WBEZ | University of Chicago http://www.wbez.org/tags/university-chicago Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Emanuel introducing ordinance to use park land for Obama library http://www.wbez.org/news/emanuel-introducing-ordinance-use-park-land-obama-library-111427 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/rahm-file_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said he&rsquo;d move &ldquo;heaven and earth&rdquo; to bring the Obama presidential library to Chicago. At Wednesday&rsquo;s City Council meeting, he officially offered up parkland to help bolster the University of Chicago&rsquo;s bid.</p><p>The U of C originally pitched three locations to the Obama foundation as part of their application for the library. That plan is in the running for the coveted library alongside the University of Illinois at Chicago, as well as Columbia University in New York City and The University of Hawaii.</p><p>The U of C&rsquo;s bid is eying two sites controlled by the Chicago Park District: Washington Park and Jackson Park. But there was word earlier this month that the Barack Obama Foundation was hesitant.&nbsp;</p><p>&ldquo;Chicago was not in its best position we did not have our best foot forward because of questions raised by the foundation,&rdquo; Emanuel said. &ldquo;We can address those questions. So I&rsquo;m gonna take the necessary steps to do that so we can gain the jobs, the economy and the cultural enrichment that would come with it.&rdquo;</p><p>The step Emanuel took Wednesday would transfer that parkland to the city of Chicago, but he promises they&rsquo;d replace whatever open space is used up by the library. For example, Emanuel&rsquo;s ordinance suggests that the library would only take up five acres within the 21 and 20 acre Washington Park and Jackson Park, respectively. That means five acres of open space would be placed elsewhere in the neighborhood.</p><p>The proposal still needs to be voted on by both the City Council and the Park District Board. Over twenty aldermen have already signed on to Emanuel&rsquo;s proposal. At two public hearings hosted by the park district last week, South Side residents came out in droves to share their opinions on the matter. While many said they wanted the library no matter where it was, some stressed the importance of preserving public park land.</p><p>Cassandra Francis, president of the nonprofit group Friends of the Parks, called the mayor&rsquo;s proposal both &ldquo;unprecedented&rdquo; and &ldquo;dangerous.&rdquo;</p><p>&ldquo;The attempt to confiscate this parkland for this use is something that has really galvanized people to focus on this issue. And not just related to real property, but other public trust assets and transfers of those out of the hands or the benefit of the public into things that would not necessarily prioritize public use,&rdquo; Francis said.</p><p>Francis said she personally would be thrilled if President Obama chose to bring the library to Chicago, but says it doesn&rsquo;t belong in a public park.&nbsp;</p><p>Francis wouldn&rsquo;t say for sure if Friends of the Parks or any national groups would take legal action over the mayor&rsquo;s proposal.</p><p><em>Lauren Chooljian is a WBEZ reporter. Follow her <a href="http://twitter.com/laurenchooljian" target="_blank">@laurenchooljian</a>.</em></p></p> Wed, 21 Jan 2015 08:41:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/emanuel-introducing-ordinance-use-park-land-obama-library-111427 Hundreds attend hearing on South Side Obama library proposal http://www.wbez.org/news/hundreds-attend-hearing-south-side-obama-library-proposal-111396 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/obamalibrary.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Hundreds gathered on Chicago&#39;s South Side to sound off about a University of Chicago proposal to build the Obama Presidential Library and Museum in a public park.</p><p>Many at Tuesday&#39;s Chicago Park District hearing say they support carving out about 20 acres in one of two historic parks as part of the university&#39;s bid.</p><p>Jackson Park was the site of the 1893 World&#39;s Columbian Exposition, and Washington Park is a national historic site. Both were designed by famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted.</p><p>Proponents say the library would be a boon for the area and using a relatively small part of either park could assure the city is chosen. Finalists include the University of Illinois at Chicago and New York&#39;s Columbia University.</p><p>Opponents say relinquishing parkland sets a dangerous precedent.</p></p> Wed, 14 Jan 2015 07:54:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/hundreds-attend-hearing-south-side-obama-library-proposal-111396 Campus police: real deal or rent-a-cops? http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/campus-police-real-deal-or-rent-cops-111071 <p><p>Say you are driving around Chicago and you happen to run a red light. There are no Chicago police officers around, but there is a university police car right behind you. Could you still get a ticket?</p><p>That&rsquo;s exactly what Jef Johnson was wondering when he started noticing University of Chicago Police Department cars all over his Bronzeville neighborhood.</p><p>Here&rsquo;s the question Jef sent our way:</p><p dir="ltr" style="text-align: center;"><em>Are police forces at local universities real police or simply security companies? How much policing power do they have?