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Kathleen Davis

Newsroom Intern

Kathleen Davis is a Newsroom Intern and 2017 graduate of the University of Michigan. She previously worked at the Michigan Daily for four years, where she wrote about art and culture and was the 2015 Managing Arts Editor.

Kathleen is from Birmingham, Michigan, a northern suburb of Detroit. Growing up in a bilingual household, she quickly developed a sense for the power of words. The three loves of Kathleen's life are coffee, dogs, and oxford commas, the latter of which she was forbidden to use at her previous place of employment.

Highlights of Kathleen’s relatively short journalistic career include interviews with Miami design icon Craig Robins, drag superstar Bianca Del Rio, and founder of the Kronos Quartet David Harrington.

legionella bacteria
Wikipedia Commons / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

New data suggest people who have tested negative for Legionnaires' disease may actually have been infected and not known it.

That's according to research by University of Michigan professor Michele Swanson.

Swanson's research shows only one type of Legionella, "serotype 1," shows up positive on the traditional Legionnaires' disease diagnostic test. 

Peter Heshey / Unsplash

The United Nations created World Refugee Day in 2000 as a way to recognize the struggles refugees face in their journeys to safety. 

Michigan is no stranger to welcoming refugees. In fact, the state took in the fourth highest number of refugees in the United States last year, with over 4000 people resettled in the state.

Credit Wikimedia Commons

Some students at the University of Michigan could qualify for free tuition starting next January. That's because of a new program called the "Go Blue Guarantee."

The University's regents passed the program at a board meeting today.

In-state students whose families make less than $65,000 a year will qualify for the incentive. The University says the move is part of an effort to be more accessible to low-income students.

a peregrine falcon on a branch
Becky Matsubara / Flickr

Peregrine falcons are making a comeback in southeastern Michigan, according to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

The birds became endangered in the mid-20th century because of pesticides like DDT. But now, the population has grown from near extinction to 15 nesting pairs in southeast Michigan alone.

Brian Hart / Flickr

The 2017 Kids Count Data Book reveals that Michigan lags behind in nearly every aspect of child well-being. The report lists Michigan at 32nd among states for overall child well-being.

The report looks at health, education, economic well-being and family and community as part of a national effort to improve conditions for children and their families.

Ryan Hallock / Creative Commons

Lake Erie's water levels have risen to a near record high, causing flood concern. Some residents with lakefront properties say they've lost patios and staircases due to the rising water.

Jennifer Caddick is a spokesperson for the Alliance for the Great Lakes. She says the rising levels are part of a natural cycle.

"Water levels vary from month to month, and also over decades, and so we go through periods of high water levels and low water levels," Caddick said. "That's just a natural part of the Great Lakes cycle."

The B's / Creative Commons http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

U.S. Representatives Debbie Dingell and John Conyers joined other members of Congress today to speak out against anti-Sharia law marches planned across the country this weekend -- including two marches in Michigan.

Ken Lund / Flickr

Two former Michigan State University football players were arraigned today on charges related to a sexual assault in January. Donnie Corley and Josh King are charged with forcing a woman to perform sexual acts on them during an on-campus party in January.

A third defendant, Demetric Vance, was arraigned yesterday.

Images Money on Flickr / Creative Commons

New data from a nonpartisan think tank says Michigan would hit a financial stumbling block if the Republican replacement for the Affordable Care Act passes.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities says the new health care bill would cost Michigan more than $582 million to maintain expansion in the next four years, and more than $1 billion by 2023. 

Michael Vadon / Creative Commons

Story updated June 9 at 2:07 p.m.

In the wake of President Trump leaving the Paris Climate Agreement, several dozen mayors across the U.S. have created a coalition to uphold the goals of the accord in their own cities. Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, and Traverse City represent Michigan on the list.

Courtesy of the University of Chicago

For the first time in history, NASA has named a spacecraft after a living individual. The Solar Probe Plus has been renamed to the Parker Solar Probe in honor of accomplished astrophysicist Eugene Parker. 

Cadillac CTS
Yahna S. / Flickr / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

General Motors has partnered with the Michigan Department of Transportation to create usable vehicle-to-infrastructure technology. This technology detects potential traffic hazards and advises drivers on how to safely proceed. 

For now, it's exclusive to certain developmental models of the Cadillac CTS. Some Cadillac vehicles already utilize a form of this technology which suggests maneuvers like lane changes to drivers. 

General Motors spokesperson Chris Bonelli says the new infrastructure technology will not be intrusive for the driver. 

Morning theft on Flickr / Creative Commons

A new program from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources will allow campers to bring their dogs and cats to some Michigan state parks. The pilot project will launch on November 1st and last for one year.

DNR resource specialist Maia Turek says lots of people like to vacation with their pets.

Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Senators Gary Peters and Debbie Stabenow announced Wednesday they will introduce a package of bills aimed at making oil pipelines safer for the Great Lakes.

Peters says the bills will address the unique needs of the Great Lakes.

"Senator Stabenow and I are very concerned about this threat, and we're teaming up to create a package of legislation to hold Great Lakes pipeline operators to the highest standard possible," Peters said.

Eric Norris / Flickr

The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD) has partnered with the DivDat Kiosk Network to make water bill payments more convenient. 

More than 15 percent of Detroit homes have their water shut off due to late or unpaid bills. 

DWSD conducted a soft-lauch in March to assess people's attitudes toward the kiosks.  

NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory / Creative Commons

Sea lampreys have devastated Michigan waters for decades. But now, scientists hope that sterilizing some males will help control the population.

