Members of the women’s boxing program, Baraka Bouts, directed their physical and mental toughness toward raising funds for East African Holy Cross Missions this past weekend in their signature event, the Power 24 Hour. With the hope of raising more funds and increasing awareness of the club and charity, the team changed and intensified the structure of this year’s event, senior captain Jen Coe said. “For a few years now, we’ve had a ‘power-hour’ where the boxers are split into two teams and try to beat each other in the number of pushups, sit-ups and jumping jacks that could be completed in the hours,” she said. “We wanted to double the amount of money raised, so we spread it over an entire day in the hopes of garnering more funds and raising more awareness about our club, the tournament and the Holy Cross missions.” The longer time period allowed the boxers to test their creativity and come up with unique approaches to their workout, senior captain Carleigh Moore said. “At one point we were doing push-ups for every dollar raised,” Moore said. “It was a great way to get in shape for the Bouts all in the name of a great cause.” Coe said there was an advantage to working out in one-hour shifts over the previous structure of one 24-hour period. “Since everyone had a one-hour shift, the energy was kept high as people were rotating in and out, then coming back later to visit and cheer their fellow team-members on,” she said. “We were working out for a good cause, so it wasn’t hard to keep up the spirit.” While the team has not yet totaled the funds raised from the Power 24 Hour, both Coe and Moore said they are extremely grateful for the outpouring of support. “The response was incredible. Students, faculty, alumni and fans were so generous and receptive to our cause,” Moore said. “Thank you to everyone who donated to help us support the efforts of the Holy Cross Missions in Uganda.” The women’s boxing team will fight in the Baraka Bouts tournament in the beginning of November to raise additional funds, which will benefit two secondary schools in Kasese and Jinja, Uganda. The women’s boxing team is changing the structure of the Baraka Bouts tournament this year as well, Moore said. “For the first time, women’s boxing will be holding a two-day tournament,” she said. “Our vision for this year’s season has been double the bouts, double the donations.” This year’s Baraka Bouts event will take place on Monday, Nov. 7, and Thursday, Nov. 10. Tickets for entry on both nights can be pre-purchased from any Baraka Bouts participant for $10 until the night of the tournament.
Four political science professors will share the Washington Hall stage April 12 to exchange and debate their opinions about the intersection of Catholicism and politics. HolyVotes, an event seeking to open a pathway for political discussion on campus, will replace the God Debate, held in past years. Senior Malcolm Phelan described HolyVotes as a “lighthearted and rational political debate” that needs to take place at Notre Dame in order to counter the political dialogue currently dominating the media. “Most news outlets and political commentators seem to be acting out some form of grotesque tragedy about the death of reason and discourse,” Phelan said. “That’s exactly why we are hosting HolyVotes. We want to lay out our civic beliefs as Catholics, and then discuss which form of government best helps us to achieve those goals.” HolyVotes will feature professors Sebastian Rosato, Eric Sims, Vincent Munoz and Michael Desch. Junior Arnav Dutt, a coordinator for the event, said he was grateful for the faculty members’ willingness to voice their opinions outside of the classroom. “In a way, these professors chose themselves,” Dutt said. “All three were brave enough to tackle the issue in a public forum.” Rosato, a professor of political science specializing in international relations, said he will represent the Democratic position, which is often considered more controversial because of the Catholic tendency to vote Republican. “It’s a very complex issue, one that many people view as black and white,” Rosato said. “The assumption is if you vote Republican, you are going straight to the pro-life argument, and if you’re Democrat, you are going to run straight to the social justice issues. “I think there is a lot of overlap, and I think that the parties are internally divided, and that therefore, this is a debate that really needs to occur on campus.” Rosato said defending the Democratic stances on abortion and gay marriage represents the most difficult task, but he believes his arguments can counter the opposition if received with an open mind. “In these types of debates, people typically tend to give the party line or the Catholic stance, and there is no one on the other end,” Rosato said. “I think the other professors involved in this debate are well-intentioned, and I believe most people in the room will be able to treat it as a debate, but I fear it may devolve into name calling.” Despite advice not to participate in HolyVotes, Rosato said he believes it is his duty to ask the charged questions and contribute to overturning the paradigm of asserting truths rather than debating issues. “I believe I was put on this earth to make arguments and to make them regardless of what people thought,” Rosato said. “As a privileged professor at Notre Dame, I’m meant to inform and contribute to raising the level of discourse. My job is to think, and that’s why I said yes.” Dutt said the event is meant to encourage contemplation and dialogue. “Students should expect an intellectually stimulating debate conducted at a high volume,” he said. Phelan agreed HolyVotes should make attendees think. “My hope is that we all stumble out of Washington Hall, slightly dazed at the brilliance of Rosato, Munoz, Sims and Desch while considering what duties we owe our country and our fellow citizens.”
