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Another Research Award Opportunity From Mission and Ministry

So Proudly Dominican: 800 Years and Counting on You ….
Supporting Undergraduate Research in the Catholic Intellectual Tradition


The year 2016 marks the 800th anniversary of the founding of the Dominican Order.  In celebration of this historic moment and in order to advance the Dominican, Catholic intellectual life on campus, the Jubilee Committee invites applications for five undergraduate student research awards, each in the amount of $500, for work to be presented at our annual Exposition of Undergraduate Research, Scholarship, and Creative Investigation (URSCI Expo) in April 2016.

Awards will be given in each of the following five categories:

1)            Albertus Magnus Award for project in the natural and physical sciences

2)            Thomas Aquinas Award for work in the humanities

3)            Catherine of Siena Award for work in the social sciences

4)            Fra Angelico Award for work in fine arts

5)            Bartolome de las Casas Award for pre-professional work in business or education

To be considered for an award, students will propose research, scholarship, or creative work that engages Dominican University’s mission to “to pursue truth, to give compassionate service and to participate in the creation of a more just and humane world,” and actively engages one or more of the Catholic intellectual tradition’s features, namely “commitment to the continuity between faith and reason; respect for the cumulative wisdom of the past; an anti-elitist bent; attention to the community dimension of all human behavior; concern for integration of goals and objectives; and keen awareness of the sacramental principle.”   Further, student work that links the Catholic intellectual tradition to Dominican’s interfaith and multicultural commitments will be especially encouraged.

Students selected for one of the research awards will produce two items:  the research, scholarship or creative work itself, and a short essay reflecting upon the ways in which the work engages the Dominican mission.  Note that both scholarly work already completed at the time of application, as well as work to be conducted during the spring 2016 semester are eligible for the awards.  All student applicants must be mentored in their scholarly or creative work by a member of the Dominican University faculty.  The intent of this project is to encourage student research which is rooted in the disciplines, but engages the Catholic intellectual tradition as a tool for reflection.  Applicants should demonstrate a clear understanding of the ways in which their work has been shaped by their Dominican education.

To be considered for the award, we ask that students submit a letter of interest which includes the following:

1)            A brief description (no more than 250 words) of the scholarly or creative project.

2)            A preliminary discussion (no more than 250 words) of how the work is connected to one or more of the dimensions of the Catholic intellectual tradition.

3)            The name of the faculty mentor.

4)            The category in which the student would like to have the work considered (natural and physical sciences, humanities, social sciences, fine arts, or pre-professional).

This letter should be submitted to Claire Noonan, Vice President of Mission and Ministry, by email ( by 12:00pm on November 30.  The faculty mentor must be copied on the letter of interest.

If selected, the award will be dispersed upon successful completion of the project, reflective essay, and presentation at the April 2016 URSCI Expo.  The exact nature of the URSCI presentation will be determined based upon the projects that are selected.

The Days of Interlibrary Loan Phone Calls

This image is from a 1967 proposal for a union card catalog for libraries in the LIBRAS consortium – liberal arts college libraries, including Dominican’s library, in and around Chicago.  Yes, that means paper cards, in stacked drawers.  Cards for all holdings of each library would reside in one catalog at one institution, and microfilm copies of the catalog would be sent to each library.  When a Dominican student needed a book that was unavailable in her library, the librarian, rather than call around to all libraries hoping to find one that owns the book, would just check the union catalog, find out who owns the book, and contact that library.  Only 3 minutes.  Now, of course, students use I-Share on their own and requests can be placed in a matter of seconds.

All rights held by LIBRAS, Inc. Digital reproductions may be copied and used freely for the purposes of private study, scholarship or research without written permission. Permission to quote from or use LIBRAS, Inc. material in a commercial publication, exhibit, or for other commercial purposes must be obtained from LIBRAS, Inc. President.

Rebecca Crown Library Excellence in Research Awards

Design by Kelsey Keithly, class of 2017
Design by Kelsey Keithly, class of 2017

Apply for the first annual Rebecca Crown Library Excellence in Research Awards:

The awards recognize excellence in scholarly or creative written papers or projects that demonstrate quality and in-depth use of Rebecca Crown Library resources and services.

All Dominican University undergraduate and master’s students enrolled in at least one class for the fall 2015 semester and/or the spring 2016 semester, including students who graduate in December 2015, are eligible.  Papers and projects submitted for consideration must have been completed for credit courses or Dominican-sponsored research programs (such as the Undergraduate Summer Scholar Program) during the summer 2015, fall 2015 or spring 2016 semester.

