That time of year has come once again. The decisions involved in class registration hold particular importance in university life for multiple reasons, not only to fulfill requirements and ensure timely graduation, but also to shape the kinds of ideas we feed ourselves throughout our time here, which will greatly impact how we live and who we will be in the future.
The question of what types of knowledge are most important for students to learn has repeatedly arisen within the Notre Dame community, especially throughout the process of the Core Curriculum Review. It is a question that remains relevant both on the greater university scale and on the individual scale. For students, a key component in discerning what fields of study to pursue is the professors who instruct them. Concerning the role of professors, Pope Saint John Paul II writes in Ex Corde Ecclesiae, “Christians among teachers are called to be witnesses and educators of authentic Christian life … All teachers are to be inspired by academic ideals and by the principles of authentic human life.” With both freedom and responsibility, professors must seek to fulfill these duties—especially at Catholic university such as Notre Dame—and students must seek their proper guidance.
In order to help students get the most out of their Notre Dame education, the Rover staff presents the following course recommendations for the Spring 2017 semester. For further resources, contact the Rover or view NDCatholic.com.
If you are looking to fulfill your fine arts requirement, Bill Kremer’s ceramics class is a great option. His sense of humor, openness to student creativity, and flexible teaching style make ceramics an excellent choice for students of all artistic capacities.
Angela Engelsen will teach a section of “Business Law Contracts and Agency.” The course examines the background of the legal process and the judicial system, torts, contracts and the Uniform Commercial Code and agency law. Engelsen is a devoted teacher who wishes to tie her courses into the university’s mission, and readings will include selections from Aquinas, among others. Business Law is a required course for business students.
Rover advisor Laura Hollis will teach “Business Law: Contracts and Agency” and “Introduction to Entrepreneurship.” Hollis presents law in an attractive and digestible manner for students of all backgrounds, and she readily addresses any questions about various legal situations. Her expertise, confidence, and solid convictions make her an excellent professor and exemplary female professional. The class is a challenge, but you will find Hollis helps her students excel by providing the essential information in class and encouraging them to actively participate in discussion.
Edward Hums will teach “Accountancy II.” While the class can often strike students as tedious, Hums frequently livens it up with personal stories, and he combines a sense of professionalism and faith with conviction and naturalness. Aside from teaching well, Hums also shows genuine care and attention to students, whether he teaches them or not, and testifies to his great love for Notre Dame by living as the faculty-in-residence with his wife, Shirley, in Lyons Hall.
The Rover also recommends Jamie O’Brien and Rover advisor Martijn Cremers.
Brian Krostenko will teach “Cicero and the Crisis of the Roman Republic,” a class in which students will translate and discuss the speeches, letters, and philosophy of Cicero. Over the course of the semester, students will examine Cicero’s perspective during this tumultuous time in the Late Roman Republic. As Krostenko’s research focuses on the culture of the Late Roman Republic, students can expect an expert analysis of the history of the period. The level of this class is perfect for classics majors looking to strengthen their Latin language skills.
Tadeusz Mazurek will teach “Introduction to Greco-Roman Mythology,” “Roman Criminal Law,” and “Beginning Latin II.” Mazurek provides a great introduction to the Classics department; he is an enthusiastic, energetic professor who is always willing to make time for his students. He also has a great sense of humor.
The Rover also recommends Elizabeth Forbis Mazurek and Catherine Schlegel.
Rover advisor Kirk Doran will teach “Principles of Microeconomics” for freshmen and sophomores. Doran is a dynamic professor who actively engages his students with practical and fun examples, and he also makes an effort to get to know students personally and assist them outside of class. This section is a great choice for those business students looking to fulfill requirements, but it is also helpful for anyone seeking a basic introduction to economics.
Timothy Fuerst will teach “Monetary Theory and Policy.” One of the most-cited economists in the world, Fuerst unites a dedication to professional excellence with the university’s mission. He seeks to educate his students both academically and personally, and he sets a strong example of how to work with dedication and cheerfulness amidst any circumstances.
The Rover also recommends Michael Pries and Mary Flannery. Always recommended but only teaching graduate courses next semester is Rover advisor Eric Sims.
Education, Schooling and Society Minor
John Schoenig works in the Institute for Educational Initiatives with the ACE program, and teaches one undergraduate seminar each semester on education law and policy. A triple domer (B.A., M.Ed, J.D.), he is passionate and articulate about the complexities of the education sector today. Anyone interested in law or education will improve their ability for legal and critical analysis through both written papers and class discussions.