Student Senate met in LaFortune Student Center on Wednesday night to discuss potential issues with the revised O’SNAP program and possible future budget cuts.“I think there’s been some concern about the ways that SafeWalk and O’SNAP are being utilized. … There have been some issues with dispatching SafeWalk; I know it’s not an isolated thing,” St. Edward’s Hall senator and sophomore Jake Wittenberg said. “There have been a few issues with dispatching and a little clarification that we could take back to dorms, or some discussion on the procedures and efficiency of the program would be helpful.”While the topic will not enter into a formal discussion for a few weeks, other senators shared similar sentiments.“I feel like there’s been some discrimination with size and gender,” Keenan Hall senator and junior Ryan Rizzuto said. “… A few weeks ago, I called, and I had to keep belaboring a point that I was concerned for a girl who was very intoxicated.”Rizzuto also said he experienced an issue several weeks ago when he called to be picked up with a few of his friends. He was told there was no danger or reason for O’SNAP to pick them up if it was a group of six or more.“I don’t think they have any right to do that,” Rizzuto said. “If O’SNAP is a shuttle service, then we really need to hone in that message to the student body and figure out why it’s harder to be picked up if you’re a guy than a girl.”Student body vice president and senior Matthew Devine brought up the issue of newspaper subscription and distribution on campus.According to Devine, the University currently spends about $50,000 on newspaper subscriptions annually, but only about 100-150 papers are actually picked up per day.“I think we need to reassess,” Devine said. “… We’re looking to see if we can do individual subscriptions, but that doesn’t necessarily stay true to the purpose of making it available to everyone.”Alumni Hall senator and sophomore Scott Moore proposed potentially decreasing the order, if possible.“If we can’t get a smaller quantity, I’d rather see it disbanded,” Moore said.The Senate will continue the conversation on the topic throughout the remainder of the semester, ultimately deciding whether to keep all of the subscriptions for the 2015-2016 school year.“It’s going to be contentious, whatever the decision is, so we’re trying to make sure we get the most comprehensive thoughts from everyone,” Devine said.The Senate also unanimously passed a resolution moving Off Campus Council elections to the third week of April, as opposed to April 1.“The purpose behind this is essentially is that there can’t be a comprehensive list of all the students living off campus in about mid-February, when we’re asked for one, which makes it hard to have elections,” Judicial Council president and off-campus senior Kathryn Peruski said.Tags: ND student senate, Notre Dame Senate, Senate, student senate
Emma Farnan | The Observer Panelists Fr. Peter McCormick, senior Annie Kuster and junior Daniel Esparza discuss consent and the hook-up culture at Notre Dame.To frame the discussion, the panel began with a short video called “Tea Consent,” which provided a humorous perspective on the topic by using the act of serving someone tea as a metaphor for sexual consent.The panel initiated their conversation by talking about the purpose of dorm parties and the consequences that on-campus parties entail.Esparza said students often uses alcohol and parties as ways to release the stress of a long week, a mindset that can hold potentially damaging ramifications.“It’s very important that people don’t use things like dorm parties and alcohol as a crutch,” Esparza said.Because of the ubiquity of on-campus parties at Notre Dame and the strong connection between residence halls and social life, Kuster said students can sometimes be lulled into a false sense of security when they go to parties in dorms.“We don’t necessarily connect going down the hallway with a place where some problem could be,” Kuster said.McCormick said these thoughts are consistent with his experience as a rector. While Notre Dame has consciously preserved the culture of on-campus parties because it values making residence halls central to student’s lives, he said the prevalence of alcohol on campus does involves some risks.“If we want you to feel that the residence halls are home, you should be allowed to welcome your friends over, and you should be allowed to have parties,” McCormick said. “The mindset of why parties occur in dorms is very much rooted in the community mindset of Notre Dame.”The panel also discussed the differences in social life between men and women in college.Kuster said boys have more power than girls over almost every aspect of a party, from the alcohol they provide to the music they play, because most parties are held in boys’ dorms. Although this may seem like a trivial issue, Kuster said this means girls can feel more helpless in unfamiliar situations.“When you show up to somebody else’s party and boys are the ones throwing the party, they have the control,” Kuster said.However, McCormick said, girls have the ability to decide which parties to go to and can always leave when they feel uncomfortable.“Woman actually have more power and authority than what they think,” McCormick said.The panel then examined the question of why hook-ups and sexual assault seem to be so prevalent in college.Esparza said many students enter college with naive ideas about how sex and relationships actually work, and consequently, can make mistakes without realizing their errors.