Professional development and networking.

Student Affairs Resources for Networking and Development (STAR-ND) is a divisional professional development initiative, begun in January 2009. STAR-ND seeks to meet the needs of the division in providing professional development programs and networking events that are open to all staff within Student Affairs. New to mid-level professionals from across Student Affairs departments comprise the STAR-ND planning committee.    

The STAR-ND Professional Development Planning Team is comprised of staff members from around the division. Members are generally invited to serve for two-year terms. The commitment includes monthly meetings and staffing at least one event each semester. If you are interested in serving as a member of the STAR-ND team now or in the future, please let a STAR-ND Co-Chair and/or your supervisor know of your interest. 

STAR ND Planning Team

Laura Connelly (Chair), Senior Counselor to the Vice President for Student Affairs  
Amy Jobst, Assistant Director, Testing Center & Student Access, Center for Student Support and Care
Anna Kenny, Rector, Howard Hall
Dan Riemersma, Assistant Director, Office of Community Standards
Dan Rohmiller, Assistant Director of Assignments and Data Analysis, Residential Life
Allie Steiner, Assistant Director of Liturgical Formation, Campus Ministry 


Past Programming

Spring 2022 Summit

Our plenary speaker is Dr. Adam Dell, Psy.D., ABPP, HSPP, clinical psychologist and Director of Emotional Wellbeing at the Notre Dame Wellness Center. Dr. Dell will share his deep insight and clinical expertise on stress, posttraumatic growth, and the centrality of belongingness and meaning in an informative and interactive way. We know the past two years have been especially challenging for all of us - both in our work and in our personal lives. We hope this time together as a Division will prove to be deep, meaningful, and healing after two incredibly difficult years.

Lunch will be provided. Following lunch, everyone will participate in one of two reflection activities related to the morning plenary session – one activity is more hands-on and interactive, and the other option is more passive and contemplative. We are excited to share the details of these activities at the event and are grateful for the openness we will each bring to these conversations.

MiNDful Training Lunch-and-Learn

Student Affairs professionals are invited to participate in MiNDful Training (Microaggression Intervention @ Notre Dame), a training created to educate Notre Dame students about the racial climate at the University and provide them with proper language to identify implicit bias and develop effective skills to assist with navigating racial microaggressions as they occur. Division staff will learn together about the context of this training that is being delivered to many students, and participate in the training themselves. The lunch-and-learn will be hosted by Paige Jackson, Assistant Director of Diversity Education, Outreach and Assessment in Multicultural Student Programs and Services (MSPS).

Although a single program, policy, or workshop will not solve the issues faced by students of color, the hope is that if enough staff and students become aware of the impact that words and actions have on peers of color, we can begin to collectively make changes that over time help us evolve into a more inclusive and welcoming space for everyone at Notre Dame.

Me and White Supremacy: Reading and Guided Discussion

Join STAR-ND to read and discuss the New York Times and USA Today bestseller, Me and White Supremacy. Through guided group discussions and private reflections, participants will work to unpack biases and dismantle privilege throughout December and January. Virtual discussions will be scheduled when registration is complete based upon number of participants. Following registration, an electronic copy of the book, available through the free Kindle app, will be provided to you. 

STAR-ND invites Division staff to select any of the following pre-recorded presentations. Please indicate your preference(s) no later than Friday, Dec. 4, and links to the video(s) will be emailed you.

  • White Immunity: Working Through the Pitfalls of Privilege with Nolan Cabrera. Click here for a description. Length: One hour.

  • Race and Restorative Justice: Black Lives, Healing, and Social Transformation with Dr. Fania Davis. Click here for a description. Length: One hour.

  • Anti-Asian Racism & COVID-19: Jennifer Ho, Director, Center for Humanities and the Arts, University of Colorado Boulder. Length: 19 minutes.

Spring 2020

Afternoon of Reflection
Feb. 13, 2020

At mid-year in February and prior to the Holy Season of Lent, many of us need an opportunity to examine our values, meaning, and purpose as Student Affairs professionals. Regardless of our roles and faith traditions, the Afternoon of Reflection provides us all the space to consider why our work is meaningful and important. 

