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viewpoint

Structurally, Notre Dame is designed for wealthy White Americans

| Thursday, September 28, 2017

When discussing my experience at the University of Notre Dame with the institution’s apologists — or anyone for that matter — I’m usually met with dismissiveness. As an orphaned queer student of color, my demands for more inclusive policies provoke responses like: “But they’ve created [insert campus institute for marginalized community] precisely for students like you.” Or “If you talk to them, they’ll make an exception for you.” Or even, “You can’t expect them to understand and meet all of your particular needs.”

You’ll notice that all these suggestions are premised upon the fact that I’m an outlier.

Well, it’s true. While I’m not alone in my structural location at this university, I’m certainly not “Katie from Chicago.” But precisely the fact that “Katie from Chicago” is the archetypal Notre Dame student is the symptom of a grave illness.

On the surface, it’s an intuitive proposition: The phrase illustrates the University’s poor inclusion policies that render null the university’s efforts to diversify the student body.

But the root cause of these failures is subtler and perhaps more difficult for privileged students — and indeed the University’s administration — to recognize. Whether intentionally or not, the University of Notre Dame is structurally designed for wealthy White Americans.

Is this written in the University constitution? No. Figuratively, however, it’s written all over University policy, crafted without heeding marginalized students’ explicitly solicited advice.

Take the new housing policy, requiring incoming students to spend a minimum of six semester on campus. Going against student focus groups’ recommendations, the policy forces residence halls upon students of color, queer students, student victims of sexual violence and other groups who find respite from marginalization in off-campus housing without offering concrete proposals to tackle these issues. But heterosexual white male students need not worry.

Or take the new Office of Student Enrichment, established to assist low-income students when their financial aid package is insufficient. Because the office is only funded by private donations and not by the University itself, it has insufficient resources to assist all students eligible for its services. Still today, many students have difficulty procuring such essentials as over-the-counter medication; fortunately for me, football tickets are all I’ve gone without this semester. In any case, to my wealthy peers: To your good health, and enjoy the game on my behalf.

Certainly, the University has made provisions for students like myself. Distressed students may obtain exemption from the new housing policy, for example. But options like these further marginalize us; by transforming us into perennial exceptions, these policies strip us of our agency, forcing us to appeal to benevolent administrators in our time of need rather than allowing us to take control of our lives as independent adults.

Rather than boosting financial aid packages to begin with, for example, the University administration has propped up the sickly Office of Student Enrichment, to which low-income students must resort for all needs trivial to life-threatening.

In other words, by crafting essentialist policies designed with privileged students in mind, or else without the counsel of underprivileged students, the University not only marginalizes students like myself, but indeed forces us into need.

When voicing my discontent about the University of Notre Dame’s policies vis-a-vis marginalized student communities, I have been met with skepticism. My standards are too high. I’ve demanded too much.

Many even acknowledge the University administration cannot see past its archetypal students’ privilege, and knowingly or not caters to this population. But, hey, they’re trying their best.

In the meantime, as they say: “Beggars can’t be choosers.”

Perhaps they are right: I may be a student, but I’ve been made a beggar.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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About Adrian Mark Lore

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  • Matthew Bartilotti

    Alright gang, pack it up, we’ve reached peak Viewpoint, we can all stop now

  • Matthew Bartilotti

    The notion that minorities are systematically marginalized from on campus housing is undoubtedly wrong. I can agree with you that the housing requirement puts extra stress on the financial situation for low income students. But in my housing experience and what I have experienced with my friends who are minority, I have never seen any marginalizing experiences. I would love to hear what some of your examples of how you have experienced this discrimination based on race to understand why you think this way though

    • Alex Rice

      So you think that you can speak for students of color…because you were never marginalized?
      Two of the most egregious experiences off the top of my head, both of which happened to people in my community:
      1. Black students hearing “who invited these [n-words]?” upon entering a dorm party
      2. Black male students being questioned by NDSP about whether they attend Notre Dame when trying to swipe into their dorms after a late night.
      These things wear on you over time and often lead students of color to prefer off-campus life. Not to mention: off-campus life is often much cheaper!

