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State of Opportunity

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hmm360/morguefile

Every year, thousands of the state's best and brightest collect diplomas from Michigan colleges and universities and then leave for Chicago, New York and other cities. However, two lawmakers think tax credits could help keep the brain drain at bay.

Historically, missions executed by NASA (and others) were on a grand scale – massive spacecraft built with massive budgets and a massive labor force, but in the past decade, an education and industrial focus has emerged on sending nano-satellites, known as CubeSats, into orbit (so named for their cubical shape).

Jewelry For A Cause

Jewelry buyers from around the country can help get illegal weapons off the streets of Detroit.

A company called Jewelry For A Cause has recently launched the Detroit Caliber Collection. The 13-item collection joins similar collections for Newark, San Francisco and Hartford.

Sarah Hulett / Michigan Radio

The Coalition for the Future of Detroit Schoolchildren is pushing hard to publish a set of recommendations for improving Detroit schools by the end of March.

The group is gathering feedback from community and key leaders over a 90-day period to find solutions for a district hit hard by a dwindling population, and a fractured school landscape.

U.S Embassy Manila, Phillipines / flickr

More than 21,000 4 year olds have been enrolled in free preschool in Michigan over the past two years, according to Ron French at Bridge Magazine. It's the result of the biggest pre-school expansion in the nation

In 2012, a Bridge investigation found that about 30,000 pre-school aged kids that qualified for free preschool were not attending due to lack of funding, logistical issues or lack of transportation services. 

Paul Engstrom / Skillman Foundation

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan is asking Detroit area businesses to offer at least 5,000 summer jobs in 2015 to Detroit teens and young adults.

He addressed more than 100 business leaders yesterday at the Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce.  

"For every dollar a business puts in to employ a young person, the mayor will match," said Kristen McDonald of the Skillman Foundation, one of the sponsors of the newly re-launched Grow Detroit's Young Talent program.

Paige Pfleger / Michigan Radio

People will be hitting the streets Wednesday to count the number of homeless individuals in Washtenaw County. 

The count is a part of the Point in Time census that is conducted every other year and documents the sheltered and unsheltered homeless people in the area. 

This year's count is especially important, because the county only has one year to end veteran homelessness to meet it's goal as a part of the national Zero:2016 Campaign. 

Alex Ragone / Flickr Creative Commons

Starting a week from today, if you need emergency help in Oakland County, you'll be able to text 911 – as well as call it.

"The sheriff's office in Oakland County just wants to use the latest technology available to identify callers in need," said Mel Maier, chief of  emergency management operations for the Sheriff's Office.

Director Clover Adams and Deputy Commissioner Xia Qianbao of the Ocean & Fisheries Bureau from the Jiangsu Province signing a Memorandum of Understanding.
Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Officials from Michigan and China plan to work together on developing advancements in fisheries and aquaculture.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development last week in Lansing hosted a delegation from the province of Jiangsu.

A classroom of students hard at work at MHacks.
Ari Sandberg

As a self-proclaimed geek with a passion for engineering, I have known my fair share of programmers. Whenever one of them tells me with a devilish gleam in their eye that they've been dabbling with hacking, I jump to the conclusion (often correctly) that they're up to no good.

So when I heard a “Hack-a-thon” was descending on the University of Michigan campus over Martin Luther King weekend, I immediately had a vision of my old robotics teammates: disheveled, manically excited, awake only by the grace of Mountain Dew, trying to break into the secrets of the free world. 

Thetoad / Flickr

State Rep. Peter Lucido, R-Shelby Twp.,  plans to introduce a bill next week requiring high school graduates to pass the same citizenship test immigrants take. Students would need to score 60% or higher on the test to receive their diplomas. Lucido says that he hopes the exam will encourage participation and increase voter turnout for elections. If passed, the law would be in effect for the 2016-17 school year.

user: Alden Jewell / Flickr

With the North American International Auto Show under way in Detroit, we thought we'd dig up some archival photos of what the auto show used to look like for throw back Thursday. Click on the photo above to see more images of past Detroit Auto Shows. 

User: Sean_Marshall / Flickr

Developers say they will turn the Wurlitzer building and the Professional Plaza building into a hotel and apartment complex, respectively. 

Detroit's historic Wurlitzer building was deemed one of the city's 'most dangerous structures' because it's been raining bricks onto neighboring buildings, such as 1515 Broadway Cafe. Comically, the cafe responded with a sign that reads 'Free coffee with purchase of Wurlitzer Building'. 

Morguefile

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development is asking lawmakers to boost inspection fees for its food safety program over the next three years.

"Our ability to spend the quality time needed with Michigan's food businesses is hindered without an additional investment in food safety," said Jennifer Holton, spokesperson for the department. "And that's what we're asking for."

Holton said the fees have not changed in 15 years, while the department needs more inspectors to keep up with changes in the food industry.

University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital

The cost of school sports is keeping many kids off the field, according to the latest poll by the University of Michigan Mott Children's Hospital. 

The poll asked parents of children 12-17 years old across the nation how they felt about participation fees for sports. 

user: John Hardwick / Flickr Creative Commons

For the last week, a bus that stops in southwest Detroit has been stopped by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The riders are asked for identification, and those that cannot produce the proper paperwork are detained. 

