Campus welcomes new students

first_imgWhile freshman orientation staffs waited expectantly for the first cars to pull up in front of their dorms Friday morning, families of new students began to explore Notre Dame’s campus. Friday marked the first day of “Frosh-O,” a weekend packed with events meant to welcome freshmen to their new “home under the dome.” Freshman Bernie Floeder of Shoreview, Minn., said he is excited to move into Fisher Hall and begin his life at Notre Dame. “Notre Dame was by and far the school that I was most interested in,” Floeder said. “When I visited here, it seemed like this was the place – excellent academics, people ready to help you and a great campus.” Junior Sarah Fleming, Badin Hall’s freshman orientation commissioner, said her staff is anxious to welcome the Class of 2016 to campus by easing them into life at Notre Dame. “Our staff is super excited to meet the new Badin Hall freshmen,” Fleming said. “We’ve been waiting for this since April. All summer our staff has been working … to coordinate things … we have our dorm all decorated and the music blaring outside.” Fleming said the weekend is structured so that the freshmen would first bond with their hallmates and then with other classmates around campus. “We planned it so that Friday events would be Badin only, so that the girls would build relationships with one another,” Fleming said. “Saturday and Sunday the events are with the rest of campus, but then Sunday after the final goodbyes to their parents we have a lot of events planned one after another because some girls might find it difficult to say goodbye to their guardians.” Freshman Andrew Petrisin, who hails from McKinney, Tex., said he decided to attend Notre Dame after a visit to campus last fall. “I came here for the Michigan State football game and immediately fell in love with the whole place,” Petrisin said. “This was always the No. 1 choice.” Freshman Katie Kaes of Cincinnati, Ohio, said she was familiar with the University before coming to campus, but she is excited to make Notre Dame her home. “I’ve been around Notre Dame my whole life, and I’ve loved it my whole life,” Kaes said. “When my sister got there I just learned more about it, and really wanted to go here … I’m so excited to meet my roommates and to get to know more about Notre Dame than what I’ve already experienced.” After visiting Notre Dame during Reilly Weekend, freshman Steven Doyle said he knew this was an amazing place. “All the people in Alumni Hall have been really welcoming,” Doyle said. “Everyone’s been really helpful here. I’m looking forward to having a great time.” Junior Pat Raycroft, freshman orientation commissioner for Zahm House, said he planned his weekend in the same way. First, the staff would help their freshmen build a sense of brotherhood, and then they would encourage new residents to connect to the rest of Notre Dame’s community. “The biggest thing we want our freshmen to take out of the weekend is brotherhood – that they have guys around them in their house that are willing to do anything for them,” Raycroft said. “We tried to strike a balance between interhall and intrahall stuff so that they would not only get a good orientation to Notre Dame, but a good orientation to Zahm.” Junior Maggie Wieland, Cavanaugh Hall freshman orientation co-commissioner, said the overall goal is to welcome the Class of 2016 to the Notre Dame family from the first moment they step onto campus. “All of the planning, all of the craziness – it’s all for them,” Wieland said. “We want to make sure that they love it here as much as we do.”last_img read more