      • Matthew Bartilotti

        Your two instances of racism are not STRUCTURAL problems, those are two instances of gross racist behavior by one of our students s by an NDSP officer that should have been reported by those students. And I know you said it was cheaper: that is not a race issue, because white Low income students would be equally as disenfranchised by that as minority low income students. The fact of the matter is that you will not be forced into that 6 semester contract, and neither will any of next year’s studens. They know what they will be getting into when they come to this school

        • Jack Jacobs

          Okay, so Matthew, Alex went out of her way to specifically recall *for you* two instances of racist discrimination in (or, well, at the entrance of) ND dorms. And Adrian’s basic observation was that requiring all students to live in dorms for longer will require all students to experience ND dorms for longer.

          If part of the ND dorm experience is discriminatory — per Alex & Adrian, *who both definitely know way more about this than you or I* — then ND establishing a regulation (i.e., structure) to put students into a dorm setting for longer is a *textbook example* of an administrative structure reinforcing discrimination — at the very least, for 2 years longer than the old 1 required year.

          You are either arguing that a) requiring students to live in dorms will not place them in more dorm situations, or b) students of color have no way of deciding for themselves that they would feel more comfortable off-campus on the basis of discrimination at ND dorms.

          Arguing (a) is ridiculous, and arguing (b) *after two students of color told you that they have lived this, and after Alex went out of her way *AT YOUR REQUEST* to recall to you racist discrimination at ND in her own life* is just insulting. It seems like you will never believe Alex or Adrian, or any people of color who disagree with you.

          Echoing your request to Adrian to prove his experiences to you, could you either a) acknowledge that Adrian’s & Alex’s ND dorm experiences included racist, queerphobic, economic discrimination, or b) let me know what, *specifically*, I’m missing with my reasoning here? You’re all over this thread, and I’m seriously at a loss with you.

          • Matthew Bartilotti

            There were two instances that had to do with two completely awful racist people. I am truly sorry that they had to deal with those racial experiences. But to act as if that is the *norm* rather than the few and far in-between exception at Notre Dame is a lie. Those two instances are not part of the dorm experience in its structure, they are two individuals who acted in a racist way. The main argument in this viewpoint was that the dorm system in itself was discriminatory. If this were the case, then I would expect there to be countless examples about how minorities experience a less welcoming dorm experience; I think its fair for somebody making this argument to provide some examples of a systemic problem. If anybody were to make a comment like they received at a party, I would 100% expect the university disciplinary process to address it, and I would equally expect 90% of Notre Dame students to not tolerate that behavior.

            I can acknowledge that they have experienced discrimination, and I am sorry for that. But I do not think that it is something caused by the dorm system like they state.

          • Selwin Wainaina

            But the thing is that those “isolated incidents” are reoccurring stories for many minorities on this campus. Whether it be microaggressions to full blown racist. Stories like Adrian’s or even as intense as people like Greg (http://ndsmcobserver.com/2017/02/trump-supporters-paid-visit/) are not just isolated incidents. The two examples Alex gave you are only drops in the lake of issues that some minority students have to face the moment they step on campus. As I said before in my reply to another comment you made, many of the lses students on campus also belong to minority groups (or are categorized as minority either way), so to try to completely distinguish the two groups is impossible.

            P.S. – If you truly had wanted to learn about the issues, or systematic marginalization that Adrian was talking about in his article, why did you turn to the comments instead of inquiring to him directly? His email is attached to the bottom of the article, so if you were actually wondering what he was talking about or had a problem with what he may not have stated in the article, why not simply ask him head on instead of debating with people in the comments? I still do not agree with you speaking for all of the minority groups on campus just based on what you have or have not seen from your minority peers, but as a suggestion, just message him.

  • LawMom

    Curiously absent is any mention of a campus job to help with this student’s apparently huge financial deficits. And I’m guessing the Catholic atmosphere on campus isn’t exactly amenable to his interest in advancing his “marginalized” lifestyle.

    • Alex Rice

      On-campus jobs pay at or just above minimum wage. Try again.

      • LawMom

        I don’t have to “try again”. Both of my ND students received financial aid packages to cover what we couldn’t afford, which was a significant amount. What they could not recover in campus jobs is being paid off or will be in the future. Education is an investment in or future. It’s not meant to be paid for at the time it is received.

    • Gregory Serapio-García

      Actually, Adrian works several jobs. He is a student manager at LaFun and I’ve also seen him working at the Huddle.

      • LawMom

        Two=several. Did those math skills get you into Notre Dame?

        • Gregory Serapio-García

          Edit: Actually, Adrian works several jobs. He is a student manager at LaFun and I’ve also seen him working at Starbucks and the Huddle.

