S1 – Episode 09: Conversations on Race and Rural America – How Do We Talk About Race in Rural America?

 We’re excited to share this outstanding conversation about race and rural America with Dr. Alphonso Simpson.  Dr. Simpson is a professor of African American Studies at Western Illinois University and also serves as chair of the department of Liberal Arts and Sciences.  He’s been teaching at WIU since 2000 and is the author of 3 books “Mother to Son: A Collection of Essays and Readings in African American Studies, Ain’t Nobody Worryin’: Maleness & Masculinity in Black America, and Living the Life I Sing: Gospel Music from the Dorsey Era to the Millennium. Our essential questions are “How do we talk about race in rural America?” And “what advice do you have for young people growing up in rural counties that are predominantly white?”  Speaking with Dr. Simpson was super enjoyable and informative. We learned a lot from this talk and know you will too.

Continue reading “S1 – Episode 09: Conversations on Race and Rural America – How Do We Talk About Race in Rural America?”

S1 – Episode 08: The Gender Gap – What are the Greatest Concerns for Young Women Growing Up in Rural America?

We are pleased to share this podcast interview as two Cuba high school students, Brianna Gorsuch and Caitlin Patterson, interview with the recently retired Carol Davis over the gender gap and how it impacts Rural America; both in the past as well as the present.  Carol shares her experience with gender inequality, gender stereotypes and expectations society places on women as a child, as a parent and in the workplace.

Continue reading “S1 – Episode 08: The Gender Gap – What are the Greatest Concerns for Young Women Growing Up in Rural America?”

S1 – Episode 07: Panel Discussion on Poverty in Rural America – How Do We Address the Stereotypes? Summary Report Part 5 of 5

The following is a summary of a panel discussion about poverty in Fulton County that took place March 23, 2017.  The forum took place at the Canton Church of the Brethren and was moderated by Pastor Kevin Kessler. Panelists included Missy Kolowski of the Health and Wellness Clinic of Fulton County,  Rolf Siversten Superintendent CUSD #66, Paster Monroe Bailey of the First Baptist Church, Brooke Denniston Executive Director of the YWCA, Paula Grigsby Executive Director of the YMCA, Rhonda Morgan from the Salvation Army and Teri Williams director of Spoon River Pregnancy Center.

This fifth and final post explores solutions and offers closing remarks. Listen online here or through our Forgottonia Project podcast (search “Forgottonia Project” on iTunes or wherever you find podcasts.

Continue reading “S1 – Episode 07: Panel Discussion on Poverty in Rural America – How Do We Address the Stereotypes? Summary Report Part 5 of 5”

Panel Discussion on Poverty in Rural America – What Can Schools Do to Help Address Rural Poverty? Summary Report Part 4 of 5

The following is a summary of a panel discussion about poverty in Fulton County that took place March 23, 2017.  The forum took place at the Canton Church of the Brethren and was moderated by Pastor Kevin Kessler. Panelists included Missy Kolowski of the Health and Wellness Clinic of Fulton County,  Rolf Siversten Superintendent CUSD #66, Paster Monroe Bailey of the First Baptist Church, Brooke Denniston Executive Director of the YWCA, Paula Grigsby Executive Director of the YMCA, Rhonda Morgan from the Salvation Army and Teri Williams director of Spoon River Pregnancy Center.

This fourth post features audience questions that were presented to various panelists.

Continue reading “Panel Discussion on Poverty in Rural America – What Can Schools Do to Help Address Rural Poverty? Summary Report Part 4 of 5”

Panel Discussion on Poverty in Rural America – How Can We Serve the Needs of Those Living in Rural Poverty? Summary Report Part 3 of 5

The following is a summary of a panel discussion about poverty in Fulton County that took place March 23, 2017.  The forum took place at the Canton Church of the Brethren and was moderated by Pastor Kevin Kessler. Panelists included Missy Kolowski of the Health and Wellness Clinic of Fulton County,  Rolf Siversten Superintendent CUSD #66, Paster Monroe Bailey of the First Baptist Church, Brooke Denniston Executive Director of the YWCA, Paula Grigsby Executive Director of the YMCA, Rhonda Morgan from the Salvation Army and Teri Williams director of Spoon River Pregnancy Center.

This third post highlights remarks made by our panelists exploring solutions to poverty in our county.

Continue reading “Panel Discussion on Poverty in Rural America – How Can We Serve the Needs of Those Living in Rural Poverty? Summary Report Part 3 of 5”

S1 – Blog 04: The Gender Gap: What are the Greatest Concerns for Young Women Growing Up in Rural America?

We are pleased to share this interview with Dr. Lori Baker-Sperry from Western Illinois University Department of Women Studies.  We asked Dr. Baker-Sperry several questions concerning the topic of gender, especially in regards to rural America.  This interview prompted us to interview key community leaders to also share their experience with things like gender stereotypes and advice to women growing up in rural America today.  Dr. Baker-Sperry provided us with several links to her responses as well that you will find helpful.  We hope you enjoy and please contact us with any questions you might have.

Continue reading “S1 – Blog 04: The Gender Gap: What are the Greatest Concerns for Young Women Growing Up in Rural America?”

S1 – Blog 03: Notable Rural Americans – What Lessons Can We Learn from the Passing of John Mahoney?

It might surprise you to learn that of the 20 presidents who have served since 1900, just 5 have come from a big city (Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, John F. Kennedy, Barack Obama, Donald Trump).  It wasn’t until the 1920s when the majority of Americans began to migrate from small towns to big cities. You might be surprised to learn what notable figures have come from your town, county or state.

Continue reading “S1 – Blog 03: Notable Rural Americans – What Lessons Can We Learn from the Passing of John Mahoney?”