Happenings This Year
From community service to lectures by prominent academics, authors and activists, there's always something going on at Notre Dame.
National-level Speakers Visit Notre Dame
Notre Dame welcomed two distinguished speakers to campus during the fall semester. Liz Murray, author of this year’s Campus Common Reading, Breaking Night: A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard, spoke on October 7.
Born to loving but drug-addicted parents, Murray found herself living on the streets at age 15 but managed to complete high school in two years and gain admittance to Harvard University. Murray told her compelling story with humor and inspiration, emphasizing the help she received from key people along the way, particularly from a high school teacher who believed in her refused to let her give up.
Michael Eric Dyson, Ph.D., of the sociology department at Georgetown University, was the keynote speaker at Community Day on October 16. Dr. Dyson, an ordained Baptist minister, challenged and inspired the audience of students, faculty, and staff as he spoke on this year’s theme of “Diversity and Inclusion: Social Justice and Social Responsibility.”
Afterward, students and faculty held workshops to further explore such issues as racial inequality, domestic violence, and environmental justice. Community Day is an annual campus-wide event honoring Notre Dame’s SSND heritage.
Blessing of the Hands
The Blessing of the Hands is an annual tradition in the School of Nursing when the School Sisters of Notre Dame anoint the hands of nursing students and faculty with oil to impart a blessing of healing. These are the kinds of traditions in the School of Nursing that mark our Notre Dame nurses as providers of professional and compassionate care.
Tree Planting to Honor Biology Professor Dr. Cynthia Wang
On Wednesday, May 28, a small group toted shovels, wheelbarrows, and water to the east side of campus to plant a tree in tribute to beloved colleague and professor Dr. Cynthia Wang, who is retiring. Despite the 90-degree heat and the large rocks they encountered as they dug, the group—which included biology department faculty members, biology and chemistry lab manager Pat Bell and lab assistant Katelyn Gay, School of Pharmacy assistant professor Dr. James Lee and Tri Beta vice president and rising senior Victoria Meadows—was cheerfully determined to provide the perfect home for this special young tree.
It was a touching experience, says Dr. Wang, who has been a full-time faculty member at Notre Dame for 31 years (and is also an alum). “As I communicated to all of the tree planters, I will always cherish the memories of these experiences at NDMU and of the camaraderie amongst the faculty and students. [Wednesday] was truly a special day for me.”
A red maple—Dr. Wang’s favorite—this tree will grow and flourish just a few feet away from the redbud tree planted in 2002 as a memorial to Dr. Wang’s mother. It is the 46th tree that has been added to campus since 2008, when the tree-planting project was launched in memory of Dr. Nancy Kreiter, an environmentally concerned biology faculty member who passed away unexpectedly in 2007. Every year around Earth Day, TriBeta and the Student Environmental Organization team up to plant more trees, and others like Dr. Wang’s are added on an ad-hoc basis—after consultation with facilities management and our landscape architect. The purchase of supplies and trees—which are all native species—is funded each year by the campus laser and inkjet cartridge recycling program, coordinated by Pat Bell.
Charles J. Busta III Lecture In Business: The Arts Transforming Communities
On the evening of Tuesday April 22nd, the campus community gathered to hear from four extraordinary women who are using art to transform communities in the Baltimore area. This annual lecture series is designed to showcase the thoughts and experiences of leaders in business, especially those of women. This year the speakers were three women running Baltimore's popular art museums, Doreen Bolger-BMA, Rebecca Hoffberger-American Visionary Art Museum, Julia Marciari-Alexander-Walters Art Museum, and Marin Alsop, the director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. The four women were presented Notre Dame's esteemed Pro Urbe ("For the City") Award, given to individuals whose accomplishments within the community have lasting impact.
Cover to Cover Book Club Interest Meeting
A new joint book club between Notre Dame and Loyola-Cover to Cover-had its first interest meeting last night. (April 8th) The club not only aspires to read interesting books and have engaging conversations, but also strives to bring fellowship between neighboring campuses.
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/cover2coverclub
Civera Fitness Center Is Open for Business!
President Joan Coley trying out the new elliptical machine!
A new fitness center for the Notre Dame community opened up this past week-Civera Fitness Center, which is right above the main gym in the MBK Sports Complex. It hosts a bunch of new equipment (and tvs!) for the campus to take advantage of. A grand opening ceremony will be held in May.
Community Service Achievement!
On March 31st, 2014 it was calculated that during the 2012-2013 academic year, the Notre Dame community served a total of 104,611 volunteer hours! Way to make an impact NDMU!
Women In Visual Media Series: Kalima Young
On Thursday, March 27th, Kalima Young was the second presenter for the Communications Arts Speaker Series, Women In Visual Media. She spoke on the importance of art and how it can have an important role in social justice. She also discussed her works as a filmmaker, and her independent production company, Kubla Khan Productions.
