An image of a man in a hard hat applying gold to the statue of Mary on top of the Golden Dome.


The 2023-24 institutional message

August 24, 2023

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Each year, the University produces an institutional message that airs during broadcasts of Fighting Irish sporting events. This year’s spot was produced entirely by members of the Office of Public Affairs and Communications’ Brand Content and Internal Communications teams.

Inspiration for the 2023 message was taken from this year’s most visible campus facilities project: the regilding of the Dome and statue of the Blessed Virgin atop the Main Building. While footage of the regild is featured in only one shot of the finished spot, the deep symbolism around the materials involved in that project provided a compelling platform to tell the story of the University’s mission.

“Gold…came from the heavens,” the spot begins. This is an allusion to the process by which gold was formed: a collision of neutron stars that causes neutron-heavy metals such as gold to form and scatter throughout the universe. Yet there is an invitation to consider gold beyond a set of scientific facts. Given the “heavenly” nature of its origin, gold can also be seen as a divine gift, especially when viewed metaphorically and symbolically, as it often is.

Notre Dame is a place that calls for excellence (“the highest standard”) in every endeavor, especially the pursuit of knowledge. Yet inquiry for its own sake is not enough; Notre Dame seeks to use knowledge as a means for good in a world that is deeply in need. It was central to our founding in 1842 and permeates our work as a Catholic research university today. This is the “most important work” we refer to in this year‘s spot, and that is why we say the gold of knowledge is most valuable when it is shared.

For stories that show how Notre Dame is using knowledge to help a world in need, visit