</em></p><p>We found a straightforward legal answer about how this works in Illinois. There is a spectrum of authority that ranges from security guard to all-out cop. At the far end of that spectrum are Jef&rsquo;s own University of Chicago police. He didn&rsquo;t know it at the time but UCPD is almost unique, with a particularly strong hand when it comes to power and jurisdiction. Those officers don&rsquo;t just protect students, staff and campus &mdash; the UCPD serves as the primary police force for 65,000 Chicagoans, and most are not affiliated with the university.</p><p>That prompted a question that should interest anyone, even those who never encounter these officers: How can a private police force get jurisdiction over so much of the public?</p><p><span style="font-size:24px;">Not your father&rsquo;s rent-a-cops</span></p><p>Let&rsquo;s start with that legal distinction we found. If you&rsquo;re anything like Jef, you probably assume that campus police officers aren&rsquo;t real police, and they have little authority other than the power to break up rowdy parties.</p><p>&ldquo;I always thought somehow that they were rent-a-cops,&rdquo; Jef said.</p><p>But that&rsquo;s not always the case, according Cora Beem, who manages mandated training for the<a href="http://www.ptb.state.il.us/aboutus.htm" target="_blank"> Illinois Law Enforcement Standards &amp; Training Board</a>. She said the big distinction to be made is between campus security guards and campus police. The latter undergo the same basic training and certification that state and municipal police officers do. With that certification, they have the same authority as any other police officer in the state, even if they are privately employed.</p><p>Illinois&rsquo; public universities employ campus police, but private universities can choose to hire plain old security guards. Those guards might be armed, but they don&rsquo;t have the power to give Jef Johnson a ticket, and they certainly cannot patrol off campus.</p><p>Like many private schools in Illinois, the University of Chicago voluntarily upgraded its security force to a police force 25 years ago. According to Beem, that means they are definitely not rent-a-cops.</p><p>&ldquo;They can write you a ticket. They can arrest you,&rdquo; Beem explained. &ldquo;They can counsel and release you, so yes, they&rsquo;re real cops.&rdquo;</p><p><span style="font-size:24px;">The UCPD&rsquo;s jurisdiction</span></p><p><iframe height="480" src="https://mapsengine.google.com/map/u/0/embed?mid=zD1cveoHRWh8.kfGTEakNbuXk" width="620"></iframe></p><p>With more than 100 full-time officers, the University of Chicago&rsquo;s police department is one of the largest private police forces anywhere. Not only that, UCPD also has a really big patrol area &mdash; they cover 6.5 square miles, most of which is beyond the core of the University of Chicago&#39;s South Side campus.</p><p>But why can UCPD officers patrol so far from campus in the mid-South Side? According to Craig Futterman, a clinical professor of law at University of Chicago Law School, the department&rsquo;s status is almost unique.</p><p>&ldquo;The deal is that there is a city ordinance in Chicago that grants the police superintendent the power to appoint special policemen for the city of Chicago,&rdquo; he explained.</p><p>This <a href="http://www.amlegal.com/nxt/gateway.dll/Illinois/chicago_il/title4businessesoccupationsandconsumerpr/chapter4-340specialpolicemenandsecurityg?f=templates$fn=default.htm$3.0$vid=amlegal:chicago_il$anc=JD_Ch.4-340" target="_blank">ordinance allows private police forces to assume the powers and responsibilities of municipal police</a>, not just on campus but in surrounding neighborhoods. UCPD is only one of two private forces in Chicago with this &ldquo;special police&rdquo; designation. The other force is that of Northwestern University Law School, but its <a href="http://directives.chicagopolice.org/attachments/S12-01_Att2.jpg" target="_blank">patrol area extends just a few blocks beyond its Streeterville campus </a>north of Chicago&rsquo;s Loop.</p><p>Once the ordinance was passed in 1992, UCPD negotiated its extended jurisdiction with Chicago&rsquo;s police superintendent. To the north, University of Chicago&rsquo;s main campus stops at 55th Street. UCPD&rsquo;s jurisdiction, however, extends all the way to 37th Street, even farther than Jef Johnson&rsquo;s home in Bronzeville.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/u%20of%20c%20charters.png" title="University of Chicago's Woodlawn Charter School, left, and Donoghue Charter School, right, are on the southern and northern ends of UCPD's extended jurisdiction. (Ellen Mayer/WBEZ) " /></div><p>Futterman says Chicago&#39;s police superintendent has granted UCPD more independence than it once had. In years&nbsp;past, university police needed administrative assistance to complete arrests.</p><p>&ldquo;The arrest, though, would be formalized and would be processed at a local chicago police department district station, usually whatever district the arrest was because UCPD operated in more than one Chicago police district,&rdquo; Futterman explained. Last year that changed. Now UCPD reports directly to the state and can process arrests independently. According to the university, this arrangement allows both departments to operate more efficiently.</p><p>Maintaining a large police force is expensive, but the university says its worth it. On this, an emailed statement from the UCPD reads: &ldquo;The extended patrol area enhances safety and security through the mid-South Side, which is home to a large number of University of Chicago faculty members, students and staff.&rdquo; The statement mentions the university&rsquo;s interest in protecting its charter schools and other properties within the extended patrol area.