WSIU InFocus

WSIU takes a closer look at issues around the region. From arts and entertainment, to science and nature, the environment, politics, and other topics people are talking about.

Ways to Connect

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Carbondale NAACP Vice President Pepper Holder and Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation's Charah Mckinzie about the upcoming Records Expungement Clinic in Carbondale.

Two counties in southwestern Illinois grow the majority of the nation’s — possibly the world’s — horseradish. The city of Collinsville, population 25,000, straddles both Madison and St. Clair, and celebrates the root annually, hosting the International Horseradish Festival.

Harvest Public Media decided it was time to check out the entertainment, games and horseradish-based dishes and drinks. Here’s a bite of the zesty gathering.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Dayempur Herbals General Manager Terry Hickey about their upcoming Herbal Medicine Workshop.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Paul Simon Public Policy Institute Director John Shaw about his new book, "Rising Star, Setting Sun: Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, and the Presidential Transition that Changed America."

SIUC

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIUC Associate Director for Housing Operations Jim Hunsaker about the closing of "The Towers" residence halls, and what can be expected for the Fall of 2019.

People
Illinois Public Radio/WILL

Ronald Pressman says everyone needs to think ahead to retirement, whether that time is far in the future, or just a few years away. He says baby boomers need to make sure their retirement benefits live as long as they do ---- and millennials need to act now to make sure their plans for retirement get off to a good start.

Pressman is the CEO for Institutional Financial Services at the non-profit financial services organization TIAA (which underwrites All Things Considered and other NPR programs that air on WSIU Radio). 

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Carbondale Mayor Mike Henry and City Manager Gary Williams about the 2019 Illinois Budget, along with preparations for the 2020 U.S. Census, and more.

It’s been just about six months since a new Illinois law allowing 16 and 17 year olds to donate organs went into effect. Has the change made a difference for those waiting for life-saving organ transplants?

National Trails Day is Saturday June 2nd, 2018.  On this edition of WSIU In Focus, WSIU's Kevin Boucher visits with Cobden Teacher Kelly Flamm's 5th Grade Students to talk about nature.

Illinois is one step closer to having a budget for next year — the state Senate approved a spending plan late Wednesday night.

It follows years of bitter partisan fighting over state taxes and spending. But the mood around this year’s budget is remarkably different.

State Senator Chapin Rose had what he thought was a no-brainer bill. All he wanted to do was help public universities connect with promising high school juniors by sharing basic data like standardized test scores. But just hours before presenting his bill in committee, he ran into FERPA — the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.

It’s a federal law; there’s no easy way around it.

Taja Welton is ready for her daughter to be born. She’s moved into a bigger house, one with room for a nursery. She has a closet full of pink, Minnie Mouse-themed baby clothes. Her baby bag is packed right down to the outfit she plans to bring her baby home in that reads, “The Princess Has Arrived.”

“I can’t wait to put it on her,” Welton smiles. The princess even has a name: Macen.


WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Illinois Lawmakers Host Jak Tichenor about action in the General Assembly. One week remains in the Spring Legislative Session.

WSIU/Kevin Boucher

An ambitious project to build a Mountain Bike trail at SIU's Touch Of Nature Environmental Center is currently underway.  Isaiah Tanner recently graduated with a Master's Degree from SIU Carbondale's Outdoor Recreation Resource Administration Program,  is leading the effort.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIU President Randy Dunn. In Segment One, President Dunn explains a timeline leading up to April's Board of Trustees meeting, where a controversial budget reallocation plan was voted down.


City of Carbondale

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Carbondale's Amy Fox and General John A. Logan Museum's Mike Jones about the significance of Memorial Day in southern Illinois, 150 years after it was officially recognized.

WSIU/Kevin Boucher

As we approach the Memorial Day Holiday, we take a close look at the early days of General John A. Logan.  Our expert is Mike Jones, the Executive Director of the General John A. Logan Museum in Murphysboro.  For more information about the museum browse to:http://www.loganmuseum.org/

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Illinois Lawmakers Host Jak Tichenor about the latest from Springfield.

Illinois Lawmakers airs at 7:30pm Fridays in May on WSIU TV.

How To Stop Gun Violence? Just Ask

May 18, 2018

Conversations around gun violence often revolve around long-term solutions, like improving schools or the local economy.

But even if those things were easy — and they’re not — it would take a generation to realize the benefits.

And for the Illinoisans living and dying in these communities — mostly low-income, black communities — they don’t have time to wait.

For many families and young adults living in Peoria’s South Side, gun violence is too often a part of life and something they’ve been fighting against — with few resources.

Part of the challenge, according to researchers, is getting the broader community to examine a part of itself and confront the barriers that keep families, predominantly minorities, from moving out of poverty.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Dr. Christine Porucznik of the University of Utah's School of Medicine about the 2018 SIU Health Policy Institute.

Abigail Irby Fights For Family, Community Despite Loss

May 16, 2018

In Peoria, at least 251 people were hurt and 26 killed by gun violence between 2015 and 2017.

Abigail Irby moved her family to the South Side of Peoria because she felt called to make a difference. Twenty years later, she's a survivor of the chronic violence felt across the state and says, “I’m not going anywhere until God says it’s time for me to go.”

Suicide A Driver Of Gun Deaths In Rural America

May 16, 2018
People
Courtesy Beth Martinez

The national conversation around gun violence generally centers around mass shootings, school shootings and gang activity. These problems need to be addressed, but may overshadow the largest group affected: suicide victims.

How Schools Can Help Kids Traumatized By Gun Violence

May 15, 2018
School
Lee V. Gaines/Illinois Newsroom

Last month, about a dozen people gathered in the basement of a church in Champaign, Ill. to learn about how traumatic experiences affect the lives of children and young adults, and what they can do to mitigate its effects.

 

His name was Devon McClyde, and he was 16 years old when he was caught in the crossfire of an argument while playing basketball one evening in a local park in Danville on June 8, 2016.

He died three days later – the victim of another gun crime in Central Illinois.

 


WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Illinois Lawmakers Host Jak Tichenor about the status of budget talks in Springfield.

Illinois Lawmakers airs on WSIU TV at 7:30pm CDT.

As Illinois celebrates its bicentennial year, WSIU Radio contributor Pete Peterson looks back at the history of the state's professional hockey and basketball teams and the joy they have brought to fans, especially over the past three decades.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Carbondale Mayor Mike Henry and City Manager Gary Williams about the city's relationship in recruitment and retention at SIUC, along with Memorial Day observances for 2018.

John A. Logan's Contribution To The Civil War

May 9, 2018
WSIU/Kevin Boucher

As we get ready to celebrate Memorial Day we visit with Teacher and Historian Mike Jones, Director of the General John A. Logan.

SIU

SIUC Chancellor Carlo Montemagno shares his goals for his new recruitment manager, the future of his reorganization plan, and more with WSIU's Jennifer Fuller.

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