This year, STAR-ND welcomes keynote speakers, Fr. Gerry Olinger, C.S.C., Vice President for Mission Engagement and Church Affairs, and Zach Mercurio, Ph.D., author and expert in organizational and leadership development. Together, we will explore how the intersection of our spiritual practices and the needs of our campus community might be the place where we discover our personal call and vocation.

Fall 2019

Making the Next Step: Navigating Your Career Path in Student Affairs, presented by STAR-ND
Wednesday, Oct. 9

In honor of Careers in Student Affairs month, STAR-ND will host a panel of Division staff to share stories about their professional lives and offer advice for how to navigate a career in Student Affairs. The event is open to all, but is especially geared toward entry or mid-level professionals. 
Panelists include:

  •  Karen Kennedy: Director, Student Centers, Activities, and Events
  •  Mark Williams: Director, RecSports
  •  Consuela Howell: Program Director, Office of Student Enrichment
  •  Ryan Willerton: Associate Vice President for Career and Professional Development

STAR-ND will moderate the panel discussion and allow time for questions and answers from the audience. After the panel concludes, attendees are invited to stay for appetizers and happy hour. If you are unable to attend the panel, you are still welcome to join for the social. 

STAR-ND Luncheon following Fall Staff Town Hall
Wednesday, Oct. 16
STAR-ND invites Division staff to an informal luncheon after the Fall Staff Town Hall on Wednesday, Oct. 16. The Fall Staff Town Hall is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., and the luncheon will immediately follow at a location still yet to be announced. Please RSVP here for the luncheon by Wednesday, Oct. 9.

2019 Summer Series:

Summer Series

Spring 2018

Afternoon of Reflection - February 27, 2018

Our division is unique in it’s mission to care for student well-being and to create opportunities for formation and flourishing.  At mid-year in February and during this Holy Season of Lent, many of us may need renewal in this important work, so Student Affairs is offering an afternoon of reflection to create space for us, the caregivers of students, to be restored. Consider joining your colleagues for a few hours of restoration with keynote speaker Stacey Noem, Director of Human Formation for the Master of Divinity program on campus, presenting on the habits of wellness for caregivers, followed by breakout sessions focusing on heart, body, and spirit.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018
Moreau Seminary

March Social

Join your Student Affairs colleagues for networking and socializing! The Spring Social will offer everyone in the Division a chance to catch up and meet new members to Student Affairs.

Thursday, March 22, 2018
4:00pm - 6:00pm

Fall 2017

STAR-ND Fall Social - September 14, 2017

Join your Student Affairs colleagues for lunch following the Division Speaker Series for some networking and socializing! The Fall Social will offer everyone in the Division a chance to catch up, and meet new members to Student Affairs.

Thursday, September 14, 2017
11:30 a.m. (or immediately following the Division Speaker Series)

Understanding Love Languages - November 2, 2017

Our individual languages of appreciation are an important but often overlooked part of our work life. Join us as we each learn our own unique "language," and how to effectively identify and use other individuals' languages within our offices and homes. Speaking and listening in all 5 of the languages of appreciation will better allow you to express gratitude in a meaningful way, hear the needs of others, and provide dynamic support for each colleague. The language of appreciation is based on The 5 Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman.

Thursday, November 2, 2017
1:30 p.m. 
Como Lounge

Reflections on the LeMans Pilgrimage - December 4, 2017

Join your colleagues who participated in the LeMans Pilgrimage to France this summer and hear their reflections on this amazing experience.  Attendees will learn more about Blessed Basil Moreau's life and homeland, a brief history of the Congregation of Holy Cross, and will glimpse how the pilgrims have integrated this experience into their work.

