Month: January 2021

SGA addresses College readership, renovations

first_imgThe Student Government Association (SGA) discussed the Le Mans Hall basement renovation and the Saint Mary’s Readership Program at Wednesday’s meeting. Student body president Rachael Chesley started the meeting by talking about a meeting with the designer who will be leading the project to renovate Le Mans Hall. “We presented her with all the ideas we talked about last week,” Chesley said. “There are a lot of possibilities that can be done down there.” Different ideas have included a television area, pool table and ping-pong table. Chesley said the basement would be split into eight zones, and SGA’s next steps would be to brainstorm what should go in those zones and to choose a theme color for the area. “We want it to be a really fun area that is engaging and interactive,” Chesley said. SGA will create a committee to discuss what should be done in Le Mans and they are trying to adhere to a particular time frame, she said. Chesley said they hope to have the project completed when students return from Spring Break. To meet that deadline, SGA will finalize the ideas at the beginning of spring semester. “First, we want to have the color we want down there,” Chesley said. “Then, after the color we pick the finish that we want down there. It’s a huge room so it all has to kind of connect still and off of that we have to think of furniture.” In addition to the discussion of the basement renovations, the Board also spent time reviewing the campus’ readership program, which SGA sponsors to supply students with free copies of USA Today, The New York Times and The South Bend Tribune. “We want to bring awareness to the program because it is a great thing we have here on campus so we looked at what other colleges are doing,” Chesley said. The Board discussed hosting “coffee-house style” meetings with professors at Dalloway’s — the campus clubhouse — and having the professor pick an article and present it to students. Chesley said students know about the free access to newspapers on campus, but they don’t always realize SGA sponsors it. The Board also talked about giving out prizes to students are “caught reading.” Students seen reading the newspaper could be given prizes by members of SGA, Chesley said.last_img read more

Motivational speaker lectures at Key Bank event

first_imgAs a motivational speaker, writer and artist Joni Arredia tries to find the best in everyone. “I reflect goodness,” she said. “I love finding the best in people, I am a creative that always follows through. I use this gift that God has given me to make the world a better place. That’s what I do.” Arredia spoke at Saint Mary’s on Thursday night for a Key Bank event. “I’m talking about lifestyle balance, ” she said. “Key Bank puts this event on for women business owners that are their clients.” With all the different ventures she is involved in, Arredia said she understands the importance of lifestyle balance. “All the things that I do … they feel that I balance life very well,” she said. “As an entrepreneur and creative businesswoman how do you keep your connection to yourself, your family and your business … [with] space in your life to balance.” Motivational speaking was not Arredia’s first career choice. In 1982, she bought a jazzercise franchise. “I was teaching about 500 students a week,” she said. “I really found that people were coming in and wanting to lose weight and get fit but what I found more than anything they were looking for a place that made them feel good.” While teaching jazzercise, Arredia also became interested in the nutritional end of fitness. She studied with the ‘Fit or Fat’ method under Cover Bailey and became a speaker for the program. Then, one day, Arredia decided to speak for herself. “One day I thought I’ll just get on that stage and … speak about what I believe in,” she said. “It worked, it worked to the point that I got everyone crying, like 300 people.” Arredia realized while she wanted to impact people with her words, but she needed a tutor to hone her speaking and motivating skills. “Words are very, very powerful and you have to be very responsible [with them],” she said. “I took about another year before started speaking to motivate people [again].” Once she began motivational speaking, Arredia said she realized she wanted to be able to offer people something to take home to continue their journey. It was then she decided to become an author. Arredia has since written a newspaper column on the East Coast and has published two books. Along with motivational speaking and writing, Arredia is also a painter and a recent playwright. “I moved to Chicago seven years ago and started to study [acting] ferociously for two years,” she said. Arredia said she got interested in theatre because of her involvement in high school and she wanted to work in a team again. Her play, ‘Resurfacing’, debuted in Chicago in 2011. Even with all she has accomplished in her life, Arredia said her work with Hut Outreach, a Toledo, Ohio-based organization in Haiti has been the “coolest thing in my life, other than my family.” “I went to Haiti in January, and when I came home worked furiously on pieces [of artwork] and staged a show in my home,” she said. “In one night we raised $20,000 dollars and went back a month later … to work on some exciting outreach programs.” Through her career, Arredia said she has been able to understand people more and realize how to motivate them. “I just love it. It is so much fun,” she said.  “It is such a blast to watch light bulbs go off and peoples eyes sparkly. I thank God every day for this gift.” Contact Anna Boarini at [email protected]last_img read more