“Sometimes, especially in college, many people typically don’t see it as rape because they really don’t understand how mutual relationships work,” Esparza said.Additionally, McCormick said the media portrays college far different from reality, with an emphasis on casual sex, drinking and partying. In particular, McCormick said, movies embody this myth and give incoming students major misconceptions about college.“The thing Hollywood doesn’t show you, the thing popular literature doesn’t show you, is how it feels when an unwanted advance gets made on you,” McCormick said.In order to break free from this ignorance, McCormick said students need to be actively involved in both learning about sexual assault and being mindful of their own actions.“We need to be more informed … about the fact that our actions, whether they be subtle, quick or even unintended, have significant impacts on people’s lives,” McCormick said.Tags: Fire Starters, Fr. Pete McCormick, Gender Relations Center, GRC, Men against Sexual violence, sexual assault Dorm parties are a cherished part of student life at Notre Dame, but the abusive drinking and negligence that can often accompany them lead to devastating results, Fr. Peter McCormick, director of campus ministry, said.In an effort to spread awareness about sexual assault and promote conversations about alcohol, consent and dorm parties, the Gender Relations Center (GRC) sponsored a panel discussion Tuesday night at DeBartolo Hall. In addition to McCormick, the panel consisted of senior Annie Kuster, a GRC FIRE Starter, and junior Daniel Esparza, the president of Men Against Sexual Violence. Following the theme of “Let’s Talk about Hooking-up, Consent and Dorm Parties,” they answered questions directly from the moderator and anonymously submitted by the audience.
The Saint Mary’s Women’s Choir and the Saint Mary’s Collegiate Choirs will perform their fall concert with Bellacapella on Wednesday in O’Laughlin Auditorium.Conductor Nancy Menk said the Women’s Choir will be singing the same songs they plan to take to the American Choral Directors Association Conference in Chicago this coming February.“One of our pieces, a setting of Psalm 150, is composed by Carolyn Pirtle, assistant director for the Center for Liturgy at Notre Dame, so we have a local composer represented,” Menk said. “Another piece I’m proud of is ‘Heaven Full of Stars’ by Eric William Barnum. It’s a very challenging piece for advanced women’s choirs, and I feel we’re singing it very well.”Sophomore Alyssa Rogers said the challenging music has been exciting to learn.“The music we have been working on is very diverse,” she said. “Some pieces are slow and traditional, but we also have a few that are new and upbeat. Several of the pieces are sung a cappella, and others have very complex piano accompaniment. We are also singing a few pieces in different languages.”Rogers said the concert will showcase the progress and hard work of both choirs.Junior Jackie Schramm said the fall concert is particularly exciting because it is the first time the campus can hear both choirs together. Schramm said she enjoys being in a choir because she can express herself with like-minded people.“Choral music, in my opinion, is a rare opportunity to hear a larger group of people work together to make a uniform sound with just their voices. This skill is not as easy as it seems” Schramm said.Rogers said she has always enjoyed performing arts.“I really enjoy being able to go to choir after all my classes and do something totally different. It’s very relaxing and rewarding for me,” she said. “Most forms of entertainment today are experienced through various forms of media. I think that it is important to appreciate choral music in live performances as well because it is a totally different experience. It’s not always perfect, but it’s real, and that’s what makes it so enjoyable for me.”Menk said participation in choirs has positive effects on students.“There is study after study about how participating in choirs boosts students’ academic abilities and social interactions. It’s a great way to de-stress from homework and exams as well,” Menk said.Tags: bellacappella, chorale, collegiate choir, fall concert, SMC women’s choir, Women’s Choir
Despite Wednesday’s expected high of 31 degrees, the Siegfried Hall Ramblers will be wearing only T-shirts, shorts and flip flops as part of their annual Day of Man. The event aims to promote solidarity with the homeless — many of whom do not have adequately warm clothing during winter months — and collect funds for the South Bend Center for the Homeless, junior Michael Hernick, Day of Man co-commissioner said.“Last year we raised $22,000, so I mean, our goal for this year is to beat that again,” junior Isaac Althoff, Day of Man co-commissioner, said. “That was $9,000 over our previous record, so [to] just keep pushing the record up there is always the goal.”Siegfried Hall president, sophomore Sam Bishop, participated in the Day of Man last year and said the event is “a lot of fun” despite the cold temperatures.“Probably my best memory is standing outside of South Dining Hall for an hour in the freezing cold, and I was dressed as a banana and we had some funny signs, and just having a lot of fun with the passersby and people laughing at us,” Bishop said. “It hurts because it’s very cold. Your fingers and toes start to hurt, but it’s worth it.” Hernick said when he participated in the Day of Man during his freshman year, the temperature was between 15 to 20 degrees, and it was “snowing sideways.”