About Us

Brownson Courtyard Gate

Mission
People
Approach
History
Ways to Give

Mission

The Nanovic Institute for European Studies is committed to enriching the intellectual culture of Notre Dame by creating an integrated, interdisciplinary home for students and faculty to explore the evolving ideas, cultures, beliefs, and institutions that shape Europe today.



People

The Nanovic Institute is administered by a Director, staff, a faculty committee, and an Advisory Board. Over 150 faculty from across campus affiliate with the Institute, along with a growing list of visiting European scholars. The Institute collaborates frequently with other centers, institutes, programs, schools, and European universities. It routinely sponsors over one hundred undergraduate and graduate-level students annually in research and European projects. Friends of the Institute can be found in every corner of Europe.

Top of Page

Approach

Our goal as an institute is to support, integrate, and internationalize the experience of our students and faculty in five ways:

  1. Promote European studies
  2. Transform undergraduates
  3. Professionalize graduate students
  4. Foster faculty research
  5. Build an international network

Our activities and events are numerous. To promote European studies, we host an annual Nanovic Forum to bring the best of Europe to Notre Dame, present the annual Keeley Vatican Lecture to build ties between Notre Dame and the Vatican, award the annual Laura Shannon Prize for the best book in contemporary European studies. We also run a European Film Series every semester, and support dozens of lectures and symposia. We transform undergraduates through a comprehensive range of grant programs designed to foster their skills, confidence, and international experience. We are now making heavy investments in the internationalization of European studies curricula. We seek to professionalize graduate students by offering them opportunities to organize conferences and conduct research in Europe. We foster faculty research through grant programs and our ability as to connect faculty interests and projects across disciplinary lines. We build international networks through our visiting scholar programs and our Catholic University Partnership.

We aspire to create nothing short of a comprehensive and integrated culture of European studies at Notre Dame.

Top of Page

History

The idea of establishing the Nanovic Institute for European Studies had its origins on the Danube River in the early 1990s. Robert and Elizabeth Nanovic were participants in a Notre Dame-sponsored tour of central and eastern Europe, complemented by daily lectures with Robert Wegs, a history professor at Notre Dame. “We had been thinking for some time about what we could do for Notre Dame,” Bob Nanovic remembers, “The idea of a program that could grow, evolve, and have an impact on the lives of students appealed to me.”

Thus the Institute was created in 1992, first as a “center” for European studies which sponsored an annual conference and ran a Minor in European Studies. Over time, its programs expanded. In 1997, it was designated an institute. In 2002, the current director, A. James McAdams, oversaw the development of the institute’s first formal strategic plan. The goal of this plan was to use the institute’s resources to provide greater intellectual coherence to the educational experience of undergraduate and graduate students, integrate faculty research, and enhance the internal and external visibility of European studies at Notre Dame.

The Institute’s new strategic plan (2011) is designed to promote creative and comprehensive thinking about even more ambitious ways of challenging our students, enhancing academic excellence, and acting on Notre Dame’s distinctive values. The premise of our plan is that the Institute should move beyond the emphasis on home campus and embrace a conception of the twenty-first century university that has multiple sites and metropolitan centers.

Top of Page

Ways to Give

If Notre Dame graduates are to become future leaders in American society, models of professionalism in the boardroom and the classroom, and dedicated and well–informed representatives of the U. S. abroad, it is crucial that they understand the world first-hand.

The generosity of Notre Dame’s alumni and friends enables us to meet this goal. If you would like to help, contact A. James McAdams, Director at 574.631.5253 or by email at amcadams@nd.edu.
View the current list of gifts

Top of Page