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Students plunge into cities

first_imgInstead of spending winter vacation relaxing or earning money, several Notre Dame students donated their time to the underprivileged in their own backyards through the Center for Social Concerns’ Urban Plunge program. Bill Purcell, the Center’s associate director for Catholic social tradition and practice, said this year’s theme was “Raising Voices in the City.” Urban Plunge is a one-credit learning course that focuses on urban poverty in the United States, Purcell said. Students participate in a 40-hour immersive volunteer experience, usually in cities close to their homes. Purcell said 210 students were chosen out of 280 applicants to this year’s program. These participants attended three preparatory class sessions about Catholic social tradition late in the fall semester. Various professors taught the class sessions, including Mary Jo Bane, a political science professor from Harvard University who specializes in poverty studies, Purcell said.  Chris Weber, a sophomore from Chicago, Ill., said he decided to participate in the program after hearing positive feedback about Urban Plunge from his roommate. “From him, I learned that it would be a service trip over winter break,” Weber said. “When I saw that there were a couple of sites located in Chicago, I thought, ‘Why not?’” Weber said he did not know what to expect from the experience but was confident it would be worthwhile.  “Even after the three Urban Plunge classes before break, I had no greater understanding about the nature of the service I would be doing in Chicago at the Amate House site,” Weber said.  “However, I was pleasantly surprised by the welcoming atmosphere there.  The house staff was kind, funny, entertaining and generous.” Weber said he felt at home after getting to know everyone through conversation, games and prayer. “Over the course of the next two days, my fellow Notre Dame volunteers and I visited four different locations to lend our help,” Weber said.  “We were able to get a sampling of various services: decorating Rice Krispies treats with the elderly, packing donated food goods at the Greater Chicago Food Depository, helping out a creative writing workshop for eighth graders and helping teach addition and subtraction to first graders.” Weber said Urban Plunge changed his view of Chicago and opened his eyes to an entirely different way of life. “Through these experiences, I was able to experience a whole different side of Chicago,” Weber said.  “Additionally, I was privileged to meet amazing people from different walks of life, and I met some great fellow volunteers. For these reasons, I am glad that I participated in such a great service trip.” Purcell said the Urban Plunge program predates the Center for Social Concerns, where it is currently housed. “The program started in 1967 at Notre Dame and started to expand outside of Notre Dame in the 70s,” Purcell said.  As the Urban Plunge projects continue, Weber recommended the service opportunity to others. “I would highly suggest that everyone tries an Urban Plunge at least once,” he said.,Instead of spending winter vacation relaxing or earning money, several Notre Dame students donated their time to the underprivileged in their own backyards through the Center for Social Concerns’ Urban Plunge program. Bill Purcell, the Center’s associate director for Catholic social tradition and practice, said this year’s theme was “Raising Voices in the City.” Urban Plunge is a one-credit learning course that focuses on urban poverty in the United States, Purcell said. Students participate in a 40-hour immersive volunteer experience, usually in cities close to their homes. Purcell said 210 students were chosen out of 280 applicants to this year’s program. These participants attended three preparatory class sessions about Catholic social tradition late in the fall semester. Various professors taught the class sessions, including Mary Jo Bane, a political science professor from Harvard University who specializes in poverty studies, Purcell said.  Chris Weber, a sophomore from Chicago, Ill., said he decided to participate in the program after hearing positive feedback about Urban Plunge from his roommate. “From him, I learned that it would be a service trip over winter break,” Weber said. “When I saw that there were a couple of sites located in Chicago, I thought, ‘Why not?’” Weber said he did not know what to expect from the experience but was confident it would be worthwhile.  “Even after the three Urban Plunge classes before break, I had no greater understanding about the nature of the service I would be doing in Chicago at the Amate House site,” Weber said.  “However, I was pleasantly surprised by the welcoming atmosphere there.  The house staff was kind, funny, entertaining and generous.” Weber said he felt at home after getting to know everyone through conversation, games and prayer. “Over the course of the next two days, my fellow Notre Dame volunteers and I visited four different locations to lend our help,” Weber said.  “We were able to get a sampling of various services: decorating Rice Krispies treats with the elderly, packing donated food goods at the Greater Chicago Food Depository, helping out a creative writing workshop for eighth graders and helping teach addition and subtraction to first graders.” Weber said Urban Plunge changed his view of Chicago and opened his eyes to an entirely different way of life. “Through these experiences, I was able to experience a whole different side of Chicago,” Weber said.  “Additionally, I was privileged to meet amazing people from different walks of life, and I met some great fellow volunteers. For these reasons, I am glad that I participated in such a great service trip.” Purcell said the Urban Plunge program predates the Center for Social Concerns, where it is currently housed. “The program started in 1967 at Notre Dame and started to expand outside of Notre Dame in the 70s,” Purcell said.  As the Urban Plunge projects continue, Weber recommended the service opportunity to others. “I would highly suggest that everyone tries an Urban Plunge at least once,” he said.last_img read more