Conference talks stem cells

first_imgNotre Dame students and faculty traveled to Vatican City to participate in the Second International Vatican Adult Stem Cell Conference, a three-day event for a select group of medical experts, ethicists, students and financial analysts which ran from April 11-13. The conference,  titled “Regenerative Medicine: A Fundamental Shift in Science and Culture,” was intended to promote awareness of adult stem cell research and its potential and implications for the future of medicine. Juniors Rebecca Marton and Kristin Springer and senior Margaret Kennedy attended the event with professor of biological sciences David Hyde and program of liberal studies professor emeritus Phillip Sloan. Marton and Springer, both biology majors, work with Hyde in the Center for Zebrafish Research, while Kennedy, a double major in philosophy and accounting, works Notre Dame’s Center for Ethics and Culture. “The conference was not only scientific, but at least for one of the days it addressed the ethical issues of stem cell research,” Marton said. Marton explained that one of the conference’s chief goals was to discuss and raise awareness of the distinction between embryonic and adult stem cell research. While embryonic stem cells are taken from human embryos, adult stem cells can be extracted from the very patients needing therapy, meaning the ethical issues regarding destruction of embryos are not a concern. “I think it’s actually a problem today where people confuse the two,” Marton said. “They sort of set themselves against all stem cell research where really they probably don’t have anything against adult stem cell research and just don’t realize the difference. Springer said the difference in the sources of the cells is critical since adult stem cell therapy utilizes a patient’s own cells. “This gap between science and faith was totally bridged,” Springer said. “You’re not destroying life by any means, you’re using a more organic, natural way to heal a patient … and the Church supports it 100 percent.” Springer said she wishes the general public could understand the widespread potential for adult stem cells in regenerative medicine. “Regenerative medicine and adult stem cell therapies – they’re not only going to benefit those in the science field … but I think they’re going to benefit all of us,” Springer said. Springer and Kennedy both referenced multiple sclerosis patient Roxane Beygi, who spoke at the conference about her diagnosis and treatment with adult stem cell therapy. Beygi was told “she had no chance of recovery,” according to Kennedy. “Basically, she went from completely debilitated – couldn’t walk, had a hard time feeding herself, clothing herself, couldn’t speak, and was really struggling – and then underwent stem cell therapy,” Springer said. “Apart from minor speech things, she was like you and me.” Although adult stem cell research does not bear the same ethical concerns as embryonic stem cell research, Kennedy said certain medical and ethical issues still need to be considered. “It has the potential to heal so many people, but at the same time, when is it too much?” Kennedy said. “At what point do we draw the line? If the average human lifespan keeps increasing, it can’t increase exponentially.” Marton said the Notre Dame students were among 26 student ambassadors invited to attend the conference. Springer said most of the students attend other Catholic universities including Georgetown, Villanova and Loyola. “I felt very prepared by my education here to understand the talks and the meaning of what was being presented,” Marton said. Marton, Springer and Kennedy said learning about the potential benefits of adult stem cell research made them hope to continue researching novel therapies or, in Kennedy’s case, to remain familiar with the biotech industry. “This is actually a reality today,” Kennedy said. “This isn’t some thing that’s conceived of in the future, it really is at the cusp of fundamentally changing medicine today.” Contact Lesley Stevenson at [email protected]last_img read more

