Director for Game Day Operations Mike Seamon said Notre Dame game weekends are following an upward trend. With the unusually warm weather, enthusiasm of fans and a 59-33 victory against Air Force, Seamon said the past weekend had all the ingredients to be “first class.” “We couldn’t ask for better weather, there was just a great sense of enthusiasm and energy in the fans, you could just see it,” said Seamon, also the associate vice president of Campus Safety. Seamon said the Air Force weekend was even more successful than the Michigan State weekend. “The Michigan State weekend was a really good weekend … But the Air Force weekend, from top to bottom, was heads and shoulders above that,” he said. The temperature Saturday was about 10-15 degrees higher than the average for the beginning of October, Seamon said, making the game day uncommonly warm for this time of year. “The weather we had this weekend was more typical for an early September game than early October,” he said. Seamon said the high levels of energy on campus were apparent as early as Friday’s pep rally. “It was a really good positive pep rally,” he said. “People were loving the weather.” Saturday’s game was sold out, with more than 82,000 people in attendance, Seamon said. Police made 10 arrests Saturday, director of Notre Dame Security Police Phil Johnson said. Seven arrests were made outside the stadium: two for public intoxication, one for battery on a police officer and public intoxication, one for battery, one for battery and public intoxication, one for theft and possession of marijuana and one on an outstanding warrant. Johnson said at the stadium, three more people were arrested for public intoxication Seamon said 4,200 people visited the tunnel Friday, which was more than 1,000 more than the Michigan State weekend, and 1,300 attended Friday’s football luncheon. “That told us on Friday to start expecting some good things,” he said. He said the flyover before the game and the recognition of the marching band at halftime contributed to the energetic atmosphere. “People loved the B-2 Bomber flyover, that was kind of very special for us,” he said. “We’ve gotten a lot of good feedback on that.” Seamon said game weekends have been following a “really good trend,” which he expects will continue for the remaining home games. “Overall I would have to say the energy and the enthusiasm was unbelievable for the weekend, [and a] great springboard into the upcoming USC weekend,” he said.
Student Senate discussed the option of an environmentally-friendly commencement gown and a potential human rights event series at its meeting Wednesday night. Interim University Registrar Chuck Hurley said Balfour, the University’s commencement gown vendor, now offers an environmentally-friendly gown made of 23 plastic bottles. Students could purchase the new gowns for $45, which is approximately the same price as renting the current gowns for two days, Hurley said. The new gowns would not be available for rent. “You can take [the new gowns] home with you to take pictures,” Hurley said. “If you want, after the ceremony, we’d have recycling bins that you can put them in. You also can put them in a recycling bin back home, and it would go right through and become plastic.” The Notre Dame emblem could be added to the black gowns, but Hurley said he does not recommend this option. “It’s an additional $6 charge if you add a crest to it,” he said. “I would like to not add the crest just because of that extra price.” Hurley said seven of the eight Ivy League schools currently use these “green” gowns. “It’s what most institutions have switched to or are switching to right now,” Hurley said. For every gown sold, Hurley said Balfour would donate 25 cents to a University sustainability initiative. This would amount to approximately $600 to $700 per year. “If this is something you’re interested in, then I would take it forward with the University [Office of] Business Operations,” Hurley said. Student body president Pat McCormick said collaboration between the Athletic Department and the student body is an ongoing conversation. “We might be exploring some combination of an advisory council to the Athletic Department and also striving to solidify relationships with student government in the halls so athletics can know how to engage [with students] more actively,” he said. McCormick said student government is also engaged in an ongoing effort to host a human rights series at Notre Dame this spring. The event would have a Saint Patrick’s Day theme. “Our proposal would involve an internationally recognized event consultant who has done events of this type before, and our hope is that the University would find this proposal worth pursuing,” McCormick said. “This is part of the effort that we’re trying to advance this year in terms of this argument that students can serve as partners in the project of advancing the Notre Dame mission and that student government can work simultaneously on both issues of convenience and issues of consequence.”
