Martin Sheen to speak at Senior Service Send-Off Ceremony



Some 160 Notre Dame graduating seniors who are embarking on a year or more of service in this country and abroad will be honored during the University’s annual Senior Service Send-Off ceremony at 1 p.m. May 17 (Saturday) in the DeBartolo Performing Arts Centers Leighton Concert Hall.

Notre Dame’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., will address the seniors and their families on the Universitys commitment to service in education and throughout the lifetimes of its graduates. Actor and activist Martin Sheen, who will receive Notre Dames highest honor, the Laetare Medal, during the May 18 Commencement ceremonies, also will speak.

Reflections on postgraduate service will be offered by Wendy Holthaus Schmiedeler, a 1994 Notre Dame alumna and graduate of the Alliance for Catholic Education.

At the ceremony each of the seniors will be recognized by name and service program, and each will receive a journal with favorite quotations and advice from various members of the Notre Dame community.

A blessing of the seniors will be led by Rev. William Lies, C.S.C., executive director of the Center for Social Concerns, and Liz Mackenzie, the center’s director of senior transition programs.

Music for the ceremony will include songs chosen by the seniors and led by the Notre Dame Folk Choir.

A reception will follow the ceremony outside the performing arts center.

Tickets are no longer available for the ceremony, but it will be broadcast live inRoom 141 of DeBartolo Hall and on Notre Dames Web site at .Among the service programs in which this year’s Notre Dame graduates will participate are Notre Dames Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE), which provides teachers for understaffed parochial schools in dioceses across the United States; Notre Dames Echo Faith Formation Leadership Program, which trains and provides religious educators for Catholic parishes; the Peace Corps, AmeriCorps and Teach For America.

Many of the graduates became involved in service and social action through the programs and courses of the Center for Social Concerns.They join a community of more than 3,500 Notre Dame alumni who have chosen postgraduate volunteer service since the Center for Social Concerns opened 25 years ago.

_ Contact: Liz Mackenzie at 574-631-5779 or_ " "

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