Former student pleads guilty to father’s murder

first_imgFormer Notre Dame honors student Patrick Mikes Jr. pleaded guilty but mentally ill to second-degree murder today for the July 27, 2012, death of his father, Patrick Joseph Mikes Sr. The guilty plea means Mikes Jr. will be sentenced anywhere from 12 years to life, and he will receive mental health treatment while in prison. The Troy, Mich., native will be sentenced Sept. 10. According to his attorney, Christopher Andreoff, in a statement to the Detroit News, Mikes Jr. could be considered for parole. Mikes Jr. and his younger brother reported their father missing July 29, 2012, according to a press release from the Troy Police Department. The brothers told police they had last seen their father two days earlier when he left for a bike ride. Mikes Sr. was found beaten to death in a cornfield. Mikes Jr. was arrested on an open murder charge Aug. 8, 2012, after police discovered evidence of a violent dispute in the family’s basement. Mikes Jr. was diagnosed as bipolar in 2008. Mikes Sr. was a 1979 alumnus of Notre Dame.last_img read more

SMC group hosts world cinema festival

first_imgThis week, the College’s annual “World Cinema Festival” will emphasize women directors and strong female characters.Hosted by the Center for Womens Intercultural Leadership (CWIL) at Saint Mary’s, the weeklong series will feature five films in the Vander Valet Auditorium.Mana Derakhshani, associate director of CWIL, said a grant from Franco-American Cultural Exchange program called Tournées originally made the event possible. Since then, CWIL has been hosting this event every year.“This effort supports the internationalization of the campus in the curriculum with the Global Learning outcomes of the Sophia Program, in the increase in our study abroad opportunity in the expansion of exchange programs with international colleges and university,” Derakhshani said.According to a poster advertising the event, “The World Cinema Festival” will include the following films: “La Mujer sin Cabeza,” “The Indendies,” “A Separation,” “Talentine” and “Autumn Gem.”“La Mujer sin Cabeza” (the Headless Woman) is an Argentinean psychological-thriller film focusing on social class systems, and follows the life of a woman who after being impacted by an event becomes psychotic. The film records changes in Veronica’s psychological state after a life-changing incident.“The Indendies” is a Canadian film adapted from the play The Incendies focuses on the final wishes of a mother to send her two sons to the Middle East in search of their roots. “A Separation” is an Iranian film centers on the lives of an Iranian middle class couple who separate and have to deal with lower class care giver who cares for his father with Alzheimer’s. “Talentine” is a Malaysian comedy film about a group of young students who attempt to find their footing before stepping out into the real world. “Autumn Gem” is a Chinese documentary that explores the life of China’s first feminist Qiu Jem and her challenging traditional gender roles and demanding equal rights for women.Following the screening of “The Indendies,” first-year Melissa Mendez spoke highly of the film. “I like the plot twist and the war that became part of the story,” Melissa Mendez said. “I loved the war and revolt attacks.” Each film shown in the Festival aims to expose viewers to issues faced by international countries and step into the shoes of unique characters, according to advertising for the event.“I hope that this provides students with the opportunity to learn about other parts of the world, hear languages other than English and discover the cinematic art beyond Hollywood-type films,” Derakhshani said.Tags: CWILlast_img read more

