News & Events News

Notre Dame Celebrates Advent

December 14, 2017

On a recent crisp fall morning the entire learning community of students, faculty and staff made the annual pilgrimage to our downtown place of worship, the Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph to celebrate the season of Advent. The mass, presided over by Father Kim, incorporated the Notre Dame spirit of diversity as students performed the Filipino candle dance. The liturgy also included the “Put a Dollar in Your Pocket” campaign in support of Gardner Health Network's efforts to provide Christmas gifts for local foster care children.

Notre Dame's varsity basketball team had a busy week. In the first regular season game of the year they beat Leland in overtime for a final score of 61-57. They continued the winning streak through three games at the Pioneer Tournament, beating Pioneer, Mountain View and Soquel to claim the title of tournament champions! A great way to start off the season!

More than 200 guests gathered in Julie Billiart Hall in support of Justice Immersion recently. Attendees shared a simple soup supper and listened as students shared their immersion trip experiences. "It was heartwarming to hear how these Notre Dame students, along with many others, took what they had learned about justice and compassion in the classroom and applied it to the real world," shared Nicole Yu '18.

Senior Nicole Yu, along with a few of her Notre Dame sisters and chaperones, spent several days in Washington DC attending workshops, participating in discussions, and taking some time to visit landmarks and museums. This Ignatian Family Teach In is one of eight immersion trips offered at ND. Read Nicole's reflection on the experience here.

The Class of 2020 Griffins have been developing their leadership skills all year. Last Friday they had the opportunity to use those skills as they hosted hundreds of prospective members of the Class of 2022 and parents for Eighth Grade Day.

Eight Notre Dame students spent three days learning about careers in the tech industry last week and putting their STEM skills to use in hands-on workshops taught by industry volunteers. Participants processed their own wafers in the lab at SJSU and also spent some time working on soft skills through activities such as mock interviews.

Students in biology and environmental science classes recently visited the Monterey Bay Aquarium where they were able to examine the effects of climate change and learn ways to live more sustainably in our changing environment. Through hands-on exhibits and experiments, they gained a better understanding of the way different biomes function and how they influence our lives as humans.

The more than 120 student athletes participating in volleyball, cross country, tennis and golf wrapped up their 2017-18 fall season last night with an awards ceremony. Eleven students were recognized by the West Bay Athletic League for their outstanding performance.

French IV AP students recently visited Stanford University's Auguste Rodin sculpture collection to experience, in person, the art they had been studying in class.

For the 9th consecutive year, the Notre Dame community has come together on a crisp fall day to play some football and dodge ball, enjoy some food and celebrate sisterhood in support of our sister community in Yancolo, El Salvador. Funds raised through this year's event are helping to provide an education for nine students in the small community of about 200 families.

The Notre Dame campus and Pardini Park were transformed into a playground for historical figures, evil witches and all manner of creative characters on Tuesday as students, faculty and staff celebrated Halloween with a costume contest, games, food and fun including the ever-popular donut on a string game!

Notre Dame's Model United Nations Club provides students with an opportunity to learn about foreign affairs and practice diplomacy and public speaking in a setting that replicates a traditional United Nations sessions. The recent Berkeley workshop focused on the topic of capital punishment.

Notre Dame's tech theater students began working on the set design for this year's fall play, Kind Lady, in August. Construction begin in September. At Notre Dame, it isn't parents or volunteers that are using power tools to build the intricate sets that always seem to include stairs, platforms, windows and doors. In fact, the tech crew for Kind Lady used 30 pounds of screws, more than 30 screw gun bits, 9 gallons of paint, 2,000 stables, 190 feet of molding, 850 square feet of plywood and a gallon of wood glue to construct a set that, end-to-end, would run 60 feet in length!

Notre Dame's Robotics Team 1967, the Janksters, kicked off their robotics season with the CalGames 2017 Steamworks competition. Rookies and veterans alike were able to learn many valuable lessons including time management, the importance of being calm in stressful situations and effective communications.

Representative Ro Khanna spent some time on campus recently with the Class of 2018 Government classes. He shared with students the path he has taken to becoming a member of the United States Congress and his insight into how important it is for our young people to learn about the issues facing our country and the world and get involved.

More than 250 freshman students and family members gathered recently to celebrate Notre Dame's fourth annual Freshman Family Liturgy, presided over by Father Joe Kim.

Alumna Shirley Minardi '50 Lewis passed away on October 8 in her San Jose home surrounded by the family she loved. In 2013 Shirley was recognized and honored as a Woman of Impact at Notre Dame's 5th annual event. Her story of commitment, tenacity and compassion inspired students, faculty and staff. Friends and family are invited to celebrate her life from 2PM-5PM on October 29th at History Park. Please RSVP by emailing

Dr. Terrence Roberts, a member of the Little Rock Nine and author of this year's ND Reads selection, Lessons From Little Rock, shared his personal account of the desegregation efforts of 1957 with students and the Notre Dame community as part of the 11th annual ND Reads author talk.

Notre Dame's 9th annual Women of Impact luncheon honored Lisa Sobrato Sonsini and Kelly Powell '88 Bruno, who shared inspiring stories of women's leadership with the more than 750 guests in attendance at the San Jose Convention Center last week.

Thirty juniors joined the Class of 2021 for one of Notre Dame's time-honored traditions, Freshman Sleepover. The big sisters took charge of the event, helping the newest members of the ND sisterhood with games and activities that, ultimately, lead them to voting on the colors and mascot that will identify them throughout their high school years and even as they join the more than 8,000 alumnae in the ND network! We're excited to introduce the Red & Teal Tigers!

The mission of International Day of The Girl is “to help galvanize worldwide enthusiasm for goals to better girls’ lives, providing an opportunity for them to show leadership and reach their full potential.” At Notre Dame, our rich urban landscape and innovative programs cultivate young women with strong voices who will advocate for social justice in their local, national and global communities and help to bring about change. In celebration of International Day of the Girl we invite you to meet three of these young women. They will be the voices of change.

A recent walking field trip to the Martin Luther King Jr. Library provided students in Introduction to Photography with a hands-on lesson in one of the first forms of 3D photo technology.

In the Fall 2017 issue of Made @ The Tech magazine, Mallika Yeleswarapu, Class of 2017, shares her advice to parents for how to support girls in STEM. Mallika is currently attending Santa Clara University where she is working towards a degree in economics and feminist studies.

A Notre Dame education extends well beyond the footprint of our downtown San Jose campus, out into the tenth largest city in the United States and the thriving center of Silicon Valley. The area is rich with culture, history, art and resources. Biotech students recently embarked on one of more than 50 walking field trips scheduled for this year, to visit the BioDesign Studio at the Tech Museum.

The junior class traveled to Angel Island recently to bring to life their study of American immigration. Now a California State Park, Angel Island served as a "holding place" for primarily Chinese immigrants in the early 1900s.