Admitted Student Day at Notre Dame

By Grace Watkins

April 23 is an Admitted Student Day at the University of Notre Dame. Admitted students and their families come to campus to take tours, attend classes and eat in the dining hall before starting school in the fall.

Families are offered vouchers for meals in South Dining Hall, located on South Quad. This Bubbli gives a 360-degree view of South Quad.

Admitted Student Day ends with a mass at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart on campus. This Bubbli gives a 360-degree view of the St. Jude statue near the Basilica. The statue is a popular stop on campus tours.


Google Timelapse: Deforestation in the Amazon Rainforest

By Grace Watkins

This Google Earth Engine timelapse shows satellite imagery of deforestation in the Amazon rainforest from 1984 to 2016. This section of the Amazon rainforest is located in the Codajás municipality of the Amazonas state. Zoom in to see the individual settlements that have cut deeper and deeper into the rainforest over time. Roads into the rainforest widen as deforestation increases.

Deforestation is used by the logging industry, as well as for farm, industrial and settlement use. The Amazon rainforest has lost 294,366 square miles in total since 1970. “Save the Rainforest” protests prompted significant decreases to illegal logging, but deforestation has been back on the rise since 2015. These increases threaten Brazil’s ability to successfully complete the Paris Agreement commitments it made in 2016.

Deforestation has a serious impact on the environment and endangered species. If the current rate of deforestation continues, every rainforest in the world will disappear within 100 years.

Gender Equity in High School Sports

By Grace Watkins

The overall picture of gender equity in high school sports is bleak. Analysis of Department of Education data from 2012 suggests that 28 percent of all public high schools have large gender gaps in their sports programs. A “large” gender gap is defined as having significantly more boys receive spots on sports teams than girls (relative to the overall distribution of gender in the school).

The 10 worst states for gender equity are all in the South. Only six states have fewer than 10 percent of public high schools with large gender gaps. Indiana has the 35th worst ranking. 28 percent of its public high schools have large gender gaps. The good news is that Indiana improved four percent from the 2010-11 school year to the 2011-12 school year.

For more on gender equity, you can view the interactive version of the map. Here is another interactive graphic demonstrating the wide range of gender gaps by state.

Religion in Indiana

By Grace Watkins

Vice President Mike Pence is known for his evangelical faith. His commitment to the “Billy Graham Rule” made national headlines last week. Pence’s home state of Indiana is also widely regarded as religious. Do Indiana residents really live up to this expectation of religiosity, and can we learn anything about Pence by examining his home environment? I created a graphic using Gallup and Pew Research Center data to investigate further.

By Grace Watkins