</p><p><span style="font-size:24px;">The community speaks</span></p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/meeting%20WEB.jpg" title="University of Chicago students and South Side residents held a forum October 29, 2014, at Hyde Park's Experimental Station to discuss UCPD's presence in their neighborhoods. (WBEZ/Ellen Mayer)" /></p><p>UCPD&rsquo;s jurisdiction doesn&rsquo;t just include university students and employees; again, the department protects approximately 65,000 residents. How do they feel about UCPD&rsquo;s presence in their neighborhoods?</p><p>On Wednesday, October 29, <a href="http://www.experimentalstation.org/" target="_blank">Hyde Park&rsquo;s Experimental Station</a> held a forum for students and South Side residents to discuss exactly that. Organizers also invited former UCPD chief Rudy Nimocks. He was at the helm when UCPD expanded its jurisdiction. As he recalls it, the university received community support as it broadened its jurisdiction.</p><p>&ldquo;We had public hearings,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;We were asked to come in. At each one of the sessions I said, &lsquo;We&rsquo;ll stay here as long as you want us.&rsquo; That&rsquo;s how it&rsquo;s been ever since.&rdquo;</p><p>Nimocks has a point. Almost every speaker at the community forum expressed gratitude that UCPD has made their neighborhoods safer. That being said, almost every speaker also had a story to tell about UCPD racially profiling black residents who live within the extended jurisdiction.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/triggs%20FOR%20WEB.jpg" style="float: left; height: 246px; width: 370px;" title="Jamel Triggs, who attended the recent forum on neighborhood UCPD presence, says he's been stopped by UCPD six times since returning from the Marine Corps in May. (Ellen Mayer/WBEZ)" />Jamel Triggs, a young black man who works at the Experimental Station&rsquo;s bike shop, said he had been stopped by UCPD six times since he returned from the Marine Corps in May. &ldquo;They&rsquo;re supposed to be protecting and serving us. That&rsquo;s supposed to be the goal,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, not the other way around.&rdquo;</p><p>According to Triggs, the neighborhood doesn&rsquo;t feel safer if he has to worry about being stopped by UCPD. He said he is also concerned about the safety of the younger kids he mentors at the bike shop. &ldquo;I don&rsquo;t want these kids walking around being scared of the police and being scared of the gangbangers out in the streets,&rdquo; he said, &ldquo;because I was, and it hurts.&rdquo;</p><p>A student group called South Side Solidarity Network has launched a campaign to end perceived racial profiling by UCPD. The trouble is, all their evidence is anecdotal. To firm up accusations of wrongdoing, SSSN has asked UCPD to release records indicating the race of residents the department stops and searches. So far, the department has refused.</p><p>Another emailed statement responds to accusations of racial profiling. &ldquo;The University of Chicago Police Department does not deploy tactics that support racial profiling,&rdquo; it states. &ldquo;As a department, we often and openly discuss our policing strategies to ensure our officers are not engaging deliberately or inadvertently in bias-based policing.&rdquo;</p><p>Without releasing records and data, however, UCPD is asking the public to take them at their word.</p><p><span style="font-size:24px;">Private police and public accountability</span></p><p>This is where Jef Johnson&rsquo;s curiosity about &nbsp;potential traffic stops in Bronzeville morphed into a much bigger question about the transparency and accountability of a private police force. The 1992 Chicago ordinance that allows for the creation of special police includes technical language about certificates and licensing fees, but it doesn&rsquo;t address the public&rsquo;s right to information when a private force takes on the responsibilities of municipal police. UCPD is not a governmental agency, therefore it is not required to release records under Illinois&rsquo; Freedom of Information Act.</p><p>The University of Chicago does have a <a href="http://safety-security.uchicago.edu/police/contact_the_ucpd/complaint_process/" target="_blank">process for investigating complaints against UCPD</a>, but that process will soon get an overhaul. Until now, all investigations were performed in-house, by a fellow UCPD officer. In response to <a href="http://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20140311/hyde-park/university-of-chicago-police-no-longer-accountable-petition-claims" target="_blank">criticism about UCPD&rsquo;s perceived lack of oversight</a>, the university recently announced the hiring of a new director of professional accountability. This new position will not be filled by a uniformed officer.</p><p>So what did Jef think about all this?</p><p>&ldquo;This is much bigger than I thought when I asked the question,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;I worry about a private police force. It just sounds like maybe we&rsquo;re handing too much power to them.&rdquo; Jef said he is most concerned that the average Chicagoan might never know that UCPD had such a huge jurisdiction.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s scary in that sense,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;I&rsquo;m just finding this out, and I&rsquo;ve been living in this area ten years.&rdquo;</p><p><span style="font-size:24px;">Now we have an answer. Who asked the question?