NIreland leader orders inquiry into homes for unwed mothers

first_imgLONDON (AP) — The leader of Northern Ireland has ordered an independent investigation to give voice to the survivors of church-run homes for unmarried mothers and their babies, saying they have been silenced and shamed for too long. First Minister Arlene Foster’s comments came after the publication Tuesday of a government-commissioned research report that examined institutions for unmarried mothers and their children from the 20th century. The report said more than 10,500 women and girls, including some rape and incest victims, entered such homes from 1922 to 1990. Their babies often were sent to a different home or put up for adoption, and Foster says  that too often, the mothers and their children suffered “a lifetime of trauma.”last_img read more

Read More »

Biden flexible on who gets aid, tells lawmakers to ‘go big’

first_imgWASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is encouraging Democratic lawmakers to “act fast” on his $1.9 trillion COVID-19 rescue plan but also signaling he’s open to changes, including limiting the proposed $1,400 direct payments to Americans with lower income levels. That could draw Republican support. Biden told lawmakers in private comments Wednesday that he’s “not married” to an absolute number for the overall package but wants them to “go big” on pandemic relief and “restore the soul of the country.” Biden spoke with House Democrats and followed with a meeting of top Senate Democrats at the White House, deepening his public engagement with lawmakers on his American Rescue Package.last_img read more

Read More »

Police: Fingerprint led them to 2003 Georgia murder suspect

first_imgCOLUMBUS, Ga. (AP) — Georgia police detectives say a fingerprint match more than 15 years after a killing led them to arrest a man in January in South Carolina for a 2003 killing. A judge on Friday declined to set bail for 46-year-old Alvin Barfield, refusing arguments from the defense that Barfield wasn’t a flight risk due to his cooperation with detectives. Columbus cold-case investigator Stuart Carter testified Friday that investigators took a fingerprint from the crime scene in 2003 where Albert Carter Woolfolk was stabbed and strangled that matched to Barfield late last year. Police haven’t identified another fingerprint from the scene, and believe two men would have been needed to take a big-screen TV from Woolfolk’s house in 2003.last_img read more

Read More »

University tests new electric car

first_imgIn an effort to explore new sustainable energy options, the University added an electric car to its fleet of vehicles this semester. The Mitsubishi iMiev, an electric car that seats four people, will be on loan from Mitsubishi Motors North America to Notre Dame this semester. Eaton Corporation is also providing three charging stations on campus, according to a Notre Dame Office of Sustainability press release. “This is just the beginning of something good for campus,” said Erin Hafner, the Sustainability Program Manager for the Office of Sustainability. “It’s opening some doors for us to bring electric cars to campus. It really wasn’t an option before.” This initial car is acting as a pilot test program, Hafner said. If successful, the University will look at adding electric cars to its fleet. “We’d like to integrate these into the fleet for travel,” she said. “We’d also like to integrate these into our maintenance fleet. There’s a wide array of uses.” The iMiev gets 100 miles to every charge, according to Mitsubishi’s website. It is also listed as a zero emissions vehicle, meaning it doesn’t emit carbon dioxide. When taking the carbon dioxide used to create electricity to charge the car into account, the iMiev still releases only 30 percent as much carbon dioxide as do its gasoline-powered mini-car counterparts. “Through our collaboration with Notre Dame, Eaton is paving the way for the development of the infrastructure leading to the adoption and expanded use of electric vehicles,” Jerry Whitaker, president of Eaton’s Electrical Sector, Americas Region, said in the press release. This is not the first time the University has partnered with Eaton Corporation; the corporation helped the University with Stinson-Remick Hall. “The project will help us to further understand the potential of electric vehicles as we strive to reduce our energy consumption and carbon footprint on campus,” Executive Vice President John Affleck-Graves said in the press release. The car will be on display at public events and promotions for the Office of Sustainability, Hafner said. These promotions include football Friday afternoons at Irish Green, where the car is stationed next to a table with information about electric cars. Different University departments will also drive the car, so students will see it around campus, Hafner said. It will have a Notre Dame-themed car design similar to the three Smart cars that the University purchased this year.last_img read more

Read More »