Notre Dame Announces The 14th President: Dr. Marylou Yam
On Thursday, March 20th the campus community came together to celebrate the selection of our 14th president. Dr. Marylou Yam.
Dr. Yam’s leadership experience in the development and delivery of leading-edge professional programs rooted in the liberal arts will serve Notre Dame well in the continued expansion of our four Schools—Arts and Sciences, Education, Nursing and Pharmacy. Dr. Yam’s track record of innovation will further strengthen our leadership position as a renowned university that prepares fearless and faithful leaders who effect real change in their communities and beyond” -Board Chair Patricia J. Mitchell ’69.
The New Nature Movement: Reconnecting with Life in a Virtual Age
On the evening of Tuesday the 18th, as part of the School of Eduction 2014 Speaker Series, Richard Louv, renowned journalist and author of eight books, gave a talk in LeClare Hall on his works about rediscovering nature in a world that revolves around technology.
His newest book, The Nature Principle: Human Restoration and the End of Nature-Deficit Disorder, asserts that our lives should be as immersed in nature as much as they are in technology—which could improve our psychological, physical and spiritual health.
Louv said there has been a 50% decrease of children playing outside since the 1990, and that studies show that spending time outside can improve academic and social skills in children.
Gabby Gator Mascot Welcome Event
Students gathered in Doyle Dining Hall on Tuesday, March 18th to celebrate the reveal of our new Mascot, Gabby Gator! Free t-shirts and key chains were given out, and The Baltimore Orioles bird even paid a visit to have some fun and take pictures with students!
Breakfast with the Baltimore Ravens' Gabrielle Dow!
On Thursday, March 13 professionals in the Baltimore area gathered at the Center Club downtown for networking and breakfast with guest speaker Gabrielle Dow, Vice President of Marketing for the Baltimore Ravens. Ms. Dow joined the Ravens prior to the 2006 season and has a hand in many tasks including the team’s promotions, marketing, advertising, events, trademark and licensing, game entertainment, sponsor activation and fan affinity areas. She is also responsible for Purple Friday and the first-ever professional team sports women’s fan club, Purple! Guests were also able to try on the 2013 SuperBowl Ring! Go Ravens!
Arizona/Mexico Spring Break Trip
In mid-March, four Women’s College students—Jillian Childs ’14, Rachel De La Haya ’14, Merisa Hernandez ’16, and Ashleigh Hughes ’14—and two alums/staff members—Marianne Amoss ’04 and Sibyl Snow ’06, M’13—spent the week of spring break at the United States/Mexico border, learning about immigration issues and witnessing first-hand the conflicts playing out at and around the border. They were led by Sister Linda Stilling, SSND ’64, who teaches Spanish language and culture at Notre Dame.
SSND Patricia Receives National Honor
Sister Patricia McCarron, SSND, Ph.D., headmistress of Notre Dame Preparatory School, has been named one of six national recipients of the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA)’s Educational Excellence Award. This award honors Catholic secondary school educators for their service and dedication, their outstanding contributions to Catholic secondary education, and their achievements in Catholic secondary education at the local, diocesan, state and national levels.
Housing Selection Event 2014!
On Saturday, March 1st, students crowded around the Doyle Dining room doors at 2pm impatiently waiting for them to open so they could get first pick of rooms for the 2014-2015 academic year. It was a little more hectic this time because of some new changes to policy, (First year students can now live in Meletia Hall) but with snacks and music provided, the stress was kept to a minimum and students got their rooms!
CAB's WinterFest 2014!
On Saturday, February 22nd at 9 pm students gathered in the MBK Gym for some wintery fun planned by the Campus Activities Board! The community enjoyed bumper cars, lazer tag, a photo booth, making your own stuffed animal, henna, music by DJ Phaze, and even indoor ice skating. Some lucky students even got a chance in the money machine! It was a great way for students to relax as the semester picks up speed.
Great job CAB!
Notre Dame Day 2014
The annual event of Notre Dame Day took place this year on Tuesday, February 11th. It is a day that celebrates our campus community by remembering our heritage and taking the time to celebrate the achievements of our current students and staff. The day began with a song from the NDMU choir as the community joined together in the dining hall around tables of white and blue for a light luncheon. Several awards were given to staff and students throughout the event, including the SSND Mission and Ministry Award that went to our current University President, Joan Coley.
Mary Alice Adams, Business Office, Student Accounts Assistant Distinguished Staff Award
Christmas Tree Trim and Dinner
The annual Tree Trim and Christmas Dinner is one of Notre Dame's most beloved traditions. After a short prayer service, every office, department and student group on campus places an ornament on the tree. Without a doubt, the little ones from A Child’s Place, our on-campus preschool, steal the show every year.
After all the ornaments are placed and the tree is lit, everyone adjourns to the dining hall where Christmas dinner is served. This tradition has been around since the very start of the University, when the School Sisters would serve Christmas diner to the young women. The tradition continues with faculty and staff taking on the role of the server.
