Three generations of the Liu family gathered with Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C, as he blessed the Liu Institute on October 14 in Jenkins Nanovic Halls. After blessing the Institute suite with holy water, Jenkins prayed with the family, benefactors of the Institute: husband and wife, Robert and Mimi Liu; children, Emily Liu Foy ’94 and Justin Liu ’00, and their respective spouses, Clinton Foy ’93 and Elaine Chok; and the Foys’ children, Grant and Mia.
Afterward, the family and 70 members of the Notre Dame community gathered for a celebratory dinner in Jenkins Nanovic Halls. Highlights of the evening included performances of Asian music by Notre Dame’s handbell choir, a personal account by new alumna Ashley Zhou ’19 about her experiences with the Liu Institute, remarks by Emily Liu Foy and Justin Liu, and words of gratitude and a benediction by Jenkins.
“Whenever I turned to the Liu Institute for help, they were always there,” said Zhou, who received research funding and other forms of support from the Institute. “I feel very secure knowing resources that the Liu Institute provided to me will be provided to other students, and that they can create their own experiences.”
Foy emphasized the significance of the Institute in polarizing times. “In a world that feels increasingly divisive, we need now, more than ever, deep understanding and compassion for others. And the students here at Notre Dame need to be exposed to Asia. But we also feel strongly that Asia needs Notre Dame,” she said, referencing students and faculty promoting unity and creating positive change in the world.
In closing, Jenkins echoed the importance of the Institute. “I want to thank the Liu family for making us more Notre Dame. You helped us to be a better Notre Dame because you helped us to be a more universal university, connected with peoples around the globe,” he said. “This legacy and effectiveness will continue to grow.”
Coordinated by the Office of Development, the blessing and celebration is one of nine such events to be held for each institute housed within the Keough School of Global Affairs, which opened in 2017.