          Yes, they did! Curiously absent from my admissions application, to boot, were ad hominem reactions to legitimate criticisms. 🙂

          • LawMom

            Well done! =)

    • Selwin Wainaina

      …You do know that writing for the Observer is one of the jobs available on campus…right? or….

      • LawMom

        Letters to the editor aren’t paying jobs.

    • Adrian Mark Lore

      I told myself I wouldn’t reply to any of these comments, and I’m not going to argue with you, but just to set the record straight:

      1. This is not a Letter to the Editor; it is an Inside Column. It’s mandatory that I write one or two every semester as part of my paid job as the Associate Editor of The Observer’s Scene section.

      2. In addition to working at the Observer, I work on the board for the undergraduate radio station WVFI, where I serve as the editor for the station zine. In addition to this, I write analytical news briefings about the Colombian peace agreement for the Peace Accords Matrix project of the Kroc Institute. These are all paid jobs. I’d say I work at least about 15 hours weekly.

      3. I’m not sure what you’re trying to say about Catholicism, but I’m a devout Catholic; I served as my residence hall’s liturgical commissioner my entire sophomore year. For what it’s worth, I got an award from the actual Diocese of San Bernardino for my service work my last year of high school. Anyways, I’ll pray for you.

  • warmupthediesel

    You’ve been handed the opportunity of a lifetime….and yet you’ve shown up on that campus and have attacked the (admittedly) majority of your peers…for what? Being more fortunate than you, on average? For looking differently than you? Because their great-grandparents had different backgrounds than yours? It’s clear you don’t like white people based on the tone of your letter. And newsflash….not every white person is privileged or wealthy. You’re making a generalization based on skin-color and vocalizing your resentment of that particular group…that makes you a racist.
    You made some solid points on the University’s recent decisions…but the second you brought skin-color into your argument, I figured you out. Why didn’t you pick another university to attend? Did you not look up the ethnic makeup of Notre Dame before you signed on? If not, it’s you own fault you’re unhappy…NOBODY ELSE’S! I’d have a hard time believing that ND was the only school you got into?
    Maybe you should get to know “Katie from Chicago”. She’s probably less likely to let her skin-color affect her relationships compared to you…you bigot.

    • Alumna

      “You’ve been handed the opportunity of a
      lifetime.” So you don’t think he earned his spot?

      “[You] have attacked the (admittedly) majority of your peers.” Where? This article was about institutionalized white supremacy.

      “It’s clear you don’t like white people based on the tone of your letter.” Perhaps this is clear to you as a person who is looking to pick a fight with a person of color about their lived experiences. To me, it’s clear that you don’t like it when people of color try to express the ways they have felt marginalized or oppressed. It is also clear that the tone of the letter is more level-headed than the tone of your response.

      “And newsflash…not every white person is privileged or wealthy.” Here enters your condescending and rude manner. Nonetheless, you are incorrect. Every white person is privileged. White skin privilege is privilege. If you have white skin you have privilege.

      “You’re making a generalization based on skin-color and vocalizing your resentment of that particular group…that makes you a racist.” Where is there resentment? Adrian is stating facts. Moreover, your lazy response is again incorrect. Even “resentment of a partticular group” is not racism—race has to be involved. Finally, the nature of racism does allow for so-called reverse racism or racism against white people. You cannot be racist against a white person. You can be prejudiced. You can discriminate. You cannot be racist.

      “You made some solid points on the University’s recent decisions…but the second you brought skin-color into your argument, I figured you out.” This is where I figured you out. Your response essentially translates into, “I was compelled by your arguments until you brought up a subject that was threatening to me or my identity, so I had to write a comment calling you a racist and a bigot.”

      “Why didn’t you pick another university to attend? Did you not look up the ethnic makeup of Notre Dame before you signed on? If not, it’s you own fault you’re unhappy…NOBODY ELSE’S! I’d have a hard time believing that ND was the only school you got into?“ This may be the most repulsive part of your comment. ND is one of the best schools in the country, which is why people of color and queer people choose to go there—in fact, I think it’s why most people choose to go there. You seem to insinuate that people should only go to a school whose composition reflects who they are and their thoughts, which I am guessing is a reflection of yourself—you exist in an echo chamber and have heard the buzzwords you’re using before and will shout out at strangers on the internet when what they say disagrees with or challenges what you’ve heard. You do realize you just made an argument for racial segregration of institutions of higher learning right? That’s usually what we call… racist.

