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South Bend, Notre Dame hold meeting to discuss partnerships

NOTRE DAME, Ind. -- Notre Dame played host to South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg Thursday night. The meeting was held so students, faculty and the general public could discuss how to create more partnerships between the city and private university.

Recently elected, and ready to serve; Alex Coccia is Student Body President of Notre Dame, and determined to foster change between the city of South Bend and Notre Dame's campus.

"There's a lot of student engagement within walking distance from campus, so we're trying to figure out maybe how we can get students downtown more," Coccia said. "How can we get students to a lot of different events that go on?"

Questions, he's not alone in asking.

"We need to make sure that South Bend is a favorable platform," Pete Buttigieg, South Bend Mayor, said.

His main focus at Thursday night's roundtable -- getting students to stay in the city and surrounding areas once they've graduated.

"It's much more than just a relationship between a community and one of it's largest employers," Buttigieg said. "It's a set of overlapping relationships that are economic, social, cultural."

Students who attended the discussion also shared concerns over volunteering. Many, confused on how to do so.

Something, Coccia, plans to change.

"Students certainly want to be engaged with South Bend, and likewise," Coccia said. "And so, student government's role is maintaining and bridging those relationships."

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