</span></p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Jef.jpg" style="float: right; margin: 5px;" title="Jef Johnson asked our question about university police after noticing UCPD officers far from campus. (Photo courtesy of Jef Johnson)" />Judging by the number of questions Jef Johnson has submitted to our <a href="http://curiouscity.wbez.org/" target="_blank">list of question-based story pitches</a>, he is one very curious guy. (For the record, that would be seven ... and counting!) If you haven&rsquo;t run across any of his questions we haven&rsquo;t answered yet, you might remember Jef as the truck enthusiast who launched <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/question-answered-why-ban-pickups-lake-shore-drive-where-can-they-park-104631" target="_blank">our investigation about pickup truck laws in Chicago</a>.</p><p>It turns out this question about university police was also inspired by Jef&rsquo;s driving habits. He says he first began wondering about UCPD&rsquo;s authority on a day when President Barack Obama was visiting his home in the Kenwood neighborhood.</p><p>&ldquo;They blocked off a lot of my streets, so I was taking some back streets and I saw University of Chicago Police cars in areas that seem far away from the University of Chicago.&rdquo; &nbsp;</p><p>When Jef isn&rsquo;t thinking up questions for Curious City, he&rsquo;s a wedding minister employed by the city of Chicago.</p><p><em>Ellen Mayer is the Curious City intern. Follow her on Twitter at<a href="http://twitter.com/cementley" target="_blank"> @</a>ellenrebeccam.</em></p><div>&nbsp;</div></p> Wed, 05 Nov 2014 17:26:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/campus-police-real-deal-or-rent-cops-111071 Community prosecutions credited with drop in crime http://www.wbez.org/news/community-prosecutions-credited-drop-crime-110582 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Uptown theater_flickr_BWChicago.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Placing prosecutors in a neighborhood instead of a courtroom is a different kind of &quot;law and order.&quot; A University of Chicago law professor says his research shows community prosecution has had an immediate and measurable impact on violent crime.</p><p><em>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/2014/07/31/336765946/community-prosecutions-credited-with-drops-in-crime?ft=1&amp;f=" target="_blank">hear the story from NPR&#39;s Morning Edition</a></em></p></p> Thu, 31 Jul 2014 07:38:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/community-prosecutions-credited-drop-crime-110582 Morning Shift: The relationship between mental health and eating http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-05-20/morning-shift-relationship-between-mental-health-and <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/anorexia Flickr schnappischnap.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>May is Mental Health Month, so we take a look at the connection between eating right and mental health. We also look at the latest efforts to get a new trauma center at the University of Chicago Medical Center.&nbsp;</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-the-relationship-between-eatng-and-m/embed?header=false&amp;border=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-the-relationship-between-eatng-and-m.js?header=false&border=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-the-relationship-between-eatng-and-m" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: The relationship between mental health and eating" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Tue, 20 May 2014 07:19:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-05-20/morning-shift-relationship-between-mental-health-and New exhibit takes unique look at death, food and remembrance http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/new-exhibit-takes-unique-look-death-food-and-remembrance-109974 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/death exhibit.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>When someone passes away today, it&rsquo;s pretty common for friends and family to reminisce about them over food and drink. Just think about all those casseroles and cookies that pile up or about hoisting a glass at an Irish wake.</p><p>It turns out, in some ancient cultures, that use of food went, well, further.</p><p>A new show at the University of Chicago&rsquo;s Oriental Institute opens Tuesday, and it takes an unusual look at death. The show&rsquo;s called <a href="http://oi.uchicago.edu/museum/special/remembrance/" target="_blank">&ldquo;In Remembrance of Me: Feasting with the Dead in the Ancient Middle East</a>.&rdquo;</p><p>It examines how we&rsquo;ve remembered our loved ones across cultures and time, and the ways people have tried to control how they&rsquo;ll be thought of too. It highlights some ancient Middle Eastern cultures that believed souls lived on in monuments and needed to be fed so later generations could just come and hang out with them.</p><p>&ldquo;Cultures all over world, in all different periods in all areas of the world have done this, have had some way of maintaining contact their deceased ancestors,&rdquo; said Emily Teeter, a research associate and special exhibits coordinator at the Oriental Institute.</p><p>&ldquo;In Egyptian theology, they thought they would live forever, as long as they were remembered by the living,&rdquo; she said, adding that this ancient culture believed part of the soul lived on in monuments, and keeping those souls alive required lots and lots of food.</p><p>She pointed to a stone slab with an engraving of a couple who were unmistakably Egyptian, with angular black wigs, jeweled collars.