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Newsmakers: June 23, 2013

Updated: Friday, July 26 2013, 12:45 PM EDT
Part One

"In national rankings of science and math
scores on international tests, we fall behind 26 other countries in our
math and science readiness of our high school seniors. 84 percent of
our middle school students say they would rather clean their room, eat
their vegetables, go to the dentist or take out the garbage than learn
math or science."

American rhetoric has always held up the
critical role of education in shaping our collective future. The dismal
record of American students in what has been dubbed the stem fields,
science, technology, engineering and math that define the cutting edge
of innovation, undermines confidence in the American future.

One of the project teams of this year's Leadership
Cincinnati class focused on what is necessary if we are to strengthen
stem education. What they found was that teachers cannot do this alone.
"All of the careers that are coming up in the next 10 to 20 years are
STEM jobs or they require STEM skills for students to be successful to
make the connection between business and industry and L-12 formal and
informal education."

That video was produced by Rachel Lyon, an
accomplished documentary film producer, a frequent guest on this show
and a member of the STEM Leadership Cincinnati project team. If you
would like to view the entire video, it is posted on Youtube under
"STEM: Make the Connection." The team's written report is available on
the Leadership Cincinnati website.

We talked to Janice Urbanik,
the Director of Industry Partners for the Partners for a Competitive
Workforce, which helps employers locate the talent and help individuals
develop the skills necessary to get good jobs.

Part Two

Efforts
are at work to restore the Mill Creek, the region's most import urban
stream, after centuries of misuse and abuse. We drive over it and along
side it every day, but rarely see it. As the natural pass through the
hills, this has been the preferred transportation corridor for roads,
the canal, railroads and the expressway for 225 years. And since
the 1880's it has been the preferred location for generations of
manufacturing plants. After two centuries of abuse, the Mill Creek will
require decades of systematic work to restore it as a positive natural
feature.

Efforts to restore the Mill Creek have been underway
since the early 1990's. In 1993 a report initiated by the Hamilton
County Environmental Action Committee called for the Mill Creek to be
transformed from a civic embarrassment into a community asset. Progress
has been made, mostly by grass roots organizations like the Mill Creek
Watershed Council of Communities.

If you want more information
about the work of the Mill Creek Watershed Council, go to their website,
millcreekwatershed.org, or call the office at 513-563-8800. There are
two events coming up. You can paddle the mill creek on August 3, and
join the annual Re-Creation Celebation on September 28th.

Special note:
Perhaps you have heard the news that the air times for Newsmakers will
be changing in two weeks. This is going to be a challenge, but I
believe in this show and after 15 and a half years and with the fall
elections coming up, I am going to everything in my power to make the
new format work.
Newsmakers: June 23, 2013


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