO’s efforts to reduce poverty and improve lives.”

 

Reynolds pioneered CCFW’s rigorous program evaluation approach, restructuring the organization to focus on testing program impact, adjusting resource allocations to programs that work and charging her staff to innovate in order to eradicate poverty. CCFW was one of LEO’s first key partners, working with LEO to measure the impact of its community college completion initiative, as well as partnering with LEO to embed rigorous evaluation into the design of a holistic case management program that aims to permanently move people out of poverty.

 

LEO changed the DNA of Catholic Charities Fort Worth,” Reynolds said. “We care more than ever about evidence; we invest our donors’ resources where they make the strongest impact; and, most importantly, we are better at how we help people experiencing poverty move from a place of despair to a place of potential. Having experienced LEO’s potential for impact directly at Catholic Charities Fort Worth, I am honored to join the team to help make LEO’s vision a reality.”

 

Reynolds acts as the national adviser to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Migration and serves on the Catholic Charities USA Executive Council of Diocesan Directors. In 2011, Reynolds was awarded the Benemerenti Medal from Pope Benedict XVI, which is the highest honor a layperson can receive in the Catholic Church. During her tenure at Catholic Charities Fort Worth, Reynolds has been honored as the Center for Nonprofit Management’s Nonprofit CEO of the Year, named 40 under 40 in Fort Worth, and testified on Capitol Hill about the need for a comprehensive approach to help people in poverty.

 

The Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities matches top researchers with social service providers to conduct impact evaluations that identify innovative, effective and scalable programs and policies that support self-sufficiency. LEO disseminates its key findings to policymakers and front-line providers in order to support evidence-based policy and programming decisions that effectively and jointly reduce poverty in the United States.

 

Reynolds will direct LEO’s pursuit of its newly launched five-year strategic plan, through which it seeks to influence poverty policy and support the culture of evaluation among service providers to the poor nationwide. Co-founders Bill Evans and Sullivan will remain actively involved in LEO, and Sullivan will continue to act as its director. Learn more at leo.nd.edu.

 

Reynolds holds a bachelor’s degree in social work from Texas Christian University, a master’s in social work from The University of Texas at Arlington, and an Executive MBA from Texas Christian University.

 

Contact: Colleen Sharkey, assistant director of media relations, 574-631-9958, csharke2@nd.edu

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New ND.edu launches https://news.nd.edu/news/new-nd-edu-launches/ news_91603 2018-10-17T13:00:00-0400 Andy Fuller The University of Notre Dame on Wednesday (Oct. 17) unveiled a new layout and design for its central website, www.nd.edu.

New ND.edu launches

Andy Fuller

The University of Notre Dame on Wednesday (Oct. 17) unveiled a new layout and design for its central website, www.nd.edu. It is the first redesign of the website in six years.

 

“Best practices in the web space have evolved dramatically in the past six years,” said Paul J. Browne, vice president for public affairs and communications. “The new site features a clean design built for an intuitive user experience. Aesthetics throughout the website will be fresh, with much of the content new or updated.” 

 

The new site showcases University priorities such as research, the undergraduate experience, faith and internationalization. New sections are dedicated to these themes and come to life through vibrant storytelling and gorgeous photography and videos. The rich and vibrant campus life at Notre Dame is also more visible. 

 

The launch marks the culmination of an 11-month project led by the University’s Office of Public Affairs and Communications, in collaboration with campus partners. The content, design and build of the site was completed entirely in-house with members of OPAC’s Web and Strategic Content teams.  

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Ansari Institute for Global Engagement with Religion announces inaugural events https://news.nd.edu/news/ansari-institute-for-global-engagement-with-religion-announces-inaugural-events/ news_91599 2018-10-17T10:55:00-0400 Chloe Mccotter The new Ansari Institute at the University of Notre Dame will officially launch with private and public events Oct. 25-26. 

Ansari Institute for Global Engagement with Religion announces inaugural events

Chloe Mccotter

The new Rafat and Zoreen Ansari Institute for Global Engagement with Religion at the University of Notre Dame will officially launch with private and public events this month.

