Sunday, October 29, 2006

Tailgates move to the A-lot

For the second year in a row, the Center hosted a series of “tailgate parties” before each of three Notre Dame home football games: vs. Penn State (on September 9th), Michigan (on September 16th), and Purdue (on September 30th). This fall, the tailgate parties took place in one of the tailgate lots located near the Notre Dame stadium, directly across from the Hesburgh Center for International Studies. We pitched our tent, proudly hung our banner, and welcomed many friends and their families. While we offered Starbucks coff ee, award-winning vintages of wine and the finest selections of gourmet cheese – we discovered that our friends had very simple needs – donuts, burgers, beer and brats! We obliged – and a truly wonderful time was had by all. We owe a special debt of gratitude to the Center’s visiting graduate student, Jeremy Neill, who was the grill-master extraordinaire!

As in past years, each of the tailgate parties featured a “special guest star” including Catholic scholar Michael Novak, Ralph McInerny, Grace Professor of Medieval Studies and professor in the philosophy department, and Fr. Wilson Miscamble, CSC, of the history department. We were grateful for their presence, but like Time magazine’s person of the year, we believe the special guests were really– each of YOU! We will continue to host tailgate parties next season, and hope you will be able to join us in festively preparing to cheer on the Irish!

Practicing Medical Ethics One-Credit course

Each semester the Center organizes a one-day medical ethics course designed to give undergraduates considering a vocation in health care the opportunity to engage in conversation with physicians, philosophers and theologians familiar with medical ethics. This fall, on Saturday, October 28th, despite it being the day of an away game against the Naval Academy, almost 100 undergraduate students left their big screen TVs to meet together, using the small-group discussion format of our Medical Ethics Conference, to discuss real case studies that they might encounter in their future medical practices. This semester, the cases focused on three major themes: the scope of a physicians’ responsibility in a world of increasing globalization; suffering, dying and death; and the challenge of achieving social justice in light of limited resources.

As in past years, we are indebted to the generosity of Dr. Paul Wright, a cardiologist from Youngstown, Ohio, for so graciously funding this course. Additionally, we are grateful to the alumni physicians and faculty members who so generously give of their time to mentor Notre Dame’s undergraduate students: Dr. Mark Lindenmeyer, a lawyer and hospital administrator
in the Cincinnati area; Rev. Jim Foster, CSC, MD, director of the Preprofessional Studies Department at Notre Dame; Dr. Carol Lydiatt, a pediatric anesthesiologist, of Omaha, Nebraska; Dr. Tom Murphy, a clinical endocrinologist, and his wife, Dr. Laura David, an OB/GYN, both professors at Case Western Reserve School of Medicine in Cleveland, Ohio; Yuri Maricich, a medical student at the University of Washington; and Center director David Solomon.

On Thursday, October 26th, as part of his visit to campus for this course, Dr. Wright gave a moving talk to a wider audience, including members of the South Bend community, regarding his experience as a personal physician to Mother Teresa. He has written about his relationship with Blessed Mother Teresa in his book, Mother Teresa’s Prescription: Finding Happiness and
Peace in Service.