Our Stories

‘Ways of seeing and changing the world’: Gender Studies Program marks 30 years

Carrie Gates

Three decades after its founding, the Gender Studies Program is thriving, with more than 70 students currently pursuing gender studies majors, supplementary majors, and minors at the undergraduate and graduate levels, as well as more than 50 associated faculty across campus. Hundreds of students have found a home in the program over the years — including Sarah A. Mustillo ’96, the...

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Social design course challenges students from Notre Dame and India to use creativity to tackle a global problem

Carrie Gates

When Kacey Hengesbach began her undergraduate career at Notre Dame, she didn’t imagine that it would include traveling 8,000 miles to Ahmedabad, India. But thanks to a new course created by Neeta Verma, she had the chance to spend three weeks there last summer, working collaboratively with students from India’s National Institute of Design. 

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Notre Dame economists help small business owners in Kenya find success

Carrie Gates

In a dense Nairobi slum best known for its toxic garbage dump, the crowded streets are lined with roadside stands. With no job prospects, residents’ best chance to eke out a living comes from selling foods and handcrafted goods at these tiny stalls. Three assistant professors in Notre Dame’s Department of Economics—Wyatt Brooks, Kevin Donovan, and Terence Johnson—are researching ways...

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FTT course on nonfiction graphic novels inspires visual storytelling by students

Carrie Gates

  After adapting his award-winning documentary On the Bridge into a graphic novel that both portrayed stories of veterans and offered a behind-the-scenes glimpse of Olivier Morel’s emotions and struggles as he interviewed them, the FTT assistant professor was inspired to create an undergraduate course. In Graphic Wounds, Graphic Novels, in-depth readings and discussions with some of the genre’s leading...

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Quesada and Robles strengthen Department of English’s expertise in global and multicultural literature

Carrie Gates

Sarah Quesada's research and teaching interests include 20th and 21st century Latinx and Latin American literatures, Francophone West African literature, decolonial and spatial theory, and heritage tourism of the African diaspora. Francisco Robles focuses on multiethnic American literature of the 20th century, particularly African American, Chicanx, Southwestern, postcolonial, and LGBTQ literature. Both have close ties to Notre Dame's Institute for Latino Studies. ...

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Graduate student travels to Nepal to design and construct housing for earthquake victims

Carrie Gates

Kevin Phaup, who is pursuing a master’s degree in industrial design, went to Nepal last summer to conduct research for his thesis project—designing stronger, safer, cost-effective temporary shelters for refugees and victims of natural disasters. While there, he worked with Hope for Nepal, an organization co-founded by Assistant Professor Ann-Marie Conrado, to construct temporary shelters, permanent homes, and schools after...

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Scholars of Spanish and Italian culture and literature join Arts and Letters faculty

Carrie Gates

The Department of Romance Languages and Literatures has added expertise in modern Spanish and Italian culture and literature this year with two new faculty hires — Pedro Aguilera-Mellado and Charles Leavitt IV. Aguilera-Mellado, who comes to Notre Dame from the University of Michigan, focuses on modern and contemporary Spain. Leavitt, who received a Ph.D. from Notre Dame in 2010, returns to...

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Spanish professor wins book prize for her work on Latin American female travel writers

Carrie Gates

Vanesa Miseres, an assistant professor of Spanish in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, has won a prize from the International Institute of Latin American Literature for her book Mujeres en tránsito: viaje, identidad y escritura en Sudamérica. Mujeres en tránsito examines four prominent female writers who traveled to and from Latin America in the 19th century — Flora Tristan, Juana...

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Irish studies and English professor Barry McCrea awarded Princeton Humanities Council fellowship

Carrie Gates

One of the things that drives novelists, McCrea said, is the desire to narrate their own generation. He sees his generation — in Europe and in the U.S. — as “a kind of forgotten middle child,” squeezed between the baby boomers and the millennials. “I wanted to tell the story of my generation, connected to the traditional, often rural life of our parents...

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Romance Languages and Literatures chair strives to bring literary and cultural context to American understanding of Cuba

Carrie Gates

Thomas Anderson, a professor of Spanish and chair of the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, has written two books on Cuban literature and culture and has published an edited volume of a leading Cuban author’s letters. Currently, he is working on a book that focuses on images of the U.S. civil rights movement in Cuban poetry.

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Studying youth participation in Colombia’s peace-building movements

Carrie Gates

The young people of war-torn northern Colombia want their homes and their lifestyle back. Displaced from their villages by guerilla and paramilitary groups, they have spent the last 10 years in urban centers—making them prime targets for recruitment by those same criminal enterprises. But rather than falling prey to a violent cause, they’ve founded a successful peace-building movement. Notre Dame...

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Psychology graduate student examines link between mental health and marriage satisfaction

Carrie Gates

For married couples, the odds aren’t good when one partner has anxiety or depression. The presence of such a mental issue significantly increases the risk that the couple will get divorced. Notre Dame psychology Ph.D. student Judith Biesen wants to find a way to improve the outcomes for those couples. With an American Dream grant from the Institute for Scholarship...

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