Matthew Wilkens will teach “Contemporary U.S. Novels,” a course that focuses on the literary time period of Wilkens’ specialty (post-World War II novels). Wilkens is known as a tough but fair grader, one that guides his students through discussions and research assignments with a high standard but ample time and guidance. He is dedicated to the university’s mission and aims to act as both teacher and mentor for students.
Father Gregory Haake, CSC will teach “France (Paris and Angers): Atelier,” “Art of Interpretation,” and “Overview of French Literature and Culture I.” Father Haake is an excellent teacher who demands a lot of his students. He is accessible and open to answering any questions and is dedicated to making every student progress in writing and speaking abilities. Engaging and friendly, he creates a positive class environment that in the past has included a myriad of topics, from French society to pop music.
Daniel Hobbins will teach “World of the Middle Ages,” the popular course once taught by Thomas F. X. Noble. This course offers a fascinating window into the world that produced saints such as Thomas Aquinas and vampire-novel-inspiring princes such as Vlad Dracula. Hobbins is particularly interested in High and Late medieval culture as well as religious, cultural, and intellectual history, and his subtle humor and thought-provoking style will quickly win over the hearts and minds of his students.
Brad Gregory’s class “Christianity, Commerce, and Consumerism: The Last 1000 Years” is an incredibly thought-provoking class that elucidates some of the West’s current social mores. It includes a wide array of primary source reading as well as lectures packed with Gregory’s cogent thinking. Taking this class is an excellent chance to benefit from a world-class historian and a man of deep faith.
Linda Przybyszewski will teach “History of American and European Fashion” and “Crime, Heredity, and Insanity in American History.” An expert in her field, Przybyszewski recently published the book The Lost Art of Dress: The Women Who Once Made America Stylish. She is a dynamic, quick-witted lecturer who is sure to make class enjoyable and practical.
On leave this semester, but always recommended, is Rover advisor Father Bill Miscamble, CSC. Other top Rover picks include Patrick Griffin, Semion Lyandres, Steven Brady, and Paul Ocobock.
Italian / Literature
Vittorio Montemaggi is teaching “Literature, Science, Humanity, and Friendship: Reading Primo Levi.” Montemaggi, a perennial favorite among students, is an innovative and engaging scholar whose interests include the intersection between religion and literature. This course will explore the connections between literature, science, and what it means to be human through reading the work of Jewish Italian writer and chemist Primo Levi.
Christian Moevs is once again offering his course “Dante II” featuring a close reading of the Purgatorio and the Paradiso. This is the second half of a two-part course, but can be taken without having taken the first and without knowing any Italian. Moevs is not only a world-class Dante scholar but also a dedicated professor who teaches as much by his own example as by his knowledge of Dante. This class is an opportunity to grow in faith alongside learning about one of the greatest minds in the history of Christianity.
Larry Dwyer will teach his regular “Introduction to Jazz” course, as well as “Jazz Band” and “Jazz Improvisation.” The intro course is difficult to enroll in due to high demand, but it is certainly worth pursuing as an elective or to fulfill the university requirement in fine arts. As a music appreciation course, no musical background is required, and students will gain an understanding and knowledge of the most significant musicians, styles, and structures of jazz music. Watch out for the instrument quiz, however.
David O’Connor will again teach his highly-popular course “Ancient Wisdom and Modern Love.” With Plato’s Phaedrus and Symposium at the center of the class, he also incorporates Shakespeare and modern films. This class provides an excellent chance to fulfill a second university requirement while thinking deeply about a subject that affects us all, as well as an opportunity to get to know a very personable and learned professor. O’Connor is also offering what looks to be an engaging upper-level course, “Plato’s Images of Love and Death.”
Ryan Madison will teach “Ethics,” a top-notch choice for anyone looking to fulfill the second philosophy university requirement. This course blends classical and medieval sources such as Aristotle and Aquinas with other works such as the poetry of T. S. Eliot and contemporary film. Madison’s integrity and deep faith are evident as he guides students in lecture and discussion through the complex waters of thought-provoking ethical and philosophical questions.
