Student/Alumni Stories

Planting produce, growing jobs

Jessica Trobaugh Temple '92

Lifting a panel of romaine lettuce, Jan Pilarski ’79, ’96M.A., exposes a tangle of plump roots. Over a year’s time, her social enterprise business, Green Bridge Growers, can produce several hundred pounds of organic vegetables and herbs. The entrepreneurial venture Pilarski began with her son Chris Tidmarsh is an aquaponic farming operation that provides training and jobs for young adults...

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Alumna translates liberal arts degree into international business career

Libby Feil

When Wendy Wang ’06 came to Notre Dame, she was focused on pursuing a career in academia. But when her plans changed, her liberal arts training moved with her. The skills she developed in the College of Arts and Letters have served her well in the business world, including in her current role as vice president at BlackRock, the world’s...

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The embarrassment of racism

Terry Fitzgibbons '04

Gathering with extended family or old friends often seems to churn up different versions of the same story.  From the vantage point of the distant northern suburbs, our conversation dips down into Philadelphia: who lives there now, where someone else used to live, how this neighborhood has changed, how that neighborhood has changed back. “We grew up near Olney,” we...

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Washington Supreme Court Justice Mary Yu, ’93 J.D., shares key insights with students

Lauren Love

  Growing up in Chicago’s Bridgeport neighborhood, an area historically inhabited by working class Irish immigrants, Mary Yu, ’93 J.D., wasn’t afforded the opportunity of seeing many people who looked like her in positions of power or significant influence, she told Notre Dame Law students this week. The daughter of a Mexican farm worker and Chinese factory employee, Yu was...

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Fighting for unaccompanied immigrant children, one client at a time

Denise Wager

In early June, Michael Hagerty, ‘13 J.D., a staff attorney with Public Counsel, a non-profit legal aid firm in Los Angeles, was in Visalia for the first time to represent a client in the Tulare County Probate Court. On that day a crucial guardianship hearing was set to take place—one that Hagerty knew was likely to determine the ultimate fate...

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Notre Dame graduate wins prestigious Native American internship in Washington, D.C.

Josh Weinhold

Before he heads to law school, Notre Dame graduate Tyler Barron ’15 will have a front-row seat for the lawmaking process. Barron, a sociology and American studies major, has been selected for the Udall Foundation’s Native American Congressional Internship Program in Washington, D.C. He will work for 10 weeks this summer with U.S. Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Arizona.

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Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures offers new minor: Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

Charlene Dundek

The Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters is launching a new minor in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). The program offers students the opportunity to study linguistics education, learn how to teach English, and develop classroom management and lesson planning skills.

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Marc Burdell named program director, Low Socioeconomic Status support

Ann Hastings

Burdell will oversee the creation of a student life enrichment program under the Fighting Irish Initiative, a groundbreaking initiative that will fully fund the cost for low-income students to attend Notre Dame — including tuition and fees, room and board, books, transportation and personal expenses. 

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Notre Dame adds to Wall of Honor on Founder’s Day

Brendan O’Shaughnessy

  Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, added two plaques to the Wall of Honor in Notre Dame’s Main Building on Tuesday (Oct. 13). One plaque honored Notre Dame theologian and teacher Rev. John S. Dunne, C.S.C., and another honored the first generation of African-American students at Notre Dame.  

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History alumnus Patrick Burke advocates for safety and inclusion in sports

Mary Kate Martin

  Soon after graduating from Notre Dame, Patrick Burke ’06 found himself juggling three roles—scout for the Philadelphia Flyers, law student, and co-founder of a nonprofit organization. If ever there was a time when he needed to communicate well and quickly, this was it. Whether the topic was hockey or law or diversity, Burke has found himself calling upon skills...

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A conversation with Justice Sonia Sotomayor

Michael O. Garvey

  A two-hour public conversation Wednesday night (Sept. 2) with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor drew a crowd that filled the 840-seat Leighton Concert Hall and overflowed the adjacent Decio Theatre of the University of Notre Dame’s DeBartolo Performing Arts Center. With Notre Dame alumnae and trustees Anne Thompson, chief environmental affairs correspondent for NBC News, and U.S. Court...

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The Minority Engineering Program

Gene Stowe

Memphis native Leo McWilliams came to Notre Dame as an undergraduate in the late 1970s, earning a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1981, a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1982, and a master’s degree in electrical engineering in 1985. That was before the Minority Engineering Program (MEP) started on campus in 1987, although he participated in the National Society...

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