</p><p>All over the monument, there are tiny carvings of birds, oxen, bread, even beer. Teeter said those are instructions on what to bring the couple to keep them alive: They wanted a thousand each of oxen, birds, bread and beer.</p><p>&ldquo;The Egyptian dead were apparently constantly hungry,&rdquo; Teeter said. &ldquo;...To stay alive you need to eat, and their whole goal with mummification, with creating these monuments, is to live eternally.&rdquo;</p><p>Teeter said the couple - who died more than 4,000 years ago -- even planned ahead on what to do once all their descendants had passed away, and there was no one to bring them food anymore. The engraving says that if visitors don&rsquo;t happen to have 1,000 oxen on them, it&rsquo;s enough to just pray for the food.</p><p>And it&rsquo;s not just the ancient Middle East where rites like this happened. At an excavation site in Vatican City, University of Chicago Divinity School Dean Margaret Mitchell saw tubes sticking out of burial sites. She said that was so people could pour in beverages to share with their dead loved ones.</p><p>Mitchell said some Roman catacombs had tables for people to eat between rows of burial urns.</p><p>&ldquo;Whether the dead can still eat a Twinkie or can still drink a good glass of merlot, it&rsquo;s a way of tenderly caring for the dead,&rdquo; Mitchell said.</p><p>The monuments go beyond providing the living with that connection to the dead, or assuring the dead will keep getting fed. In some cases, these statues and stones let people control how they&rsquo;ll be remembered.</p><p>The exhibit&rsquo;s showpiece is a replica of an ornately carved memorial stone of a man named Katumuwa. He&rsquo;s in fancy dress, sitting at a banquet table full of food, looking relaxed and happy in the afterlife. Before he died, commissioned it himself.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s not just &lsquo;Pete was here,&rsquo; but it&rsquo;s even bigger,&rdquo; Mitchell said. She likened this memorial stone to the huge monument Illinois politician Roland Burris has had built, even though he&rsquo;s still very much alive.</p><p>It&rsquo;s like saying, &ldquo;I&rsquo;m not going to leave it to the winds or your children to decide how you&rsquo;re going to be remembered, but I want to steer that process myself,&rdquo; Mitchell said. &ldquo;In some ways, the monuments are like a fist to the sky that says, I refuse to be forgotten.&rsquo;&rdquo;</p><p><em>Lynette Kalsnes is a WBEZ producer/reporter covering religion, culture and science. Follow her <a href="https://twitter.com/LynetteKalsnes">@LynetteKalsnes</a>.</em></p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 05:01:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/new-exhibit-takes-unique-look-death-food-and-remembrance-109974 Yo Sally! Remembering the late University of Chicago math professor Paul Sally http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/yo-sally-remembering-late-university-chicago-math-professor-paul-sally-109738 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/RS7426_chi000416_g1-scr (1).JPG" alt="" /><p><p>A University of Chicago math legend affectionately called &ldquo;Professor Pirate&rdquo; died recently at age 80. Professor Paul Sally was known as much for his teaching as his research.</p><p>Sally learned he had diabetes at age 15. The disease eventually took both legs and most of his eyesight, requiring him to wear a signature black eye patch.</p><p>Shortly before he died on Dec. 30, 2013, Sally visited the Chicago StoryCorps booth with colleague, Kim Ransom, who heads the University of Chicago Collegiate Scholars Program.</p><p>SALLY: It turned out that one of the easiest subjects for me to deal with in school was mathematics. I never had to study and I loved learning it &hellip; I loved to tell people&nbsp; about mathematics until I was blue in the face, and they were so tired they couldn&#39;t stand it anymore.</p><p><em>To hear more, and to find out what sport helped fuel Sally&rsquo;s love of math, check out the audio above.</em></p><p><em>Lynette Kalsnes is a reporter/producer covering religion, science and culture for WBEZ. Follow her <a href="https://twitter.com/LynetteKalsnes">@LynetteKalsnes</a></em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Fplaylists%2F6250422" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 21 Feb 2014 08:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/yo-sally-remembering-late-university-chicago-math-professor-paul-sally-109738 University of Chicago symposium focuses on how to better support black male adolescents http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/university-chicago-symposium-focuses-how-better-support-black-male-adolescents-109702 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Screen Shot 2014-02-13 at 10.39.48 PM.png" alt="" /><p><p>University of Chicago professor Waldo Johnson says too many black boys are being robbed of their boyhood.</p><p>&ldquo;Even when they engage sometimes in antisocial behavior, there&rsquo;s some clear evidence that the way in which corrective measures are applied to them tend to, in some instances, be far more harsh,&rdquo; Johnson said.</p><p>Johnson is referring to school suspensions. Chicago Public Schools has come under fire for its zero-tolerance policies. Just this week, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the head of CPS said they want to&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/schools-chief-mayor-push-alternatives-suspending-city-students-109690" target="_blank">change how discipline looks in classrooms</a>.</p><p>U of C is hosting &ldquo;Black Young Men in America: Rising above Social and Racial Prejudice, Trauma, and Educational Disparities,&rdquo; a symposium to be held Saturday at the Hyde Park campus.