Message from the President

As Notre Dame celebrates the 175th anniversary of its founding, it seems appropriate, in a spirit of gratitude, to reflect on the achievements of the past as well as the exciting opportunities ahead of us.

Many know the story well. The University’s founder, a young Holy Cross priest, Rev. Edward F. Sorin, C.S.C., traveled from France with a few companions and $200 in his pocket to establish “a great university for Our Lady” in the Indiana wilderness in 1842. Father Sorin faced many challenges in those early years, including harsh winters, financial hardship, cholera, and a devastating fire. Through it all, he remained steadfast and, guided by his faith, worked tirelessly to ensure that his bold dream would become reality.

Now 175 years later, we look to the future with that same bold vision. In 2016–17, the University received over $138 million in research awards, nearly double the amount from 10 years ago. In August 2017, Notre Dame opened its first new school in nearly 100 years, the Keough School of Global Affairs, which brings together nine innovative centers and institutes focused on international research, scholarship, and education. Beyond our efforts here on campus, Notre Dame continues to extend its reach in other parts of the world with the October 2017 expansion of the Beijing Global Gateway, one of five international academic and intellectual hubs.

We are pleased that several new academic and student life buildings were dedicated in Fall 2017, including Nanovic Hall, home to economics, political science, and sociology; Jenkins Hall, which houses the Keough School; Corbett Family Hall, home to anthropology, psychology, and a state-of-the- art media center; O’Neill Hall, dedicated to the University’s music department and sacred music program; and finally, Duncan Student Center, with new spaces for recreation, fitness, study, career development, and student activities. We are proud of these additions to our campus, most especially because of what these beautiful new facilities will offer to present and future generations of students, faculty, and staff—myriad opportunities for teaching, learning, discovery, innovation, and wellness, in the context of a community of faith turned to service.

Ever attuned to potential changes in the economic climate in the United States and globally, Notre Dame’s sound fiscal policies provide a solid foundation for growth. As the leading Catholic research university in the world, we are confident in our ability to pursue our aspirations from a position of strength.

On this occasion of our 175th anniversary, please know of my gratitude for the ways you participate in and contribute to Notre Dame’s mission. We ask for God’s continued blessing on Notre Dame and all who are part of the Notre Dame family.

Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.