Each semester, Notre Dame’s Spanish department, in conjunction with the Center for Social Concerns (CSC), offers community-based learning (CBL) courses that allow students to integrate their Spanish language learning with community service at various partner organizations in South Bend. “Any community-based learning program is going to be coming from a perspective of mutuality,” said Rachel Parroquin, director of Spanish service learning. “We’re looking for ways that are going to be helpful for the community partners but also meet the learning goals of our students.” Parroquin said student involvement in CBL programs allows for interaction with native speakers, language skill improvement and intercultural competence. “It’s almost like a mini-immersion,” she said. “Getting off campus, getting to the community, having to negotiate meaning, having to figure out ways to say things, it definitely helps them to work on strategies.” Parroquin said students in CBL programs have the opportunity to participate in activities including mentoring middle school students, reading aloud with preschoolers in Spanish and participating in a Latino outreach program through Memorial Hospital. “We try to have a variety of programs in terms of student interests,” she said. The CBL program works consistently with more than a dozen community partners, including La Casa de Amistad, El Campito, South Bend Community Schools and the Sister Maura Brannick Health Center. The impact of the CBL program on its partners has been enormous, totaling over 3,400 hours of community time in the 2011-12 academic year, Parroquin said. Parroquin said programs have experienced growth and expansion, especially youth-centered programs, such as La Casa de Amistad’s ¡Adelante! Youth Development Program. “Last spring [La Casa de Amistad] had their first group of the ¡Adelante! students that Professor [Marisel] Moreno’s classes had worked with all graduate from high school and all go on to some kind of either university, culinary school, or some kind of program with scholarships,” Parroquin said. Spanish CBL currently comprises three components, Parroquin said. At the intermediate level, about 10 to 15 percent of students choose to participate in a CBL program to satisfy the experiential learning component of their Spanish requirements. This semester, Parroquin teaches a new class titled “Language, Culture and Community” that requires students to commit to a minimum of 10 hours of service. “The focus of this class has to do with immigration issues, looking closely at the South Bend community and how it’s impacted by immigration,” she said. “What are the issues that the Latino community, recent immigrants especially, have to face?” At the senior level, Moreno teaches “Migrant Voices: Latino Literature through Service-Learning” and “Race and Ethnicity in U.S. Latino Literature,” both of which require two hours of community service per week. Parroquin said the Spanish department’s Community-Based Learning program continues to grow with the help of the CSC and will be adding new courses in the future.
The Campus Life Council (CLC) met Monday afternoon for a presentation and discussion on the Green Dot program, a violence prevention strategy that seeks to change the culture of communities, such as a college campus. The CLC provides a forum for students, rectors and administrators to discuss matters that are affecting students affairs and includes two subcommittees: diversity inclusion and alcohol culture.Christine Gebhardt, director of the gender relations center (GRC), offered an overview of the program to council members. She said the program promotes an effective model that focuses on the gradual change of culture.“Change does not occur with one huge event,” Gebhardt said. “Oftentimes, history will point back to a huge turning point as an event, but it can actually trace back the little ripples that created a tidal wave to try to change something.”The Green Dot program has two cultural norms, Gebhardt said. These are important because as the culture changes, there shouldn’t be as great of a need for bystander intervention.“Not only do we need to look at what happens at parties on Friday nights and help you guys become great bystanders, but more importantly we need to create a culture that when students come to our campus, they know violence is not okay and that everyone needs to do their part to send the message about our new cultural norms,” she said. Gebhardt said Green Dot stresses the importance of changing the culture, one decision at a time, until it becomes the norm without prompts. “The point where people do something because of the culture around it is the point called critical mass,” she said. “We’ll know that we’ve changed our culture when 15 percent of our student body have been bystander trained by Green Dot. When we have 15 percent, we will have hit critical mass, which indicates enough people have bought into the message and are willing to live out the message.”Council members discussed the program after Gebhardt’s presentation, highlighting the assets of the model. Senior Chizo Ekechukwu, diversity council representative, said she liked the Green Dot model because it did not demand students to change as much in their daily lives.“I think this applies directly to both of our subcommittees, especially alcohol culture,” she said. “It’s a thing we can all do daily and over the weekend, making sure we’re taking care of people and not just saying we’re going to completely fix the problem right now, but thinking of changing in small ways first and things that are easier to do if people aren’t sure how to help.” Gebhardt said the Green Dot program is most effective when it’s accepted by a large population. “It doesn’t become one group’s initiative, it becomes a message of a community,” she said. “No one has to do everything, but everyone has to do something.” Tags: Campus Life Council, Gender Relations Center, Green Dot, Student government
The NCAA tournament came to a close for the No. 10 men’s tennis team after falling short to No. 7 Georgia in the round of 16, 4-3.Despite holding a 3-1 lead, The Trojans weren’t able to close the match. The loss marked the end of the team’s season and left it with a 17-7 record this year.“I think with matches like that you have this overwhelming sense of being a part of something that is bigger than you. It’s such a great rivalry between Georgia and us,” head coach Peter Smith said. “To play that quality of a match for three and a half hours, you really feel like it’s a honor and privilege to be a part of it. It hurts to lose, but it was just a great match.”The Trojans began the match with a win on Court 1 in doubles, where the No. 46-ranked pair of junior Nick Crystal and freshman Laurens Verboven were able to beat Georgia’s Austin Smith and Ben Wagland 6-1. On Court 3, freshman Jack Jaede and sophomore Tanner Smith closed it out with a 6-4 win over sophomore Wayne Montgomery and freshman Emil Reinberg, giving USC the doubles point and the lead in the dual match.Jaede kept the momentum going at the fifth singles spot with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Georgia freshman Jan Zielinski, giving the Men of Troy a 2-0 lead. No. 32 Montgomery put the Bulldogs on the board with a 6-1, 6-4 over No. 41 Crystal at the second singles spot. No. 121 sophomore Thibault Forget was able to close his match in two sets over No. 123 freshman Walker Duncan with a score of 6-2, 7-6 (6) bringing the Trojans to one match and one point away from the upset and reaching the quarterfinals.However, at the sixth singles spot, junior Rob Bellamy wasn’t able to finish off the match after winning his first set and suffered a comeback against Georgia senior Nick Wood, who ended the match with the score of 6-4, 2-6, 1-6, tightening the gap at 3-2 in the dual. At third singles, No. 69 freshman Logan Smith fell to No. 64 sophomore Paul Oosterbaan 4-6, 6-7 (7), making it 3-3 and leaving the odds to Court 1, where No. 23 senior Max de Vroome was facing No. 17 Smith.After a slow start, de Vroome was able to bring the first set to a tie-break before eventually losing the tiebreaker 2-5. In the second set, de Vroome bounced back and was able to pull a 6-1 win and take the match to the final set.With the score tied at 3-3, de Vroome was able to break and hold serve, making it 5-3. Smith held serve and the Trojan had a chance to close the match and the dual on serve at 5-4, but was unable to convert it. At 5-5, Smith kept his momentum going and grabbed the lead at 6-5, securing the tie break. De Vroome, who was serving to stay in the match, didn’t hold serve and the Bulldogs finished their comeback and punched their ticket to the quarterfinals.The Trojans began the tournament by defeating UNLV 4-0 and No. 32 Georgia Tech 4-2 in the first and second rounds respectively in order to advance to the Round of 16.De Vroome and Crystal will keep playing in the singles draw starting on Wednesday.De Vroome will play against Dominik Koepfer of Tulane. Crystal will face off against Joao Monteiro of Virginia Tech.