Stateside Staff

We always like to say here on Stateside that we are eager to get your ideas for stories that we should tell and people we should profile.

So when we got an email from Charlie Todd and Barb Schmidt of Howell - proud grandparents - telling us about a very special teacher at Howell High School, and his very special students, we soon realized that this was a story we wanted to share with the rest of Michigan.

We hear lots about the victories of high school teams all over the state. Generally it has to do with football, basketball, soccer, hockey.

This victory is different. The competition is called "We The People."

Schools compete based on their students' knowledge of the U.S. Constitution.

And this year Howell High School came in first in the state in the "We The People Competition," which was a first for Howell High and for any high school on the east side of the State.

The three competing students, Jon Reck, Aaron Osborne, Jake Tholen, and their teacher Mark Oglesby joined us today. Oglesby won the Michigan Civic Education Teacher of the Year in 2011.

Today on the show, anyone writing tuition checks to a college or university will tell you it takes a big bite out of your checking account.

Senate Democrats in Lansing are now re-introducing their Michigan 2020 plan.

Under their plan, Michigan high school grads would receive grants allowing them to pay tuition at our state's public universities and community colleges.

They tried to get this Michigan 2020 plan off the ground last year, but it got a hearing and never advanced beyond that.

We talked with Senator Gretchen Whimer (D- East Lansing) about how the plan would work and where the money would come from.

Also, a new study released by the University of Michigan shows belief in global warming among Americans is going back up.

We ask why and how this change in public opinion will impact public policy.

And, we'll talk with singer/songwriter Khalid Hanifi about his new album and his first song that was translated into Pashto.

Gary Peters
Gary Peters / peters.house.gov

Cyndi talked with Michigan Congressman Gary Peters (D) today.

Peters is the new co-chair of the House Automotive Caucus along with Republican Congressman John Campbell (R-CA).

Peters talked about what it's like in a bi-partisan caucus and what it might mean for Michigan and the auto industry.

Click the audio above to hear the full interview.

On today's show, Michigan exports are on the rise. We'll find out what products are selling, and why.

And, it's a tale of two cities, of sorts. We'll talk to two Detroiters with different ideas about what an emergency manager would really mean for their city.

We start today's show with a Michigan congressman who was just named co-chair of the House Automotive Caucus.

Congressman Gary Peters (D - MI14) will co-chair the caucus with Congressman John Campbell (R-CA45) who, it should be noted, was once a car dealer.

Deciding where and how to spend money. It is a major part of the decisions made by top business executives.

There are 70 CEO's who have come together in West Michigan to set up a system of investment in human capital in their future employees.

They've named their effort "TALENT 2025," and they want to see 60 percent of the region's workforce achieve a post-secondary degree by 2025.

The President of TALENT 2025, Kevin Stotts, talked with Cyndy from Grand Rapids.

There’s an encouraging story to tell about Michigan companies. More companies are tapping into foreign markets, and that will have a duel result: they’re making money, and creating jobs.
 
Michigan was among 11 states that posted double-digit export growth last year. The Commerce Department reports that we were number eight when it came to exporting merchandise to foreign buyers.  It was at $56.9 billion in 2012.  That's up 12 percent from the year before.

Richard Curson is the director of the East Michigan US Export Assistance Center. He talked to us about the successes and challenges we face.

Click the audio above to hear the entire interview.

There are two ways you can podcast "Stateside with Cynthia Canty"

On today's show: We take up the topic of charter schools in Michigan, particularly the question: is there an academic difference in charter schools operated by for-profit companies versus charter schools run by non-profits. New research sheds some light.

And Michigan has the 11th-highest population of veterans in the nation, but the state is last when it comes to federal money spent per vet on all the services veterans are entitled to we'll find out what the plan is to address the issue.

But first we go to Detroit.  Mayor Dave Bing says tomorrow is the day when Governor Snyder announces whether there will be a state takeover of the city of Detroit. Mayor Bing says he spoke with Snyder today and would go no further than saying an announcement will come tomorrow.

It was just last week that a state-appointed financial review team delivered the news to Governor Snyder: Detroit is in a state of financial emergency, and the city’s current leaders "lack a plan" to deal with it.

Detroit news columnist Daniel Howes joined us to talk about Detroit's future.

Jennifer Guerra / Michigan Radio

In 2011, Governor Snyder signed a law to increase the number of charter school contracts around the state.

This bill allowed the state to have up 300 charter schools by the end of 2012.

And by the end of 2015, have unlimited caps.

When it comes to the topic of charter schools in Michigan, the question to be answered is whether there is an academic difference in charter schools operated by for-profit companies versus charters run by non-profits?

