High end restaurants serve vegetables grown at Cook County jail

Program Coordinator Tina Bentley at Cook County Jail Garden

By Cloee Cooper Surrounded by thick concrete walls and barbed wire fences lies the Cook County Sheriff’s Urban Farming Initiative, a place where jail inmates grow vegetables and herbs which eventually make their way to Chicago’s trendy restaurants and farmers’ markets. The program has operated with inmate labor since 1994. Spanning 130,000 square feet, and […]

A climate change for ‘glaciogenic’ art

Tigers are an endangered species due to humans' negative impact on ecosystems.

By Lakshmi Chandrasekaran Glaciers and  forests show jagged retreats in Jill Pelto’s paintings while the sky above heats up. Pelto, a graduate student studying climate science at the University of Maine, uses her art to convey the impacts of climate change on world environments. She overlays climate change research data with striking colors and vivid […]

A vote of faith: Converting Latinos to registered voters

Members of the Society of Toribio Romo receive a blessing at St. Agnes of Bohemia.

By Alex Ortiz Just before the end of 1:30 p.m. mass at St. Agnes of Bohemia in Little Village Sunday, the congregation participated in a blessing for the Society of St. Toribio Romo, named for the patron saint of immigrants. The group is on a mission —  not to convert others to the faith — […]

Chicago activists protest police militarization

By Shahzeb Ahmed A group of Chicago area Muslim and civil rights groups are protesting a police training session supported by a major arms manufacturer that includes a speaker criticized for his anti-Muslim rhetoric. The groups are protesting what they term as an attempt to advance  a hyper-militarized mindset among law enforcers through the four-day […]

Down to the wire: Chicago teachers strike narrowly avoided with tentative agreement

By Emily Olsen and Meredith Francis Minutes before the midnight deadline, the Chicago Teachers Union and school board reached a tentative agreement to avoid a strike that would have sent some 20,000 teachers to picket lines. “It wasn’t easy,” CTU President Karen Lewis told reporters at 11:55 p.m. Monday. “Clearly, there are some issues, and […]

Green chemistry: preventive healthcare for the environment

By Mariah Quintanilla We all know that bagel coated with sesame, poppy, onion, garlic, caraway and salt. Chemical engineer Nick Thornburg considers an ‘everything’ bagel a reasonable metaphor for an inefficient catalyst, or a compound that speeds up a chemical reaction. For those of us non-chemists, a longer explanation is required. The point of his […]

Sarah “Squirm” Sherman goes all out “sliming” stand-up comedy

Sarah Sherman Helltrap Nightmare

By Lauren Ball The crowd erupted into unabashed roars of laughter as I made my way into the darkened back room of Chicago’s Hideout Inn on an otherwise mundane Thursday evening. The show had kicked off 30 minutes ago and the room was filled, from corner to beer-drenched corner, with young faces hoping to lose […]