ND investment expert explores global markets

first_imgLONDON — Addressing a crowd of students, alumni and benefactors at Trafalgar Hall on Thursday as part of the Seventh Annual Notre Dame Alumni-Student London Lecture Series, University vice president and Chief Investment Officer (CIO) Scott Malpass elucidated the obstacles and benefits of investing in a global market.Malpass, who oversees the University’s endowment, working capital, pension and life income assets, gave a talk entitled, “The Notre Dame Endowment — The Challenges of Being a Global Investor in an Uncertain World.” He said the title of the talk was appropriate given Notre Dame’s significant international investments.“We’re actually experimenting with the idea of having offices overseas,” Malpass said. “It’s obviously a global world; we’re a major global investor. 40 percent of our endowment is invested overseas, about half of that in emerging markets.”Malpass said global investing entails picking industries and locations that can leverage a company’s strengths and add value. For Notre Dame, one of those main spots has been the energy industry, he said.“Energy is an area which we’re spending a lot of time on … obviously, in any industry going through change, there’s usually opportunity, particularly I’d say in oil services and more the private side,” Malpass said. “I’ve spent a lot of my time in London looking at a lot of energy-related opportunities for European investments in Scotland and the U.K.”Another investment target for Notre Dame, Malpass said, is emerging markets, particularly China, India, Brazil and, more recently, Africa.“We do a lot of emerging markets, a lot more than most investors,” he said. “It’s an area where there’s a lot of inefficiency, long-term high growth rates … there’s a lot of risk in some of those markets, but we’re really only doing them because we can find really good partners.”It is these partners, Malpass noted, that play an important role in managing the Notre Dame endowment, which totaled approximately $8.5 billion at the end of the last fiscal year.“We’re not managing this in-house; I’m not trading stocks or investing in companies directly,” Malpass said. “We’re hiring partners across all these major asset classes, and we’re giving them a piece of the endowment to manage, and we’re paying them to do that. We have over 100 investment partners around the world, and it’s a heck of a group.”Malpass, who was named Notre Dame’s CIO at the age of 26 in 1989, said a main goal during his tenure has been to build a strong investment organization to oversee the endowment, which consists of 5,500 endowment funds all pooled into one. This organization then carries forth a philosophy of “try to do something different,” he said.“Obviously, we’re long-term investors,” he said. “… We don’t have that luxury in a finite period of investing for individuals, but endowments are perpetual.“There’s things we can take on and risks we can take on that an individual wouldn’t take on. Part of the challenge that we’ve took on was, ‘How can we take on a portfolio that could earn very high real returns at a risk level much lower than the focus in the stock market?’“So over the years that’s what we’ve been trying to do — we’ve been trying to build a superior portfolio that can earn low double-digit returns on average over time.”In his tenure as CIO, Malpass has seen the Notre Dame endowment grow from the 25th to the 12th largest in the nation and the largest among American Catholic universities. The Notre Dame endowment, which covered only five percent of the University’s operating budget 25 years ago, now covers 30 percent of the University’s budget.Malpass said he is particularly proud to have seen the University’s total financial aid increase from $5 million in 1989 to its current total of $120 million.“It was immoral as a Catholic university to have kids accepted and not meet full need,” he said. “We’ve come a long way. We wouldn’t have the quality of faculty and students, the success of our alumni, if we weren’t able to attract the very best, partly because of the improvements we made in financial aid.”Malpass noted that his efforts in growing the Notre Dame endowment would not have been possible without the influence of University President Emeritus Fr. Theodore Hesburgh.“[Endowment] was something [Hesburgh] always emphasized, and he imparted that importance of the stewardship and fiduciary duty we have to take care of our financial resources in a first-class manner,” Malpass said. “He imparted that responsibility and importance of that, and it was obviously very motivating to me.”Tags: investment, London, London program, Notre Dame, Scott Malpasslast_img read more

