“What is God’s will for you?” one student asked at the latest event in the series hosted by Student Life, “Professors are People, Too!”
“That’s the wrong question,” Dr. Ubiratan Rezende, Associate Professor of Politics and Business, replied. “We know what it is: to respond to the here and now. Jesus told us He would take care of things; we just don’t trust Him.” Going on, Dr. Rezende explained: “If God wants you to be one of those pivotal people who change the world, you will do it. But don’t try to control things, that’s my main advice.”
“Professors are People, Too!” is a recurring event designed for students to get to know their professors outside of the classroom. In a casual setting, AMU students feel free to ask questions on a range of topics. In turn, their professors respond openly, offering life tips, words of advice, insights from their experience, or simply expounding on their hobbies and pursuits.
Within the classroom, Dr. Rezende is known for touching on a wide variety of subjects, ranging from politics, economics, and theology, to international affairs, business and culture. It’s no wonder: his educational background includes a PhD in Public Administration from the University of Southern California, a JD from the University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, and an MA in Theological Studies from the John Paul II Institute, Washington, DC.
Outside the classroom, Dr. Rezende has experience working in both the private and public sectors. He has served as Senior Consultant for the World Bank and Secretary of the Treasury for the State Government of Santa Catarina Brazil. He is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, and English. When reflecting on his work in the public and private sectors, he said: “There’s no difference. Wherever you are, you will see the human existence.”
He went on, urging the students gathered to consider a life of public service. “Serve the public,” he said, “because public service is disappearing.” Invoking the example of Jesus’ apostles, who followed Him with a simple “yes” and went on to transform the world, Dr. Rezende challenged AMU students to do the same. “Think of the twelve apostles, who didn’t know what they were doing,” he said. “Why not do something out of your comfort zone and be unprepared for it?”
In addition to academic and professional achievements, Dr. Rezende has succeeded in attaining many personal achievements. A Cavalry officer in Brazil, skilled in the guitar and Johnny Cash impressions, and an excellent cook are just a few of them. “I love to cook,” he shared. “I enrolled in a French cuisine academy. I wanted to be a chef. I want to understand the inner workings of things. Cooking is chemistry, because of the interaction between the heat and different chemical substances.” Going on, he said: “My wife loved it, because I had to come home and work on making different meals.”
Humbly responding to a student’s question about his favorite meal, Dr. Rezende answered: “My favorite meal is the one I receive every morning in the Church: the Eucharist.”
Dr. Rezende understands that many struggle with decisions and, as a man who has accomplished so much, he reassured the students wondering what to do with their lives. “I never knew what I wanted to do,” he expressed. “I still don’t. But if you have an inkling, do it.” Dr. Rezende couldn’t continue without describing his love for his wife and children: “I was able to do all that I did because of my wife’s support. My wife is the backbone of my life.”
In front of the many students listening eagerly to his words, Dr. Rezende shared from his experience and wisdom. “Professors are People, Too!” is an event that further builds the strong personal relationships possible between students and teachers at Ave Maria University. This academic year is Dr. Rezende’s final year of teaching at Ave Maria University. His impact and presence at the University will not easily be forgotten by the students, faculty, and staff who have known and learned from him. Dr. Rezende left off the event telling students that, although he doesn’t know what the next year will contain, he leaves it all in the hands of God with faith, hope and trust.
From the earliest Homeric songs, down through the centuries, to the courtly love poems of the Middle Ages, the madrigals of the Renaissance, the art songs of the 19th century, and the golden age of singer songwriters, music has been a way for humans to express our deepest sentiments. The same holds true today. Through the combination of music and lyrics, each song in the AveFy winter exhibition is presented as a piece of one student’s story, an aspect of their life, a vehicle through which they have found the expression of something meaningful or important.
Located on the second floor of the Canizaro Library, AveFy is a display of the music that speaks to our students.
The featured songs are a true mixture of genre, feeling, attitudes, and history. From the well-renowned Mozart and eccentric Elton John, to pop star Harry Styles and Christian group Casting Crowns, the display hosts a variety of music that moves and inspires. AveFy is an opportunity for some AMU students to take a moment in the spotlight.
“I think my Mom first introduced me to this song,” says student Alijah Madkour about her chosen song, “Trust in You” by Lauren Daigle. “When I experience a cross, big or small, it reminds me to trust God completely.” Yet another student, Clara Diodati, comments on her favorite song, “Landslide” by Fleetwood Mac, that she was taught how to play the song on guitar when she was about 15: “I never get tired of it; both the melody and the words are beautiful, timeless, and very relatable. It always makes me feel happy and nostalgic to hear it!”
In a display that features song titles, album covers and lyrics alongside photos of student contributors and quotes about why the song speaks to them, AveFy is an exhibit that shares a positive message on campus about the impact of music on our lives. If you’re in the area, stop by the Canizaro Library’s winter exhibition and take a look! The AveFy auditory exhibit will not disappoint; rather, it uplifts and inspires.
Canizaro Exhibit Gallery Hours
Monday – Friday, 8am-5pm
Ave Maria University is proud to announce a new opportunity for students to receive scholarship through the generosity of the Kazma Scholars Fund.
