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Emma Winowiecki

Online News Assistant

Emma is currently the online news assistant at Michigan Radio. In addition to covering news, she assists with The Environment Report and other programs. Emma is a recent graduate of the University of Michigan with a dual degree in Communication Studies and Screen Arts & Cultures, and plans to pursue radio and multimedia journalism in the future. When she's not at Michigan Radio, Emma can be found at various coffee shops around Ann Arbor.

The 2018 Honda Accord
honda.com

The big winners of the annual Detroit International Auto Show are here.

It was announced Monday morning that the Honda Accord was voted Car of the Year, the Volvo XC60 Utility of the Year, and the Lincoln Navigator Truck of the Year.

The winners were voted on by a panel of more than 60 jurors, who made their picks based on "segment leadership, innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar."

Snowshoeing in northern Michigan
Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

In case you hadn't noticed, it is very, very cold outside. In fact, the past two weeks in Michigan have seen temperatures lower than in Iceland, most of Alaska, and even some parts of Antarctica.

Cold weather isn’t exactly unusual in Michigan, but with low temperatures once again hitting the single (and negative) digits, I wanted to know: are these frigid winters the new normal?

Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

Sometimes, 2017 felt a bit overwhelming. Luckily, we found some stories that will brighten everyone’s year.

Here are some of the most popular uplifting stories from 2017:

Sleeping Bear Dunes
Rebecca Williams / Michigan Radio

Since Michigan is the Great Lakes State, it's no surprise that environmental reporting continues to be relevant year after year, and 2017 was no different.

Here are some of the biggest environmental stories from the year:

Mercedes Mejia / Michigan Radio

Problems within Michigan’s education system aren’t new. And many factors, including changes in funding and the expansion of charter schools, continue to influence the success of the state's schools.

In 2017, Michigan Radio continued to report on how those changes affect Michigan’s students:

Capitol Building in Lansing, MI
Matthileo / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Between President Trump's first year in office and several major policy battles in Congress, national politics garnered many, many headlines this year.

And while Lansing may have had a slow legislative year, that doesn't mean Michigan wasn't affected by the goings-on in D.C.

Here are the political stories followed throughout 2017:

satellite map of Michigan, the Great Lakes
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

This year, Michigan Radio's reporting took us all across the state investigating issues from sexual assault scandals, to the effects of gentrification, to fallout from the Flint water crisis.

Here are some of our most important Michigan stories of 2017: 

Santa House
Courtesy of the Charles W. Howard Santa Claus School

“He errs who thinks Santa enters through the chimney. Santa enters through the heart.”

So said the founder of the Charles W. Howard Santa School in Midland, Michigan.

Yes, you read that right. There is such a thing as Santa school, and the one in Michigan is the longest-running in the country. With students coming from as far as Australia and Denmark, it’s known as the “Harvard of Santa Schools.”

Judge's gavel
Pixabay.com

The Michigan Supreme Court says the state must return more than $550 million to school employees who had money deducted for retiree health care.

MSU President Lou Anna Simon
File photo / MSU

Michigan State University President Lou Anna Simon has apologized to survivors of sex assaults by sports doctor Larry Nassar.

Simon made the apology during a Michigan State Board of Trustees meeting Friday. The university faces complaints and lawsuits that claim they ignored warnings that Nassar was abusing girls and women who were his patients. Nassar has pleaded guilty to multiple counts of sexual assault.

April Van Buren / Michigan Radio

In May of 2016, residents of Albion voted to have their school district annexed by neighboring Marshall.

This week, Michigan Radio examined the impact the annexation has had on students, families, and the community in the three-part series, UN/DIVIDED.

In case you missed it, check out a summary of the series here:

Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

Tuesday marked the release of NPR's Book Concierge List, an annual book guide produced by NPR critics, reporters, and member stations.

To accompany that list, Michigan Radio has compiled a list of our book reviews from 2017. 

Check it out below!

Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) testifies at a hearing in 2009.
Rep. John Conyers office / Flickr

Representative John Conyers is leaving Congress.

Conyers, who has been battling sexual harassment allegations by former female staffers, said he is retiring. However, NPR’s Don Gonyea has confirmed with Conyers' attorney that he is leaving office effective today, making it a resignation.

Boy in classroom with his hand raised
Mercedes Mejia / Michigan Radio

A new analysis has found that Michigan's schools are extremely segregated.

Jennifer Chambers and Christine MacDonald with the Detroit News report that the Associated Press analyzed data from the National Center for Education Statistics enrollment data from the 2014-2015 school year.

Tony Brown / Michigan Radio

The demolition of the stadium was supposed to begin early Sunday morning with a series of explosions designed to bring it down. Curious onlookers and the media gathered with their cameras at the ready. The demolition crew detonated their charges, but the stadium refused to come down.

Congressman John Conyers
www.conyers.house.gov

U.S. Representative John Conyers has been hospitalized in Detroit for an unknown condition.

His office confirmed the news Thursday morning, but did not specify which hospital is treating the congressman. 