GRC celebrates 10th anniversary

first_imgThe Notre Dame Gender Relations Center (GRC) will celebrate its 10th anniversary this Wednesday from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Dooley and Sorin Rooms of LaFortune Student Center. The open house will consist of informational activities showcasing the work the GRC has done over the past 10 years and a hot chocolate bar, Danielle Aase, a student event coordinator with the GRC, said.Keri O’Mara “The GRC 10th anniversary celebration is not only a celebration of what the GRC has accomplished over the last ten years, but also a way for students to learn more about the history of the GRC and suggest ideas for conversations they would like to have in the future,” Aase said. “In addition to timelines detailing major GRC events over the last ten years, there will be whiteboards available for students to write what the GRC and healthy gender relations means to them.“There will also be a suggestions box for students to submit ideas for potential programs they would like to see in the future.”Past events have included distributing t-shirts in the dining halls and in LaFortune Student Center, Regina Gesicki, assistant director of educational initiatives at the GRC, said. The design included a depiction of a tree, with the branches representing the different topics the GRC focuses on and its anniversary year slogan, “Growing Healthy Relationships since 2004,” Gesicki said.“We’re planning events throughout the 2014-2015 academic year,” Gesicki said. “In the spring semester, we plan to host a panel discussion about the GRC’s … alum and staff who have shaped … its history.”The Gender Relations Center opened on a part-time basis in the fall of 2004 and became a full department in the Division of Student Affairs in the fall of 2005, Gesicki said. Heather Rakoczy Russell, the Pangborn Hall Rector at the time, served as the founding director, Gesicki said.“In the few years prior to the GRC’s founding, the first female student body president, Brooke Norton, and other campus student leaders had called for the creation of a University-sponsored ‘Center for Men and Women,’” Gesicki said.The difference between Notre Dame’s Gender Relations Center and other similar centers at other universities lies in the fact that the Notre Dame GRC focuses on both women and men.“This breadth is one unique aspect of the GRC,” Gesicki said. “Though loosely modeled on women’s centers at other top 25 universities, the GRC was, from the outset, meant to serve as a resource for all students at Notre Dame as they navigate healthy relationships, gender and sexuality within the Catholic character of the University.”The GRC is dedicated to promoting moral formation in order to create a healthy culture at Notre Dame, Gesicki said. It seeks to engage the campus in respectful dialogue and to build a community honoring the human dignity of all students.“As an office in the Division of Student Affairs, the GRC designs and implements programs about healthy relationships, gender and sexuality consistent with the Catholic character of the University,” Gesicki said. “It creates dialogue on campus by collaborating with student groups, other departments at Notre Dame and community organizations in South Bend.”Aase said she learned about the Gender Relations Center during freshmen orientation and knew right away she wanted to get involved.“I think the GRC is incredibly important because it facilitates conversations that I believe are necessary to have on campus – ones that help our community become stronger,” Aase said. “The GRC puts on programming about topics such as healthy relationships, sexual and gender identity and violence prevention.“I think educating people on these topics makes the community a healthier and more welcoming place.”Some notable milestones in the 10-year history of the GRC have included the transition from a part-time to a full-time staff, Gesicki said. By fall 2010, the GRC’s office space, programming and budget had all quadrupled from their initial size, Gesicki said.“We also expanded in ways that allowed us to delve further into the intersectionality of identities, with the hiring of an assistant director for outreach services, a position that included ‘Men & Masculinity’ initiatives in 2012, and assistant director for LGBTQ student concerns in 2013,” Gesicki said.The GRC also sponsors various training sessions for students, staff and faculty, Gesicki said.“We offer support and guidance to students as they seek to answer three important questions: Who am I? Who am I with others? Who am I with God?” Gesicki said. “We provide opportunities for leadership development through various roles in our student leader program: FIRE Starters, event facilitators and dorm commissioners, as well as student office assistants.“We strive to provide varied opportunities for students to learn to develop healthy and safe relationships, while acknowledging and lifting up the inherent dignity of self and other as those created in God’s likeness.”Tags: 10th anniversary GRC, Gender Relations Committee, GRC, tenth GRC anniversarylast_img read more