“I remember I was standing outside [LaFortune Student Center] with one of my friends, and then on the way back, it was really cold out, obviously,” Hernick said. “We decided to sprint back to Siegfried, and then he slipped and dropped his cup, so I had to stand there in the cold helping him pick up all his money. … I felt like my fingers were about to fall off, and I was really mad at the moment, but it’s a good laugh now.”The Day of Man gives Siegfried students the opportunity to bond, Althoff said.“It’s definitely an event that everyone looks forward to,” Althoff said. “People wake up in the morning and they cut their shirts and make them even more scanty. It’s just a big group thing.”Bishop said suffering in the cold helps the men of Siegfried empathize with the homeless and gives them a sense of perspective.“It definitely bonds us because one of the main points of Day of Man — maybe the most valuable thing in it — is an expression of solidarity with the poor, with those who are exposed,” Bishop said. “In expressing that solidarity with them, we are also expressing it with each other. So we suffer together, we stand outside together. We do all of it together for others.”According to Hernick, raising awareness of homelessness is necessary, and a group from Siegfried volunteers at the Center for the Homeless every Saturday.“The goal of the whole day is obviously to raise some money, but it’s also to raise awareness and to work really hard this one day so that people think about homelessness, and think about the problems it poses a little more the other 364 days of the year,” he said.Tags: Center for the Homeless, Day of Man, Siegfried Hall
Decision day has arrived for the 3,600 potential students admitted into the Notre Dame class of 2021. This year’s pool of 19,565 applicants — a new record for the University — allowed the admissions office to continue its trend of focusing on the whole applicant rather than one aspect of an application, such as test scores or grades, associate vice president of student enrollment Don Bishop said.“We understand in admissions that no matter how much you read the files and whether you use the numbers too much or not enough to inform you, there is a lot of serendipity,” Bishop said. “There are a lot of dynamics at college that you either respond to Notre Dame or you don’t in the way that we expected, and those attributes — there’s no SAT score for these sort of attributes. It’s not in the curriculum. It’s not your grades — there are just these intangibles.”Lauren Hebig | The Observer Director of admissions Bob Mundy said the department narrowed down the strong applicant pool — which included 7,500 applicants in the top one percent of the nation based on test scores and grades, of which only about one in three applicants was admitted — by searching for the right “match” with the University.“Some would call that reading for fit,” Mundy said. “Where, again, you’ve got these 7,500 really talented students, but sort of project forward — what’s [this student] going to look like when she’s a student here? … What kind of Notre Dame citizen is she going to be?”Several factors the department took into account in admitting students, Bishop said, were not quantifiable traits, such as leadership ability and desire to do good in the world.“Our attitude has been, ‘No, don’t overuse the numbers,’” he said. “So once you have a high enough number, we stop using the numbers [and] we look at the other attributes. So what other attributes? Well, there’s service to others, there’s leadership, there’s creativity [and] there’s kind of their motivation for their success.”This year’s pool of admitted students is also one of the most geographically diverse, Bishop said.“Our largest state of admits this year was California this time,” he said. “ … Apparently, we’re doing very well with international students and U.S. students studying abroad. So we are probably going to be at 7 to 8 percent international students this year, and probably closer to 10 percent of students that are outside of the U.S. … That’s going to be a historical high, and that’s something [that] is a goal of Notre Dame, is to keep becoming more global.”In addition to increased geographic diversity, Bishop said this year’s group of admitted students includes more women intending to major in fields of study that are typically male-dominated.“We also are seeing an increase in the number of women in engineering and the number of women in business,” he said. “That was a goal this year. It’s still under 40 percent in both, but compared to the national averages, we’re actually really moving up.”After informing potential students of their acceptance to the University online at 18:42 military time, Mundy said the admissions department took a more “personal” approach in connecting with admitted students through the acceptance packet this year.“We took a great line from one of their writings — like why they wanted to be at Notre Dame or something that happened to them in their life — and we captured it and put it on a refrigerator magnet with the Dome on the left side,” Mundy said. “And it’s just one of these real soft [things that we] put in an envelope, wrote them a note — we handwrite notes to probably 2,000 students — and we wrote saying, ‘Here’s something that really impressed us.’”In addition to this touch, Mundy said a revamped revisit format has attracted more families than ever before.