Categories
Viewpoint

Journey to Notre Dame

My journey to Notre Dame was not that of the average Notre Dame student.

During my senior year of high school when applying to colleges, I knew wholeheartedly that I wanted to be at a college that had a warm and welcoming, yet academically rigorous environment, much like the college prep, Jesuit high school I was attending in Chicago. It didn’t take long for me to realize that Notre Dame checked all of those boxes and then some.

When it came time to submit college applications, Notre Dame was at the top of my list. Like many other students, I spent countless hours trying to perfect my essays. When it came time to write the “Why Notre Dame?” essay, I vividly remember wondering whether or not I’d be able to say everything I wanted to say without exceeding the word limit. There were so many reasons why Notre Dame was the perfect school for me and why I wanted to cheer on the Irish as part of the Class of 2025. 

When I felt my application said everything I could possibly articulate about my love for Notre Dame, I clicked submit and was filled with hope (and nervousness) for the future. I began praying that my dream would come true, and that I would find myself home under the dome that fall. 

A few months later during the spring of my senior year, my parents were getting ready to go watch my brother play hockey when I got the email. Every Notre Dame student knows the email I’m talking about. It was the email that stated that application decisions would be released that evening. 

My mom decided to stay home with me because she knew I would anxiously be awaiting the decision. I could barely focus that evening, as Notre Dame was all I could think about. Every minute that passed felt like an hour, and every hour that passed felt like an eternity, as I anxiously paced the floors of my living room.

When it was finally time to open the decision letter, I remember my heart pounding and my hands feeling numb. No other college decision evoked this much emotion from me. This was the moment I had been waiting for for such a long time. It felt like all four years of high school — the sleepless nights spent studying, the stress of AP classes and the hours spent participating in extracurricular activities — had all been leading up to this moment. Within one click, I knew I would find out my fate for the next chapter of my life. And unfortunately, within one click, I received the news I had not been hoping for. The news that said, “we regret to inform you that we are unable to offer you admission to Notre Dame.” I was instantly crushed and experienced the heartache that I know many others can relate to. 

I knew life was moving quickly and that I had to make a decision. A few months later, I decided to accept admission into the honors program at the University of Michigan. As much as I tried to envision myself there, my heart kept leading me back to South Bend. 

A few days later, it was as though God had heard my prayers. A mentor had told me about the wonderful community at Holy Cross College. God was laying out His plan for me; I just had to decide whether or not to follow it. 

Even though it was not in the way I had expected, I still found myself in South Bend that fall. From the first day I stepped foot on Holy Cross’s campus, I immersed myself in my classes and the tri-campus community. Although I wasn’t in the Gateway program, I was not giving up on my dream of attending Notre Dame just yet. 

At the beginning of the school year, I received an email that Notre Dame would be playing the movie, Rudy, on their football field — an experience that was sure to be unforgettable. As much as I wanted to go, I couldn’t bring myself to watch something that hit so close to home. Although our stories are a little different, I related to the longing desire of making your dream a reality. 

During second semester, I submitted my transfer application, filled with the same hope and nervousness that had consumed me months earlier, maybe even more so because I was able to experience the magic of Notre Dame’s community firsthand. 

Flash forward to today, and I am grateful to be writing this in my dorm room at Notre Dame. I am also grateful to my high school (Saint Ignatius), Holy Cross, my parents for believing in me and the many mentors that stood in my corner along the way. 

We all have our own journeys in life to follow. If there’s one thing this experience has taught me, it’s that sometimes we have to be open to following a slightly different path in order to reach our final destination.

Isabelle Kause is a sophomore at Notre Dame studying sociology and minoring in journalism. When she’s not busy, you can find her listening to country music or Taylor Swift or trying out new makeup/skincare products. She can be reached at ikause@nd.edu.
The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

Categories
News

11 popular off-campus housing options near the tri-campus

By Alysa Guffey and Maggie Eastland

As October arrives, sophomores and juniors (and even first-years) begin to think about their off-campus migration. A variety of apartment and townhome complexes in the South Bend area offer leases for students, but it can be difficult to navigate all the information available.

The Observer has compiled a guide to off-campus housing with information accurate as of Oct. 1. Prices and other facts are subject to change, but this guide provides an overview of the various off-campus leasing options, compared to the cost of living on campus as a senior. 

This year it costs $16,710 per year to live on campus at Notre Dame with a meal plan. That breaks down to over $2,000 per month, or about $504 per week. Notre Dame offers a $2,000 incentive to the first 250 sophomore students who commit to living on campus as seniors. The incentive closed Sept. 30 this year. The base rate for room and board at Saint Mary’s is $13,580, averaging out to about $1,500 a month, or $425 per week. The College charges fees for certain living arrangements such as single rooms or Opus Hall rooms. Living on campus with a meal plan at Holy Cross College costs $12,000, which is roughly $1,333 per month, or $375 per week.