After dinner and dessert, it is on to the caroling, the favorite song being the 12 Days of Christmas. Each table is assigned a certain set of numbers and has to stand up and sing (shout) out their verse. This is a great tradition and a welcome break during the last week of classes for our students.
Julia Alvarez: In the Time of the Butterflies
Domincan-American author Julia Alvarez speaks Nov. 6 at Notre Dame of Maryland University on her historical novel, In the Time of the Butterflies, which recounts the story of the Mirabel sisters during the time of the Trujillo dictatorship in the Dominican Republic.
"One thing the Dictator (Trujillo) could not suppress was the irrepressible need of the human creature for stories," she told her listeners, who filled LeClerc Auditorium.
In the Time of the Butterflies is the Campus Common Reading this year for NDMU.
Siobhan "Sam" Bennett of She Should Run
Do we REALLY need more women in public leadership?
The answer is an emphatic yes, according to Siobhan “Sam” Bennett of She Should Run, an advocacy organization working to increase the number of women in public leadership.
And the keys to achieving that, say Bennett, who appeared at Notre Dame on Oct. 29, are overcoming a fear of failure, and support of other women.
Bennett spoke to a group of Notre Dame students in the afternoon, and then appeared that night at an event co-sponsored by Notre Dame of Maryland University and the United Way of Central Maryland. Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake was on hand to introduce Bennett, and Sen. Barbara Mikulski, the dean of the women in the Senate, offered greetings via video in which she spoke of the importance of Notre Dame's mission of educating women to transform the world.
The School Sisters of Notre Dame Celebrate 180 Years
On October 24, the School Sisters of Notre Dame on campus, across the country and around the world gathered to celebrate the 180th anniversary of their founding by Mother Mary Theresa Gerhardinger, in Munich, Germany. Notre Dame of Maryland University joined the international celebration by having a special Mass in the Marikle Chapel of the Annunciation, where the sisters from the campus community renewed their religious commitment as vowed members of the SSND Congregation. Members of the University community representing students, faculty and staff offered their reflections in thanksgiving for the service and the living spirituality of the School Sisters of Notre Dame.
Notre Dame Dedicates New University Academic Building
Notre Dame of Maryland University officials cut the ribbon Friday, Oct. 18 on the campus’ newly completed University Academic Building at a dedication and blessing ceremony.
"This will be a center of seeking, learning, and teaching what is true," said Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski, auxiliary bishop of Baltimore, who was on hand to bless the new facility. "We pray that those who teach and learn in this building may join in the discovery of human and divine wisdom, so that they will be able to assist others in the pursuit of truth, beauty, and goodness all their days."
The stunning three-story, 36,000-square-foot facility, which was blessed by Auxiliary Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski, is the home of the School of Nursing and Technology Resource Center and is available for use by the entire campus community. It was designed to meet or exceed LEED green building certification, pursuant to the University’s commitment to environmental sustainability, and is expected to receive a LEED Silver rating.
The facility features the School of Nursing’s Center for Caring with Technology, with state-of-the-art instructional facilities, including simulation labs; observation rooms and pediatrics and patient rooms; a lobby, gallery and other unique spaces to foster interaction and teamwork; and clinical laboratory space.
Sr. Christine DeVinne, Vice President for Academic Affairs noted that the University Academic Building represents both the tradition and future of Notre Dame.
"As a University, Notre Dame of Maryland has a strong foundation and is reaching for the sky. The tradition and solid liberal arts values are symbolized by the front of campus and the time-honored buildings that are beloved by current students and alums alike," she said. "This part of campus, a bit more contemporary in architecture, represents the current growth, the dedication to meeting the current needs of our students and all of society.
Coverage by WBAL-TV
Project Homeless Connect
More than 200 students, faculty and staff boarded buses and traveled downtown to the Baltimore Convention Center to volunteer for the United Way of Central Maryland's Project Homeless Connect, which helped link Baltimore homeless community to vital services. Notre Dame had by far the best turnout of any of the local colleges that participated, which included Towson University, University of Baltimore, UMBC, University of MD-Baltimore, MICA, Stevenson, Loyola, Johns Hopkins, Morgan, Goucher and Coppin.
Notre Dame President Joan Develin Coley was among the dignitaries who addressed the volunteers before the event began.
"In some sense we might think it is a sacrifice to be here, but it is no exaggeration to say that we always gain more than we give when we extend a helping hand to another human being," Dr. Coley said. "The presence of so many people here today says something important about the homeless clients we will encounter. It says that they matter and that we value them."
The showing by Notre Dame prompted United Way CEO Mark Furst to post on the NDMU Facebook page:
"Awesome turnout today by NDMU. Over 200 people. THANK YOU (and United Way says thanks too)."