Panel discusses ‘The Hunting Ground’

first_imgCNN’s documentary “The Hunting Ground” was shown at the Browning Cinema in the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center (DPAC) on Friday night at 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., accompanied by a panel discussion after both screenings.“The Hunting Ground,” which focuses on sexual assaults on elite college campuses across the country, prominently features Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s.In particular, the film highlights the case of Elizabeth “Lizzy” Seeberg, a former first-year student at Saint Mary’s, who committed suicide after an alleged sexual assault by a member of the Notre Dame football team. Lizzy’s father, Tom Seeberg, was interviewed in the film, along with two other former Saint Mary’s students and former NDSP officer Lt. Pat Cottrell.The Belles Against Violence Office (BAVO) previously sponsored a showing of the film April 9 at Saint Mary’s, which College president Carol Ann Mooney attended and sat in the audience during the panel discussion that followed the screening.After the Friday night showings, panels of three individuals representing faculty, staff and students sat down to speak and answer questions from the audience. Jim Collins, professor and chair of the department of film, television and theatre, moderated both panels.After the 9:30 p.m. showing, student body president emeritus Lauren Vidal, associate director of gender studies Abby Palko and director of the Gender Relations Center (GRC) Christine Caron Gebhardt discussed their reactions to the film and fielded questions.One student inquired as to whether the University had a comment on the recent Huffington Post article detailing a Title IX discrimination lawsuit filed against the University. University spokesperson Dennis Brown, who was not on the panel but spoke from the audience, said the lawsuit did not have to do with the film’s topic of sexual assault.“What they were reporting on is a discrimination and harassment complaint that was made to the office of civil rights,” Brown said. “It has nothing to do with a sexual assault complaint. The Huffington Post article paired it with ‘The Hunting Ground’ as if it was a sexual assault complaint, and it was not.”Several audience members expressed their concern that no members of the University administration were sitting on the panel. In response, Gebhardt stated she is a member of the administration as director of the GRC and said the panel was constructed purposefully.“We could have had 20 people [on the panel], and we didn’t necessarily want to do that. [Notre Dame’s Deputy Title IX Coordinator] Melissa [Lindley] is more than willing to address questions, and other folks are here willing to address questions,” Gebhardt said.Junior Brett O’Connell asked the panel what they thought could be done about the lack of adequate communication between students and the administration. (Editor’s note: Brett O’Connell is a Sports writer for The Observer.)“There is a clear adversarial relationship between administration and students, both portrayed in the film and apparently the question panel that follows the film … I want to engage with how we can broaden the channels of communication between students, faculty, staff and administration in order to allow a more cooperative environment for us to work in,” O’Connell said. “What kind of ideas do you guys have that might allow us to not function as adversaries and to really pursue a more creative, more inventive solution as a community of college students, academics and staff?”Vidal answered that she felt the solution would require work from not only the administration but also from the students.“I think that this feels as though I’m an administrator sitting on this panel, but I’m a student,” she said. “I think it starts at the ground level. Students need to be willing to have the conversation — to email administrators, to email the faculty, to come to the student government office.“I get caught up in my assignments and my daily life, so when things happen — these big conversations blow up on our campus — everyone looks retrospectively and thinks, ‘Why didn’t we have this conversation sooner? Why didn’t we make connections sooner?’ and I think it’s our responsibility to draw those lines of communication, but I would encourage the faculty and administrators to continue to reach out to students, to open up these town hall meetings and to create more of an environment for conversation.“You can’t put the responsibility just on students or just on faculty and staff — I think it needs to be a unified effort, and that’s what tonight is about. It’s about acknowledging this very large question, this very large and upsetting conversation, and opening the floor.”Many members of the audience said they felt the process for reporting sexual assaults on campus is unclear and inadequate and lacks enough support for victims or information about their options.“When a report is made, there is an investigation, and that is done by a third-party attorney who then does fact-finding related to the victim or the survivor, who makes the complaint, the respondent and the witnesses, and then it comes back to the Title IX office,” Gebhardt said in response. “And then Melissa [Lindley] sits down and says to the victim, ‘What do you want to do? Do you want to go forward to the Office of Community Standards? Do you want to stop?’“I think it’s really important that students know the choices that they have; for some students, they want to tell their story to somebody confidentially. Others, they want to tell their story publicly. And I hope we’re creating a culture where students can share their stories through things like ‘A Time to Heal’ dinner and Take Back the Night, but I would say that the reporting process is the way in which, if a students wants it investigated, there will be an investigation.”Gebhardt later commented that she had not had any students pursue criminal charges against their assailants.“When I sit down with a survivor or victim, they are notified that they have the option to go through the criminal process, and then oftentimes they will not want to do that,” she said. “NDSP does send over the reports to the prosecutor’s office, and the prosecutor’s office decides whether it will take it up or not.“And I think one of the questions we have to ask is that if people don’t use the criminal process, why do they not use it? Do they feel the criminal process is an option for them? We try to make it clear that it is an option for them to pursue.“They can do that either simultaneous with a Title IX, [or] they can put off our Title IX in order to pursue the criminal [process]. I would definitely say that we encourage that. I have not had anyone take us up on that,” she said.One audience member pointed out “The Hunting Ground” also contains statistics on the numbers of reported sexual assaults relative to expulsions at several universities, but those figures do not include Notre Dame. When asked whether she had information about that statistic at the University, Gebhardt said she had not seen the relevant numbers.“I don’t have those. That should be in the NDSP Clery Report that gets sent to you every year,” she said. “… But [the report] doesn’t have the expulsion rate, and I don’t have that information. … I can’t speak on behalf of the University and say [the statistics are] never [available], but I’d be happy to bring that forward and say that something folks were wondering about tonight was about expulsions.”Editor’s note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Saint Mary’s College president Carol Ann Mooney sat on the April 9 panel following a screening of “The Hunting Ground” at Saint Mary’s. Mooney attended the screening and panel discussion, but was not a member of the panel. The Observer regrets this error.Tags: DPAC, gender relations, GRC, sexual assault, The Hunting Groundlast_img read more