Editor’s Note: Costs used to create this graph are high-low averages that encompass 2023-2024 and 2024-2025 prices when listed. Prices are subject to future change.
Credit: Maggie Klaers | The Observer
  1. Irish Row

Monthly rent and units available

2 bed, 2 bath: $1020 per bed, $2040 total

3 bed, 3 bath: $980 per bed, $2940

Note: Monthly rates increase by $50 as each new lease is signed. Rates published are correct as of Sept. 20. Two-bedroom units for the 2023-2024 term cost $1070 per bed or $2140 total.

Lease term

June to May

August to July

When to start applying

There are limited units remaining for 2023-2024 lease terms. Leasing for 2024-2025 opened Sept. 19.

Location

Irish Row is a mile east from the Notre Dame campus. The commute is about 20 minutes by foot or 5 minutes by car. 

Utility costs

Residents are billed monthly for electricity, water, sewage, gas and trash.

Monthly rent and units available

4 bed, 4.5 bath: $1340 per bed or $5260 total

Note: Rent increases $50 with each lease signed.

Lease term

June to June

August to August

When to start applying

Now leasing 2024-2025 units. No 2023-2024 units are listed as available.

Location

East of campus and just north of Irish Row, these units are part of the Irish Crossings neighborhood. The commute to Notre Dame’s campus is 1 mile — about 20 minutes by foot or 5 minutes by car. 

Utility costs

Residents are billed monthly for electricity, water, gas, sewage and trash.

Monthly Rent and units available

4 bed, 4.5 bath: $1500 per bed or $6000 total

4 bed, 3.5 bath: $1400 per bed or $5600 total

Lease term

June to May

When to start applying

Now leasing 2024-2025 units.

Location

East of campus and north of Irish Row, these CES-owned units are part of the Irish Crossings neighborhood. The commute to Notre Dame’s campus is 1 mile — about 20 minutes by foot or 5 minutes by car. 

Utility Costs

Residents must independently contract and pay for electric, gas, cable and wifi.

Monthly rent and units available

2023-2024:

1 bed, 1 bath: $1365

2 bed, 2 bath: $1010 per bed or $2020

3 bed, 3 bath: $990 per bed or $2970

2024-2025:

1 bed, 1 bath: $1420 

2 bed, 2 bath: $1030 per bed or $2060

3 bed, 3 bath: $1010 per bed or $3030

Lease term

May to May

August to July

When to start applying

Now leasing 2023-2024 and 2024-2025.

Location

The Irish Flats are east of Notre Dame’s campus and just north of the Crossings neighborhood. They are 1 mile from campus — a 20-minute walk or 5-minute drive.

Utility Costs

Residents are responsible for electric costs, parking and insurance. Wifi and basic cable included in monthly rent.

Monthly rent and units available*

1 bed, 1 bath (renovated and furnished): starts at $1060 

2 bed, 2 bath (renovated and furnished): starts $659 per bed or $1318 total

2 bed, 2 bath (basic and unfurnished): starts at $609 per bed or $1218 total

3 bed, 2 bath (renovated and furnished): starts at $599 per bed or $1797 total

3 bed, 2 bath (basic and unfurnished): starts at $494 per bed or $1482 total

*Rates are based on 2022-23 lease terms. Renovated/unfurnished options subject to change.

Lease term

Aug. 20 to July 31 

When to start applying

Applications for fall 2023 open Oct. 20.

Location

Campus Court is 1.1 miles from the Notre Dame campus and a little further east than Irish Row. It is a 5-minute driving or 20-minute walking commute.

Utility Costs

Residents pay for electric bill.

Monthly rent and units available

6 bed, 3.5 bath: $1400 per bed or $8400 total

Lease term

June to May

When to start applying

Now leasing for 2024-2025

Location

The Legacy neighborhood is about 1.5 miles northeast of campus. It takes 7 minutes to commute by car or half an hour walking.

Utility Costs

Residents pay for water, electricity, trash pickup, internet, cable, telephone, sewer and gas.

Monthly rent and units available

1 bed, 1 bath (3 floor plans available): ranges from $1,455 to $2,264 

2 bed, 2 bath (3 floor plans available): ranges from $958 to $1,132 per bed, or $1,916 to $2,568 total

3 bed, 3 bath (4 floor plans available): ranges from $878 to $1,205 per bed, or $2,635 to $3,615 total

Note: Undergraduates cannot sign leases in the Foundry South buildings.

Lease term

One year, residents choose the start and end date

When to start applying

Applications opened Oct. 1, official pricing comes out in 1-2 months

Location

The Foundry apartments are just south of Notre Dame’s campus above Eddy St. Commons. The location offers a short 10-minute walk or 2-minute drive to common Notre Dame academic buildings.

Utility Costs

All utilities paid separately.

Monthly rent and units available

4 bed, 3.5 bath: $1,400 per bed

Lease term
June to May

When to start applying

Leasing now for 2024-25. No units shown as available for 2023-24. 

