Jenna Dooley

WNIJ All Things Considered Host

Jenna Dooley has spent her professional career in public radio. She is a graduate of Northern Illinois University and the Public Affairs Reporting Program at the University of Illinois - Springfield. She returned to Northern Public Radio in DeKalb after several years hosting Morning Edition at WUIS-FM in Springfield.  She is a former "Newsfinder of the Year" from the Illinois Associated Press and recipient of NIU's Donald R. Grubb Journalism Alumni Award. She is not afraid to brag at parties that she has met Carl Kasell, Ira Glass, and Garrison Keillor (and has pictures to prove it!) She is an active member of the Illinois News Broadcasters Association and an adjunct instructor at NIU.

Austin Hansen

For the first time in the school's history, first-year medical students will live and learn in Rockford.

The first class to arrive on campus in 1972 came to the city as second-year students, completing their initial training at the University of Illinois College of Medicine campus in Urbana.

Alex Stagnaro-Green is the regional dean for the college. He says students will now be able to complete all four years of medical school in Rockford.

Jenna Dooley

A group of volunteers is trying to clean up one of Illinois’s busiest tourist spots.

Six-year-old Leo Mancuso of Oswego enjoys Starved Rock State Park the same ways many visitors do -- jumping across small streams and gazing up at monstrous rocks. But there’s another side to the popular tourist spot: trash.

“I found a water bottle, a big one,” he explained.

It’s no surprise to his mother, Becky Mancuso, who brought along a large trash bag for this hike.

Jenna Dooley

Dozens of residents recently toured the Islamic Center of DeKalb. It was part of an effort to answer questions directly about the world's second-largest religion.

This was the first visit for some within DeKalb’s Beloved Community. The group is open to people of different beliefs and backgrounds. They meet monthly at different locations to discuss a variety of topics facing residents of the DeKalb area.

Michelle Goodenough heard about the tour in her home church’s Sunday bulletin.

Jenna Dooley

On today’s Friday Forum, we talk with two northern Illinois superintendents about their goals for the coming year. We’ll also hear how they feel about the uncertainty in school funding from the state of Illinois.

Freeport Superintendent Mike Schiffman's goal for the new year is to better align his district's schools, both in philosophy and curriculum. He's hoping to accomplish this through increased contact with students and parents.

NIU Lee Schreiner collection

Lee Schreiner of Rockford doesn’t play the piano or sing. He’s a physics teacher with multiple degrees from Northern Illinois University. But his hobby of collecting wartime sheet music has grown over the years.

“I thought maybe I could collect like a hundred sheets," he admits. "Then it was a thousand. Then it was five thousand. It’s amazing and almost unexplored territory because people had not done a lot of research on World War I. I'm trying to understand the history through the music.”

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