Marching band wins music award

first_imgThough Notre Dame was awarded the 2011 Sudler Trophy, Notre Dame Marching Band Director Ken Dye said the award represents years of dedication from band members and staff. “The Sudler Trophy is for a band that historically has been at the forefront of college bands in terms of music, innovation and supporting the American way of life,” Dye said. “We’ve worked hard over a number of years with the band members who have gone through the program and with the past directors of the program. Winning the trophy is a huge achievement.” The trophy was officially presented at halftime during Saturday’s football game against Air Force. The trophy, presented by the John Philip Sousa Foundation, is the top national honor for collegiate bands. It can only be received once, and the receiving program keeps the award for two years. Head drum major senior Matt Roe said winning the trophy felt amazing. “I was actually in the band building when we received the phone call saying that we were going to be awarded the trophy,” he said. “The excitement was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.” Roe said that the band’s greatest strength is the commitment of its members. “There are times when we’re learning three different shows at the same time,” Roe said. “Just to be able to remember it all, and to go to practice every day with the frame of mind that we’re going to have fun at practice while still keeping in mind that we have a job to do is a challenge. The commitment of everyone involved is inspiring, and it’s a lot of fun to perform at every football game.” Dye said the band focuses on developing a halftime show that can reach every demographic within the audience. “We focus on continual innovation, and we try to do things that visually connect to the audience,” Dye said. “If we do something on the field, the audience can try to guess what it is and to participate in the show as it evolves. We also try to pick music that is appealing to all of the generations of Notre Dame fans, with a particular focus to the music that is appealing and recognizable to our students.” Senior piccolo player Laura Taylor said the band’s motto encapsulates the spirit of the band and was a big part of what makes the band special. “The band’s motto is tradition, excellence and family,” Taylor said. “We have such a great love for Notre Dame, and that infuses everything we do. We are really cognizant that we are representing the University, and we all really love the tradition that we are continuing. The camaraderie in the band also motivates us to work hard at everything we do.” Dye said the band will continue innovating and working hard. “Music is one of those things at which you never can really achieve perfection; you’re always working to do it better,” he said. “We try to stay abreast of the changes in music and the current events that can be adapted to visual formations on the field. We intend to get better every year.”last_img read more

Read More »

Professor studies Arab Spring protests

first_imgNotre Dame psychology professor Laura Miller described her new line of research on the effects of extreme trauma on children and adults involved in the Arab Spring as “a marriage between [her] interests.”The Arab Spring, a wave of demonstrations and protests across the Middle East, began in 2010 and has since left its mark on the people of that area, Miller said.“The nature of what the Arab Spring has looked like and the enduring effects of initial protests have been quite different in each country,” Miller said. “In the case of Egypt, the Arab Spring began with an amazing surge of hopefulness and the removal of long-time dictator Hosni Mubarak from office, but has tragically devolved over time into military rule and pervasive instability.”Miller said her interest in the Middle East began in her undergraduate years at Notre Dame, when she studied abroad in Cairo. She wrote her senior thesis on political involvement and perceptions of mental health care among university students in Egypt. She said she then focused her graduate studies in clinical psychology on the effect of violence on children. From there, her research on the events in the Middle East took flight.Miller, who teaches the class Psychology of Peace at Notre Dame, said her research is still in its early stages.“My collaborators and I have identified some university partnerships that will be critical for facilitating our research,” Miller said. “We are starting by engaging in some academic forums that will identify the key issues, needs and research priorities. “I think that it is likely we will start with some preliminary online surveys to identify some of the cultural adaptations. We will need to make commonly used treatment methodologies and to identify ways that we can make treatment more accessible.”The effect of the Arab Spring on the mental health of those in the Middle East will be forthcoming, but Miller said the results will almost certainly indicate a need for trauma services in the region.“From the discussions I have had with colleagues so far, there is a very high need for trauma services, paired with a shortage of people available to provide these services, and much difficulty with intergroup relations,” she said.Of specifically high need for trauma resources are university students in the Middle East, she said. “Universities in the area have also reported the need for resources to help their students manage grief, as there have been a large number of student deaths that have greatly affected university communities,” Miller said.Once the need for trauma resources is validated empirically by research, Miller said the ultimate goal of the study is to help psychologically-affected Middle Easterners on the road to recovery.“After we do some survey research to identify basic needs, we are hoping to test a few intervention methodologies,” Miller said. “But what that will look like will depend on feedback we receive from the communities.”Tags: Middle Eastlast_img read more

