For sophomore Greg Allare, the challenges of playing on the Notre Dame men’s rugby club team are outweighed by the friendships between its team members. “The guys I play with and the fun of the sport make every hour of work worth it,” Allare said. The team consists of approximately 50 students who practice year round and play non-divisional games in the fall and the College Division IA in the spring. Allare said the practices and games are often demanding. “Rugby is not a small commitment,” he said. “The physical toll alone is huge, not to mention the countless hours on the field and in the weight room that [the sport] requires to play at a high level.” Junior Ryan Mitchell agreed that one of the biggest challenges of the sport is recovering from a game. “Everyone on the field just takes a beating, so it’s really hard to get up the next morning when you can’t walk,” he said. The team has a busy practice schedule during the week and plays games on Fridays or Saturdays. “We practice three times a week with a workout on Tuesday and then a yoga session on Thursday,” Mitchell said. “Although we have something going on every day, people miss practice due to class work occasionally, and the coaches understand.” Because the team’s intercollegiate season occurs in the spring, junior David Penberthy said the commitment will increase next semester. “Last year, we came back a week early from Winter Break and stayed on campus for Spring Break to make sure we were sharp,” he said. Penberthy said the team has been performing well in recent years. “Since our coach, Sean O’Leary, got here four years ago, we’ve been on quite a rise,” he said. “We started out in Division II and have made our way up to Division IA, the highest level of college rugby.” Last year the team had a 3-3 record, beating LSU, Ohio State and Tennessee. The team is 0-2 this season, with losses to Davenport and Air Force. “This year may be more of a challenge because we lost 16 seniors and are breaking in a multitude of freshmen and new players,” Penberthy said. Allare, who joined the team in August, said the unfamiliar rules are the greatest struggle of learning the sport. “Rugby is great because it is an easy sport to pick up, but there’s still a lot of rules that I’m sure I break every time I play,” he said. “I’m not too worried though because I’ve only been playing the sport for six weeks.” Despite the challenges, Allare said joining the team was the best decision he has made since he has been at Notre Dame. “I can’t tell you how happy I am that I decided to join the team,” he said. “I just started playing, and I already am great friends with the entire team.” Mitchell agreed that the most rewarding aspect of rugby is meeting new people. “You meet kids that aren’t in your dorm or your classes,” he said. “It’s a different group of guys.” Allare said the team has already improved an incredible amount over the past few weeks. “We play with a lot of heart and passion and we know that’s what is going to get us some huge wins in the end,” he said.
He told IPE the pension fund had assessed its existing portfolio, but he could not say much more about what its next steps would be as it was still in discussions with the board of trustees.The strategy would be finalised by early summer, according to Wetterwald.He indicated it would be informed by Swiss and international “norms” – laws and conventions – about sustainability.BLPK is the Swiss responsible investment association’s ninth member. The environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) criteria that SVVK-ASIR applies are also defined on the basis of Swiss laws and regulations, as well as international agreements and conventions.BLPK’s move to develop a “sustainable investment strategy” comes as many Swiss Pensionskassen, according to an independent adviser, are “overwhelmed” by the ESG investing trend.According to the World Wildlife Fund and ratings agency Inrate, the majority of the 20 largest Swiss pension funds “are still relatively far off the WWF vision for the second pillar to play an active role in helping shape a more sustainable society”.BLPK has around 24,000 beneficiaries and more than 200 affiliated employers, including local authorities, retirement homes, and higher education institutions.In response to lower return expectations, the pension fund last year cut the “technischer Zinssatz” – the rate it uses to calculate liabilities – from 3% to 1.75%.As a result it is also implementing a gradual reduction of the conversion rate that determines a beneficiary’s yearly pension. For a 65-year old, this is to be lowered from 5.8% to 5% by 2022. The public pension fund for the Swiss canton of Basel-Landschaft is developing an investment strategy more oriented towards sustainability.Implementation of such a strategy was “top of the agenda” for 2019, Basellandschaftliche Pensionskasse (BLPK) said in a statement.It became a member of SVVK-ASIR, a Swiss responsible investment association that was founded by a group of major domestic institutional investors, at the beginning of the month.Stephan Wetterwald, chief executive at the CHF9.4bn (€8.3bn) pension fund, said: “We are aware that as a public pension fund, we are particularly called upon to take account of ethical as well as economic criteria in our investment policy.”
NFL free agency news: Bengals release Vontaze Burfict Bashaud Breeland is headed to the AFC.According to NFL Media, which cited an unidentified source, the Chiefs have signed the cornerback to a one-year contract. The report noted it’s an incentive-laden deal with a max value of $5 million.Breeland previously agreed to a three-year contract worth $24 million with the Panthers last March, though it was voided when he failed a physical because of a foot injury. Related News He then signed a minimum-salary contract with the Packers in September and went on to record 20 tackles, four passes defensed and two interceptions for Green Bay in 2018.Breeland, 27, initially was selected by the Redskins in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft and remained in Washington until he became an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2017 season.He played in 60 career games (with 57 starts) and had eight picks with the Redskins.