Kelly Cares hosts Zumba class in the stadium

first_imgWhen you are diagnosed with any type of cancer, you fight like a champion. Paqui Kelly, two-time breast cancer survivor and co-founder and board president of the Kelly Cares Foundation, understands that fight.Kelly founded the organization with her husband, Irish head coach Brian Kelly, after her first experience with cancer.“I was sick for 18 months for the first time around. After I got better, I wanted to do something to help,” Kelly said. “I saw a lot of things when I was sick, and I was thankful that I had all the insurance that I needed, rides to chemo, people to take care of me during times that weren’t very good days.“There were people, single people, who were struggling doing the same things I did. I found out that there are a lot of non-profits that have lots of little ‘angel people,’ as I call them, those single people, because they need help just like everyone else. That was where the idea started.”Monday, the organization held “Paqui’s Pink Out Zumba,” a free Zumba class on the field at Notre Dame Stadium, Kelly said. More than 900 people attended the event and participants received free goody bags and t-shirts.“It’s a lot of fun, and you can’t go wrong with movement and music,” Kelly said. “I’m so excited to be a part of it. We share stories and [talk about] how much has changed because of the amount of fundraising, education, new drugs and early detection programs.”Kelly said this is the second year the foundation has hosted Zumba in the stadium.“Cancer doesn’t just happen in October. Our theme for Paqui’s 2015 Wellness Playbook is educate, thrive and support,” Kelly said. “Those are the things you need to do. If you have an illness, you’ll need to educate yourself about that illness. You are going to have lots of support and to let yourself accept that support. The thrive part [of the theme comes in] when the people supporting you thrive off of you becoming better. It’s all part of the healing process, in my experience.”The Paqui’s Playbook series was created after the organization felt that breast cancer support was lacking in the South Bend area, Patrizia Martellaro, the marketing and development manger for the foundation, said.“There is not a lot in the area during October. So the series was created and designed to touch everyone with a bunch of different activities,” Martellaro said. “It is meant to get people educated on breast cancer and what they can do as a survivor or someone going through it or someone who just cares about the cause.”Martellaro said that the foundation wanted to plan a fun event that everyone could get involved with during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The event was designed to bring in students from the University, as well as those from the surrounding South Bend community.“Because health is one of the pillars of our organization, and staying healthy, having a healthy lifestyle is so important to preventing any kind of disease, including cancer, we wanted to do something health-related that people could get involved in,” said Martellaro.According to Kelly, the event was simply designed to raise awareness for the cause.“For the people that have gone through it, it is something to help them celebrate their health,” she said.Throughout Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the foundation will hold numerous different events as part of the Paqui’s Playbook series, Martellaro said. In addition to the Pink Out Zumba Event, the foundation will be holding a Pedal in Pink Cycle event on campus in the Rockne Memorial on Oct. 27.“What we hope people get out of it [is] to motivate each other to go get their mammograms and have good health habits. That is the goal,” Kelly said.Tags: breast cancer awareness, cancer, Kelly Cares Foundation, zumbalast_img read more