Read More »

‘Defamation Experience’ aims to educate about diversity

first_imgThis week, Saint Mary’s will be hosting “The Defamation Experience”, a three-phase interactive event that aims to promote diversity in various settings. There are three phrases to the diversity program: the play, the deliberation and the post-show discussion. It is sponsored by the Center for Women’s Intercultural Leadership (CWIL), Multicultural Services and Campus and Community Events.“The Defamation Experience” was created and written by award-winning playwright Todd Logan. It premiered in November 2010. Logan wanted to write a play that encourages greater tolerance and understanding by spurring self-examination and promoting compelling civil discourse. According to “The Defamation Experience” website, the experience was first performed at DePaul University for an audience of 12, soon after President Barack Obama took office.“[It was] just a few months into the Obama Administration. It was an interesting time for American race relations, with some declaring our society ‘post-racial’ and others cautioning, as does one of the characters in the play, ‘just because Barack Obama is president, we’re a long way from a level playing field,’” Logan wrote on the Defamation Experience’s website.Sophomore Francesca Monsisvais said she hopes the Saint Mary’s community learns a lot from the experience and continue to promote diversity on campus.“Students of all majors should attend the experience because this form of discussion is much needed around our campus,” she said.CWIL director Mana Derakhshani said in an email she hopes the experience is beneficial for the Saint Mary’s community as the College seeks to deepen its diversity.“We hope to provide an opportunity for various College constituencies to engage in civil discourse around important issues regarding how people identify themselves and how that impacts their lives. We contacted a number of other institutions that had brought ‘The Defamation Experience’ to their campus and heard some very good reviews,” she said.The experience will take place Tuesday, October 2 at 7:30 p.m. in the Moreau Center for the Arts. It is free and open to the Saint Mary’s community and the public.Tags: Diversity, inclusion, saint mary’s, The Defamation Experiencelast_img read more

Read More »

Saint Mary’s volleyball team and BAVO to host advocacy activities

first_imgTags: BAVO, domestic violence, Saint Mary’s volleyball To honor Domestic Violence Awareness month, the Belles Against Violence Office (BAVO) — led by coordinator Liz Coulston — is hosting seven events throughout October.“Our goal is to end violence on the campus of Saint Mary’s in addition to in our community,” Coulston said. “We help students who have been sexually assaulted, a part of relationship violence or stalking in any way they need, whether recent or not.”BAVO is pairing up with the athletic department for their first event “Volley Against Violence” at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.“Belles Athletics has always been a big supporter of our cause and is always willing to partner with us on events,” Coulston said. “It’s also a great way to reach a different community than what some of our other events tend to reach.”During the volleyball game, there will be a number of activities in which attendees can participate. Both the Saint Mary’s Belles and their opponents, the Adrian Bulldogs, will be wearing purple ribbons in their hair to support the cause. Both teams are asking attendees to join them in wearing purple for the cause.“BAVO will have a table set up on the main floor of Angela to give out information regarding domestic violence along with a raffle for a couple of different prizes,” Coulston said. “We are also collecting non-perishable food items for the Family Justice Center. This food drive will be going on for the entire month of October with a bin to collect food at all of our events.”Throughout the next months, BAVO will also be partnering with the athletic department for a domestic violence awareness soccer game as well as a screening of the movie “At the Heart of Gold” about the USA gymnastics team. Sports information director Sarah Miesle works alongside Coulston to make these events possible.“The athletic department has been working with BAVO ever since it started around eight to nine years ago,” Miesle said. “Student athletes are a good resource on campus to spread this message. It is one thing for us to talk until we are blue in the face saying this is important but until it registers with students why it is important, we can only go so far.”Junior Meghan McNamara on the Student Advisory Committee for BAVO, along with a co-chair of Green Dot, a bystander intervention organization, said she finds this office to be an extremely important resource for Saint Mary’s students. She said she encourages other students to get involved by applying for one of BAVO’s four committees or even just attending events on campus.“Being a part of BAVO makes me feel like I am making a difference,” McNamara said. “I want girls to know that they are not alone, and they have people that will stand behind them and listen. This program has allowed me to see that it’s not always about who is helping, but it is also about how we are helping.”last_img read more

Read More »