Location

Wexford Place is nestled between several other common student housing options located just east of Notre Dame across Twyckenham Drive and offers a 5-minute drive or 22-minute walk to campus. It is across the street from Irish Crossings.

Utility Costs

Utilities included in rent are water, trash and monthly house cleaning.

Tenants are responsible for gas, electric, cable and wifi.

Monthly rent and units available

3 bed, 3.5 bath: $850 per bed

4 bed, 3.5 bath: $825 per bed

4 bed, 3.5 bath (deluxe model): $875 per bed

Lease term

One year 

When to start applying

Leasing 2023-24 now

Location

These CES-owned properties are located north of Saint Mary’s campus off State Road 933. Approximate distance from Notre Dame is 1.4 miles, or a 30-minute walk and distance from Saint Mary’s is 0.6 miles, or a 14-minute walk.

Utility Costs

Utilities included: water, trash and monthly house cleaning

Extras: electric, gas, cable/internet

Monthly rent and units available

1 bed, 1 bath: $1,200

2 bed, 2 bath: $889 per bed, or $1,778 total

3 bed, 3 bath: $785 per bed, or $2,355 total

4 bed, 4 bath: $680 per bed, or $2,720 total

Lease term

August to July 

When to start applying

Now leasing for 2023-24 term.

Location

Located north of Douglas Road off State Road 933, University Edge is a 7-minute drive or 30-minute walk to the heart of Notre Dame and a 2-minute drive or 18-minute walk to Saint Mary’s.

Utility Costs

Utilities included in rent (except electric)

  • 11. The Landings (Restricted to Married or Parenting Students)

Monthly rent and units available

1 bed, 1 bath: $865

2 bed, 1 bath: $915

3 bed, 1 bath: $1,125

Lease term

August to July

When to start applying

January to April is a priority window for married and parenting students. After that, leases are opened up to post-graduate students. 

Location

The Landings offers a convenient 6-minute drive or roughly 28-minute walk to Notre Dame with its location two miles north of campus.

Utility Costs

All utilities paid separately.

Contact Alysa Guffey at aguffey@nd.edu and Maggie Eastland at meastlan@nd.edu

Categories
Viewpoint

This time is yours

For 16 years, I’ve measured my life in school years.

Fall is an exciting fresh start, full of hope and promise. Winter is a halftime break. Spring is a time to wrap up and summer is a timeless in-between. It’s part of the reason I’ve always disliked spring. The trees and flowers may start to bloom and the sun comes out behind its permacloud, but the season is more so a period of goodbyes, endings and change. And sometimes, I don’t want to talk about the way that it was.

Freshman years are for learning names, sophomore years don’t matter all that much and when junior years roll around, there’s a feeling of superiority and independence that comes from being an upperclassman.

And then there’s senior year: the beginning of the end, the pinnacle of it all. 

College is a place where everyone here is in a different stage of their life, but also the same — learning more about the subjects that have always interested them, figuring out what they want to do in their life and taking leaps of faith toward the future.

Lately, I’ve been thinking about how I’ll measure the passing of time once I’m done with college. When everything you’ve ever known is different, what happens? But the thing about your four years at college is that it’s so much more than school. It’s living steps away from your best friends. It’s being no more than one degree of separation away from any student. It’s laying on the quad until 3 a.m. on a Monday night just talking.

For some people (read: me), it’s finishing up the newspaper at 4 a.m. so it can be distributed throughout the tri-campus. While The Observer is my college endeavor, everyone devotes themselves to their own passion in their four years here.

I spent the past summer living away from home for the first time. (Yeah, I’ve lived at Notre Dame for the past three years, but something about living in a small dorm room with your best friend makes campus feel a lot like home.) Living somewhere else made me realize that Notre Dame is an escape, for better and for worse. 

Here, days are measured in class schedules, lunch breaks, study sessions, parties, extracurricular meetings, on-campus jobs and walks around the quads. Weeks are measured by assignments, tests and time until mid-semester breaks. Then before you know it, fall turns to spring real quick. 

And a lot of the time, you get too caught up to think about it. 

As I spent most of the summer trying to decide what I wanted to say in this column, my mind kept going back to what I learned from a magazine writing class last semester taught by Kerry Temple. He talked about the importance of thinking time: time to mull over ideas and thoughts and time to figure out what you actually want to write, not what you write in the rush of the moment. He said he gets that most college students don’t have time to do this.

It hit me that he was right — I didn’t feel like I had the time to let thoughts, ideas and feelings simmer in my mind.

And that’s the advice I have for first-years. Give yourself time to stop and think. College is fun, but it’s more bittersweet and fleeting than you first realize. Measure it by the number of nights spent with friends, hours spent in a meeting for your favorite extracurricular and minutes of a home football game. The time is yours.

The views in this Inside Column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

A version of this column was published in our Aug. 19 issue.

Alysa Guffey

Alysa is a senior majoring in history with minors in digital marketing and journalism, ethics and democracy. Contact her at aguffey@nd.edu.