MMH honors last and first births

first_imgBatesville, In. — Every January, special recognition is given to the first baby born at Margaret Mary Health in the new year. Thanks to H&R Block, the last baby of 2017 also received attention and giveaways. Born at 8:38 a.m. on Dec. 29, Elijah Wayne Cox was the last baby born at Margaret Mary in 2017 to parents Ashley Johnson and Matthew Cox, of Shelbyville. Delivered by Jeff Hatcher, MD, he weighed 7 lbs., 14 oz. and was 20 inches long. For being the last baby of 2017, H&R Block gave Elijah a basket full of goodies. He was welcomed home by big brothers, Brycen, 6 and Colton, 20 months.Arriving at 7:47 a.m. on Jan. 2, Presley Wayne Speer became the first baby born at Margaret Mary in 2018. Delivered by Thomas Brown, MD, his parents are Jeffery and Chelsea Speer of Greensburg. He weighed 9 lbs., .6 oz. and was 20 inches long. For being the first baby of 2018, Margaret Mary presented Presley with a Babies “R” Us gift card. He was welcomed home by big brother, Cooper. 2.Parents – Matthew Cox and Ashley Johnson with Elijah and his big brothers.Last Baby of 2017 cutline: Margaret Mary’s last baby of 2017, Elijah Wayne Cox, is pictured with his parents, Matthew Cox and Ashley Johnson, Shelbyville, and big brothers Brycen and Colton.Parents – Jeffery and Chelsea Speer with son Presley.First Baby of 2018: Jeffery and Chelsea Speer of Greensburg welcomed their son, Presley Wayne, on January 2nd. Presley took home the honor of Margaret Mary’s first baby of 2018.last_img read more

Zika threat to Olympic attendees is ‘low’

first_imgMargaret Chan of the world health body has described the risk of infection as ‘low’ and ‘manageable’ based on a recent assessment and says that she will be going to the Olympic games in Rio.It’s just a week to the start of the world’s biggest sporting event.The games will conlude on August 21st.last_img

VY Esports raises seed round led by Raine Ventures

first_imgVY Esports, a content and services platform based in Los Angeles that’s aiming to bridge the gap between esports and brands, announced last week that it has raised a seed round led by Raine Ventures.This round saw participation from Courtside Ventures, Elysian Park Ventures and other notable investors in the esports space. VY Esports will use the financing to ‘invest in talent acquisition and build its operations as well as partner relationships’. In addition as a part of the arrangement, Blair Ford, Venture Partner of Raine Ventures, will join the company’s Board of Directors.Oleg Butenko, CEO and Founder of VY Esports commented: “Esports remains a largely untapped market for brands due to fragmentation and lack of structure across the many events and titles in the industry. “Our goal is to bring non-endemic brands and media companies into esports by aggregating the inventory around existing events and by creating branded content linking separate events together. Given their respective experience and reach in the worlds of sports, media and technology, Raine, Courtside and Elysian Park are important partners and we are excited to work with them and leverage their expertise to grow the business.”Blair Ford, Venture Partner of Raine Ventures added: “The VY Esports platform will create new opportunities for marketers to tap into the highly engaged and growing global esports audience at much greater scale, while also helping event organisers better monetise their tournaments. “Oleg has an impressive history of creating and leading businesses, including in the esports space, and we are excited to work with him to help bring this new platform to marketers around the world.”VY Esports will look to work with advertisers to develop and distribute branded content for esports events and tournaments globally. The aim is that they’ll bring together ad inventory across events, titles and distribution channels into one central platform.  Content will include narrative-driven video around the players, game highlights, in-depth analysis, recap shows, news, behind-the-scenes content and more. VY will also develop its own events and tournaments, including college tournaments and showcase events. VY will partner with existing players in the event organisation space as opposed to producing another Major or Minor for a specific title. Oleg Butenko’s business experience to date is varied. He has worked across music, telecom, and esports; he helped grow OTT services platform Megalabs, launched United Music Agency, a leading music aggregator in Russia, and he co-founded ESForce.Esports Insider says: With Oleg Butenko at the helm of VY Esports, the company stands in good stead to succeed given his track record in business to date. It’ll be fascinating to see which partners they establish themselves with for the events side, and we can assume, given the ESForce connection, that they may look to do something in Russia first.last_img read more

Jets reportedly will audition kickers as Chandler Catanzaro struggles

first_imgThe Jets are apparently considering a change at kicker after one preseason game. Following Chandler Catanzaro’s rough showing Thursday night against the Giants, which included two missed extra points, the New York Daily News reports the Jets are bringing in kickers to audition Saturday.  Pat Shurmur hits brakes on Daniel Jones hype train after impressive Giants debut Packers’ Matt LaFleur after Aaron Rodgers criticizes joint practices: ‘I still think it was beneficial for us’ The group reportedly will include former Vikings standout Blair Walsh and Chris Blewitt, a former Pitt kicker who was in camp with the Bears this spring before being cut in June. Jets coach Adam Gase had indicated the team might bring in some additional options to push Catanzaro.  Related News Browns’ Freddie Kitchens on Antonio Callaway: ‘We’re not willing to put up with it’ “I don’t think there’s ever a downside to creating competition,” Gase said Thursday. “Where we’re at right now going through the spring, there’s been some really good moments where there’s been some consistency there. We just need to kind of get back to our rhythm with the snapper, holder, kicker.”Catanzaro, 28, previously kicked for the Jets in 2017 after spending three years with the Cardinals. He started last season with the Buccaneers but was cut in November before being picked up by the Panthers three weeks later to close out the season.  He signed a one-year, $2.3 million deal to return to New York this season. Walsh, 29, was a first-team All-Pro selection for the Vikings as a rookie in 2012 but saw his fortunes diminish over time, most notably missing a 27-yard field goal against the Seahawks in the playoffs after the 2015 season in a 10-9 Vikings loss to the Seahawks. Minnesota dumped him the following November and he landed in Seattle for the 2017 season but was out of the NFL altogether last year.last_img read more