Mid-Year Marks: 2019 Student Government Insider

first_imgDiane Park | The Observer Read below for all of the mid-year marks for the 2019 student government administrations of Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s:Boyle, McGuire discuss mid-year progressSaint Mary’s SGA president reflects on semester of community-building during time of administrative transitionStudent government department reviewsSaint Mary’s SGA committee reviewsSenate examines finances, passes resolutionsStudent Union Board expands programming, empowers freshmen2019 Notre Dame Class Council Reviews2019 Saint Mary’s Class Council ReviewsStudent government plans civil discourse launch for next semesterND, SMC student government administrations discuss Midnight Express cancellationHPC encourages participation in dorm events, bridge with administrationTags: Elizabeth Boyle, HPC, Notre Dame Student Government, Patrick McGuire, Saint Mary’s Student Government Association, Student Government Insider 2019, Student Union Boardlast_img read more

Read More »

First-year retreats aim to foster multicultural community regardless of COVID-19 changes

first_imgCourtesy of Daryl Naquin Jr. First-year students gathered in the Stepan Center for the Black Student Ministry First Year Retreat on Saturady.In spite of COVID-19 protocols, many participants said they still enjoyed their retreat experience. “My favorite part was in the end when everyone was put into a circle, and we had popsicle sticks, and people stood up in terms of birthdays and tapped people they thought were their friends,” said first year student Iverson Sun, who attended the Asian/Asian American First Year Retreat. “It was a really sweet and wholesome thing.”Though the circumstances differed from usual retreats, sophomore Jerome Gan, Asian/Asian American First Year Retreat leader said he thinks the group managed to include everything that is traditionally a part of the Asian American Association.“That was a big success,” he said. “It showed because this morning, waking up to notes, texts, emails from table leaders, from all these first years who I met, and hearing all these positive experiences from them and all these kind words of affirmations really just make my day, my month and my year.”The retreat leaders, including Naquin, hope the first year students can carry friendships with them as they are about to embark on their college journeys. “The goal of The Plunge is to provide first years an opportunity to build community and also gain the wisdom that they need to help them on their journeys,” Naquin said. Gan said the same in reference to the Asian/Asian American First Year Retreat.“I really wanted to remind them that there’s a community when they need it, there is someone to be connected with and will be there for them, be the first years or be it upperclassmen within the Asian community. That’s why I wanted to lead it because I feel a sense of responsibility to these kids and to the community,” Gan said.While COVID-19 changes have made the first-year experience different, Gan said first-year students will make some of the most extraordinary memories in their life at the retreat.“COVID isn’t going to stop your year. This year is going to be as special as you make it out to be just as any other year would be,” Gan said. “Sure there are setbacks. It is tougher to meet people right now, but the resilience and the experiences that come out of this will be ones that you will cherish for a lifetime. I know that these kids are going to make the best out of it, and they’re going to go into this year and into next year prepared, strong, resilient, responsible.”Tags: African American community, Asian community, first year retreat, first year students, Multicultural Student Programs and Services Courtesy of Dylan Leupi The Asian/Asian American First Year Retreat took place Saturday in the Dahnke Ballroom.In light of the pandemic, the first-year retreats took place on campus in the Dahnke Ballroom for the Asian/Asian American First Year Retreat and the Stepan Center for the Black Student Ministry First Year Retreat.More than 50 first-year students, along with 28 leaders participated in The Plunge and around 120 first-year students along with 26 leaders participated in the Asian/Asian American retreat.The planning behind the retreats began in the summer and required team efforts to adjust to the COVID-19 protocols regarding spacing, catering and activities.“Throughout the planning process, we focused on what we called the three C’s,” said senior Daryl Naquin Jr., an anchor intern at Campus Ministry. “The three C’s were to cover, to build community and to commission. [The first-years] were coming with a lot of stuff on their hearts. Their senior year was vacated, and they were dealing with racial trauma throughout the past couple of months. But despite everything going on, God still has a purpose for them. That was what we were trying to convey through talks with them.” The Black Student Ministry First Year “Plunge” Retreat and Asian/Asian American First Year Retreat took place all day Saturday in an effort to connect first-year students and celebrate their backgrounds. Sophomore Dylan Leupi, an Asian/Asian American First Year Retreat leader, said the goal of the retreat was to introduce first years to a community on campus and make them aware that other students are here for them to help them embark on their journeys.last_img read more

Read More »