Monday, December 4, 2017
10:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.  
Como Lounge

Summer 2017

Yoga on the Dock - June 20, 2017

Sometimes the fastest way to speed things up is to slow down.  In our hyped-up and caffeinated culture, who doesn’t want to do more faster? But you may also crave a break from your overstimulated mind and aspire to a calmer, more natural, and present state. It’s easy to lose sight of your primary purpose amid the distractions of a frenzied mind. Slowing down brings you back to the here and now.  Led by Steve Krojniewski, Yoga on the Dock is a moving meditation that will help you reconnect with the present moment by bringing your attention to your breath and slow, mindful movement.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017:
8:30 AM – 9:30 AM
Docks at St. Joe Beach (Rain Location:  an email will be sent if we will be moving to the rain location)

Student Affairs Habitat for Humanity Build - June 23, 2017

Want to give back this summer?  Spend the day with your Student Affairs colleagues building a home for a local community member.  Habitat for Humanity partners with people in the community, and all over the world, to help them build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage.  The build will be divided into two shifts.  If you are interested in participating, please sign up for the build that best fits your schedule.  There will be 10 spaces per shift.  Please obtain manager approval and coordinate appropriate office coverage as needed.

Friday, June 23, 2017:
Shift One:  8:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Shift Two:  11:30 AM – 2:30 PM

STAR-ND Summer Ice Cream Social - July 12, 2017

Take a break from the summer heat and enjoy some ice cream with your friends in Student Affairs!  Back by popular demand, Star-ND is bringing the Bonnie Doon Ice Cream truck to campus on Wednesday, July 12th 3:00p at the Fieldhouse Mall.  

Wednesday, July 12
3:00 - 4:30 PM
Fieldhouse Mall (Rain Location will be in the Sorin and Dooley rooms and in the main lounge on the first floor of Lafortune- an email will be sent if we will be moving to the rain location)

Summer Reading with STAR-ND - July 25, 2017

Looking to catch up on your reading this summer? STAR-ND will be hosting a book club this summer. The book that has been selected is Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance.

In this instant New York Times bestseller, pioneering psychologist Angela Duckworth shows anyone striving to succeed—be it parents, students, educators, athletes, or business people—that the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a special blend of passion and persistence she calls “grit.”

Drawing on her own powerful story as the daughter of a scientist who frequently noted her lack of “genius,” Duckworth, now a celebrated researcher and professor, describes her early eye-opening stints in teaching, business consulting, and neuroscience, which led to the hypothesis that what really drives success is not “genius” but a unique combination of passion and long-term perseverance.

In Grit, she takes readers into the field to visit cadets struggling through their first days at West Point, teachers working in some of the toughest schools, and young finalists in the National Spelling Bee. She also mines fascinating insights from history and shows what can be gleaned from modern experiments in peak performance. Finally, she shares what she’s learned from interviewing dozens of high achievers—from JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon to New Yorker cartoon editor Bob Mankoff to Seattle Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017
8:30-10:00 AM
Location:  TBD

Spring 2017

Moreau's Spiritual Exercises & the Student Affairs Professional - April 20th, 2017

This STAR-ND Holy Cross spirituality "lunch & learn" event will introduce participants to Blessed Basil Moreau's Spiritual Exercises, which contain insights into deepening one’s spiritual life and integrating faith into everyday life from the founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross. This event will encourage us toward growing in faith personally and in advancing the Catholic, Holy Cross mission of the Division, and will include time for personal reflection as well as small group conversation.

Thursday, April 20, 2017 
Speaker: Fr. Matt Hovde, CSC (Rector, Zahm Hall)
11:30am - 1:00pm | Lunch will be served from 11:30am - 12pm
Coleman-Morse Hammes Student Lounge (First Floor)

STAR-ND Social - March 29, 2017

Join your Student Affairs colleagues for networking and socializing! The Spring Social will offer everyone in the Division a chance to catch up, and meet new members to Student Affairs.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017
4:00pm - 5:30pm

NASPA Virtual Ticket - March 13 - 14, 2017

STAR-ND will host the 2017 NASPA Annual Conference via the Virtual Ticket March 13-14 in the Montgomery Auditorium. A great opportunity for professional development, the Virtual Ticket provides access to a variety of presentations and topics relevant to student affairs professionals. Staff may choose the individual presentations they would like to attend at the time of registration. For a breakdown by day, please view the schedule here.  Times have been adjusted to reflect the EST viewing times.