 

On Oct. 25, religion historian Thomas Tweed, founding director of the Ansari Institute, will deliver the inaugural keynote address titled “Engaging Religion” at 5 p.m. in the Hesburgh Center for International Studies auditorium. The lecture is free and open to the public.

 

On Oct. 26, the Ansari Institute will host the Engaging Religion Conference from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Room 1030, Jenkins Nanovic Halls. Three panels of international experts will address current topics related to global religion: “Forced Migration: How Religion Causes and Eases Displacement,” “Religious Misrepresentation: How to Improve Representations in Education and the Media” and “Sustainable Habitats: How Religions Can Help Repair Unsustainable Environments.”

 

The conference is free and open to the public. Registration is required at ansari.nd.edu.

 

In addition to the public events, the Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, will lead a private multi-faith prayer service on Oct. 25 in Jenkins Nanovic Halls and bless the institute at its office suite on the fourth floor.

 

The Ansari Institute for Global Engagement with Religion, part of the Keough School of Global Affairs, is dedicated to the study of religion and global affairs and serves as a center of public deliberation and education through research, teaching, outreach and interaction with religious communities worldwide. Institute faculty and global partners will explore how diverse religious traditions can address a variety of contemporary problems, including migration and refugees, climate change and environmental degradation, poverty and economic disparity, and conflict and interreligious strife.
 

The institute was established through a gift from philanthropists Rafat and Zoreen Ansari, who are both physicians. It is the eighth institute housed within the Keough School of Global Affairs.

 

“For the majority of the world’s population, the practices and beliefs of a local religious community shape individual lives and social norms. Religions engage people where they live, affecting their sensibilities and attitudes toward migrants, the poor, politics, health, the family and more,” notes Scott Appleby, Marilyn Keough Dean of the Keough School of Global Affairs.

“The local variants of religious engagement are not well-understood, but they have cumulative influence over national and global trends. The Ansari Institute will shed clarifying light on these local practices and work with and alongside religious communities to amplify their contributions to the common good.”


Appleby is delighted that the Ansari Institute will strengthen the contributions of the Keough School in global affairs by helping Notre Dame students, professors and other stakeholders gain deep understanding about individual religions and, more importantly, the intersections of religions. “Not least,” he added, “we are excited that the local community has taken a special interest in this institute, and we look forward to building friendships and partnering with such communities around the world.”

 

In a 2017 New York Times interview, Zoreen Ansari gave this explanation for the family’s generous gift: “We came as immigrants, and this country has given us so much. We want to give something back to America, but also to humanity. We want to promote the idea of equality.”

 

Founded in 2014, the Donald R. Keough School of Global Affairs advances integral human development through research, policy and practice; transformative educational programs; and partnerships for global engagement.

 

For more information on the Ansari Institute, contact Thomas Tweed at ttweed@nd.edu.

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Mothers of Mexico’s missing accept 2018 Notre Dame Award https://news.nd.edu/news/mothers-of-mexicos-missing-accept-2018-notre-dame-award/ news_91591 2018-10-16T15:25:00-0400 Kathy Corcoran A grassroots group of mothers searching for their missing loved ones in Mexico’s Gulf state of Veracruz received the 2018 Notre Dame Award Tuesday for their tireless work on behalf of victims of drug violence and dedication to seeking truth.

Mothers of Mexico’s missing accept 2018 Notre Dame Award

Kathy Corcoran

A grassroots group of mothers searching for their missing loved ones in Mexico’s Gulf state of Veracruz received the 2018 Notre Dame Award Tuesday for their tireless work on behalf of victims of drug violence and dedication to seeking truth.

 

 The University’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., personally greeted more than 100 members of the Colectivo Solecito de Veracruz attending a breakfast in Mexico City in their honor as they filed to the stage and photographs of their missing loved ones flashed on overhead screens.

 

The group was recognized as emblematic of Mexican civil society’s demand for justice for the deaths and disappearances in the country’s 12-year-old war on organized crime. More than 30,000 people have gone missing in that time, according to government estimates. Authorities across the country have been slow or reluctant to investigate, causing citizen groups such as Colectivo Solecito to take up the work themselves.