Ten of Notre Dame’s most exciting and engaging professors shared the impact of their work in the first “ND Thinks Big” event Thursday evening in the Mendoza College of Business. The event was co-sponsored by the Center for Undergraduate Scholarly Engagement (CUSE) and The Hub, a student-run website which promotes academic engagement online about issues in the Notre Dame community. Paul Barany, co-chair of “ND Thinks Big,” said students chose the nine professors and one administrator who spoke at the discussion. Mike Collins, the distinct voice of Notre Dame Stadium, served as host and moderator for the event as well. “The editors of The Hub got together and picked the different speakers to invite,” Baranay said. “We knew we wanted someone from each of the five colleges and one from the administration; we knew we wanted older and younger people who are experienced and people who are up-and-coming.” Lou Nanni, Vice President of University Relations, opened the presentation with a speech titled “To Dream Big, Remember Where You Came From.” The talk reflected on the history of the founding of Notre Dame. Jessica Hellmann, professor of the biological sciences, said the need to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere was imperative in combating climate change. She also said students should each reevaluate their view of nature and their interactions with it. Economics professor Michael Mogavero addressed the 10 major mistakes universities make in implementing strategic plans. The most important mistake to fix was the failure to build a campus community with fundamental trust between faculty, students and staff, he said. Corey Angst, assistant professor in the Department of Management in the Mendoza College of Business, said the pilot program for Apple iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tab use in classes was highly successful. The program was introduced to certain Notre Dame courses in the fall of 2011. Angst said his entire class was completely paperless and promoted environmental-friendly education. All books, tests and homework were completed electronically, he said. Aaron Striegel, associate professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, discussed the benefits of video games in rehabilitation. The ability to measure rehabilitative progress in patients is often limited by the high cost of effective medical instruments, he said. As a solution, medical trainers can monitor the recovery of their patients by having them play gaming systems such as the Wii and the “Cloud” virtual computing system. Peter Garnavich, professor of physics, delivered his speech, “The Revolution Continues,” which traced the history of human understanding of Earth’s location in the universe through the discoveries of Copernicus and Edwin Hubble. “Earth is located in the suburbs,” Garnavich said. “We are the South Bend to the Chicago in the galactic universe.” The event was recorded and will be made available online at The Hub website.
String theory, a so-called “theory of everything” in physics, is a popular topic among more than just scientists. Juan Maldacena, professor of theoretical and astrophysics at the Institute for Advanced Study and one of the foremost researchers in the field of string theory, delivered a lecture Wednesday on the subject of chromodynamics, string theory and black holes. Maldacena is most well-known for his 1997 paper on the large N limit of superconformal field theories and supergravity, which is the most-cited high energy physics paper of all time. Maldacena began his talk by discussing the close relationship between quantum chromodynamics, a type of quantum field theory, and gravity theories, namely quantum gravity. “The equality between these two things would be that the quantum field theory living on some space is equal to the quantum gravity living in the interior of that space,” Maldacena said. “The idea is that the physics in the interior can be described by the physics that happens on the boundary.” In particular, Maldacena discussed supersymmetric versions of this theory using the maximum number of supersymmetries, although these versions are difficult to experimentally confirm. One of the reasons for the maximum supersymmetry assumption in the theory is that is greatly simplifies the case and makes complicated physics a more tractable problem, Maldacena said. “There’s this joke about a farmer who had a cow, and he needed to increase milk production,” Maldacena said. “So he hires a veterinarian and a physicist to help him and the veterinarian tells him, ‘Well you should feed the cows better, exercise, blah, blah, blah.’ And then the physicist says, ‘Well, let’s first assume that we have a spherical cow.’ So this theory can be called a hyperbolic cow.” In order to work out these theories, Maldacena used anti-de Sitter’s space, which comes from the de Sitter space used to describe cosmological expansion. “In some sense, anti-de Sitter space is like a gravitational box that does not allow massive particles to reach the boundaries,” Maldacena said. “So if you sit in the middle of anti-de Sitter space and you throw a rock, after awhile the rock will come back to you. If you shoot a gun, then that’s not a very good idea.” Using this approach, a natural duality arises between quantum field and gravity theories, which allows researchers to investigate fundamental questions in physics, he said. “Duality in this relationship means, ‘Take some parameter, and when the parameter takes some set of values, say small ones, then one description is easy,’” Maldacena said. “‘Then if it takes another set of values, let’s large ones, then the other description is simple.’” When looking at systems of weakly-interacting gluons, essentially free ones, the string theory is the simplest description. When there are strongly-interacting gluons, the problem is still well-defined but difficult to analyze with string theory, in which case gravitational descriptions are better because the radius in the space is much larger. This leads to a good approximation of more complicated string theory by relatively simple gravity ones, Maldacena said. “The good thing that gravity does for us is it allows us to solve the quantum field theory in a simple way,” Maldacena said. “However, there are things that we can learn about gravity from the field theory. A particularly interesting thing is that it’s useful for understanding quantum aspects of a black hole.” Black holes are gravitational collapses, where nothing can escape once the event horizon, a sort of boundary of the black hole, is passed, Maldacena said. But according to quantum dynamics, they can emit radiation, where the temperature at which the radiation is emitted is inversely proportional to the size of the black hole. “This effect implies that the smaller you make the black hole, the hotter the temperature is,” he said. “You can have the paradoxical equation of a black hole that can be white. So you have white black holes.” In physics the notion is that whenever there’s a temperature, something is moving, Maldacena said, and one of the hot questions in the field is to describe what goes on in the interior of a black hole. Maldacena said these complex descriptions of black holes can also be applied in a more generalized way to hydrodynamics, underscoring the fundamental nature of his research and the discipline of physics as a whole. “As physicists, one of the laws of physics is that you take a problem and investigate by making it simpler,” Maldacena said.