I wish

first_img 25SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Andy Janning Andy Janning is a popular keynote speaker at events across the country, a national award-winning expert in talent development, the host of NCUF’s Herb Wegner Memorial Awards, and a … Web: Details Hello, all you cool cats and kittens!Crud. Sorry about that. I’ve been quarantined for the last 102 years (approximately) and have watched way too much “Tiger King” on Netflix (don’t judge…you’ve binged it too).The streaming service has been an oasis of predictability these days. I’ve needed that stability.My life, like yours, has been tossed into a blender. My speaking and shooting schedules are in disarray. Projects have been defunded and collaborations delayed. Our daughters are adjusting to the tectonic shift in their social and academic worlds as high school lurches into homeschool and best friends fade into hand-held abstractions in their phones, a trauma they could feel for years.The King Kong atop my Jenga skyscraper of anxiety is the very real possibility of getting sick myself, watching helplessly as the coronavirus annihilates my parents and in-laws and family and friends, or unintentionally bringing the disease home to infect my kids and immuno-compromised wife.I know the small, dark hours of the morning far better now. That’s when my worst fears break quarantine and trample through the sanctuaries in my mind that I’ve tried to keep clean and pure.I’ve careened between denial (“Ain’t no way I’m gonna get sick because AMERICA!”), terror (“We’re living in the director’s cut of the movie Contagion”), anger (“PUT A MASK ON! WASH YOUR HANDS! STAY HOME! LET ME TAKE YOUR PICTURE AND SPEAK AT YOUR EVENT VIRTUALLY, PLEASE!”) and toxic positivity (“Everything happens for a reason!” and “Failure is not an option!” and “It could be worse!” and “Always look on the bright side!”).This is grief – raw, personal, communal, and nonlinear. I’ve been unwilling to accept that label and its five stages because I used to believe you could only mourn the loss of life, not a way of life. How wrong I was.I’ve learned that there is a sixth stage of grief where you find meaning for the pain, the strength to look back in love, and the hope to move forward in gratitude and humility. For me, that stage manifests itself in a personal wish list:I wish every bank and credit union in the world will budget for a huge pay and appreciation package for the #FinancialFirstResponders who have turned themselves inside out to serve the customers and members whose lives and livelihoods have been turned upside down.I wish I knew that the 2020 CUNA GAC would be the last major event I’d attend, and NCUF’s Herb Wegner Memorial Awards would be the last event at which I’d speak, for a while.I wish I could get my hair cut because I’m looking like Syndrome from The Incredibles.I wish I was a little bit taller. I wish I was a baller.I wish more folks understood that reference.I wish I could tell you about the documentary film and photography project I’m working on, the largest and most significant of my career, but the time isn’t right.I wish I could show you more of my upcoming photo book about breast cancer survivors, but the time isn’t right on that, either.  I wish I could freeze every remaining moment we have with our daughters under our roof because I’m certain we carried them home in newborn perfection from the hospital just yesterday.I wish I could hug Ronaldo Hardy and everyone else I know who has lost someone to COVID-19.I wish my wife knew, especially during this season of battle against breast cancer and a clot in her heart, that she’s still the most beautiful woman in the world to me.I wish we all knew that miracles still happen.And I wish we could finally discover what really happened to Carole Baskin’s husband.Crud. Sorry about that.last_img read more

