University kicks off year with Frosh-O

first_imgAs members of the incoming Class of 2018 pack their last bags and begin to converge on campus from all over the world, groups of older students from each residence hall are hard at work behind the scenes, putting the final touches on what will be the freshmen’s first glimpse of life at Notre Dame.Commonly known as Frosh-O, the First Year Orientation is a whirlwind of new faces, speeches and events from Aug. 22-24. In addition to open houses, an official orientation program, academic advising and DomerFest, freshmen will participate in a variety of activities with their residence halls. These events often include icebreakers, learning Notre Dame and hall-specific traditions, and small service projects, sometimes in conjunction with other halls. Senior Deirdre Harrington, chair of the Student Campus Orientation Committee (SCOC), said preparations for the weekend began last April, when the 29 residence halls’ Frosh-O commissioners, the leaders of hall orientation events, gathered for a series of training sessions. Keri O’Mara | The Observer “[It] was basically going over what we expect of them and their staff and what kind of events they should have, and preparing them to be able to plan the events during the summer,” Harrington said. She said the Student Activities Office (SAO) had to approve all Frosh-O events. Commissioners for each hall began exchanging ideas for events with their staffs and with other halls in the spring semester, and, after consulting with rectors, submitted schedule proposals to SCOC. Harrington said SCOC then acted as an intermediary between commissioners and SAO staff, offering suggestions and improvements before submitting the final proposal to SAO, which then offered its own feedback based on a number of considerations, from risk management to what kind of food each event would need. Another dimension of the training process, Harrington said, was a renewed emphasis on inclusiveness, taking students’ differences in background and personality into account, so that all freshmen could feel welcome and comfortable. She said this involved keeping diverse ethnicities, socioeconomic backgrounds, sexual orientations and ability levels in mind when planning events and adjusting existing traditions, such as designing an event students of all athletic abilities could enjoy. “The overall goal is to get people used to Notre Dame and what it means to be a student and part of this community at large, and understanding what it means to be a part of your dorm, or all the types of identities you might have as a Notre Dame student on campus,” Harrington said. Junior Josh Dempsey, a Frosh-O co-commissioner for Duncan Hall, said he and his staff decided to change serenades, a tradition in which male dorms sing to female dorms, by having the residents sing to other male dorms. He said he and his staff also worked to develop better events with female dorms. “It’s more about developing friendships early on and developing meaningful, lasting friendships,” he said. “So we try to avoid your 30-minute event with a female dorm … What we did instead was schedule an hour and a half block where the guys are in a low-pressure atmosphere and they can just mingle and talk and actually get to know [another hall resident] as a person.” The initiative also extended to personality types. Junior Maggie Schmid, a co-commissioner for Cavanaugh Hall, said she worked to make Frosh-O welcoming to both introverted and outgoing students.“We want to make sure we’re taking care of [the students],” Schmid said. “I love Notre Dame, and I want to make sure [freshmen] have a good first impression. The training helps me focus on people who I don’t [normally] focus on, and I like that, because we don’t want to let anyone slip through.” The result of all this work is a months-long, multi-step process of adjusting events and schedules and coordinating with other halls, so that it all fits together in the end. “We’re actually still today just getting approval for things that we submitted in May,” sophomore and Breen-Phillips Hall co-commissioner Melaina LaSalle said.  “It’s very long because I think Notre Dame just wants to make sure that everyone is safe and everyone has options that weekend, so it’s understandable, but it’s a long process.” LaSalle said her goal was to make the freshmen’s orientation experience as good as hers was. “Everyone in the moment is like, ‘oh, serenading, this is so awkward, DomerFest is so awkward … but I met my best friends that weekend, and I’m so thankful for that,” LaSalle said. “If I’m able to give that opportunity to someone else, even if it’s just one person, it’s worth it . . . . Our goal as BP students is to build both a sisterhood within our dorm and relationships outside of our dorm, because that’s what Frosh-O weekend is about, building relationships you’re probably going to know your whole life.” Dempsey said he wanted to emphasize a sense of community during Duncan’s Frosh-O. “Our goal would be really make them feel like Duncan is their hall,” Dempsey said. “That was a big thing for me, when I felt comfortable with the guys I was living with, going to dinner with, makes the guys excited to call their parents at the end of the weekend and say, ‘I had the best time.’ You really have kids who miss home, but are comfortable in their hall. It’s that welcoming aspect that is our main objective.” Tags: class of 2018, Freshman Orientation, Frosh-Olast_img read more

