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Sarah Edwards

From Prison To College: How A Formerly Incarcerated Student Overcame The Odds To Graduate

Like many people coming out of prison, Perry Cline never thought he’d get a college degree. “I thought I was just going to be another bum in the streets,” he said. “So I thank God that he got something else for me. And this is just the beginning.”

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Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault Website / Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault

State's Sexual Assault Crisis Centers Struggling During Gov't Shutdown

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Illinois Department of Corrections

Wrongly-Convicted Illinois Man Receives Rare Posthumous Pardon

Before leaving office, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner granted a pardon to a man wrongly convicted of attempted murder. What makes this clemency unique is that man, Grover Thompson, is now deceased.

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Illinois Supreme Court
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

The Illinois Supreme Court is considering whether sending a teenager to prison for 50 years is effectively a life sentence.

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Education Desk

Sarah Edwards

Like many people coming out of prison, Perry Cline never thought he’d get a college degree.


“I thought I was just going to be another bum in the streets,” he said. “So I thank God that he got something else for me. And this is just the beginning.”

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Health+Harvest Desk

VCU CNS / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

As suicide and opioid death numbers climb, researchers investigate how strong a connection exists.

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Illinois Economy

Sam Dunklau / NPR Illinois

The need for new or repaired roads, bridges, buildings and other infrastructure in Illinois continues to outpace the amount of funding available to complete the projects. With a new governor and legislative session starting in January, discussions have already started with an aim to change that.

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The Women's March On Washington is this Saturday Jan. 19, 2019. Since its founding two-years ago, hundreds of thousands of people have come to the nation's Capital to demand social change on behalf of diverse women and their communities.

This year, the movement has fractured under accusations of anti-Semitism, lack of financial transparency and infighting.

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Arts & Life

Fighting doesn't have to be about survival. It doesn't even have to be about pride.

At least, this is what Josh Rosenblatt contends in Why We Fight: One Man's Search for Meaning Inside the Ring. He intends to impress that to fight is to know who you are in a very immediate sense. Fighting, as he sees it, is the pursuit of active self-knowledge through self-endangerment, pain and risk. It's about facing and embracing what is dangerous and, in a way, making it beautiful.

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Scientists Find Brain Cells That Make Pain Hurt

1 hour ago

Pain is a complicated experience. Our skin and muscles sense it, just like they sense softness or warmth. But unlike other sensations, the experience of pain is distinctly unpleasant.

Pain has to hurt for us to pay attention to it, and avoid hurting ourselves further.

But for people in chronic pain, the pain has largely lost its purpose. It just hurts.

While it has long been understood how nerves signal pain to the brain, scientists haven't known how the brain adds a layer of unpleasantness.

William Barr, President Trump’s nominee for attorney general, told lawmakers at his confirmation hearing this week that he would consider jailing journalists only as “a last resort.” The comments come amid Trump’s continued denigration of media. Here & Now‘s Robin Young talks with NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik (@davidfolkenflik).

Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson discusses high-profile freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (D-N.Y.) first weeks in Congress, and her seat on the powerful House Financial Services Committee, with Politico Congress reporter Rachael Bade (@rachaelmbade).

Former Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke was convicted of second-degree murder last year for the 2014 killing of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald. On Thursday, a judge will decide whether three other current and former officers are guilty or innocent of covering up for him. Here & Now‘s Robin Young talks with WBEZ’s Shannon Heffernan (@shannon_h).

The Trump administration is forcing thousands of federal workers to return to work without pay as the government shutdown enters its 27th day. The administration is calling back some workers at the IRS, the Farm Service Agency and the Department of the Interior in an attempt to ease the pain of the shutdown on some of the president’s constituents.

Saturn is famous for its lovely rings, but a new study suggests the planet has spent most of its 4.5 billion years without them.

That's because the rings are likely only 10 million to 100 million years old, according to a newly published report in the journal Science that's based on findings from NASA's Cassini probe.