All applicants must write a short (up to 750 words) essay in which s/he demonstrates her/his originality, depth, breadth, and sophistication in the use of Library resources and services; ability to select, evaluate, synthesize, and utilize Library resources in the creation of a scholarly or creative written paper or project; and personal or professional growth through the acquisition of newfound knowledge.

Winners must agree to give the Library permission to publish winning papers and projects in Constellation, Dominican’s online repository of scholarship.  Access to projects that are part of ongoing scientific research intended for future publication will be restricted to you and the Constellation administrator.

Winners must also present a summary of their research at the Library Excellence in Research Awards ceremony on Monday April 18, 2016.  The time of the ceremony is TBD, but will likely be 5:00pm.

One undergraduate student and one master’s student will receive a first place award.  One undergraduate student and one master’s student will receive an honorable mention award.

First Place:
Publication of research in Constellation
Recognition at the Library Excellence in Research Awards ceremony on April 18, 2016
Bookplate dedication in library book of student’s choice

Honorable Mention:
Publication of research in Constellation
Recognition at the Library Excellence in Research Awards ceremony on April 18, 2016
Bookplate dedication in library book of student’s choice
Applications due April 11, 2016

Online application

Questions?  Email

$435,000 Grant Awarded To Dominican Neuroscience Professors

Bob and Irina Calin-Jageman, Professors in Neuroscience, recently received another prestigious grant from the National Institute of Mental Health, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to continue their research on memory.  This $435,000 grant will be used to study the process of forgetting in Aplysia californica, California sea slugs.  Read more about the specific research process and its implication on Campus News.

The Calin-Jagemans have several undergraduate students working with them in their lab each semester.  This NIH grant is designed for universities with strong undergraduate research programs, and brings recognition to these neuroscience students, and all Dominican students conducting research.

The results of this memory research have been published in five academic journal articles; the results of the new project on forgetting will also be published.  These articles are, and will be, open access, so no paid subscriptions to journals are needed.  The NIH, and several other federal agencies, publish articles that are results of their grants in PubMed Central and other freely accessible research databases.

In addition, you can access the articles, and see other research articles produced by Dominican faculty and students, in our open access repository of scholarship, Constellation.

Image from
Aplysia californica. Image from

We Have Family in Iraq: Letters from Dominican Sisters in Iraq during ISIS offensive, 2014

It has been just over a year since ISIS took hold of Mosul, Iraq and surrounding cities, forcing thousands, including The Dominican Sisters of Saint Catherine of Siena – Iraq, to flee to neighboring cities.  In a series of letters to the greater Dominican family, Sister Maria Hanna, O.P. describes the fighting, the exodus, ISIS’s takeover of the convents, the plight of the refugees, and the conditions in the displaced persons camps one year later.

You can read the letters in Constellation, our online repository of scholarship.  They were first published online by Sinsinawa Dominicans, Inc.  We present them as a reminder of the hardships the Sisters, Christians, other minorities, and all Iraqi citizens endured during the ISIS offensive, as a celebration of the charity and love shown by the Sisters, and as a call to always keep our Sisters and those they serve in our thoughts.

Below are excerpts from the letters, and a movie of the Sisters talking about the ISIS takeover.

“Some parts of Iraq are controlled by the government and others are not. We are – like the rest of our people – unable to understand what is really happening. But we know for sure that this situation is not leading to any common good. There are many political groups and sects, however peace and prosperity of the country as a whole is not in their agenda.”   June 23, 2014, as ISIS began its offensive

“Our exodus started at 11:30 pm, and before that we decided to pray and have the Holy Communion so that if the ISIS entered the house, it will not be defiled. But on the last minute, we decided to leave one piece in the tabernacle praying it will protect the house and the town.
When we arrived to the intersession of Mosul-Erbil, we were shocked to see a huge mess of cars driving very chaotically to Erbil. The view was beyond describing, as words cannot fully capture it. Men, pregnant women, children, handicaps and elderly were moving toward Erbil. There were Christians, Muslims Shiites, Yezeds and Shabak; some people were on foot, some were riding trunks of pick-up, lorry trunks, and motorcycles.”  August 8, 2014, as the Sisters were forced to flee to Erbil

“Despite the loss and pain our community is experiencing, we rejoice in the reality that our sisters have decisively chosen to live life, never letting despair extinguish the light within them, and in the midst of overwhelming hardship, two sisters renewed their vows yesterday evening and two postulants received the habit, becoming novices.
It was a day where the contradictions of life and death converged; we witnessed simultaneously death and resurrection. This was a sign of hope and God’s presence among us, and it gave us courage to continue our journey with our people who are still displaced, weakened, and impoverished.”  September 9, 2014, as the Sisters were reunited in Erbil and Ankawa