Pizza, Pop and Politics examines right to recreation

first_imgNDVotes hosted another discussion in its Pizza, Pop and Politics series Wednesday, featuring presentations by associate professor of American Studies Annie Coleman and professor in the Program of Liberal Studies F. Clark Power on the political history of sport.Beginning her presentation with a reflection on a reading recently used in a class she teaches titled “Sports in American Culture,” Coleman said people enjoy sports because they are “very upfront and straightforward.”“We read an article … by a couple of socialists who are trying to figure out how they can love sports — or why we love sports so much and why socialists can love sports — and also why capitalists love sports,” Coleman said. “The takeaway that they argue … we like sports because sports seem to be a separate playing-ground, a place of fair competition where you know the rules, you know who you’re playing against, you know how to score.”Coleman said sport offers a clear contrast against the current status of the job market, in which the rules are not always very clear.“This [fairness] is contrasted, perhaps, by the situation you might face after you graduate and you go on the job market and you’re trying to figure out, ‘Who am I competing against? What are the rules? Who are they looking for? How do I get this job?’ That’s a lot more frustrating, because it’s hard to tell,” she said. “This ideal of sports — of ‘unmystified competition’ — has a lot of appeal.”Access to and recognition of sports are historically related to the power of one’s own group, Coleman said.“Sports have been deeply in-meshed in relationships with power since the beginning,” she said. “One way of thinking about it is thinking about who gets to define what sports are and who gets to play them — it’s typically groups with cultural, social, political and economic power.”Power said the role of sports and recreation changed near the beginning of the 20th century, taking a more prominent role in the life of typical Americans.“In the 18th century, recreational programs were for the leisure class,” he said. “At the turn of the century, welfare and philanthropy paid for the construction of sports and recreational facilities and programs for all kinds of children.”Power, who also works as an advocate for increased public funding of recreation programs, particularly in urban areas, said modern-day recreational sports can be framed as a political issue.“This is a political issue in a way, it is a human rights issue in a way; there is a legitimate right to play,” Power said. “I mean, apart from the health benefits, and the prescription of character, how about just play for the sheer fun of it? Or should that just be for some kids? If some kids deserve to play in safe places and some kids deserve to play other places in other places, too bad?” Power said increased public funding for recreational sport ought to be made available, contrasting the effects of older models of public recreation funding with those of modern ones.“At one time in our history, we did it; we as a people did it,” Power said. “That was a political act — tax people and build playgrounds, and put sport in schools. What’s happening today? We’re not funding the playgrounds, and we’re not funding the school activities. And, who is paying for that? Who pays, if it’s not the state? It’s your family, and if your family can’t afford it, then it’s ‘too bad.’”Tags: Children, Economic Inequality, inequality, Pizza Pop and Politics, Public Funding, Recreation, Sportlast_img read more