That question is the focus of a piece appearing in today's Bridge Magazine.

We spoke with Bridge writer Ron French and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Williams, from Public Sector Consultants.

They  gave us a rundown on charter schools in Michigan and how they compare with other states.

To hear the full story click the audio link above.

Zoe Clark / Michigan Radio

Last week, Governor Snyder  received the results of a state-appointed financial review of Detroit.

According to the review, Detroit is in a 'financial emergency' and that the city's current leaders "lack a plan."

This week, Michigan is waiting to see whether or not Gov. Snyder will appoint an emergency manager for the city. The Detroit City Council still seems unsure about how to respond to the review team's assessment. 

To discuss the options in front of Gov. Snyder and in front of the city, Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with Detroit News columnist Daniel Howes.

To hear the full interview, click on the listen link above.

http://developingchild.harvard.edu / Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University

March 16 is a big day for innovators, inventors and creators. That's the day that the United States will change it's patent system from the first-to-invent system of filing for a patent to the first-to-file system. 

For many companies and creative individuals, the pressure's on to take advantage of the current patent system before the big day.

But will the change hurt or help businesses and universities?

Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with two University of Michigan professors: Bryce Piltz, an assistant professor in the Entrepreneurship Clinic, and Max Shtein, a professor in the Entrepreneurship Master's Program and in Materials Science and Engineering

You can listen to the full interview above.

Senator Levin speaks with military member
Carl Levin

  The following is a summary of a previously recorded interview. To hear the complete segment, click the audio above.

There are 670,000 veterans in Michigan — the 11th highest population of veterans in the US.

However, Michigan comes in last place (after Guam) when it comes to the amount of federal money spent per veteran. The benefits and assistance exist, but why aren't they being used?

Jason Allen is the senior deputy director for veteran affairs for Michigan's Department of Military and Veteran Affairs. He pointed to three reasons that can be attributed to Michigan's low ranking.

Michigan Department of Enviromental Quality

For centuries the Great Lakes have engulfed thousands of ships and 2,000 of those ships have been found at the bottom of of our lakes.

The most famous of which is probably the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Tony Gramer, an award winning underwater photographer, knows of other famous ships that have been swallowed up by the Great Lakes. 

He's presenting the story behind one of those ships this weekend at the 32nd Great Lakes Shipwreck Festival. It's happening this weekend at Washtenaw Community College.

We spoke with Tony about what it is  like to dives in the Great Lakes and why people are so passionate about shipwreck discovery & exploration.

To hear the full story click the audio link above.

http://www.snre.umich.edu

The challenge of food insecurity is a fact of life for some 50 million Americans.

Researchers at the University of Michigan School of Natural Resources and Environment are taking part in a major study to probe the causes and solutions to food insecurity in Michigan.

In short, their research will look into how to link up the people who are not getting enough fresh healthy food, to the producers and the sources of that safe healthy food.

University of Michigan Professor Dorceta Taylor is one of the lead investigators. She is a professor of Environmental Justice at the School of Natural Resources and Environment and she was kind enough to tell us about the issue of food security.

To hear the full story click the audio link above.

Michael Gil / Flickr

Governor Snyder was crystal-clear in his State of the State address. Michigan’s roads are creaky, old and need to be fixed.

Just about everyone agrees with that. The big question is how to pay for those badly-needed repairs.

Governor Snyder wants to spend $1.2 billion each year for these road repairs. He’s proposed raising our gas tax and vehicle registration fees.

These proposals are not getting a lot of love, especially among Republicans who are not fans of anything that looks, smells, or sounds like a tax increase.

Which leads us to another idea afoot in Lansing. An idea that proposes that we can find the money from our existing budget, rather than increase revenue.

We welcomed the Capitol Correspondent at Crain’s Detroit Business Chris Gautz and Lansing reporter for the Detroit News Chad Livengood to discuss these ideas.

To hear the full story click the audio link above.

Today on Stateside, Governor Snyder is appointing a Justice to the state Supreme Court. That's after former Justice Diane Hathaway officially resigned last month after being indicted on bank fraud. We got the details on the appointment coming out of Lansing.

 And, in his State of the State address, Governor Snyder was crystal-clear: Michigan’s roads are creaky and old, and they need to be fixed. Just about everyone agrees with that. The big question is how to pay for those badly-needed repairs.
 The Governor wants  $1.2 billion each year for these road repairs. He’s proposed raising our gas tax and vehicle registration fees, but this isn’t getting a lot of love, especially among Republicans who are not fans of anything that looks, smells, or sounds like a tax increase.
 And finally, five-time national champions, silver medalists in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, 2011 world champions, and four-time Grand Prix Final champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White joined us in the studio today. It’s no exaggeration to say they helped to make Southeast Michigan the ice-dance capital of America.

http://www.macombcountymi.gov

Governor Snyder has appointed a new Justice to the state Supreme Court.