Michigan United, a civil rights group, is calling these actions by CBP intimidation, harassment, and even racial profiling. 

Timo Newton-Syms / Wikimedia Commons

You might have heard of the seat belt campaign "Click It or Ticket." Well, there is a similar safety campaign for snowmobilers, according to an announcement by the Michigan State Police.

Four state and local law enforcement agencies took part in a snowmobile operation this weekend in the eastern half of  Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

"We're enforcing excessive speed, alcohol consumption of course, and failure to follow the rules of the road," said Kevin Dowling of the Michigan State Police.

Amazon.com is one of the online retailers which will be regulated by the newly-passed Main Street Fairness legislation.
User soumit / flickr.com

Michigan residents who buy from Amazon.com and other online stores will be forced to pay the state's 6 percent sales tax starting October 1 of this year.

Gov. Rick Snyder signed the so-called "Main Street Fairness" legislation (Public Acts 553 and 554 of 2014) into law this Thursday. It will require Internet retailers with a "physical presence" in Michigan to collect and remit sales tax on Michigan purchases. Internet retailers subject to this law include Amazon, Overstock.com and eBay, among others.

Asian carp
KATE.GARDNER / flickr.com

A federal report says genetic markers of Asian carp are still showing up in Chicago-area waterways, which environmentalists say highlights the continuing threat that invasive fish will reach the Great Lakes. 

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has released its findings from 240 water samples it collected during the week of October 20, 2014. Twenty-three of these samples tested positive for DNA from silver carp, one of several Asian carp species that currently infest many Midwestern rivers.

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

The Michigan Department of Human Services will lose 270 jobs this year, including about 100 layoffs.

The job reduction is the result of the $7.5 million budget cut approved by lawmakers last June.

That's according to Bob Wheaton, DHS spokesman, who said staff will receive layoff notices by tomorrow. The effective date of the layoffs is expected to be February 15.

Ann Rosene / Library of Congress

The Atlantic aggregated photos of what Detroit looked like in the 1940s.

Click on the image above to view some of the images shared from the Library of Congress. 

In their article, the Atlantic explained why the 1940s was such a vital time in Detroit's history. 

Hello Aerial / YouTube

The team at Hello Aerial, a drone cinematography group based out of Detroit, explored the images of Detroit's historical churches from a very different angle: the sky. 

The video, below, shows the Sweetest Heart of Mary Catholic Church and the St. Joseph's Catholic Church from the air. They even flew the drone inside the church to get a closer look at some historic detailing. 

Hyatt Guns

Governor Rick Snyder needs to decide soon whether to sign a bill that would allow some people with restraining orders against them to still get concealed gun permits in Michigan.  

Senate Bill  789 would allow some people restricted by personal protection orders to get permits, which is prohibited  under current law.

Paige Pfleger / Michigan Radio

Click on the image above to see some of the concept cars on display at this year's auto show.

- Paige Pfleger, Michigan Radio Newsroom

Morguefile

The federal early education program Head Start could help children fight obesity, according to a new study published today in the online journal Pediatrics.

Julie Lumeng, associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Michigan and the study's lead author, sampled almost 44,000 Michigan children.

"Over the course of their time in Head Start, if they started the year obese, they become slimmer," said Lumeng.  And the Head Start kids who were obese or overweight were more likely to slim down by the end of the school year than pre-schoolers in the two comparison groups.  

from video posted by Opportunity Detroit
screen grab from YouTube

The “MHacks” hackathon will be hosted this weekend at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor (Jan 16-18).

According to the University of Michigan Engineering Department, the event is the largest student-run hackathon in the country. In 2014, the school says MHacks attracted over 1,200 college and high school students from 100 schools.

Hyatt Guns

A bill that gun-rights advocates say will streamline the process of receiving a concealed-weapons permit also contains a measure that other advocates - for domestic violence victims and women's rights - say could put many Michiganders in danger.

Lake Michigan, one of the Great Lakes subject to clean-up by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.
User airbutchie / flickr.com

A proposal to continue a wide-ranging Great Lakes cleanup program has been resurrected in Congress after falling short last month.

Rep. David Joyce, R-OH, introduced the bill Thursday. It would extend the soon-to-expire Great Lakes Restoration Initiative for another five years and authorize spending $300 million annually.

Shannan Muskopf / Flickr Creative Commons

Michigan's plan to switch its 11th grade standardized test from the ACT to the SAT in 2016 is too much change too fast, according to some educators.

Wendy  Zdeb-Roper, executive director of the Michigan Association of Secondary School Principals, said many of the state's high school principals were caught off guard by yesterday's announcement by the Michigan Department of Education.

Part of the Diego Rivera mural in the DIA. Foundations pulled together to help save the art in the museum.
Joseph Gallegos / Flickr

  

Graham Beal will retire from his position as the director of the Detroit Institute of Arts at the end of July. 

His 16-year tenure saw the museum through the financial crash in 2008 and the city's bankruptcy. 

"We did indeed get tremendous support," Beal said, "but none of that would have happened had we not been a thriving institution that had positioned itself as being for the people."

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