 

 “They and other mothers from colectivos across Mexico have carried the burden of not knowing what happened to their missing loved ones. Or the burden of learning, only much later, that their loved ones were murdered,” Father Jenkins said. “The University of Notre Dame, named for the Blessed Mother, honors these women today with the Notre Dame Award, an international recognition conferred on only 10 persons previously, including Mother Teresa.”

 

In accepting the award, Lucia de Los Angeles Díaz Genao of the Colectivo told the story of the mothers sitting in government offices day after day, looking for help, for something to happen, only to see the cases languish and collect dust.

 

“We learned at once that it was much easier and less painful to fight than to stay passive and wait,” Díaz said. “Finally, we learned that the struggle is long, and that it is essential to keep fighting, putting our hearts into it, with the hope that one day we will come out of the darkness and our motto becomes reality. … The sun will shine again.”

 

On Monday, Father Jenkins concelebrated mass officiated by Veracruz Roman Catholic Bishop Luis Felipe Gallardo Martín del Campo in Veracruz at the site of one of the largest mass graves in Mexico.

 

Solecito Colectivo started as a group of eight mothers in 2014 who decided to dig in areas rumored to be mass graves in search of human remains. They raise their own money to pay for the searches and initially received no help or recognition from the state government or justice system in Veracruz.

 

Then in 2016, the group received a huge tip from an anonymous source: a map depicting the exact locations of more than 120 clandestine graves at Colinas de Santa Fe, the site of Monday’s Mass. The group’s search so far has led to the discovery of 295 bodies and some 22,000 fragments of human remains. They now have the help of state and federal authorities, but identification of those remains has been slow.

 

The award was presented before the start of a one-day conference on “The Challenges of Transitional Justice in Mexico” organized by Notre Dame in Mexico City. Convening a group of international practitioners, members from the incoming Mexican government, groups of victims and their families, international and Mexican scholars and members of Mexican civil society, the conference will explore how a process of truth, justice and reconciliation for the victims of the country’s drug war may be implemented.

 

The Notre Dame Award was first presented in 1992 and recently was revived to honor the “women and men whose life and deeds have shown exemplary dedication to the ideals for which the University stands: faith, inquiry, education, justice, public service, peace and care for the most vulnerable.”

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Notre Dame president blesses souls of the missing and departed at one of Mexico’s largest criminal mass grave sites https://news.nd.edu/news/notre-dame-president-blesses-souls-of-the-missing-and-departed-at-one-of-mexicos-largest-criminal-mass-grave-sites/ news_91563 2018-10-15T15:00:00-0400 Kathy Corcoran Father Jenkins concelebrated the Mass, officiated by His Excellency Bishop Luis Felipe Gallardo Martín del Campo of Veracruz, as part of the University’s honoring the Colectivo Solecito de Veracruz — the mothers who discovered the graves  — with the 2018 Notre Dame Award.

Notre Dame president blesses souls of the missing and departed at one of Mexico’s largest criminal mass grave sites

Kathy Corcoran

University of Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., commended a group of mothers of the missing Monday for their courage in the face of tragedy during Mass at the site of one of Mexico’s largest mass graves, where scores of victims of the country’s drug violence were found buried.

 

“The weapons and the violence of those who took your children are strong. But your courage and your love are even stronger,” Father Jenkins told the Colectivo in his homily. “Thank you for your courage. Thank you for your love. Thank you for demanding the truth. Thank you for insisting on justice.”   

 

Father Jenkins concelebrated the Mass, officiated by His Excellency Bishop Luis Felipe Gallardo Martín del Campo of Veracruz, as part of the University’s honoring the Colectivo Solecito de Veracruz — the mothers who discovered the graves  — with the 2018 Notre Dame Award. Workers scouring more than 100 acres of hillside and scrub land in the last two years in an area known as Colinas de Santa Fe have found 295 bodies and some 22,000 fragments of human remains, according to federal police and volunteers at the site.

 

Previous winners of the Notre Dame Award, which recognizes dedication to faith, peace, justice and care for the vulnerable, have included Mother Teresa and Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter. This is the first time the award has been given to a group or individual in Mexico.

 

Father Jenkins compared the mothers’ grief to that of the Virgin Mary, for whom Notre Dame is named, in the death of her son, Jesus Christ.