An expert in the thought of Thomas Aquinas, Therese Cory will teach a philosophy university seminar and an upper-level course, “Classical Islamic Philosophy.” The latter course will study the thought of great philosophers of the Islamic tradition and their response to questions ranging from “What is God, and how do we know Him?” to “Could a child growing up alone on a desert island develop rationality?” through examining primary texts and recently scholarly literature. The course will also indicate how Islamic philosophical theories influenced Thomas Aquinas and other Western medieval philosophers.
Also recommended are Meghan Sullivan, Sean Kelsey, Adrian Reimers, and John O’Callaghan.
Phillip Muñoz, another Rover advisor, will teach “Constitutionalism, Law, and Politics I: American Constitutionalism,” a course in the political science department that is cross-listed with the Constitutional Studies minor. As the founding director of the Potenziani Program in Constitutional Studies and widely respected legal scholar, he has in-depth knowledge of the subject matter to be covered in this class.
Patrick Deneen, a Rover advisor, will teach “The American Regime,” which is cross-listed for the Political Science major and Constitutional Studies minor. The class will focus on the connections between the Constitution and the formation of American politics and way of life. If you are interested in addressing questions about human nature and political thought with one of the nation’s best political theorists, Deneen’s classes are for you.
The Rover also recommends David Campbell and Mary Keys and Rover advisors Dan Philpott and Michael Zuckert.
Program of Liberal Studies
Jennifer Martin will teach “Bible and Its Interpretation” and the third Great Books Seminar. A systematic and historical theologian, Martin brings a wealth of expertise to many topics raised in class, while also accommodating for the various backgrounds and understandings regarding faith among her students. She is known for her ability to guide student discussion with a balanced sense of objectivity and professional guidance, and she attentively works with each student to formulate strong arguments.
Felicitas Munzel will teach two sections of a Literature University Seminar, which fulfills both the major and university requirement. Munzel leads classes in productive discussion by encouraging students to come to class with questions about the texts, and she effectively guides responses from other students and her own expertise. This class is a great way to get acquainted with the PLS curriculum and class structure.
Henry Weinfield will teach “Literature II: Shakespeare and Milton,” a class that gives students a thorough appreciation for two of England’s greatest authors. Weinfield brings insightful expertise to class discussions and engages students to think about Shakespeare plays and Paradise Lost in new ways—especially by sharing various written commentaries on each work. He holds a high standard for written assignments but also provides very good feedback to help his students make significant improvements in writing.
Sister Ann Astell is offering two courses, a second theology course entitled “Fr. Bernard to Bernadette: The Dogma of the Immaculate Conception” and an upper-level course, “Philosophical Women Theologians: Edith Stein and Simone Weil.” The latter focuses on Stein and Weil’s respective spiritual journeys and intellectual quests, examining their historical, political, philosophical, and of course, theological significance. Sr. Ann’s kind demeanor, love for students, and vast knowledge make her classes excellent additions to any schedule.
Tim O’Malley, director of the Institute for Church Life’s Center for Liturgy, is reprising his course “The Nuptial Mystery: Divine Love and Human Salvation.” O’Malley is an engaging, enthusiastic lecturer who cares deeply about connecting with his students, and the course promises students a rich engagement with the Church’s understanding of nuptial theology from the Old Testament to the present era and the sacramental theology of marriage. He is also teaching the upper-level course “The Bible and the Liturgy” in conjunction with David Gura.
Rover advisor John Cavadini is teaching a course that fulfills the second university requirement for theology. “The Catholic Faith” is centered around the Catechism and is enriched by a variety of primary sources. Cavadini is an engaging teacher who offers clear and relevant explanations filled with analogies and stories.
Cyril O’Regan is teaching “The Christian Theological Tradition II,” a requirement for all theology majors, as well as for theology-philosophy joint majors. In arguably one of the most important classes a Notre Dame student could ever take, you will receive a solid foundation in the Christian tradition from the Reformation to the present. Vastly intelligent, O’Regan has the skill to break down material and relate it well to students, who have also greatly enjoyed his love for Irish culture, Irish accent, and sweet beard. O’Regan is among the finest theologians in the world and a course with him will not soon be forgotten.
The Rover also recommends Anthony Pagliarini, Catherine Cavadini, Fr. Kevin Grove, David Fagerberg, Fr. Brian Daley, and Joseph Wawrykow. Not teaching next semester but always recommended is Rover advisor Father Terry Ehrman, CSC.