      “Maybe you should get to know “Katie from Chicago”. She’s probably less likely to let her skin-color affect her relationships compared to you…you bigot.“ If I had to guess, Adrian does know Katie from Chicago. There are pretty good odds she probably sounds a lot like you.

    • Alumna

      “You’ve been handed the opportunity of a
      lifetime.” Do you not think he earned his spot?

      “[You] have attacked the (admittedly) majority of your peers.” Where? This article was about institutionalized preferences.

      “It’s clear you don’t like white people based on the tone of your letter.” Perhaps this is clear to you as a person who is looking to pick a fight with a person of color about their lived experiences. To me, it’s clear that you don’t like it when people of color try to express the ways they have felt marginalized or oppressed. It is also clear that the tone of the letter is more level-headed than the tone of your response.

      “And newsflash…not every white person is privileged or wealthy.” Here enters your condescending and rude manner. Nonetheless, you are incorrect. Every white person is privileged. White skin privilege is privilege. If you have white skin you have privilege.

      “You’re making a generalization based on skin-color and vocalizing your resentment of that particular group…that makes you a racist.” Where is there resentment? Adrian is stating facts and explaining the way the he feels about the school. Moreover, your lazy response is again incorrect. Even “resentment of a particular group” is not racism—race has to be involved. Finally, the nature of racism does not allow for so-called reverse racism or racism against white people. You cannot be racist against a white person. You can be prejudiced. You can discriminate. You cannot be racist.

      “You made some solid points on the University’s recent decisions…but the second you brought skin-color into your argument, I figured you out.” This is where I figured you out. Your response essentially translates into, “I was compelled by your arguments until you brought up a subject that was threatening to me or my identity, so I had to write a comment calling you a racist and a bigot.”

      “Why didn’t you pick another university to attend? Did you not look up the ethnic makeup of Notre Dame before you signed on? If not, it’s you own fault you’re unhappy…NOBODY ELSE’S! I’d have a hard time believing that ND was the only school you got into?“ This may be the most repulsive part of your comment. ND is one of the best schools in the country, which is why people of color and queer people choose to go there—in fact, I think it’s why most people choose to go there. You (and several others in the comments) seem to insinuate that people should only go to a school whose composition reflects who they are and their thoughts, which I am guessing is a reflection of yourself—you exist in an echo chamber and have heard the buzzwords you’re using before and will shout out at strangers on the internet when what they say disagrees with or challenges what you’ve heard. You do realize you just made an argument for racial segregration of institutions of higher learning right? That’s usually what we call… racist.

      “Maybe you should get to know “Katie from Chicago”. She’s probably less likely to let her skin-color affect her relationships compared to you…you bigot.“ If I had to guess, Adrian does know Katie from Chicago. And he probably doesn’t want to get to know her if she sounds like you or the other people in the comments.

    • Alumna

      “You’ve been handed the opportunity of a lifetime.” So you don’t think he earned his spot?

      “[You] have attacked the (admittedly) majority of your peers.” Where? This article was about institutionalized white supremacy.

      “It’s clear you don’t like white people based on the tone of your letter.” Perhaps this is clear to you as a person who is looking to pick a fight with a person of color about their lived experiences. To me, it’s clear that you don’t like it when people of color try to express the ways they have felt marginalized or oppressed. It is also clear that the tone of the letter is more level-headed than the tone of your response.

      “And newsflash…not every white person is privileged or wealthy.” Here enters your condescending and rude manner. Nonetheless, you are incorrect. Every white person is privileged. White skin privilege is privilege. If you have white skin you have privilege.

      “You’re making a generalization based on skin-color and vocalizing your resentment of that particular group…that makes you a racist.” Where is there resentment? Adrian is stating facts. Moreover, your lazy response is again incorrect. Even “resentment of a partticular group” is not racism—race has to be involved. Finally, the nature of racism does allow for so-called reverse racism or racism against white people. You cannot be racist against a white person. You can be prejudiced. You can discriminate. You cannot be racist.

      “You made some solid points on the University’s recent decisions…but the second you brought skin-color into your argument, I figured you out.” This is where I figured you out. Your response essentially translates into, “I was compelled by your arguments until you brought up a subject that was threatening to me or my identity, so I had to write a comment calling you a racist and a bigot.”