ClickOnDetroit spoke with political consultant Sam Riddle, who said Conyers' illness is stress-related:

Mackinac Bridge
Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Enbridge Energy will be required to take steps to safeguard the Great Lakes under a binding agreement with the state of Michigan.

Enbridge and Governor Snyder signed the agreement Monday, which stipulates that the energy company must act immediately to increase environmental protections around Line 5, the controversial pipeline that runs under the Straits of Mackinac.

Nassar in court.
Kate Wells / Michigan Radio

Dr. Larry Nassar, a former athletic doctor at Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics, pled guilty to seven counts of sexual assault in Ingham County court today (Wednesday). He faces at least 25 years in prison, but the judge could set the minimum to 40 years in prison. Sentencing is set for Jan. 12.

Over the summer Nassar also pled guilty to federal charges for possessing thousands of images of child pornography. More than 120 women and girls tell MSU police that Nassar sexually abused them under the guise of treatment.

Nassar was fired from MSU in September 2016. The university has hired attorneys to investigate who knew what about the allegations against Nassar. MSU says it has no plans to release that internal review. Meanwhile, lawsuits against Nassar and the university allege that MSU officials have been receiving reports of abuse since 1999.

Congressman John Conyers
www.conyers.house.gov

Update 5:12 p.m.: The leaders of the House Ethics Committee say the panel has begun an investigation into allegations of sexual harassment by Michigan Rep. John Conyers. A statement from Reps. Susan Brooks and Ted Deutch says the committee is aware of public allegations that Conyers may have engaged in sexual harassment of members of his staff and used official resources for impermissible personal purposes.

Original post: 

Another United States legislator has been accused of sexual harassment.

Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the past year, to reconnect with family and friends, and to express gratitude for the all that is good in our lives.

But more importantly, Thanksgiving is a time to eat.
With those priorities in mind, Michigan Radio has compiled a number of favorite recipes from our own family feasts. Below you’ll find everything from the classics, like cranberry sauce or pumpkin pie, to more specific family traditions, like Portuguese Sweet Bread or onion pie.

We hope you give some of our Turkey Day treats a try, and have a happy Thanksgiving!

inside of lead service line
Terese Olson / University of Michigan

Ever since the Flint water crisis, Michigan cities and citizens have started paying attention to lead in drinking water pipes and faucets and the potential dangers they pose.

You might have lead pipes, or fixtures that contain lead, in your home without even knowing. Many cities are only replacing the public side of lead service lines. So determining what's coming into, and what's inside your home is up to you.

Wikicommons

What is the best way to keep a soldier’s morale up? This was a serious question for government officials during World War II.

America’s soldiers were experiencing the most traumatic events of their lives, away from their families and surrounded by the horrors of war.

Officials concluded that perhaps the best way to keep soldiers happy was the power of music.

Every Michigander's morning is unique. A cherry farmer might be shaking trees at 6 a.m. Bus drivers and teachers are busy making sure students are in their seats on time. Some of us might just be sleeping in.

For Doug Tribou, mornings mean waking up at 3:20 a.m. to host Morning Edition on Michigan Radio.

Morning Edition is launching a new series, Mornings in Michigan, and we want to hear from you! What do your mornings look and sound like?

gun holster
Creative Commons

A set of bills passed the Michigan Senate Wednesday that would allow concealed weapons in gun-free zones such as schools, day cares, stadiums, and churches.

Senate Bills 584, 585, and 586 were passed along party lines – Marty Knollenberg was the only Republican to vote against the motion.

Vote Here sign
Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

Below are the election results for the races we're watching here at Michigan Radio.

Please go to your county's election page for more detailed results in your area.

Joan Larsen
University of Michigan Law School / screen grab from YouTube video

The United States Senate voted Wednesday to confirm Michigan Supreme Court Justice Joan Larsen to the Sixth U.S. Court of Appeals. 

Larsen was nominated to the lifetime position by President Donald Trump on May 8. Michigan Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters voted in favor of Larsen's appointment, making the final decision 60-38.

The Michigan Union covered in blooming ivy
Wikimedia Commons

White supremacist Richard Spencer submitted a request Friday to speak at the University of Michigan as part of an ongoing attempt to challenge the free speech policies of public universities.

healthcare.gov

For the last three years, millions of Americans have signed up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. This year, enrollment will be open from November 1 to December 15.

syringe
Partha S. Sahana / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

A Massachusetts pharmacist whose facility was responsible for tainted drugs that led to a 2012 nationwide meningitis outbreak that killed 76 people was cleared of murder Wednesday.

Glenn Chin was the supervisory pharmacist at the now-closed New England Compounding Center, which distributed mold-contaminated injections of medical steroids. Those drugs led to a fungal meningitis outbreak that affected more than 700 people in 20 states, including 264 Michiganders.

MOTOWN31 / FLICKR - HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

There’s a bill going through the state legislature right now that would require traditional public schools to share money raised by regional enhancement millages with charters.

Senate Bill 0574 was passed by the Senate last week after it was introduced by Representative David Hildenbrand, R-Lowell, in September.

The bill has caused a lot of controversy and complicated the ongoing debate about charter schools in Michigan.

So what would the bill change, and how would it affect schools?

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