The Institute for Church Life (ICL) at the University of Notre Dame has launched Camino, an online faith formation program for Latino Catholics.Camino Program Director Esther Terry has developed Camino from its early stages, she said.“The program has been in the works for a long time and the pilot phase started in 2012,” Terry said. “The pilot phase started with just one course that was adapted from a course that we have in English.”According to its website, Camino is an online program of Catholic theology courses designed by University professors and leaders in Latino ministry. A facilitator, who must have a master’s degree in theology, instructs the course, which can last anywhere from four to seven weeks.Camino stems from Notre Dame’s Satellite Theological Education Program (STEP), a program developed in the early 1990s that aimed to provide high quality theology courses at affordable prices.“For a long time people had been taking these courses in English, and they had been receiving requests for courses in Spanish,” Terry said.On Camino’s website, Notre Dame professor of theology Fr. Virgil Alizondo said Camino is “a great way to use media and technology to give learning opportunities beyond the University.”The STEP program worked in collaboration with the SouthEast Pastoral Institute in Miami (SEPI) to develop Camino. Various dioceses are also involved with advertising the program to potential participants.“The people that take our courses are typically catechists, readers [and] serve in the music ministry,” Terry said. “[They] usually have some position in their parish and they want to have ongoing faith formation.”Terry said the program prides itself in the flexibility and accessibility of its courses. She said many of Camino’s participants live in rural areas or other places where learning resources in their native language are limited.“I think the flexibility of hours for taking an online course and the quality of what we are able to deliver in places where it would be very difficult for them to have this formation experience makes [this program] very important,” Terry said.Terry said she enjoys contributing to Camino.“It’s been so exciting to see people engage Scripture and engage the Catechism and see the sense of wonder and excitement that they have and how dignified they feel to be taking an online course with Notre Dame,” Terry said.Terry said her hope for Camino and other theological programs like it is that the intellectual resources at Notre Dame and other partners and affiliates are made available to an even more diverse group of people.“We want to share those resources with people in the pews, your average Catholics, and help them to see the beauty and the joy of our Catholic faith so that they can share that with others,” Terry said.Tags: Camino, Hispanic Catholics, ICL, Institute for Church Life, SEPI, SouthEast Pastoral Institute in Miami, STEP
Senior education majors at Saint Mary’s are beginning their transition into student teaching this week. The students will begin teaching at local elementary and secondary schools and will work on their portfolios, lesson plans and testing.Maeve Sullivan is an elementary education major with a minor in mild intervention which, she said, consists of “helping students who have mild cognitive or physical disabilities.” “Education is becoming more inclusive to those who are cognitively and physically disabled, and mild intervention is why I got into education,” she said. “Indiana has mild, moderate and severe categories of [educational] intervention.”Samantha Allen said she has always wanted to be a teacher and is glad to be teaching kindergarten this semester. “I really enjoy having students learn how to tie their shoes,” she said. “It’s such a small thing that people don’t realize they learned at one point, and the students feel so overwhelmed at the beginning — to the point of tears — and it’s so sad but a little bit funny. I teach them the steps, and then we go over the steps each time — shoes come untied every five minutes, so there’s always a learning opportunity. It’s truly the joy of my day. They know I’m the teacher who will call them out on their shoe-tying.”Allen said most students began teaching Tuesday. “I have eight full weeks in a general classroom and then seven weeks in an English-as-a-second-language classroom,” she said. Although she initially came to Saint Mary’s to be a nursing major, Sullivan said she easily made the switch to education, as the two have similar philosophies. “Nursing and education really bring in people who serve others and want to make a difference in the lives of others,” she said. “I’m Catholic, so serving others has been a huge driving force for me.”Sullivan said their semester began with a seminar discussing the transition, including the necessary exams and portfolios. “We had an introduction into our portfolios, which are where we compile student work and lesson plans from different content areas,” she said. “They’re a huge part of the student teaching process.”Education majors have regular assessments that consist of testing and teaching lessons to the students, Allen said. “We have to do an assessment cycle where we have to give a pretest and then teach a lesson and then give another test until we give them a final test,” she said. “That’s the minimum requirement.” Saint Mary’s has given Sullivan the opportunity to encounter real-life experiences as a teacher, she said. “Saint Mary’s has put me in so many different types of schools with different types of students and in different areas of South Bend,” she said. “They’ve really allowed us to come into contact with some of the things we’ll see as teachers so that we’ll have already learned how to respond to them.” Allen said the College expects the best from its education majors.