AMU now offers a new scholarship opportunity for students in the academic top 20% of the incoming class who are demonstrated leaders and committed to serving others.
Through the generous donation of the Kazma Family Foundation, The Kazma Scholars Fund now provides up to twenty scholarships of $12,500 per year. The Kazma Scholarships are awarded to students of strong moral character, demonstrated initiative, and a commitment to the service of others, and who also establish high academic achievement.
Ave Maria University is grateful to the benefactors who give so generously, providing students across the country with the opportunity to receive a quality Catholic education..
If you are a student who fits the criteria and wishes to benefit from this opportunity, apply for the Kazma Scholarship today! To learn more about the Kazma Scholars Fund and other scholarship opportunities at Ave Maria University, visit https://www.avemaria.edu/future-students/scholarships/.
The Ave Maria Mission Society Scholarship Dinner is always a night to remember, and this year’s event will be no exception. With keynote speaker Dr. Arthur C. Brooks, entertainment from the Shakespeare in Performance troupe, and a merry-making Renaissance theme, the 2018 Scholarship Dinner promises to be an unforgettable event.
Get ready for a night making merry with good food, good drink, and good friends!
The dinner, which raises funds for scholarships at Ave Maria University, will take place on Thursday, February 15, 2018, at the The Ritz-Carlton Beach Resort in Naples, Florida. The University is honored to have Dr. Arthur C. Brooks, President of the American Enterprise Institute and Trustee of the University, as keynote speaker for this event. Dr. Brooks is a bestselling author and social scientist. He has served as president of Washington D.C.’s premier public policy think tank, the American Enterprise Institute, since 2009. Dr. Brooks has served as a member of AMU’s Board of Trustees since 2012, and he received an honorary doctorate from the University in 2015.
In addition to an address from distinguished speaker Dr. Brooks, attendees of the 2018 Scholarship Dinner will be delighted by a performance from AMU’s Shakespeare in Performance troupe, complete with song and dance. Directed by Professor and Chair of Humanities and Literature, Dr. Travis Curtright, Shakespeare in Performance at AMU investigates early modern acting styles, thrust stages practices, and how an acting troupe cooperates and functions in the preparation and performance of plays. The troupe is part of a minor of studies program at AMU.
The 2018 Scholarship Dinner will take place on Thursday, February 15th, from 5:30-8:30pm. Preceding the evening event, Ave Maria University will host an Inaugural Symposium on Principled Entrepreneurship over brunch.The symposium will feature Plenary Speakers Dr. Peter Whalen (Penn State University) and Dr. Seana Sugrue (Ave Maria University), as well as a panel of entrepreneurs. The topic of this Inaugural Symposium is “Creating Faith Based Value.” AMU students enrolled in the Principled Entrepreneurship course, created with funding from the Charles Koch Foundation, will be in attendance. The Symposium brunch will be held at 9:30am at the Ritz-Carlton Beach Resort in Naples, Florida. Admission to the Symposium on Principled Entrepreneurship is included with every purchased ticket to the Scholarship Dinner.
The annual Scholarship Dinner is organized by the Ave Maria Mission Society. Mission gifts support AMU scholarships, programs, faculty and opportunities to advance the institution. To learn more about the Mission Society, register for the 2018 Scholarship Dinner, or learn about sponsorship opportunities, visit dinner.AveMaria.edu.
On a recent Saturday morning, a project becoming known as The Ave Homes brought a spot of brightness to a community still reeling in the aftermath of a tremendous natural disaster.
30 Habitat for Humanity homes in Immokalee, Florida, were dedicated at a ceremony on Saturday, January 20th. Three of these homes, The Ave Homes, were built in partnership with The Mother Teresa Project at Ave Maria University by funds raised by Steve Auth, Wall Street Executive and friend of AMU.
Mr. Auth owns a seasonal home in Naples, Florida. After Hurricane Irma passed through the area in early September 2017, Mr. Auth was struck by the damage suffered in the town of Immokalee, which is located ten minutes from Ave Maria, Florida. He reached out to his friends and colleagues, quickly raising enough money to build new homes. Through a connection with a student at Ave Maria University, Mr. Auth partnered with The Mother Teresa Project and Habitat for Humanity to help coordinate the volunteer labor and logistics required to make this dream a reality.
Much of the work put into building The Ave Homes was done by AMU students. Athletic teams, faith households, RAs, and individual students signed up to volunteer their free time to frame, put up siding, and paint homes built to last. Mr. Auth and his wife, Evelyn, also devoted many of their weekends to work alongside the volunteers building homes. On January 20th, the donors, volunteers and homeowners all came together to celebrate the accomplishment. At the Habitat for Humanity dedication ceremony, each family was presented with a housewarming basket, and the homes were blessed. AMU student volunteers also had an opportunity to tour the completed homes and meet the grateful families.
Immokalee Rebuilds, the collaborative project between Mr. Auth, Habitat for Humanity, and Ave Maria University, has already begun construction on a fourth home. The project’s operating motto echos the words of Mother Teresa: “We can do no great things, only small things with great love.”
Two AMU student volunteers (in the official bright blue Immokalee Rebuild t-shirts) stand for a group picture with Steve Auth, at center, the Wall Street Executive who funded The Ave Homes project, and the new residents.