</p><p>The symposium will center around research and developing strategies to support black male adolescents. Educators, social workers and youth service providers will be in attendance. Panelists will also focus on to how communicate and build relationships with this population. They include Nia Abdullah and Elizabeth Kirby of CPS, Marshaun Bacon of Becoming a Man and Monico Whittington-Eskridge of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.</p><p>This week President Barack Obama was scheduled to announce a <a href="http://www.ebony.com/black-listed/news-views/president-obama-to-launch-my-brothers-keeper-981#axzz2tF58ukaZ" target="_blank">new program</a> to help young minority men;the weather postponed the unveiling.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m optimistic, as this particular initiative develops, that it will develop in ways that will allow for some flexibility to recognize that we&rsquo;re not talking about a monolithic group. There&rsquo;s a lot of differences among African American males,&rdquo; Johnson said.</p><p><em>The symposium is Feb. 15 from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. at the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration, 969 E. 60th St.</em></p><p><em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/nmoore-0" rel="author">Natalie Moore</a> is a WBEZ reporter. <a href="mailto:nmoore@wbez.org">nmoore@wbez.org</a>&nbsp;Follow Natalie on <a href="https://plus.google.com//104033432051539426343" rel="me">Google+</a>, &nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/natalieymoore">Twitter</a></em></p></p> Thu, 13 Feb 2014 22:30:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/university-chicago-symposium-focuses-how-better-support-black-male-adolescents-109702 Curious tales from Chicago's past http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/curious-tales-chicagos-past-109432 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/history books photo flickr inspector_81.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="350" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/playlists/7198832&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=true" width="620"></iframe></p><p>The Chicago Fire. Mrs. O&rsquo;Leary&rsquo;s Barn. Fort Dearborn. Al Capone. We&rsquo;re not going to talk about any of that here&nbsp;&mdash; at least not in the ways you&#39;ve heard before.</p><p>Instead, you&rsquo;ll find chapters of Chicago history missing from most textbooks. We bring you stories from Chicago&rsquo;s past that range from near-death pair-o-chute rides to rides on funeral train cars; forgotten zoos to abandoned hospitals; produce markets to telephone exchanges; infamous asylums to anonymous (but fascinating) sidewalks. And yes, we talk about the Great Fire. But, how about this angle: <a href="http://interactive.wbez.org/curiouscity/chicagofire/" target="_blank">What would Chicago look like if the fire had never happened?</a></p><p>All of these stories started from <a href="http://curiouscity.wbez.org/" target="_blank">questions </a>you&rsquo;ve asked and you&rsquo;ve helped us report. There are enough of them that it&rsquo;s worth recapping what we&rsquo;ve learned about the Chicago area&#39;s peculiar past &mdash; through the lens of residents&rsquo; own curiosity.</p><p>The audio playlist above begins with an hour-long special featuring questions that span from the 1800s to today. You&rsquo;ll hear about <strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/should-we-use-l-word-jane-addams-108619" target="_blank">Victorian-era sexuality</a></strong>, <strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/story-dunning-tomb-living-106892" target="_blank">forgotten graves</a></strong> near an insane asylum, <strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/did-wwii-nuclear-experiment-make-u-c-radioactive-106681" target="_blank">radioactive secrets</a></strong>,&nbsp;<strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/what-happened-nike-missile-sites-around-chicago-105087" target="_blank">missiles</a></strong> that were a little too close to home, a long-gone&nbsp;<strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/laugh-your-troubles-away-105619" target="_blank">amusement park</a></strong>, <strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/neon-no-more-lincoln-avenues-motel-row-109050" target="_blank">seedy motels</a></strong> and &hellip; <strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/where-have-all-old-school-doughnut-shops-gone-108483" target="_blank">doughnuts</a></strong>, of all things. Below, we follow up with videos that tell what happened to Union Park&rsquo;s menagerie, what it was like to visit the 1893 World&rsquo;s Fair and why residents on the city&rsquo;s Northwest Side were afraid of Dunning Asylum for the Insane.</p><p>If you want to bring alive the history of Chicago, the region or its people <a href="http://curiouscity.wbez.org/" target="_blank">ask your question right now</a>! Otherwise, enjoy tales of local history &mdash; Curious City style!</p><p dir="ltr"><strong>Good reads:&nbsp;</strong></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://interactive.wbez.org/curiouscity/chicagofire/" target="_blank">What would Chicago look like without the Fire?</a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/tensions-and-torches-after-great-chicago-fire-110908" target="_blank">Did the Great Fire affect where Chicago&#39;s rich and poor lived?