“We also pretty dramatically changed our yield weekend events, or our yield events,” he said. “ … This year, we really have centered them around four events — four weekends … and then on Monday, we had a really well-defined academic day for the students, where each of the colleges sort of bought in.”Bishop said the increase in the number of families taking a second look at campus led to an increase in the number of early enrollments.“That’s been interesting to us, because right now we are a little ahead in our deposits from last year,” he said. “We still think in our model that we’re going to be right where we want to be, and we hope to take some students off wait list, but this increased number of visitors, I think, will be an ongoing trend.”Rather than hoping to fill the entire class of 2021 with initially accepted students, Bishop said the department aims to take 50 to 100 students off the wait list each year.“Wait list allows us to look at what part of the class didn’t fill in the way we expected,” he said. “ … So it allows us to kind of fill in an area, or — and this is also, I think, more true for the majority of the decisions — we look at how people respond to the adversity of being wait-listed, and we kind of reward the emotionally-skilled families [and] students where they showed character and they showed desire to be at Notre Dame.”Bishop said he hopes the finalized class of 2021 lives up to his expectations of being “forces for good” at the University and beyond.“We want you to be a force for good — not only being a high force, but a force for good,” Bishop said. “A lot of schools, their focus is on just getting you to be a high force for success, whether that’s as a scientist, a business person, a doctor, a politician, whatever. At Notre Dame, it’s for good.”Tags: Class of 2021, Notre Dame admissions, Office of Undergraduate Admissions, Prospective Students
The DeBartolo Performing Arts Center has cancelled all public events for the fall semester in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to press release published Wednesday.The facility will instead be used for physically distanced classrooms, as the teaching days will be extended. Those who hold Presenting Series season tickets were notified and given the option for refunds, exchanges or account credit.Executive director Ted Barron said the Center will likely open in January 2021 for scheduled programming.“Since March, we have all been challenged, committing to choices in the short term to mitigate longer-term impacts,” Barron said. “That’s why the Center is supporting our communities’ healing and comfort until we can again welcome you and many more to premier arts experiences.”Tags: COVID-19, DPAC, pandemic, Presenting Series
Stock image.NEW YORK — Attorney General Letitia James has issued a warning about new, recently reported scams using New Yorkers’ personal information to file fraudulent claims for unemployment benefits.“We must remain vigilant about potential scams and ensure residents remain alert,” James said. “During these uncertain times, unemployment benefits are a safety net for many individuals and families who have lost their jobs. To exploit the use of these funds and overload a system that is already processing unprecedented numbers of claims per day is as shameful as it is illegal. My office remains committed to holding accountable anyone who violates the law, and I continue to encourage the public to report suspected scams to my office.”State officials have received recent reports of scammers having access to detailed databases with Personally Identifiable Information (P.I.I.). Armed with P.I.I., scammers have sought out cooperation from “mules” who are used as intermediaries for filing claims online seeking benefits, exploiting the avalanche of legitimate claims that have hit the New York State Department of Labor due to the COVID-19 crisis.Individuals who have been contacted by the NYS Department of Labor about unemployment benefits they did not apply for must be aware of the possibility of identity theft. Attorney General James highlights the following tips for New Yorkers to protect themselves from these scams:Be suspicious of anyone who calls you over the phone seeking money or personal information. If you owe money, you will receive a legitimate notice in writing that identifies the agency and the reason you owe money.Do not give out personal and sensitive information, including your Social Security number and bank account information, to individuals over the phone. In addition, ensure to independently verify the authenticity of the caller.Victims of unemployment benefits fraud should report any incidents to their employer and to the NYS Department of Labor Unemployment Insurance Program. Victims can also file a complaint online with the Office of the Attorney General or call 1-800-771-7755.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)
MGN ImageMAYVILLE – Chautauqua County health officials have reported 16 new COVID-19 cases Thursday afternoon, bringing the total number of positive cases to 550.According to officials, 11 cases are in Battalion 1, one case in Battalion 2, three cases in Battalion 3, and one case in Battalion 4. Of these new cases, two cases are SUNY Fredonia students.485 cases remain under quarantine or isolation orders by the Public Health Director and 235 people are under domestic quarantine for having arrived to Chautauqua County from a state listed on the New York State travel advisory. There also remains two hospitalizations.To date, there have been 416 recoveries, 10 fatalities, and 37,453 negative test results. 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)