Arsene Wenger sends warning to Aaron Ramsey over Juventus move

first_imgArsene Wenger claims Aaron Ramsey wanted to stay at Arsenal until club withdrew contract Comment Advertisement Ewan RobertsWednesday 6 Nov 2019 11:37 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link7kShares The Welshman moved to Turin on a free transfer when his Arsenal deal expired (Picture: Getty)Arsene Wenger says Aaron Ramsey always wanted to stay at Arsenal but has blamed outside ‘influences’ for his move to Juventus, while he has warned the midfielder he needs to be playing.Ramsey was in the final year of his deal with Arsenal when the club’s hierarchy suddenly took fresh terms off the table, paving the way for the Welshman to sign a pre-contract agreement with Serie A champions Juve.Wenger says he did everything to get Ramsey to stay and believes he was happy to remain at the Emirates until the contract U-turn took place.center_img Ramsey’s start to life at Juventus has been plagued by injury niggles (Picture: Getty)Probed on whether Juve is a good fit for Ramsey, Wenger said bluntly: ‘If he plays. Like Ruud [Gullit] says, you have to win but as well when you’re 27 or 28, that’s your best years as a football player.‘If you don’t play from 27-32 that’s difficult to swallow. You can be patient at 21,22,23, you’re in and out. Once you get to 27 you have to play.’MORE: How Arsenal beat Tottenham to the signing of William SalibaMORE: Arsene Wenger gives encouragement to Bayern Munich over manager jobMore: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man City Advertisement Wenger was speaking during Champions League punditry duty (Picture: beIN SPORTS)Asked if he kept Ramsey at Arsenal as long as he could, Wenger told beIN SPORTS: ‘Yep. In the end I met him once, he wanted to stay at Arsenal.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENT‘They had an agreement and the club came back on that, from what I understood. I tried a long time to extend his contract but sometimes you have influences of agents as well.‘Every case is different and you have to understand in decision makings always who is influential – or not – when you make transfers. What I know from him, he was keen to stay.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing ArsenalDue to several injury problems and Juve’s surplus of talent in central midfield, Ramsey has only started three Serie A matches since moving to Turin.He played 64 minutes on Wednesday night and got his second goal for the club as they beat Lokomotiv Moscow in the Champions League, though Wenger believes game time will be more important than silverware in his peak years.last_img read more

Indiana On Path To State-Funded Preschool

first_imgAs the 2014 legislative session wraps up this week, state lawmakers are expected to decide on the future of state-funded preschool in Indiana. Photo credit: M. Kuhlman.With a possible decision from lawmakers by the end of today, preschool for some low-income Hoosiers could be just around the corner.Under Gov. Mike Pence’s initial proposal for a pilot program, vouchers would be provided for 1,000 children in five counties to attend preschool.Some lawmakers rejected that plan and called for a study committee on the matter.But Ann Murtlow, president and CEO of the United Way of Central Indiana, says a study and a pilot program could actually work together.“There have been significant studies that show that the return on investment for early childhood education is very, very significant,” she points out. “So we believe those studies should be very compelling.“At the same time we don’t believe we should wait to get going in helping our kids.”The governor has called the study of preschool vouchers a good thing, but renewed his call for the Indiana General Assembly to combine the study with a pilot program.Indiana is only one of a handful of states that do not have state-funded pre-k.The 2014 session is scheduled to end no later than Friday.Murtlow stresses preschool is not just about learning ABCs and 123s. She says statistics showeducation truly is the best path out of poverty, and a strong education begins in early childhood.“At risk kids who don’t receive high quality early education are 25 percent more likely to drop out of school, about 40 percent more likely to become teen parents and 70 percent more likely to be arrested for a violent crime,” she points out. “So early education really matters.”Whether it’s the pilot program, the study or both, Murtlow says advocates are pleased to see early childhood education getting attention at the state level.“We want to thank the governor for his committed stance on preparing our children for the future and for the legislators that have been supporting these bills,” she says. “It’s wonderful to see this kind of movement in Indiana and it really is critical to the future of our state.”last_img read more

Parliament Hill 420 organizers predict record crowd after legalization

first_imgOTTAWA — The first 4-20 demonstration on Parliament Hill since marijuana became legal is expected to draw an even larger crowd than usual.Several thousand people normally set up shop on the Hill to smoke marijuana and highlight cannabis culture but organizers of this year’s event expect many more people to emerge from their shells and join in now that it’s legal to do so.But during a morning press conference today, the organizers also made clear there are still issues the federal Liberals have left hanging, making the job of legalization incomplete.Shawn Mac calls the legal cannabis system a “boondoggle” and accuses the government of using misleading information to justify over-regulation that has helped large companies in the market.The Marijuana Party of Canada says the Liberals need to expunge past convictions for simple possession, instead of suspending records, and issue a formal apology for the harms prohibition had particularly on black communities.There are also concerns being raised about the government’s decision to tax medical marijuana.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

First Nation chiefs meet with Prince Charles

first_imgAPTN National NewsMembers of the Royal family are currently touring Canada as part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee tour.Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall Camilla, arrived in Canada this past weekend.The three-province Royal visit marks the Queen’s 60 years on the throne.Their second stop was in Toronto where Prince Charles met with the Assembly of first Nations.last_img