</a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/hosting-enemy-our-wwii-pow-camps-109344">Hosting the enemy: Our WW II POW camps </a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/story-dunning-tomb-living-106892">The story of Dunning, a &lsquo;tomb for the living&rsquo;</a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/after-haymarket-anarchism-trial-and-city-search-its-soul-110098" target="_blank">After Haymarket: Anarchism on trial and a city in search of its soul</a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://wbez.is/1nh6mYK">Pilsen&#39;s tranformation into a Latino community</a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/311-chicagos-early-phone-numbers-109135">The 311 on Chicago&rsquo;s early phone numbers ... and letters </a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/gulp-how-chicago-gobbled-its-neighbors-109583" target="_blank">Gulp! How Chicago gobbled its neighbors</a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/should-we-use-l-word-jane-addams-108619">Would Jane Addams be considered a lesbian? </a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/bridges-span-river-and-decades-108903">History of downtown bridgehouses </a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/marina-city-ideals-concrete-108072">Marina City: Ideals in concrete</a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/laugh-your-troubles-away-105619">Riverview: Laugh your troubles away</a></p><p dir="ltr"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/what-happened-nike-missile-sites-around-chicago-105087">What happened to Nike missile sites around Chicago? </a></p><p><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/question-answered-how-has-chicago%E2%80%99s-coastline-changed-over-decades-104328">How has Chicago&rsquo;s coastline changed? </a></p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="349" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/videoseries?list=PL0LxICU6xOzOOOQCazHiJN9W9pvThPmjA" width="620"></iframe></p><p><em>Follow Curious City&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/WBEZCuriousCity">@WBEZCurious City</a>.&nbsp;</em></p></p> Mon, 23 Dec 2013 12:31:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/curious-tales-chicagos-past-109432 Chicago: A home fit for wild parrots http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/chicago-home-fit-wild-parrots-108565 <p><p><a name="Audio"></a>It may be easier to listen for Chicago&rsquo;s wild parrots than look for them.</p><p>If you hear <a href="http://www.azfo.org/soundlibrary/MP3/190_Parrots/AZFO_MONK_PARAKEET_deviche_112004.mp3" target="_blank">this</a>, look up. High in an elm tree &mdash; or maybe on a light pole &mdash; you&rsquo;ll see an elaborate nest made of twigs.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Leanne%20parrot%20question%20asker.jpg" style="height: 257px; width: 200px; float: right;" title="Leanne Roddy of Chicago’s Avondale neighborhood asked Curious City to investigate the origin story of the region’s wild parrot population. (Courtesy of Leanne Roddy)" /></div><p>The bright green parrots that live in these nests year round seemed out of place to Avondale resident Leanne Roddy. So she asked Curious City:</p><p style="text-align: center;"><em>I heard there were wild parrots on the South Side of Chicago, and I was just wondering where they came from ... and how do they survive in the winter?</em></p><p>The raucous birds are monk parakeets. The species is native to South America and notorious there as an agricultural pest, chowing down on crops from corn to citrus fruits.</p><p>But the tropical transplants have found a friendlier reception from people in Chicago since they first showed up in the late 1960s.</p><p><strong>Home, SQUAWK!, sweet home.</strong></p><p>Leanne had never seen one of the parrots up close, so our first order of business was to spot one in the wild. <a href="https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid=210525372542852493607.0004e1dfcb308d0ee1264&amp;msa=0&amp;ll=41.79454,-87.605892&amp;spn=0.003579,0.008256" target="_blank">Lots of you suggested</a> locations to look. There are about a dozen monk parakeet nests in Washington Park, so we started there.</p><p>Leanne and I didn&rsquo;t see any parrots on our adventure. Not one. But we did spot some nests. And we collected a diverse bunch of urban legends.</p><p>How did the wild parrots get here, according to people in the park?<a name="video"></a></p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="465" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/PbRPXM3HHNM" width="620"></iframe></p><p>So, to recap, Chicago residents think the wild parrots&#39; origin story is:</p><ul><li>A University of Chicago experiment went awry and the birds escaped</li><li>The birds escaped from a holding pen at O&rsquo;Hare</li><li>A truck on its way to a pet store overturned and let the parrots loose</li><li>The government put them here</li><li>People who owned them as pets let them out of their houses</li></ul><p>Those urban legends are fun &mdash; but we needed an expert. Lucky for us, <a href="http://pondside.uchicago.edu/ecol-evol/people/pruett-jones.html" target="_blank">Dr. Stephen Pruett-Jones</a>&rsquo; office at the University of Chicago is just a block down from Washington Park.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/tango_dougstotz_tree.JPG" style="float: left; height: 225px; width: 300px;" title="Tango, a rescued wild parakeet, sits in a tree. (Courtesy of Doug Stotz)" />As an ornithologist and evolutionary biologist, Pruett-Jones has studied the wild parrot population for more than two decades. He&rsquo;s writing a book about the birds now.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">First, Pruett-Jones helped us sort through the many aliases at play. The bright green birds are monk parakeets. Parakeets are small parrots. In the pet trade, they&rsquo;re often called Quaker parrots.