"If you're going to be the center of attention no matter what, don't try to blend in--shine." Hannah Storm Class of 1983 My dad was always a huge Notre Dame fan. He had the school flag flying in front of our house every football Saturday. Nonetheless, I was planning to go to Duke University until we went one night to a dinner for the Atlanta-Notre Dame alumni club. Basketball coach Digger Phelps happened to be the speaker. My dad sidled up to Digger and said, "Hannah's thinking about going to Duke." Digger set his sights on me as if I was some kind of blue-chip basketball recruit, and essentially gave me the full-on Digger Phelps pitch! After that, I literally went home that night and signed my letter of intent to go to Notre Dame. Digger always jokes that he is the reason I went to Notre Dame . . . even though I'd never played basketball outside of our driveway! What my dad knew, and what I came to appreciate, is there's so much great tradition at Notre Dame. The university has offered the same core values and inspiration to generations of grads: service to others, a strong sense of community, and something that really can't be overstatedschool spirit. When you say you went to the University of Notre Dame, you always get a reaction of some sort. It's great to have a degree from a school that everyone has heard of. It's part of your heritage. You say, "Well, I'm part English. I'm part German. I'm part Irish. And I'm a Domer." During my years at Notre Dame, I really took full advantage of all that the school had to offer. I worked at the campus radio station as a DJ. That was a total blast. I also had a sports talk show my sophomore year, which I think only my roommates actually listened to. I was in a musicalPippin. And later I began my TV career as an intern and sometime sports feature reporter at WNDU-TV. There were also challenges. In the early eighties, we were still at the beginning stages of women attending Notre Dame. So it could be socially awkward at times. I remember, when the girls would get ice cream in the cafeteria, some of the less enlightened young men would actually "moo" at us as if we were going to turn into cows! But I have to say the experience of being occasionally teased and tortured really toughened me up. When I graduated and went into the completely male-dominated field of sports, I was prepared! As women, we were such anomalies at Notre Dame, and that taught me to just go with that feeling. I thought, "I'm going to stick out like a sore thumb no matter what, so I'm not going to even try to blend in." So even though there were difficult moments, it was actually freeing in a way. If you're going to be the center of attention no matter what, don't try to blend inshine. Like so many others finding their way through those formative college years, I found a lot of comfort and solace in the spiritual aspect of Notre Dame. It was everywhere: in the dorm, in service activities, and at the Grotto. Spirituality was front and center in our lives. I'll never forget a great conversation with Father Mark Poorman, who was rector of Dillon Hall, a couple of years after graduation. My younger brother had just graduated and was about to go off to work with war refugees in Asia. I was in radio at the time, spinning records and doing sportscasts. I said to Father Poormanbecause being at Notre Dame makes you think about these really profound life questions"Well, Father, I feel like my brother is off saving the world, but what about me? I feel good about using my talents and I'm pushing ahead even though noboStorm, Hannah is the author of 'Notre Dame Inspirations The University's Most Successful Alum Talk About Life, Spirituality, Football-and Everything Else Under the Dome', published 2006 under ISBN 9780385518123 and ISBN 0385518129.