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

Federal Food Aid Program Difficult To Navigate, But Crucial Service For Mentally Ill

May 3, 2018

It’s a challenge for people with severe mental illnesses to hold down a job or get the medical help they need. And that extends to when they try to alleviate hunger by getting on the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP.

Fearing Deportation, Unauthorized Immigrants Shy Away From Signing Kids Up For Food Aid

May 2, 2018

In the small city of Fort Morgan, Colorado, 33-year-old Verónica delicately stacks cans of food into her mini shopping cart, strolling the narrow aisles of the Rising Up food pantry to gather eggs, milk, apples and an extra-large box of cereal.

There’s a Republican-authored proposal in the next farm bill that would require millions more people to work or volunteer in order to receive federal food assistance.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is the biggest federal program aimed at breaking the cycle of poverty that millions of Americans find themselves in — sometimes for a few months, sometimes for several years.

People
www.msl-chemcam.com

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Los Alamos National Laboratory Scientist Roger Wiens about his ChemCam, the Mars Rover Mission, and more ahead of his visit to The Science Center of Southern Illinois for this month's Science Cafe.

Randy Dunn
SIU

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIU President Randy Dunn about testimony before an Illinois Senate Committee, including legislation that would split the SIU Carbondale and SIU Edwardsville campuses.

New York Times

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with New York Times Chief Washington Correspondent Carl Hulse, during his visit to SIUC and the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute.

SIU

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIUC Chancellor Carlo Montemagno about legislative proposals to split the SIU System, as well as enrollment hurdles his campus faces.

Local artists will take their wares to the streets this weekend, as a part of the annual Oak Street Art Fair in Murphysboro. WSIU’s Jennifer Fuller reports.

LEAF Online Farmers Market Starts Second Season

Apr 20, 2018
LEAF Food Hub
Benjy Jeffords / WSIU

Last year, we introduced you to Little Egypt Alliance of Farmers – or LEAF – and their online farmers market.

Spring is here, the grass is growing, trees are starting to show their leaves, and flowers are starting to bloom.

Some people are planning to start a garden while others plan on going to the farmers market.

WSIU/Kevin Boucher

WSIU Radio speaks with Scott Ballard, a Herpetologist talks about taking in a pregnant Timber Rattlesnake found on private land in southern Illinois.

Illinois Prison System Spent Less Than $300 On Books Last Year

Apr 18, 2018

Every Sunday, a group of women meets in the basement of a church in Chicago’s Ravenswood neighborhood to sort and package boxes of books. The boxes are sent to women in prisons in Illinois and beyond the state’s borders. In total, the group, Chicago Books to Women in Prison (BWP), has sent nearly 20,000 books to incarcerated women in the last five years, and tens of thousands since the organization was founded in 2002.


WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Chef Rob Connoley, author of "Acorns & Cattails; A Modern Foraging Cookbook of Forest, Farm & Field," about his upcoming presentation with FoodWorks at Scratch Brewing in Ava.

Images
Brad Palmer, WSIU Radio

The future site of a replica Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in southeast Missouri hosted a special event recently for Vietnam veterans and their families. WSIU's Brad Palmer reports.

The U.S., Canada and Mexico wrapped up the latest round of negotiations earlier this month over NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement.

President Donald Trump has threatened to terminate the trade pact, which he continues to call a bad deal for the U.S. But NAFTA has helped grow the beef industry beyond the U.S. borders, so while some worry about the Trump administration’s wavering commitment to NAFTA, others want more protections.

For more than 30 years, kids with a certain streak of genius have found a home at Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy in suburban Chicago. It’s the rarest of gems in the educational landscape: a public, affordable, boarding school. One of just a handful of such schools nationwide, Wired magazine dubbed it “Hogwarts for Hackers.” But now, after the state’s two-year budget impasse, lawmakers are pondering a proposal that would welcome wizards from outside of Illinois — for a price.

WSIU/Kevin Boucher

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Touch of Nature Director JD Tanner and Shane Bennett of The Special Olympics, which got its start in Carbondale 50 years ago.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Eileen Norcross, the Director of the State and Local Policy Project at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Amy Dion of the Neighborhood Coop and Patty Mullen of Good Samaritan House about the 2018 "Feed Your Neighbor" 5k.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Carbondale Mayor Mike Henry and City Manager Gary Williams about city action that cancelled a potential concert over the weekend due to safety concerns.

Kaskaskia: The Original Illinois Capital

Apr 2, 2018
Photograph taken at the Randolph County Archives and Museum, January 2018.
WSIU/Kevin Boucher

Kaskaskia Illinois, across the river from Chester, is in Randolph County.  The Village has a historical place in the state because it was the state's first Capital.

WSIU Almanac: Monday April 2nd, 2018.

Apr 2, 2018

In a refrigerator in the coroner’s office in Marion County, Indiana, rows of vials await testing. They contain blood, urine and vitreous, the fluid collected from inside a human eye. In overdose cases, the fluids may contain clues for investigators. 


WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIU President Randy Dunn about budget and enrollment concerns:


Tornado
noaa.gov

Warmer spring temperatures mean an increased potential for severe weather, including tornadoes. 

If you own a home then you  want to make sure you’re protected in case of any emergency.

Planetary Radio Host Mat Kaplan Returns To Carbondale.

Mar 23, 2018

On this edition of WSIU InFocus, Mat Kaplan, Host of Planetary Radio, heard at 6:00AM Saturday and Sunday, stops by the WSIU studios to talk about the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse, the upcoming free public screening of the film "In The Shadow" on Saturday March 24th, 2018 at 5:30PM at Shryock Auditorium.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with the creators of "In The Shadow," a documentary about the August 2017 solar eclipse that crossed over Carbondale.

Doors open at Shryock Auditorium at 5:30pm.

Science
By Jamie Foster/Wikipedia

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Bethany Rader of SIUC's Microbiology Department about her upcoming Science Cafe:

www.alicedreger.com

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Alice Dreger about her upcoming lecture, "Who Should Count As A Woman On The Playing Field?"

Dreger is the SIU Law School's John and Marsha Ryan Bioethicist-in-Residence for 2018.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Paul Simon Public Policy Institute Visiting Professor John Jackson about his expectations for the Illinois Primary.

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