      “Why didn’t you pick another university to attend? Did you not look up the ethnic makeup of Notre Dame before you signed on? If not, it’s you own fault you’re unhappy…NOBODY ELSE’S! I’d have a hard time believing that ND was the only school you got into?“ This may be the most repulsive part of your comment. ND is one of the best schools in the country, which is why people of color and queer people choose to go there—in fact, I think it’s why most people choose to go there. You seem to insinuate that people should only go to a school whose composition reflects who they are and their thoughts, which I am guessing is a reflection of yourself—you exist in an echo chamber and have heard the buzzwords you’re using before and will shout out at strangers on the internet when what they say disagrees with or challenges what you’ve heard. You do realize you just made an argument for racial segregration of institutions of higher learning right? That’s usually what we call… racist.

      “Maybe you should get to know “Katie from Chicago”. She’s probably less likely to let her skin-color affect her relationships compared to you…you bigot.“ If I had to guess, Adrian does know Katie from Chicago. There are pretty good odds she probably sounds a lot like you.

  • Triggered Snowflake

    Dear Adrian,

    Thank you very much for your oh-so-original regurgitation of the current leftist dribble with which college students are indoctrinated daily by Marxist junior professors of Gender Fluid Dance Theory and the Huffington Post. You are truly an innovative thinker and unique voice.

    I agree with you. There are too many Katies from Chicago! These creatures are dangerous, and as you rightly pointed out, “the symptom of a grave illness”! Nothing gets me crawling to my safe space faster than a Katie from Chicago. (It’s such great fun to judge people by an exterior trait without getting to know them first as an individual!)

    But Adrian, I must say, my favorite part of your article is where you lament the difficulty of being a queer student. It must be so hard having twice as many sexual options as the rest of us, and then being snuggled and tucked in by the University with a cozy quilt of rainbow flags celebrating your encounters. I thought my own sexual approach of waiting for marriage was torturous, but clearly I’ve been soundly misled.

    And last, I’m very sorry you were unable to purchase football tickets this semester. I would offer to spot you for one of the $20 tickets that are available to scalp when we play teams like Miami of Ohio, but really, you don’t sound like you would be a very fun addition to the student section. And I’m willing to bet you wouldn’t stand for the national anthem, which of course is your right in this great free nation, but which would leave me feeling very triggered.

    Go Irish, (and sorry for appropriating the Irish),
    A straight white educated legal immigrant female
    (Is that how this “intersectional victim card” thing works? Plz advise)

    • Alex Rice

      “…two of my three best friends were non-white, as was my boyfriend.” So you think you speak for them? Wonderful.

  • Cindyanna

    “Take the new housing policy, requiring incoming students to spend a minimum of six semester on campus. Going against student focus groups’ recommendations, the policy forces residence halls upon students of color, queer students, student victims of sexual violence and other groups who find respite from marginalization in off-campus housing without offering concrete proposals to tackle these issues.” This is how I read this: “We’re marginalized, so we want to marginalize ourselves further by secluding ourselves, but you won’t let us. Stop marginalizing us!”

    • Daniel Esparza

      Do you even know what marginalization is? It’s not physically being placed peripheral to other people, as you seem to be implying.

      • Cindyanna

        Seems to me that living among others that might be different from you might be the best way to understand each other – therefore, less “marginalized”.

        • Alumna

          It’s not enough to go to school with them and be in class with them? They need to live together too?

  • Steven Alagna

    These other–very frustrating–comments are proving the author’s point. Instead of listening to the author as the author shares their sincere concerns, these commentators appear to be blaming the author. This validates the author’s argument that these issues are systemic. They are so entrenched that even calling out these norms is an affront to the people protected/empowered/served by them. Ironically, I venture to guess that these commentators would also be quick to tout the importance of “Christian values.” But I notice a conspicuous lack of compassion in their comments.

    Adrian, thank you for speaking this truth. The points you raise are dramatically important. I hope this article starts important conversations. And I hope people can recognize the importance of granting you and other Q/T POC the baseline/minimal/humanly-decent courtesy of hearing you out. But the comments prove that we have so far to go.

    • Daniel Esparza

      Agreed. I honestly thought that it was painfully obvious that the school is pretty much designed with WASCs in mind, especially while the legacy pool still exists, yet simply pointing it out brings these other’s blood to boil.

