Opinion

Notre Dame President Condemns Students Rushing The Field After Applauding Them From The Sidelines

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Notre Dame President John Jenkins condemned the actions of Notre Dame students in a Sunday statement, though video shows him applauding as students rush onto the football field to celebrate their victory.

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish defeated Clemson 47-40 Saturday night, prompting “thousands” of students to storm the field and celebrate the victory, according to the Chicago Tribune. Many of the students who rushed the field were not wearing masks or had their masks pulled down, the publication reported, and students reportedly attended parties following the celebratory field rush.

Video from the event shows the Notre Dame president standing on the sidelines clapping as students rush the field. Jenkins is wearing a mask and watching as he claps, the video shows.

Jenkins sent an email to Notre Dame students Sunday that denounced the celebration and warned students that they must participate in mandatory testing before they return home for Thanksgiving.

“As exciting as last night’s victory against Clemson was, it was very disappointing to see evidence of widespread disregard of our health protocols at many gatherings over the weekend,” he said in the email, a copy of which was obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Jenkins said that the university consulted with St. Joseph’s County Deputy Health Officer Dr. Mark Fox and determined that “the University will place a registration hold on the record of any student who fails to appear for testing when asked to do so.”

“A registration hold would mean that you are unable to matriculate or register for classes next semester or receive a transcript,” the email said. The email also says that students “may not leave the South Bend area until you receive the results of your exit test.”

“Again, should we discover that you have left the area, we will place a registration hold on your record,” the email says. “There will be zero tolerance for any gatherings that do not comport with our health and safety guidelines, on or off campus. Those found responsible for hosting such gatherings will face severe sanctions.”

Jenkins has previously come under fire for attending the nomination ceremony of Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett, where he was photographed without a mask. The university president, who contracted the coronavirus from the event, later apologized for his actions to the Notre Dame community.

Jenkins did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the DCNF.

Mary Margaret Olohan

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