Communication expert endorses WHO’s delay on pandemic declaration

first_imgJun 12, 2009 (CIDRAP News) – A well-known risk-communication expert said the World Health Organization (WHO) acted wisely in delaying its declaration of an influenza pandemic until yesterday, but he simultaneously expressed concern that the move may lead to complacency about the situation.The WHO drew considerable criticism for putting off announcing a phase 6 pandemic alert in the face of evidence that the virus was spreading on several continents. But Peter M. Sandman, PhD, a New Jersey-based consultant and close watcher of pandemic preparedness, said the WHO’s go-slow approach gave the world a chance to get used to the idea that a pandemic declaration was coming soon.However, he also worried that declaring a pandemic of an illness that is usually mild may lead many people to think that a pandemic is not a serious concern.Sandman observed, as have others, that the WHO has been trying to steer a course between unduly frightening people and lulling them into complacency.Officially, yesterday’s WHO announcement means that the H1N1 virus is spreading in communities in more than one region of the world. The virus first emerged in April in the United States and Mexico and has since spread to 74 countries. Its spread in places far from North America, including Australia, Chile, and the United Kingdom, had led to growing pressure on the WHO to announce that a pandemic was under way.But at the urging of several governments, the WHO held off on taking the step for weeks out of concern that it would cause excessive alarm in a world that has learned to link the concept of a pandemic to the H5N1 avian influenza virus, which rarely infects humans but kills about 60% of those it does infect.”I think WHO was wise to wait to declare H1N1 a pandemic, while clearly signaling that it would do so soon,” Sandman commented yesterday by e-mail.The delay has given everyone a chance to get used to the idea, allowed governments and companies time to adjust their preparedness plans, shown due deference to governments that urged delay, and allowed time for the evidence of H1N1 transmission in widespread parts of the world to grow indisputable, he said.”Those are all good objectives,” Sandman said. “An urgent health necessity would have trumped all of them, but I have trouble seeing what urgent health necessity would have been served by an earlier declaration. (It is worth remembering that the WHO’s recommended action steps for phases 5 and 6 are identical.)”An adjustment reaction likelySandman said the pandemic announcement is likely to cause anxiety in some people, who will undergo an “adjustment reaction”—a temporary state of overanxiety that can lead to precautions that are unnecessary or premature. This response is natural, and it typically passes soon, leaving people more concerned than before they learned about the threat but not overly anxious.”The key task of leaders is to guide the adjustment reaction instead of ridiculing it,” Sandman stated. “That helps people get through it more quickly. And it helps people come out in a better place.”He said leaders need to try to keep people who initially reacted with fear from later swinging to the opposite extreme, where they “end up feeling foolish for having been concerned, angry at those who warned them, and resistant to later evidence that the situation is worsening (a virulent pandemic second wave, for example).”But Sandman said he is much more concerned about complacency than fear in response to the WHO announcement: “Instead of learning from swine flu that influenza is a more serious disease than they thought and that a severe pandemic is an ever-present threat that deserves more preparedness that it has received, what millions of people ‘learned’ (mislearned) is that pandemics are a paper tiger and health officials are fear-mongers.”Insofar as the phase 6 declaration has an effect, I think confirming complacency will be a more important and more long-lasting effect than provoking a fearful adjustment reaction.”He hoped to hear the WHO, in its press conference yesterday, talk very explicitly about the dual concerns of undue alarm and complacency, but he was somewhat disappointed by what he heard.”It is disappointing that [yesterday’s] actual news briefing contained comparatively little that spoke to either concern,” he said. WHO Director-General Margaret Chan and Assistant Director-General Keiji Fukuda “said much less than they might have said to validate that people may overreact temporarily but will recover quickly; that their governments should neither ridicule the overreaction nor take inappropriate ‘precautions’ in deference to it; that the pandemic we declared today isn’t the much more virulent pandemic we have lived in fear of since 2004; and that that more virulent pandemic may still be on the horizon (whether from H1N1, or H5N1, or a reassortment of the two), requiring both vigilance and preparedness.”On the other hand, he said WHO officials in several press interviews preceding the announcement did make some comments about these considerations, especially the adjustment reaction.Markets unfazed by declarationSandman also observed that world markets mostly rose yesterday, apparently unfazed by the WHO announcement. The Dow Jones average was up 31.9 points.”In other words, investors do not expect an economically damaging response to the phase 6 declaration; they are betting that few if any governments are going to close borders or take other steps that would materially damage economic prospects,” he said.Meanwhile, a business continuity specialist with Marriott International said today that the business world’s reaction to the pandemic declaration is likely to be moderate.”I think the initial response will generally remain quite restrained as businesses and governments have had a few weeks to adjust their plans to the realities of a more moderate H1N1 pandemic,” said Penny Turnbull, senior director of business continuity at Marriott.”It also appears that there is a good understanding that the virus may change in the coming months, requiring more restrictive policies and procedures to be implemented—particularly in the realm of community mitigation measures,” she said. “In the meantime, overall the response seems quite well scaled to the risk. In these early weeks I think this is the most important message—make sure the response is scaled appropriately and be ready to escalate as, and when, necessary.”See also: Index of Sandman’s writings about H1N1 flu risk communication’s periodic updates on the topic read more