    • Alex Rice

      And they are almost all willing to pull the “my friend is black/PoC” card…there’s probably a lot those “friends” couldn’t share with you. And this is coming from someone who lived on campus for 4 years. I didn’t enjoy it necessarily, but I appreciated the convenience and was blessed to have financial aid. Contrary to what many think, for a lot of students, financial aid/student employment didn’t/doesn’t meet their basic needs.

    • Matthew Bartilotti

      He said there were systemic problems disadvantaging minorities but did not name a single systemic problem. That’s the issue that I see. It’s an article slandering the University that we attend.

      • Steven Alagna

        Matthew: I’m not sure wherever you have any marginalized identities, but if not, you might consider that before suggesting people with marginalized identities are making up their experiences. And the article is far from slander.

        • Matthew Bartilotti

          Maybe if he is going to claim that this University is systematically oppressing minority students he should provide actual ways that this happens (which he has not) or provide actual solutions to solve the problem (which he has not). The entire tone of the article is so “Woe is me”

        • warmupthediesel

          I identify as a stapler. Does my opinion carry any weight now? You’re the bigot, Steven.

      • Selwin Wainaina

        Honestly, I wouldn’t say at all that the article is “slandering” the university. I believe that it definitely brings a real issue to the forefront of people’s awareness. If you do want systematic, you can take a look at things such as football tickets and dues. Many of the students cannot afford these things, yet isn’t it a part of the Notre Dame experience? Why should they have to pay (with money that some students just do not have) for things to put on a resume or to feel community? This directly affects many of the LSES students on this campus, as it has been expressed by numerous people who fall into this category. To be completely honest, a large number of our lses students just so happen to be students of color. So you are forced consider both grouping factors. The many of the LSES students are from systematically marginalized groups.

        • Gregory Serapio-García

          Agreed!

  • CB

    Yes education is very expensive, but that is hardly a Notre Dame problem.

    You made the decision to come to ND knowing what it would cost you and knowing its background. ND meets full demonstrated need of every student, which for this academic year meant $39,100 for incoming freshman. The Office of Student Enrichment was founded based off the old “Rector Fund” system which would give money to students in need for football tickets and SYRs etc. The only reason ND as an institution does not sponsor it is because they are not able to give you more financial aid than your package stipulates. They are literally trying to help under-resourced students of all races more than they are able to through financial aid. I know of no other university that is like that and know of no other university that has as generous of a financial aid package as that. Notre Dame is a private institution. They do not have to do any of this.

    http://financialaid.nd.edu/prospective-students/

    While financially it may make sense for some to live off-campus (those who have to pay full bill), it actually makes more sense for the students with the greatest demonstrated need to live on-campus because financial aid covers more of their cost of attendance than they could get through living off-campus (I was in this boat my last two years). While I think it works best to allow housing choice for personal freedom and to allow students to vote with their dollars, I lose you for the most part with your thoughts about financial aid.

    They sell OTC medications at the Huddle. You can alter your meal plan to get flex points if that is not how you do things. In addition to the rector fund, it is possible through on-campus work to earn/save enough money to buy football tickets. If you don’t value going to the games in terms of the time you would have to give up to get that money to go, then don’t go. Life is unequal. You have to jump through hoops others don’t. You have work ethic if you got into Notre Dame. Where’s the grit? Imagine what you would have to do if there were no financial aid.

    Having everyone at random live in dorms defines inclusion and embracing diversity within dorms at a structural level. The dorms also all cost the same despite their varying quality. I would like to hear tangible experiences why living in a dorm makes you feel marginalized. As an RA, I did my best to foster a community where everyone was included. I had good, open-dialogue relationships with my guys. It was my experience that we grew as a community by having everyone participate in section events. Minority or majority, you were a resident in my dorm and a Notre Dame student with unique interests and goals. It is not perfect; not everyone will love their dorm, more likely in my observation due to individual people or smaller groups of people. However, at an structural level, the dorm is created for inclusion and community. The Hall Staff of each dorm are trained to this end and goal.

    I cannot imagine that you have been made a beggar. You are a student at the University of Notre Dame. The resources available to you do not allow that unless you deny yourself the food and community around you. If you want to see what begging looks like, do an urban plunge or spend time volunteering with people who are truly destitute.

  • NDAlum

    Well said, Adrian! You did forget to mention the University’s policy of giving admission prefernce to “Legacy” students–that is, the decendants of the white males who were the only demographic permitted at the school historically.