The appointment comes after former Justice Diane Hathaway resigned last month after being indicted for bank fraud.

For many Court watchers, Chief Judge of the Macomb County Circuit David Viviano is a surprise pick.

Rick Pluta,  Lansing Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network was at the announcement. He spoke with us to tell us more about Judge Viviano.

To hear the full story click the audio link above.

user: The Ohio State University / Flickr

In 2012, Grand Rapids saw an outburst of violent crime, including nine homicides in which all of the victims died from gunshot wounds.

This week, two community groups called Urban League and Network 180 are hosting a series of meetings to inform the public about possible solutions and to begin a discussion about the future of violence in the Grand Rapids community.

Raynard Ross is a resident of Grand Rapids and works with Upward Bound at Grand Rapids Community College. Ross also serves on a panel to address the issue of violence within the Grand Rapids community.

The interrupters

According to Ross, street violence has reached a level of “borderline madness.”

“There’s a lot of retaliatory violence,” Ross said. “[Grand Rapids] is relatively small, so the degree of separation with those involved is one or two degrees tops. We’ve found that a lot of this violence is occurring based on misunderstandings and things begin to snowball and escalate and next thing you know we have something that could have been squashed by some early interrupting.”

That’s where someone like Cobe Williams comes in.

Carlos Lowry / Flickr

The clouds have been lifting for  U.S. car makers.

With car sales and America's economy picking up, there are some who are looking further down the road.

They have been wondering  if deeper, bigger challenges lie ahead for the companies who put the world on wheels.

One of those wondering is automotive writer Micki Maynard. She recently published a couple of pieces in Forbes Magazine exploring what she calls "The Secret Fear of the World's Biggest Auto Companies".

Micki Maynard spoke with us to explain exactly what is the "Secret Fear" of the World's Biggest Auto Companies.

To hear the full story click the audio link above.

http://dugganfordetroit.com

He has been an assistant prosecutor, Wayne County Deputy Executive under Edward McNamara, and the CEO of the Detroit Medical Center.

Today, Mike Duggan is making his next move official. He wants to become Detroit's next Mayor.

With Duggan throwing his hat into the ring,  what is he going to bring to the table that other candidates do not?

And are black residents prepared to cast their vote for a white candidate?

1973 was the last year there was a white candidate in a Detroit Mayoral race. That's when John Nichols lost to Coleman Young.

Will Detroiters be ready to vote for Duggan? He recently moved to the city from Livonia.

We spoke with Detroit Free Press writer Rochelle Riley who gave us a closer look at Duggan's mayoral campaign.

To listen to the full interview click on the audio link above.

via US Postal Service

In 2005, the Daub and Firmin Sculpture Studio of California was commissioned to create a bronze statue of Rosa Parks.

Parks, who would have been 100 this month, will be the first life-sized representation that is approved and funded by Congress since 1873.

Her likeness will also be the first full-sized statue of an African-American woman in the National Statuary Hall. 

Seven years after the commission was placed, Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with one of her sculptors, Eugene Daub. 

You can listen to the full Stateside interview above.

U.S. Congress / congress.gov

Not many people have the opportunity to speak directly with legislators about priorities within the federal budget, but Detroit area resident Mary Kate Cartmill is going to get that opportunity this week.

Cartmill has been chosen to meet on Capitol Hill this week with legislators to discuss the impact federal spending cuts will have on the poorest and most at-risk people here at home.

Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with Cartmill about her upcoming experience.

You can listen to the full Stateside interview above.

State capitol
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

Over the weekend, both the Democratic and Republican parties held their conventions.

The 18-year run for Democratic Party Chairman Mark Brewer has come to an end. Brewer will be replaced by Lon Johnson, of Kalkaska.

On the other side of the aisle Republican Chairman Bobby Schostak was reelected.

Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with Rick Pluta, the Lansing Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network.

You can listen to the full Stateside interview above.

Kate Sumbler / Flickr

The Detroit Future City plan, released by Detroit Mayor David Bing's Detroit Works Project, offers both short term action and long term plans to rebuild the city.

The report, created over a two year period, intends to improve the quality of life and business in Detroit and also sets goals for the future.

What could cities facing similar situations learn from Detroit? And what has been done in cities outside of Michigan?

June Manning Thomas and Margaret Dewar are professors of urban and regional planning at the University of Michigan and are editors of the book "The City after Abandonment," a collection of essays from top urban planning experts.

Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with Thomas and Dewar about the next steps outlined in the plan for Detroit and what its future will hold.