 

“Your great love did not end with the disappearance of that child.  You have come together to reveal the truth about your loved ones who were taken from you,” he said. “In this you are so much like Mary, our Lady, who endured such sorrows, but endured them with love and faith.”

 

More than 160 people attended the Mass, held in a dusty, sun-battered clearing of Colinas de Santa Fe dotted by small poles bearing numbers to mark the graves that have already been excavated. Many were overcome with emotion, and Father Jenkins greeted and hugged the mothers after the Mass.

 

When asked by a news reporter if forgiveness was possible for the people who committed these crimes, he responded, “Yes. But first we need transparency. We need to know what happened to all these young people. Let us know what happened to our children. Unless that happens, I don’t think the process of forgiveness can be complete.”

 

Cuitlahuac Garcia, governor-elect of Veracruz, attended the Mass and promised to work with the Colectivos and victims to pacify the state, which has seen a spike in violence and disappearances during Mexico’s 12-year drug war.  Former state officials, including ex-Gov. Javier Duarte, currently sit in jail accused of financials crimes, with some under investigation for forced disappearances.

 

“We will keep people informed. We won’t grandstand. We won’t be authoritarian, and the victims in these cases will always accompany us, always,” said Garcia, who takes office Dec. 1.

 

The Colectivo and workers they hire with their own money — raised through food sales, raffles and donations — started with no outside help. They now have the support of a university archaeologist and forensic experts from the federal police, who excavate and process evidence once members of the Colectivo have located a potential criminal burial site.

 

The group was formed in 2014 in the face of government inaction on cases of missing persons, some of the casualties of a 12-year government war with drug cartels.  Estimates include over 130,000 homicides related to criminal conflicts; more than 30,000 disappearances, some forced; and more than 320,000 displaced people to date.

 

The mothers decided to dig in areas rumored to be mass graves on their own. As a result of their labor, they received an anonymous tip in 2016 —  a map showing the location of graves in Colinas de Santa Fe, the undeveloped, secluded hillside behind a housing subdivision.

 

Father Jenkins will formally present the award to the Colectivo at breakfast in Mexico City on Tuesday. He led a Notre Dame delegation to Mexico that including Chief of Staff Ann Firth, the Rev. Gerard Olinger, Vice President for Mission Engagement and Church Affairs, Michael Pippenger, Vice President and Associate Provost for Internationalization, and Paul Browne, Vice President for Public Affairs and Communications.

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Garth Brooks concert information https://news.nd.edu/news/garth-brooks-concert-information/ news_91549 2018-10-15T08:00:00-0400 Sue Ryan Country music star Garth Brooks will perform a first-ever full, stand-alone concert at Notre Dame Stadium on Oct. 20 (Saturday).

Garth Brooks concert information

Sue Ryan

Country music star Garth Brooks will perform a first-ever full, stand-alone concert at Notre Dame Stadium on Oct. 20 (Saturday). The sold-out event is expected to bring tens of thousands of visitors to the University of Notre Dame campus and the South Bend region.

Those planning to visit campus should be aware of the following:

  • Parking — Various parking lots throughout campus will be used for concert parking. A map of parking lot locations is available here. Pre-purchase parking passes are sold out.
  • Rideshare — The designated drop-off locations for those coming via rideshare are the Rugby, Lake and Dorr Road parking lots. A drop-off zone will also be created in front of the Compton Family Ice Arena with access via Joyce Drive. Guests can also use the White Field North lot or the intersection of Ivy and Bulla roads and then take a shuttle bus to campus. Shuttle bus routes can be found at gameday.nd.edu.
  • Security measures — The University’s clear bag policy will be enforced for the concert. See the complete list of rules at und.com/clearbag. Magnetometers will also be in use for entry to the stadium. Guests are encouraged to arrive at the gates early to allow sufficient time for the screening process.
  • Tailgating — Tailgating is allowed from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on concert day. Tailgating ends promptly at 7 p.m., and no one will be allowed to tailgate during the concert.
  • Gates — Gates to Notre Dame Stadium open at 5 p.m.
  • Dining — Several University dining options will be open. A complete list is available here. The Morris Inn will also host a backyard barbecue on Saturday from 2 to 6 p.m. on the Wind Family Fireside Terrace.
  • Bookstore hours — The Hammes Notre Dame Bookstore is currently selling Garth Brooks at Notre Dame apparel. The bookstore and other campus shopping venues will be open in conjunction with the concert. See a full list here.
  • Williams Sonoma Presents Trisha Tailgate — Garth Brooks’ wife, Trisha Yearwood, country music artist and host of “Trisha’s Southern Kitchen” on the Food Network, will host a ticketed tailgating event on Irish Green before the show. More information is available here.
  • Mass — Vigil Mass will be held at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart on campus at 5 p.m.