Marc Gaden is with the Great Lakes Fishery Commission.

"The goal is to overwhelm the lampreys, to have the sterilized males out-compete the fertile males, and reduce spawning in that system to the bare minimum," Gaden said.

According to scientists, the invasive species has the ability to wipe out native life.

Courtesy of Lena Epstein

Inspired by Donald Trump's presidential win in Michigan, Lena Epstein is hoping to beat Democrat Debbie Stabenow in the 2018 election for U.S. Senate.

Epstein, who is a co-owner of her family's business Vesco Oil Corporation, was also a co-chairperson of Trump's campaign in Michigan.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Tensions among Republican lawmakers are rising over the new state budget.

Some Republican leaders are trying to change teacher pensions to a 401(k)-style plan for new hires. But critics, including Gov. Snyder, say the change would create an unnecessary financial burden for the state. And teachers say the change would be the latest blow to a profession that's already struggling to attract young people.

Flint water plant manager Jolisa McDay in red sweater in front of microphones
steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The city of Flint's top water plant manager has resigned, according to MLive.

Jolisa McDay will remain on staff until June 30, a little more than a year after she was hired as the city's water plant supervisor.

User: Nic Redhead / Flickr

A Michigan activist group is telling immigrants not to attend regular check-ins with immigration officials. That's because some undocumented immigrants are being detained for deportation at these check-ins.

But immigration attorneys say this is bad, and potentially dangerous, advice.

An email sent from the group By Any Means Necessary earlier this week said, "WARNING: BEWARE OF 'SILENT' DEPORTATIONS--DO NOT GO TO 'CHECK IN' WITH I.C.E." 

U.S. Department of Agriculture / Creative Commons

A new federal bill up for a vote in Congress Thursday could hurt efforts to protect the Great Lakes from invasive species.

An amendment to a Coast Guard bill would loosen regulations against ballast water discharges by cargo ships. Experts say this is one way that invasive species enter new environments.

Marc Smith is Regional Conservation Director for the National Wildlife Federation. He says the harm from invasive species is well known.

University of Michigan campus
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

A Michigan city has been ranked number one in the country for clean energy innovation. Washington D.C.'s Brookings Institution, a public policy think tank, says Ann Arbor has the most clean energy patents per million people.

Mark Muro is a policy director for the Brookings Institution, and a co-author of the report.

"I think it's very clear that Ann Arbor has a pretty well developed clean energy economy," Muro said.

Ben Sutherland / Creative Commons

Northern Michigan University will debut a forensic anthropology major in the fall. Included in the curriculum will be hands-on experience in the world's first cold-weather "body farm".

A body farm is a research facility where decomposition of the human body in various environments is studied. There are currently eight in the world, but all are in moderate to warm climates. Relatively little is known about how a human body decomposes in cold weather.

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

A new plan could help support Washtenaw County's undocumented residents.

The plan would give undocumented immigrants the same county-wide benefits as citizens.  Washtenaw County officials voted Wednesday to give initial approval to the plan.

Commissioner Conan Smith was a primary supporter of the plan.

"It's essential for our economy and our social fabric that we express how welcome they are as members of our community," Smith said.

He says this plan is especially important in light of national policies against undocumented immigrants.

DLG Images / Creative Commons

Budget talks in the House and Senate may close Michigan's pension program for new teachers.

Supporters say this would help ease Michigan's growing debt. But others say pension cuts would hurt a profession that's already struggling.

David Crim is with the Michigan Education Association.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement - or ICE - agents
U.S. Air Force / Creative Commons

An Ann Arbor man who was scheduled to be deported  has been granted a temporary delay.

Jose Luis Sanchez-Ronquillo has lived in Ann Arbor for nearly 20 years with his wife and two children. His lawyer says he's never had a criminal record.

He was detained last month during a routine check-in with Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, and sent to Louisiana to be deported. 

Supporters of the family rallied in front of ICE offices in Detroit and an Ann Arbor elementary school Sanchez-Ronquillo's son attends. 

Netflix mailer.
user rachellynnae© / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

The new Netflix show "13 Reasons Why" is causing lots of controversy in schools. That's because it graphically deals with themes like suicide and sexual assault. It's also marketed to a teen audience.

Muskegon Intermediate School District is the latest in the country to send home a warning about the show. The district sent a letter to parents and guardians last week.

Stephanie Koenig is a social worker at Michigan Medicine who has worked substantially with adolescent psychiatry. 

401(K) 2012 / Creative Commons

A new report from a Michigan nonprofit says the state's households are still struggling financially. 

Michigan's unemployment rate is currently at 5%.  However, 75% of Michiganders face stagnant or declining incomes.

Lou Glazer is President of Michigan First, the nonprofit that released the report.

"It's pretty clear that you can have a low unemployment rate and still have a lot of people struggling. In a growing economy, the same thing is true," Glazer said.

An electric car at a charging station
Wikimedia Commons

A lack of public charging stations is hurting the growth of electric cars in Michigan, according to some clean energy advocates.

Consumers Energy recently pulled the plug on a plan to set up hundreds of charging stations around Michigan. This was in response to pushback from competitors and consumers who don't want to pay for the system.

Kathleen Davis / Michigan Radio

Part-time lecturers at Eastern Michigan University held a protest in front of the university president's office today, asking for better pay and benefits.

Almost 50% of EMU's teaching staff are part-time. Many of these instructors make less than $15,000 a year, and lack critical benefits like paid medical leave and job security.

Adena Rottenstein is a lecturer and member of the Part Time Lecturers Union. 

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