</div><p>Pruett-Jones knows the urban legends well &mdash; the overturned truck, the daring escape from the airport &mdash; but says no one has been able to prove the specifics of the birds&rsquo; origin story in North America. He is sure about one thing, though.</p><p>&ldquo;They got here through the pet trade and the pet trade really peaked in the mid to late 1960s,&rdquo; Pruett-Jones said.</p><p>So it may be as simple as a few South Side kids leaving their windows open while cleaning a bird cage.</p><p>The first documented nest of wild parrots in the Chicago area dates back to 1973.</p><p>Now Pruett-Jones, along with colleagues at nearby universities, has <a href="http://www.uic.edu/labs/minor/pruett-jones_etal.pdf" target="_blank">mapped the location of almost five hundred monk parakeet nests</a> in the region. The farthest north is near Milwaukee, and the parrot population swings south along Lake Michigan to Chesterton, Indiana.</p><p>The noisy birds have also established colonies on the East Coast, including cities such as <a href="http://www.brooklynparrots.com/" target="_blank">New York</a> and <a href="http://www.urbanparrots.com/" target="_blank">New Jersey</a>.</p><p><strong>Stayin&#39; alive ... with some help from us</strong></p><p>Plenty of pet birds get loose &mdash; but most parrots aren&rsquo;t adaptable enough to survive so far from their natural habitat and climate.</p><p>&ldquo;Birds need a place to live, a place to nest, and they need food,&rdquo; Pruett-Jones said. &ldquo;Monk parakeets solve the first problem because they build their own nest. Every other species of parrot requires a tree hollow, or a stump of a broken limb that is somehow hollow.&rdquo;</p><p>Or a pirate ship?</p><p>&ldquo;Yes, or a pirate ship,&rdquo; Pruett-Jones said.</p><p>It&rsquo;s a classic Chicago story: The city welcomes outsiders who are willing to work. And these little birds work hard. <a name="tapstory"></a>Every day they scour the landscape for good twigs and prune their nests.<iframe src="//cdn.readtapestry.com/stories/CODk4QIMF/index.html" width="600" height="343" scrolling="no" style="border: 0px;"></iframe><p>Maybe it&rsquo;s why <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1988-04-19/news/8803100092_1_parakeets-feeders-birds" target="_blank">Mayor Harold Washington liked them so much</a>.</p><p>Of the thousands of bird species worldwide, the monk parakeet is about the only one that lives in its nest every day.</p><p>&ldquo;Without trying to sound anthropomorphic, it basically is a house to them,&rdquo;&nbsp;Pruett-Jones said.</p><p><em>House</em> might be the wrong analogy to draw. But with <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2004-06-14/news/0406140216_1_parakeets-birds-tree" target="_blank">giant nests</a> cooperatively built among pairs of birds, <em>condo development</em> sounds about right.</p><p>Monk parakeets have gotten good at building these giant nests on man-made structures like light poles and <a href="http://www.northjersey.com/eastrutherford/Monk_parakeet_causes_power_outage_in_Leonia_Edgewater_East_rutherford.html" target="_blank">transformers</a>.</p><p>ComEd&rsquo;s senior environmental compliance specialist Sara Race says it&rsquo;s a perpetual problem.</p><p>The nests can cause a fire on utility equipment or outages. ComEd does sometimes proactively remove nests on its structures.</p><p>&ldquo;They are unfortunately all over our system,&rdquo; Race said. &ldquo;We typically would leave a nest there unless there is a potential reliability issue. We will remove the nest and remove all the sticks and anything that came from the nest in hopes that they will find another place to nest.&rdquo;</p><p>But they don&rsquo;t usually get the memo.</p><p>&ldquo;Many times they will actually start rebuilding right there,&rdquo; she said.</p><p>Building nests on utility poles isn&rsquo;t the only way Monk parakeets have adapted to their urban environment. <a name="winter"></a>They also completely change their diets depending on the season.</p><p>&ldquo;If people did not feed birds through backyard bird feeders, I believe that monk parakeets would not survive the winter,&rdquo; Pruett-Jones said. &nbsp;</p><p><a href="http://archive.audubonmagazine.org/birds/birds0501.html" target="_blank">Fears</a> that the introduced species would become an agricultural pest like it is in Argentina haven&rsquo;t materialized in the <a href="http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/The-312/March-2013/In-Hyde-Park-the-Parakeets-Abide/" target="_blank">four decades since the birds began to breed in the Midwest</a>.</p><p>The seasonal reliance on backyard bird feeders might be part of the reason why.</p><p>The monk parakeets can&rsquo;t find much to eat in the winter if they live out in the country. So they stick to areas with a dense human population, huddle in their condo-like nests and head to backyard birdfeeders for takeout.</p><h2><strong>Good work, gumshoes!</strong></h2><p>We asked for your help finding monk parakeets in the wild, and you didn&#39;t disappoint! <a name="voicemail"></a>Listen to voicemails from fellow Curious Citizens about where to spot the birds.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Fplaylists%2F9654393" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/tbobeda" rel="author">Tricia Bobeda</a> is a WBEZ web producer. Follow her <a href="https://twitter.com/triciabobeda">@triciabobeda</a>.</p></p> Thu, 29 Aug 2013 15:59:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/chicago-home-fit-wild-parrots-108565