For a list of all events on campus that weekend, visit the Garth Brooks event page at gameday.nd.edu.

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Notre Dame releases climate vulnerability assessment of more than 270 US cities https://news.nd.edu/news/notre-dame-releases-climate-vulnerability-assessment-of-more-than-270-us-cities/ news_91512 2018-10-14T08:00:00-0400 Jessica Sieff The Urban Adaptation Assessment is an open-source, free measurement and analysis tool that explores a city’s ability to adapt and readiness for adaptation to climate change.

Notre Dame releases climate vulnerability assessment of more than 270 US cities

Jessica Sieff

Researchers at the University of Notre Dame have completed a two-year assessment of the current climate risks of more than 270 U.S. cities.

The result is the Urban Adaptation Assessment (UAA), an open-source, free measurement and analysis tool that explores a city’s ability to adapt and readiness for adaptation to climate change.

Funded by The Kresge Foundation, the UAA provides the projected cost and probability of climate-related hazards, such as drought, flooding and sea level rise, in 2040. Just as critical, the tool includes sub-city mapping, allowing the exploration of potential inequities within each city and providing a picture of how city and sustainability officials can implement more inclusive adaptation options for all residents.

“We saw that current indicators and measurement tools evaluate vulnerability at the city level, but there is also a need for data-driven analysis that illustrates how cities can effectively prepare for a changing climate,” said Patrick Regan, director of Notre Dame’s Global Adaptation Initiative. “By including sub-city analysis, residents can explore conditions within a city through a social equity lens.”

Hurricanes on the East and Gulf coasts have brought record amounts of rainfall and flooding to communities in Texas, Louisiana and the Carolinas, spurring debate about how best to prepare for future storms. According to UAA data, eight of the top 10 cities facing the highest likelihood of extreme heat in 2040 are located in the Midwest.

The UAA was developed to support cities in their prioritization of adaptation efforts by identifying populations on the front lines of climate change that do not have resources to adequately adapt to their particular climate risks. Detailed visualization of the distribution of adaptive capacities and social vulnerabilities at the sub-city level can support strategies and improve adaptation across communities.

Researchers created an online platform to visualize data for every city in the United States and Puerto Rico with a population of at least 100,000. Features include:

  • A rich, open-source dataset covering more than 40 indicators for over 270 cities.
  • Risk and readiness scores for each city in the event of flooding, extreme heat, extreme cold, sea-level rise and drought.
  • Projected cost and probability of climate-related hazards in 2040.
  • Assessment of risks due to climate-related hazards.
  • Evaluations of readiness to implement adaptation measures.
     

“This is a platform to help inform policymakers grappling with questions about local-level adaptation strategies,” Regan said. “By providing quantitative analysis of cities in an open-source format, our goal is to encourage policy and adaptation innovation.”

The UAA can be used to determine how to focus investment on social or physical infrastructure within a city. Sub-city maps include census-tract data that highlight vulnerability of populations including single mothers, people with disabilities, elderly who live alone and those without access to a vehicle, among others.

“Our hope is this information will ignite necessary conversations and dialogue around climate change adaptation, and will bring city leaders and community organizers to the table to address an increasingly important issue,” said Lois DeBacker, managing director of The Kresge Foundation’s Environment Program, which funded the study. “There is currently a knowledge gap in understanding how risks and opportunities from climate change are distributed within a city, thereby making it difficult to adapt to risks faced by already vulnerable populations.”

The UAA website includes resources to help new users learn how to get the most out of the online tool and how to apply the data toward their work.