Journalist Jon Ward talks about the chaos that led Kennedy to challenge Carter for the Democratic nomination — and the long-lasting damage it did to the party. Ward's new book is Camelot's End.

Copyright 2019 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

After years of living and changing in the public eye, it should come as no surprise that DAWN (f.k.a. D∆WN and Dawn Richard) is a survivor. The multi-hyphenated talent has been through the girl-group music machine and label politics to emerge with her artistic freedom intact. From New Orleans, she's a music-industry outlier who confidently occupies — and constantly redefines — her own lane. She's incomparable.

For nearly a year before family separation became an official and controversial policy of the Trump administration in the spring of 2018, federal immigration agents separated "thousands" of migrant children from their parents. That's according to a government watchdog report released Thursday.


Community Voices - Past This I Believe Essays

Gabe Knott at the microphone
Dan LaGrasso / NPR Illinois

This I Believe: Gay Forever, Hell For Never

You’re going to hell. Yes, you, the young male wearing the loud shirt, scarf, and skinny jeans. Yes, you, the student tutor with a 3.8 GPA, who aspires to have a family, who has goals for your life and a career in mind and who was baptized in a Southern Baptist church; none of that matters when the TRUTH is that you aren’t natural and neither are your actions.

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This I Believe: A Universal Language

Social Action - Thanks for Sharing!

22 Years In Solitary Confinement: Looking At The Life Of Former Inmate Anthony Gay

Anthony Gay went to prison in Illinois in 1994 for stealing a dollar bill and a hat. Behavior problems added to his sentence, and by the time he was released in August, he had served 24 years in prison — 22 of which were spent in solitary confinement inside a cell smaller than the size of a parking space, according to Gay. On many occasions, I would be isolated on a wing by myself in a cold, freezing cell, strapped down in six-point restraints, he said. I would be punished for cutting on...

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Analysis & commentary on the events that made news this past week in Illinois state government & politics.

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Jilmar Ramos-Gomez served in the Marines and saw combat in Afghanistan. Born in Grand Rapids, Mich., he is a U.S. citizen.

But last month, federal immigration authorities took him into custody to face possible deportation.

Attorneys and immigration advocates in West Michigan are now demanding to know why, and how, that happened.

President Trump's former personal attorney Michael Cohen acknowledged on Thursday that he schemed to rig online polls that sought to make Trump seem like a more plausible presidential candidate.

The story was first reported by The Wall Street Journal. In a tweet following the report, Cohen said he sought to help Trump's political aspirations, having been directed by the candidate.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit

Three Chicago cops were found not guilty of attempting to cover up the fatal police shooting of Laquan McDonald.

Handing down her decision Thursday afternoon, Cook County Judge Domenica Stephenson attacked the prosecution's case, including its heavy reliance on police reports and an infamous dashcam recording that showed convicted Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke shoot 17-year-old McDonald 16 times on Oct. 20, 2014.


The X from NPR Illinois | 91.9-3 HD

Tiny Desk Sketches: An Illustrator's Year In The Front Row

As an illustrator at NPR, my work includes creating editorial illustrations for news stories, photo illustrations for the NPR Music team, looping animations for smart displays, and the occasional journalistic drawing foray out in Washington, D.C. Few things make me say, "I can't believe this is part of my real job" quite like sketching Tiny Desk concerts as they happen. I usually try to get to the desk during sound check to give myself a little extra time. Even so, it's a mad rush to get a...

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NPR Illinois Classic | 91.9-2 HD

For Opera Singers, Life After Retirement — At Least At One Very Special Rest Home

Opera star Renée Fleming drew concern last year after a New York Times profile suggested the acclaimed soprano would be retiring. Luckily for fans, it turned out to be a false alarm. But if Fleming does ever start to ponder retirement, she might consider a move to Milan — where she'd likely be welcomed with open arms at Casa Verdi, a retirement home for opera singers and musicians founded by the famed Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi more than 100 years ago. Soprano Lina Vasta spent her career...

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