WKU Public Radio News

News Team

The award-winning news team at WKU Public Radio consists of Dan Modlin, Kevin Willis, Lisa Autry, and Joe Corcoran.

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Sports
1:21 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

WKU Announces Football Schedule For First Year in Conference USA

Credit WKU Athletics

Four new opponents highlight the WKU Hilltoppers’ 2014 football schedule.  The school’s athletic department announced the schedule Monday afternoon.  It will be the first year for the ‘Toppers in Conference USA and they’ll open up the schedule on Thursday,  Aug. 28 against Bowling Green State at L.T. Smith Stadium. 

They’ll take on Illinois for the first time in school history September 6th and will also face conference opponents Old Dominion, Texas-El Paso and Texas-San Antonio for the first time. 

Army travels to Bowling Green to take on WKU November 15th.  The school also announced its ticket plans for the 2014 season on Monday.
 

WKU 2014 Football Schedule

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Regional
8:25 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Winter Weather Snarls Monday Morning Traffic on I-65 in South Central Kentucky

The northbound lanes of Interstate 65 at mile marker six in Simpson County are now open. 

A crash involving multiple tractor trailers closed the northbound lanes around exit 6 for several hours Monday morning. 

Traffic was detoured onto 31W north, but motorists are cautioned there is still some ice on 31W and  traffic is slow going.

The ramp at exit 6 remains closed.

Check back for updates.

Regional
9:13 pm
Sun February 2, 2014

WKU Regional Campuses Impacted by Winter Weather Monday

The WKU-Owensboro campus will be closed Monday due to the winter weather impacting the region.

WKU-Elizabethtown and Ft. Knox campuses will be closed Monday.

The WKU-Glasgow campus is opening Monday at 1 pm.

Education
1:40 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

More than Half of Kentucky Kindergartners Were Unprepared to Learn Reading, Math Skills

A new statewide reading survey shows roughly half of Kentucky’s kindergartners entered school this year unprepared to learn the reading and math skills that are expected of them.

The survey shows 51-percent of Kentucky kindergartners who began school last fall were described as “not ready” to learn the basic reading and math skills expected of them. That means those students lacked basic literacy, match, or cognitive skills, such as knowing letters and numbers. The social and physical readiness of the students were also taken into account.

You can read more about the survey results here.

Governor Steve Beshear, who has proposed expanding early childhood initiatives in the state, said the report showed how some students are at a disadvantage “from day one.”

In a statement, the Governor said too often those students who begin school academically behind their peers never catch up, and face poor grades and negative school experiences that “usually only end when they drop out or graduate from high school unprepared for college or career.”

Business
4:27 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Auto Manufacturer Bringing Facility, 75 Jobs to Hardin County

A global auto manufacturer is building a facility in Elizabethtown and creating 75 new jobs.

Hendrickson USA LLC creates suspension systems and components for heavy-duty vehicles. The $20 million facility will be built at T.J. Patterson Industrial Park in Hardin County.

Construction on the 100,000-square-foot building is expected to be complete later this year.

Economy
1:44 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Report: Over Half of Kentucky Residents Living Paycheck-to-Paycheck

A new report shows over half of Kentuckians are living paycheck-to-paycheck, and would fall below the federal poverty line if they lost their job.

The numbers come from the Corporation for Enterprise Development, a non-profit based in Washington D.C. that has released a scorecard focusing on the financial well-being of households in each state.

The numbers for Kentucky aren't good.

Fifty-two percent of Kentuckians wouldn’t have enough money to get by at the federal poverty level if they lost their job. The report says that means more than half of households in the commonwealth “are one crisis away" from financial devastation.

Sixty-percent of Kentucky residents have sub-prime credit, which is defined as a credit score below 570.

Kentucky Center for Economic Policy Director Jason Bailey says the report is proof that the commonwealth has steeper economic challengers compared to many other states, because of Kentucky’s traditional reliance on low-wage jobs.

Regional
10:05 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Accident on Western Kentucky Parkway in Grayson County Causing Delays

Update at 3:23 p.m.:

From the Kentucky Transportation Dept.:

The semi from this morning’s tractor trailer crash has been removed and the detour has been removed.  The right eastbound lane of the parkway at Mile Point 100 will remain closed for another approximately another hour as debris cleanup continues on the shoulder and right of way.

Motorists traveling in the area should reduce speed and be aware of the scene until cleanup is complete.

Original post:

The Kentucky Department of Transportation has released the following statement regarding a Thursday morning accident on the Western Kentucky Parkway:

A mid-morning tractor trailer crash may cause delays for eastbound motorists traveling on the Wendell H. Ford Western Kentucky Parkway in Grayson County near Mile Point 100.

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Business
10:14 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Jim Beam Set To Roll Out First Global Marketing Campaign

Credit Jim Beam

Jim Beam is turning to Hollywood for its latest spokesperson as the company gets set to launch its first-ever global marketing campaign.  

In a video posted on the Jim Beam website, Master Distiller Fred Noe takes actress Mila Kunis on a tour of Jim Beam's Kentucky facilities.

Kunis, who’s starred in movies along with TV shows like That 70s Show and Family Guy, will be the centerpiece of Jim Beam’s new campaign branded “Make History”.  

The announcement of the world-wide marketing effort comes two weeks after Japanese company Suntory announced it was purchasing Jim Beam. The ads featuring Kunis start next month.

Politics
8:38 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Beshear Snags Invitation to State of the Union Speech

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear

Governor Steve Beshear has been invited to attend tonight’s State of the Union Address in Washington, D.C.  Beshear and his wife Jane will be guests of the President and Mrs. Obama. 

Beshear has been a leading advocate for the implementation of the controversial Affordable Care Act, but he dismisses critics who claim his support for the legislation has been purely about politics.

“If the president were a Republican, I would be going to Washington, D.C. to be honored and for Kentucky to be honored for the efforts that we’re making for our people on affordable healthcare,” said Beshear in an interview posted to his official video channel. “This is not political, as far as I’m concerned.”

Beshear says he thinks debate over the new healthcare law will die down by the time the November elections come around. 

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Education
6:00 am
Sat January 25, 2014

Why Do Students Drop Out of WKU? MAP-Works Is Looking for Answers

WKU administrators are hoping the MAP-Works system increases student retention rates.
Credit Kevin Willis

A program being used at WKU is providing a better idea of what can be done to prevent students from leaving school before completing their degree.

The MAP-Works system helps identify at-risk students who take a voluntary survey. Students who appear to be struggling receive direct intervention by WKU faculty and staff who direct the student to programs that can help with academic, financial, or health issues.

Lindsey Gilmore, with the WKU enrollment management office, says she assumed money problems would be the top reason why students drop out. But she says MAP-Works shows that’s not the case.

"Generally, what MAP-Works does is let us see about five top issues our students are facing per classification, and lack of financial confidence is always in the top five, but it’s never number one."

Gilmore says MAP-Works shows the biggest stressors for WKU students include homesickness, test anxiety, study habits, and low peer connections.

More than 5,400 WKU students have been contacted or met with in person this academic year about their survey results. Gilmore says the school is working to get more students to take the MAP-Works survey. A little over 27 percent of WKU students completed the survey last fall.

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