You can listen to the full Stateside interview above.

Movement: Detroit Electronic Music Festival / Facebook

The second annual Orion Music + More Festival will take place on Detroit's Belle Isle on June 8 and 9.

The festival, created and headlined by the hard rock group Metallica, debuted in 2012 in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

The Festival lineup includes 30 acts on five stages, including groups like the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Bassnectar.

Gary Graff is the music writer for the Oakland Press and is a dedicated observer of the music scene in Detroit and in Michigan.

Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with Graff about Orion Music + More and the Festival's influence in Southeast Michigan.

You can listen to the full Stateside interview above.

Today on Stateside, Cyndi talks "sequestration." The word is on the tip of everyone's tongue in D.C.

We’ll get a break-down of how those across-the-board cuts could directly affect Michigan's economy.

We also look at the challenges around re-inventing abandoned and distressed neighborhoods.  Cyndy gets a perspective from two urban planning experts.

Also, it was a very busy weekend for the Michigan Democratic and Republican Parties.

Both held their conventions this weekend, and for one party, it means a brand-new state leader.

So Rick Pluta, the Lansing Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network, stopped by to help fill in the details.

www.DSO.org

The sounds of Beethoven have been ringing through Detroit's Orchestra Hall.
 
Starting tonight and running through the weekend, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra tops off its Beethoven Festival in magnificent style: with Beethoven's Symphony Number 9 in D-Minor.
 
These performances are the culmination of three weekends' worth of Beethoven.

Music Director Leonard Slatkin has been leading the DSO through all nine of Beethoven's Symphonies.

It's worth noting that it has been 36 years since the DSO served up all nine symphonies in one complete "serving", if you will.
 
Maestro Leonard Slatkin joined us to talk about Beethoven's 9th and what it takes to be a maestro.

You can listen to the full Stateside interview above.

user Explore the Bruce / Flickr

Frida Waara is an instructor in the upcoming Becoming an Outdoors Woman event this weekend in the Upper Peninsula's Big Bay, sponsored by the Department of Natural Resources.

The event will help women - even the most devoted Netflixers - develop skills that encourage and maintain an active lifestyle during a Michigan winter.

So, how does Waara get women to be active outdoors when the weather drops below zero?

Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with Waara about the program and the importance for women to be active year round.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The following is a summary of a previously recorded interview. To hear the complete segment, click the audio above.

The amount of international students from China who have enrolled  at Michigan State University is 385 times greater than it was a decade ago.

How does this impact instate students applying to schools like MSU and the University of Michigan? How big of a factor does out-of-state tuition play in an institution's decision to accept more non-Michigan or international students?

Michigan writer Ron French wondered, "is a student from China taking my kid's college slot?" His story appeared in today's issue of Bridge, from the Center for Michigan.

On today's show, as the Detroit Symphony Orchestra tops off its Beethoven Festival, we'll speak with the Orchestra's Music Director Maestro Leonard Slatkin. And, as temperatures continue to remain below freezing, we'll speak to the instructor of the "Becoming an Outdoor's Woman" event, being held this weekend in the Upper Peninsula.

But first on today's show, Governor Rick Snyder met with reporters in downtown Detroit today answering questions about the report he got from a state financial review team. Nobody was particularly surprised when, earlier this week, that review team announced Detroit is in a state of financial emergency and that its current leaders "lack a plan" to deal with it.

Even as Mayor Dave Bing protests that a host of roadblocks have kept his plan from being put into place, most Detroiters and Detroit-watchers are now resigned to the fact that it's likely a matter of when, not whether, Governor Snyder will appoint an emergency manager for the city.

Cyndy spoke with Karen Dumas. She is watching these developments with intense interest and insight. She grew up in Detroit has worked in Detroit. She is the former Chief of Communications for Mayor Dave Bing and the City of Detroit.

Photo courtesy of the Snyder administration

The following is a summary of a previously recorded interview. To hear the complete segment, click the audio above.

Governor Rick Snyder met with reporters in downtown Detroit on Thursday to discuss the report he received from a state financial review team earlier this week.

The report announced that Detroit is in a state of financial emergency and that the city's current leaders "lack a plan" to deal with it. Mayor Dave Bing's insisted that he did have a plan, but numerous obstacles made it difficult to put it in place.

Now, Detroit residents and those who have been following the crisis are merely waiting for Governor Snyder to appoint an emergency manager.

Karen Dumas, a native Detroiter, is the former Chief of Communications for Mayor Dave Bing and the City of Detroit. Dumas has worked at Detroit's City Hall over the past decade, and is closely following the process.

Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty spoke with Dumas about Detroit's state of financial emergency and the upcoming process the city will undergo.

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