WSIU InFocus

  • Hosted by WSIU News Team

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

Puppets Take Over on April 22nd, 2019

20 hours ago

On Earth Day, Monday April 22nd, 2019, the 6th Annual All Species Puppet Parade will take place in Carbondale.

Andrew Joyce won’t be growing any tomatoes this summer. His three-acre produce farm in Malden, Missouri, will lie fallow. The cause: damage from the weed killer dicamba.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Amy Dion of the Neighborhood Coop and Patty Mullen of Good Samaritan Ministries about the 2019 "Feed Your Neighbor" 5K.

SI Music Festival

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Maestro Ed Benyas of the Southern Illinois Symphony about the upcoming performance of Verdi's "Requiem."

Losing Weight Takes More Than Willpower

Apr 12, 2019
Steph Whiteside/WSIU

Doctors often advise patients to lose weight - but that’s easier said than done. If you’ve been trying to drop the pounds and are struggling, it’s not just an issue of willpower.

“The brain is fighting you on multiple fronts,” said Dr. Megha Manek, a physician at the Southern University School of Medicine. She works with patients who are trying to lose weight.

Patients like Kathy Dauksza, who lost 50 pounds working with a wellness program at the university.

SIU-C Math Students Supply Crucial Data for Ameren

Apr 11, 2019

In a unique partnership, Ameren is giving some math students at SIU Carbondale the job of crunching numbers and studying data, all to help the major energy supplier be better prepared for problems.

Touch of Nature

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller visits Touch of Nature to talk with Pat Jones and Cassie Roy about 2019 Summer Camps.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIUC Interim Chancellor John Dunn, as the school forwards more program changes as a part of a proposed reorganization plan. In addition, Dunn describes enrollment projections for the 2019-2020 academic year.

Segment 1:

Segment 2:

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIUC Faculty Association President Dave Johnson about the union's upcoming meeting about proposed reorganization plans at the university.


WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Jackson County Health Department Administrator Sarah Patrick about Public Health Week 2019.

In addition, the JCHD and SIH will present a special lecture on Saturday, April 6 at the Holiday Inn and Conference Center in Carbondale focusing on Health Equity. You can see the information in the flyer below.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Nancy garwood and Jean Sellar about the upcoming Indigenous Plant Symposium at John A. Logan College.

Ellie Sullivan/SIU-C Vocal Performance Student

The Sigma Alpha Iota fraternity at SIU Carbondale is organizing an instrument drive to collect, not only instruments, but music supplies.  The collection will run through May 5th. 

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Rosanne Szekely of SIUC's Radiologic Sciences program about her upcoming Science Cafe, focusing on X-Ray screeners and other security scans.

Vietnam Vet Will Show His New Film on the SIU Campus

Mar 26, 2019

Ron Osgood spent much of his youth in Chicago.  In 1967 one kid from his neighborhood,  who was a Marine serving in Vietnam, was killed in action.  Several months after attending the funeral, Ron received is draft notice and served in the United States Navy in the South China Sea during the Vietnam War.

Ticks, And How Are They Adapting?

Mar 21, 2019
Courtesy of the Illinois Department of Public Health.

With Spring arriving and many of us getting outside, ticks will no doubt be doing the same thing.

On this edition of WSIU INFOCUS, we visit with some tick experts to learn more about this amazing

creature, which has survived on the earth a long time.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Ambassador Harriet Elam-Thomas, ahead of her presentation for the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at SIUC.

Paul Simon Public Policy Institute

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with the SIU School of Law's John & Marsha Ryan Bioethicist in Residence, Alex London, about his lecture, "Artificial Intelligence in Medicine: Does Accountability Require Explainability?"

Carbondale Park District's Website

On April 2nd when voters go to the polls and vote for Mayor and City Council, they will also see a question on the ballot asking if a study should be done to determine if the Carbondale Park District Operations should be merged with the City of Carbondale.

Caregivers Should Also Be Aware Of Their Health.

Mar 18, 2019

On Thursday March 21st, 2019, the non-profit Centerstone will offer a presentation for caregivers titled "Caring For The Caregiver: Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Trauma.".

Gov. J.B. Pritzker wants to create a host of new taxes to help balance Illinois’ budget — on everything from e-cigarettes to medical insurance companies.

NPR Illinois reporters have been breaking down those revenue-generating ideas. Today we’re looking at a potential tax on shopping bags.

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker says he’s counting on new taxes to help close the state’s  3.2 billion dollar budget hole. NPR Illinois reporters are taking a closer look at some of his ideas. First up, Jaclyn Driscoll breaks down the biggest chunk of revenue in Pritzker’s proposal -  a tax on health insurers.

At Hummel’s Nissan in Des Moines, Kevin Caldwell sells the all-electric Leaf. Driving one is basically the same as driving a typical gasoline or gas-electric hybrid car, he said, except for a few new features like the semi-autonomous hands-free option. And the fact that you plug it in rather than pumping gas into it.

About a quarter to a third of Caldwell’s Leaf customers are farmers, some of whom grow corn for ethanol.

NPR's series "American Anthem" is striking a chord across the country.

Murphysboro's Gary Hart says "an 'anthem' is more than a song. An anthem is the right song heard by the right person and the right time in the right circumstances."

To that end, Hart has crafted his own "American Anthem," and shared it with us.

We'd love to hear your American Anthem! Find us on Facebook, Twitter, or email us at

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIU's John Jackson, who edited Southern Illinois University at 150 Years: Growth, Accomplishments, and Challenges.

Southern Illinois University

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Interim SIUC Chancellor John Dunn about the school's 150th Anniversary, along with the annual Day of Giving campaign.

Carbondale / Carbondale

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with Carbondale City Manager Gary Williams about the city's reaction to Governor J.B. Pritzker's budget proposal, along with other priorities. Williams also discusses the importance of 150 years of Southern Illinois University on the eve of the school's anniversary kickoff.

According to research cited in a new documentary, frequent stress is bad for kids.  This film is called "Resilience: The Biology of Stress and the science of hope" and on March 7th the non-profit Prevent Child Abuse Illinois is sponsoring a free screening and panel discussion of the film. 

To learn more about this film, visit:

SIU Planning Day of Giving on March 6th, 2019.

Mar 1, 2019

On this edition of WSIU InFocus, we visit with Rae Goldsmith, Interim Vice Chancellor for Development and Alumni Relations and Chief Communications and Marketing Officer for SIU.

Five local non-profit groups are sponsoring two voter forums in Carbondale featuring candidates for Mayor and City Council.  The first forum is planned for Thursday February 28th, 2019 at 6:00PM at the Carbondale Civic Center.  This forum will feature candidates running for Carbondale City Council.

Health officials say teenagers are using e-cigarettes at epidemic rates. Lawmakers in a number of Midwest states, like Indiana, Illinois and Minnesota, are addressing the problem and so is the FDA.