For more information, and to begin assessment of various cities in the U.S., visit www.gain.nd.edu/urban.

Contact: Jessica Sieff, assistant director of media relations, 574-631-3933, jsieff@nd.edu

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Student Safety Summit draws nearly 100 to talk to local police https://news.nd.edu/news/student-safety-summit-draws-nearly-100-to-talk-to-local-police/ news_91489 2018-10-11T14:00:00-0400 Erin Blasko The event featured Q&A with local law enforcement, including Notre Dame Security Police Chief Keri Kei Shibata, St. Joseph County Assistant Police Chief Bill Thompson, South Bend Division Chief Eric Crittendon and state excise officer Nicholas Canal.

Student Safety Summit draws nearly 100 to talk to local police

Erin Blasko

Nearly 100 University of Notre Dame students attended a Student Safety Summit at Notre Dame’s LaFortune Student Center on Tuesday (Oct. 9).

The event took the form of a Q&A with local law enforcement, including Notre Dame Security Police Chief Keri Kei Shibata, St. Joseph County Assistant Police Chief Bill Thompson, South Bend Division Chief Eric Crittendon and state excise officer Nicholas Canal.

NDSP, in partnership with Notre Dame Student Government, the Office of Community Relations, the South Bend Police Department, the St. Joseph County Police Department and Indiana State Excise Police, hosted the summit.

Students were able to submit questions ahead of time, ask them in-person or submit them anonymously via Poll Everywhere, an online application. Topics ranged from crime prevention and reporting, underage drinking and campus access to the use of metal detectors on campus, police-community relations and police accountability.

The hour-long event included food and giveaways.

Responding to a question about the University’s approach to safety on an open campus, Shibata noted that NDSP officers constantly patrol campus for suspicious activity, and encouraged students and other members of the campus community to “let us know when you see something” suspicious as well.

“The University of Notre Dame wants to be a very welcoming place,” Shibata said. “That comes with some risk in that we don’t always know everyone who is on campus.”

As far as metal detectors, Shibata noted that the University already rents metal detectors for special events like the recent Chainsmokers concert and the upcoming Garth Brooks concert, “and we’re looking at expanding that to other major athletic events or events where there will be a large number of people on campus.”

That’s in addition to the University’s clear bag policy for all reserve-ticketed events at Notre Dame Stadium, Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center and Compton Family Ice Arena, Shibata said, which went into effect in August as a way to enhance security and expedite entry for those venues.

Asked about bias in policing, an issue of increasing significance nationwide, Shibata noted that NDSP officers train to recognize bias and ensure fair and impartial policing, and also work to build relationships across campus “so you get to know us and we get to know you.”

South Bend, Mishawaka and county police undergo the same training, Thompson, the assistant county police chief, said.

“Basically, everyone has a bias,” Crittendon, the South Bend division chief, said. “We want to make sure those biases don’t get in the way of the way we police” and erode confidence in law enforcement.

“It’s about making sure people believe in us and believe in the work that we do,” Crittendon said.

Another question centered on the relatively small number of blue-light phones — strategically placed emergency phones that connect directly to law enforcement — on campus.

Essentially, cell phones have eliminated the need for such phones, Shibata said, so while the University continues to maintain its existing blue light phones, “we’ve been selective in where we put” new ones.

Generally, the phones can be found in parking lots, along the perimeter of campus and in remote areas where cell service is unreliable, Shibata said. Each residence hall also has a phone in the entryway.

As far as who to call in an emergency, Shibata recommended students dial NDSP directly when on campus, since 911 routes through the county dispatch center. She suggested students program the number (574-631-5555) into their phones for convenience.

“If you call 911 from your cell phone, it goes to the county consolidated dispatch center, which dispatches the county and city police,” Shibata said. “So they get that call and then transfer it to us.”

Capt. Robert Martinez, head of crime prevention, outreach and safety for NDSP, said the department is considering a second safety summit in the spring.

“It was evident that students are mindful of safety and security issues on campus,” Martinez said, adding, “Engaging with students in an event like this goes a long way towards them maintaining positive relationships with campus officials, local law enforcement and their neighbors.”