*Due to lack of interest, Sunday's session has been canceled.  The Virtual Ticket will begin on Monday, March 13.

Monday, March 13, 2017-Various Presentations (please register for individual presentations)
9:30am - 5:45pm
Montgomery Auditorium 

Tuesday, March 14, 2017-Various Presentations (please register for individual presentations)
9:30am - 12:45pm 
Montgomery Auditorium 

The full schedule of the STAR-ND NASPA Virtual Ticket can be found here.  

The full schedule of presenters for the SA Speaks segment of the NASPA Virtual Ticket  can be found here.  Please note times listed on the NASPA website are CST.

We hope you will take advantage of the amazing presenters during the NASPA Conference!  To attend the event, please register here.  

STAR-ND Walk-In Conference - January 19, 2017

This event provides an opportunity for colleagues from around our division to present sessions and facilitate discussions so we may share resources, best practices, and challenges of our work in student affairs.  The conference is meant to create dialogue across departments and encourage innovative methods for engaging our students.  Attendees will mainly be from the Division of Student Affairs, but we may also have attendees from Saint Mary's, Holy Cross, and other campus collaborators. 

Register HERE for this event.  To learn more about this event please see the schedule and session descriptions HERE.   

STAR-ND Walk-In Conference Call for Proposals

We invite proposals for the 2017 Walk – In Conference that will inform, share resources, best practices, and challenges of our work in student affairs.  The conference is being held on Thursday, January 19, 2017 and is meant to create dialogue across departments and encourage innovative methods for engaging our students.  We are open to all proposal submissions.  Attendees will mainly be from the Division of Student Affairs, but we may also have attendees from Saint Mary's, Holy Cross, and other campus collaborators.  

Program proposals are due Thursday, October 27, 2016.  If you have questions about the proposal process or submitting a proposal, please contact Casey St.Aubin (  

Important Dates:
•    Proposals due:  Thursday, October 27, 2016
•    Selection notification:  week of November 14, 2016
•    Personal Bios of presenters for selected programs due: week of November 28, 2016
•    Conference:  Thursday, January 19, 2017

Fall 2016

Star-ND South Bend Panel Discussion

Join your fellow Student Affairs colleagues at the Center for History in South Bend. We have invited members of the Michiana Community to a panel discussion including:

  • Regina Emberton, President and CEO Michiana Partnership
  • Aaron Perri, Executive Director of Parks & Recreation
  • Jeff Rea, President and CEO of the St. Joseph County Chamber of Commerce.

This is a great opportunity to learn about the important roles these panels members serve with information on the development and direction of our community. Following the panel discussion, there will be light hors d'oeuvres/appetizers with drinks served. You will also have the opportunity to explore the museum after the panel discussion!

Thursday, November 3, 2016
Program: 3:30pm - 4:45pm
Reception: 4:45pm - 6pm
Center for History in South Bend ( 808 West Washington Street - South Bend, IN )

STAR-ND Social

Join your Student Affairs colleagues for lunch following the Division Speaker Series for some networking and socializing! The Fall Social will offer everyone in the Division a chance to catch up, and meet new members to Student Affairs. 

Thursday, October 6, 2016
11:45 AM - 1:00 PM (Following the Division Speaker Series)
Club Naimoli, Purcell Pavilion

Pilgrimage to Le Mans: All in the Family!

STAR-ND Is excited to kickoff our fall with our first event - Pilgrimage to Le Mans:  All in the Family!  Please join the pilgrims from the division that made their way to France this summer. Learn about their experience and their reflections on family and the Congregation of Holy Cross. Attendees will also get a glimpse of Moreau's homeland, a brief history of the Congregation of Holy Cross, as well as some thought about how we in Student Affairs contribute to the Notre Dame Family.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016
1:30 PM - 3:00 PM
Coleman-Morse Lounge