    • Matthew Bartilotti

      That’s almost every college im America that would give preference to legacy students… are whites being disenfranchised by Howard University? That would be pretty dumb for me to argue

    • Alex Rice

      Howard and other HBCUs were never segregated! That’s the difference.

  • Balace

    To Adrian: Thank you for writing this article, it’s something that everyone at Not Dame needs to read and acknowledge. I would tell you to ignore some of the disgusting, bigoted comments on here, but the reality is that these are the people we need to engage in dialogue with if things are every going to get better.

    To those attacking Adrian: I’m honestly shocked that you have the audacity to read this entire article and still tell Adrian that he should stop complaining because his problems don’t exist. I guess seeing it one time wasn’t enough, so I’ll say it again: Structurally, Notre Dame is designed for wealthy white Americans. No, this doesn’t mean that anyone is attacking wealthy white Americans or saying that they are “part of the problem” themselves: the problem comes when these wealthy white Americans fail to realize the flaws in the system the operate within, and marginalize minority groups within that system. No one is trying to say that these wealthy white Americans don’t have issues of their own to deal with, as some of the other commenters seem to think. But the problem faced by Adrian, which he articulated very well in this article, are problem faced by minority groups at Notre Dame every day, and problems that have largely been ignored. Fixing these problems doesn’t have to come at the expense of anyone; it just means coming to terms with one’s privilege and working to build a Notre Dame that is truly welcoming and accepting for all, something that, as these comments indicate, does not exist at present.

  • LawMom

    I think I know that cost, as a parent of one graduate and one current student. I take it from your comment that you’re not Catholic. Pretty judgmental to claim to know the hate in someone else.

    • Alumna

      You’re the one who insinuated he should feel unwelcome because of Catholicism in the first place.

      • LawMom

        No, I never implied that. You inferred it, apparently. My point was that the strict rules of parietals in the dorms, based on Catholic teaching, might make a queer student feel uncomfortable, not that they wouldn’t be welcoming to him. But a Catholic University should not bend teachings to the desires of students, straight, gay, or queer.

        • Alumna

          “And I’m guessing the Catholic atmosphere on campus isn’t exactly amenable to his interest in advancing his “marginalized” lifestyle.”
          Okay we’re arguing semantics. You meant uncomfortable, I said unwelcoming. However, you put marginalized in quotes, indicating you do not think he/his identity is marginalized. You also focused solely on the queer part of his identity. You do realize that same-sex dorms are actually the one potential perk of being queer at ND?

  • LawMom

    A campus job will help pay for expenses. The debt from the cost actual borne by the student can be paid in the future. An education is supposed to be an investment in yourself, not something that necessarily gets paid for in the present. The true question is what is it worth to you? If it isn’t valued, then choose another institution or don’t get a degree. Life is about choices. No college is supposed to make life perfect for students.

    • Selwin Wainaina

      I see what you’re saying but…. You say “oh the students shouldn’t have to worry about the costs now…it’s an investment that they will pay off in the future.” A significant majority of the Notre Dame student populations come from families that make well over 122k and there are even parents pay out of pocket, up front, for their child’s college experience. This school’s LSES students (which is a title that many (not all) students of color also possess), should not have to be bogged down until death, paying off students loans that would, perhaps, not have to be as high if they were able to live off campus. I have a friend who is LSES and their family struggled to pay while they lived on campus. When they moved off, the benefit was so great, the university actually gave them money that they use strictly for rent, dues, and books.

  • Michael McCann

    Wow. As somebody who attended college for a short time (not Notre Dame), it sounds lame. Nobody is “forced” to attend Notre Dame. Every single person CHOOSES to attend Notre Dame. Read the history of the school. Was it founded on the extremities of society? No. Who was the first President? Who’s the current President? What was the university founded on? What is the school’s history? Did you visit the campus and talk to a variety of students and professors? Was ANY research done? If you don’t know the answer to the first three questions, and answered no to the last three, then that is your fault. A college and/or university is a place to EXPAND yourself. If done right, you learn a helluva lot more outside the classroom than you do inside one. Diversity and tolerance, first and foremost. How other people live, grow, perceive the same thing, attack the same problem, etc. It is NOT a place you go to have them cater to your every need, or ESPECIALLY every want. It’s a place a person CHOOSES to go to EXPAND themselves. This article sounds more like a conversation between a few people rather than an indictment of the school. Don’t blow it up more than it is. If you feel something needs to be done, then DO it. Don’t rant and rave just to stir up hate and discontent.