NDSP is a fully authorized police agency in Indiana that employs both sworn police officers and non-sworn campus safety officers. NDSP officers complete state mandated training and have the same legal authority as other police officers in the state.

For more information, visit ndsp.nd.edu.

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Father Jenkins to present Notre Dame Award in Mexico to Colectivo Solecito https://news.nd.edu/news/father-jenkins-to-present-notre-dame-award-in-mexico-to-colectivo-solecito/ news_91462 2018-10-11T13:00:00-0400 Kathy Corcoran A grassroots group of mothers searching for their missing loved ones in Mexico’s Gulf state of Veracruz will be honored Tuesday (Oct. 16) by the University for tireless work on behalf of victims of drug violence and for dedication to seeking truth.

Father Jenkins to present Notre Dame Award in Mexico to Colectivo Solecito

Kathy Corcoran

A grassroots group of mothers searching for their missing loved ones in Mexico’s Gulf state of Veracruz will be honored Tuesday (Oct. 16) by the University of Notre Dame for tireless work on behalf of victims of drug violence and for dedication to seeking truth.

The University’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., will present the Colectivo Solecito with the 2018 Notre Dame Award at a breakfast ceremony in Mexico City as a group emblematic of Mexican civil society’s demands that authorities, some in collusion with or coerced by criminal groups, act against violence and corruption.

On Monday, Father Jenkins is scheduled to visit the port city of Veracruz, where the Colectivo was founded, and to celebrate Mass at Colinas de Santa Fe, one of the largest sites of mass graves in Mexico. He will honor the families of the victims and bless the souls of the anonymous dead.

In selecting the Colectivo, Father Jenkins praised them for “heroic witness to human dignity and service to the noble cause of justice itself.” It is the first time the international award will be presented to a Mexican individual or group.

Previous recipients of the Notre Dame Award have included Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter; St. (Mother) Theresa of Calcutta; John Hume of Northern Ireland; Cardinal Vinko Puljić, Archbishop of Sarajevo; and most recently, Judge Sergio Moro of Brazil.

“The previous recipients, each in their own way, have been pillars of conscience and integrity,” Father Jenkins said. “Notre Dame recognizes that the Colectivo’s courageous work has drawn needed attention to victims’ disappearances, and has helped to relieve some of the suffering visited upon the families of the victims of such intolerable violence. The Colectivo has made a marked difference for all Mexicans and for humankind at large in our universal thirst for justice.”

Solecito Colectivo de Veracruz started as a group of eight mothers in 2014 who decided to dig in areas rumored to be mass graves in search of human remains. They raise their own money to pay for the searches and initially received no help or recognition from the state government or justice system in Veracruz.

Then in 2016, the group received a huge tip from an anonymous source: a map depicting the exact locations of more than 120 clandestine graves at Colinas de Santa Fe. The group’s search so far has led to nearly 300 bodies and thousands of fragments of remains. They now have the help of state and federal authorities, but identification of those remains has been slow. There are many such groups of families around the country searching for their loved ones in the face of an absent state.

“We recognize the Colectivo’s steadfast faith and tenacity,” Father Jenkins said. “It inspires our students to engage the world as forces for good when confronted with injustice and suffering.”

The award will be presented during a one-day conference on “The Challenges of Transitional Justice in Mexico” organized by Notre Dame in Mexico City. Convening a group of international practitioners, members from the incoming Mexican government, groups of victims and their families, international and Mexican scholars and members of Mexican civil society, the conference will explore how a process of truth, justice and reconciliation for the victims of the country’s 12-year drug war may be implemented.

Casualties include over 130,000 homicides related to criminal conflicts, more than 30,000 disappearances and more than 320,000 displaced people to date.

The Notre Dame Award was first presented in 1992 and recently was revived to honor the “women and men whose life and deeds have shown exemplary dedication to the ideals for which the University stands: faith, inquiry, education, justice, public service, peace and care for the most vulnerable.”

 

Madres de los desaparecidos recibirán el Premio Notre Dame 2018

La Universidad de Notre Dame reconocerá el martes a un grupo comunitario de madres que buscan a sus seres queridos desaparecidos en el estado de Veracruz, ubicado en las costas del Golfo de México, por su trabajo en favor de las víctimas de la violencia del narcotráfico y su dedicación a la búsqueda de la verdad.   