“Saint Mary’s is very extensive about what they require of education majors in order to best prepare us,” she said. “In the moment, it seems very overwhelming, but they’re so supportive and encouraging. They want the best for you, and they expect the best from you.”Sullivan is worried her penchant for perfection will cause her to overestimate and exhaust herself, she said. “I’m a perfectionist, so a fear of mine is knowing you can only do so much on your end as a teacher,” she said. “One has to understand that there is human limitation — there’s only so much you can do as a teacher. You have to teach and they have to learn, and that child’s future is literally in your hands.”Allen’s goal is to create a productive and healthy classroom environment, she said. “I’m working on classroom management, which is learning how to best de-escalate any situation or how to be the one in charge but still have fun and have students enjoy learning,” she said. Allen said she hopes those who want to become teachers are passionate about teaching and are not just teaching as a backup plan. “I think people who feel a passion towards education and lifelong learning are people who would really benefit from going into education,” she said. “I hope that people teach from a place of love and not from a place of desperation.”Sullivan said her goal for the semester is to get to know her class personally and academically. “I’ve gotten all the tools from Saint Mary’s, so I’m excited to see what I can do and also surprise myself a little, too,” she said. Tags: education, learning, Saint Mary’s education major, student teaching
Robert Post resigned from his position as director of campus safety at Saint Mary’s on Tuesday, vice president of student affairs Karen Johnson announced in a Wednesday email.Post was named the director of campus safety Feb. 18 following the retirement of former director Dave Gariepy earlier that month.Campus Safety will continue to be staffed around the clock and stands ready to assist those on campus, Johnson said in the email.“Campus and student safety is always our first priority,” she said. “We have begun the search process for a replacement and in the meantime, everything is in place for the department to operate as normal.”Tags: director of campus safety, robert post, Saint Mary’s Campus Safety, Saint Mary’s College
Federal funds received by the University for coronavirus relief will be used to aid students whose families are struggling by the loss of a job or another hardship as a result of the pandemic, Notre Dame announced in a press release Wednesday.“Almost one-half (48 percent) of Notre Dame students receive financial assistance in the form of need-based scholarships that do not require repayment,” the press release said. “The median amount per student is $38,000, about three-quarters the cost of tuition to Notre Dame.”One-third of University’s endowment goes toward student financial aid and the savings generated by Notre Dame’s early retirement package also went to student financial aid.Tags: COVID-19, Endowment, financial aid, pandemic
Photo: PexelsJAMESTOWN – Business leaders in Jamestown are clarifying new rules for essential employees who interact with the public during the COVID-19 pandemic.The Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce says a new executive order by New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo now requires all employees who interact with customers or the public must be provided with face coverings.The Executive Order reads, in part: “any employees who are present in the workplace shall be provided and shall wear face coverings when in direct contact with customers or members of the public. Businesses must provide, at their expense, such face coverings for their employees.”This mandate applies to all employees working in public areas of licensed businesses including liquor stores, pharmacies, and grocery stores, in addition to restaurants, bars, and manufacturers providing food and alcoholic beverages for delivery and takeout. Officials say the provision may be enforced by local governments or local law enforcement as if it were an order pursuant to section 12 or 12-b of the Public Health Law.Businesses licensed to sell alcohol who fail to follow this Executive Order, or any other Executive Order, will be subject to SLA discipline.The full order is available on the state’s website.On Wednesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced he is issuing a new executive order requiring face masks in public in the state of New York.Starting Friday, all New Yorkers will need to carry a face mask or covering while they’re out in public. You will need to wear it in any situation where you aren’t able to social distance. Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)
Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) WNY News Now File Image.JAMESTOWN – Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist announced Friday morning that starting next week city hall will be reopening on a limited basis.The Mayor says additionally parking enforcement will resume next Tuesday.Sundquist says that enforcement tickets will be issued for parking meter violations only. At this time, no violations will be issued by parking enforcement for expired registrations or inspections until the Department of Motor Vehicles reopens. City parking garages will also resume normal operations.All city offices will be open to the public by appointment only and will accept permits, applications and payments. The public is encouraged to continue to use the city payment drop boxes and other methods of payment. City parks continue to remain open, except for park restrooms and playgrounds, which will remain closed until further notice, the Mayor says.