El Presidente de la Universidad, el Revdo. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., hará entrega del Notre Dame Award 2018 al Colectivo Solecito durante un desayuno ceremonia en la Ciudad de México como grupo representativo de la sociedad mexicana que al paso del tiempo demanda a las autoridades, algunas coludidas o coaccionadas por los grupos criminales, a actuar contra la violencia y la corrupción.   

El Padre Jenkins tiene programada el lunes una visita al Puerto de Veracruz, lugar donde se fundó el Colectivo, y oficiará una misa en las Colinas de Santa Fe, una de los sitios de fosas masivas más grande de México. Honrará a los familiares de las víctimas y bendecirá las almas de los muertos anónimos.

Al elegir al Colectivo, el Padre Jenkins reconoció su “testimonio heroico de la dignidad humana y el servicio a la noble causa de la justicia misma”. Es la primera vez que este premio internacional será entregado a un grupo o individuo mexicano.

Entre los ganadores anteriores del Notre Dame Award se encuentran Jimmy y Rosalynn Carter, la Santa (Madre) Teresa de Calcuta, John Hume de Irlanda del Norte, el Cardenal Vinko Pujlic, el Arzobispo de Sarajevo, y más recientemente, el Juez Sergio Moro de Brasil.

“Los ganadores anteriores del Notre Dame Award, cada uno a su manera, han sido pilares de conciencia e integridad”, dijo el Padre Jenkins. “La Universidad de Notre Dame reconoce que la valiente labor del Colectivo ha atraído la atención necesaria hacia los desaparecidos y ha contribuido a aliviar una parte del sufrimiento que aflige a los familiares de las víctimas de la violencia intolerable. El Colectivo ha marcado una gran diferencia en todos los mexicanos, y en la humanidad en general, ante la sed de justicia universal”.

El Colectivo Solecito de Veracruz inició en 2014 siendo un grupo de ocho madres de familia que decidieron excavar en áreas que se rumoraba eran fosas masivas en busca de restos humanos. Recaudaron sus propios fondos para pagar las búsquedas y al inicio no recibieron ayuda o reconocimiento alguno por parte del gobierno del estado o del sistema de justicia de Veracruz.  

Después, en 2016, el grupo recibió información importante de una fuente anónima: un mapa que especificaba la ubicación exacta de más de 120 fosas clandestinas en las Colinas de Santa Fe. Al día de hoy, la búsqueda de este grupo ha llevado a encontrar cerca de 300 cuerpos y miles de fragmentos de restos humanos. Actualmente cuentan con la ayuda de las autoridades estatales y federales, pero la identificación de los restos ha sido muy lenta. Existen muchos grupos y familias en todo el país buscando a sus seres queridos de cara a un Estado ausente.

“Reconocemos la inalterable fe y tenacidad del Colectivo”, dijo el Padre Jenkins. “Inspiran a nuestros alumnos a involucrarse como agentes de bien cuando se enfrentan a la injusticia y el sufrimiento”.

El premio se entregará durante una conferencia de un día sobre Los Retos de la Justicia Transicional en México organizada por Notre Dame en la Ciudad de México. Al convocar a un grupo de profesionales, miembros del gobierno entrante de México, grupos de víctimas y sus familias, académicos internacionales y mexicanos así como miembros de la sociedad civil mexicana, la conferencia explorará la forma en que podría implementarse un proceso de verdad, justicia y reconciliación para las víctimas de los 12 años de guerra contra el narcotráfico en el país.

Las pérdidas incluyen más de 130,000 homicidios relacionados con conflictos criminales, más de 30,000 desapariciones, algunas forzadas, y más de 320,000 personas desplazadas a la fecha.

El Notre Dame Award fue entregado por primera vez en 1992 y se reactivó recientemente para honrar a las “mujeres y hombres cuya vida y acciones han mostrado dedicación ejemplar a los ideales fundamentales de la Universidad: fe, indagación, educación, justicia, servicio público, paz y preocupación por los más vulnerables”.

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