UI's Rhodes scholar joins a select few

CHICAGO — Thinking he had tanked his interview with the judges, Thomas Dowling phoned home Saturday and asked his mom if she would drive over to the Chicago History Museum from their South Side home to pick him up.

Getting Personal: Kathy Wallig

Each week, we offer a Q&A with a local personality. Today, staff wrtier Paul Wood chats with 66-year-old Urbana resident Kathy Wallig, a former Urbana schools public relations coordinator, journalist and METCAD dispatcher — and the mother of three public servants. Mostly, she is a neighborhood activist. When she has spare time, she quilts.

Educators trying to teach students to spot actual fake news

If it's on the internet, then it must be true.

Steve Rayburn knows that modern-day proverb is a joke, but it still rubs him the wrong way.

"I've spent almost 40 years teaching people to think critically," says the English teacher at Urbana's University Laboratory High School.

Marching orders: Maroons to share turkey with Mickey Mouse

ORLANDO, Fla. — Thanksgiving by candlelight and hundreds of musicians and singers.

This year's Walt Disney World Thanksgiving Day Parade of Bands will feature a taste of home, in the form of more than 100 students from Champaign Central High School.

Naturally, it's a Disney-style extravaganza.

Wired In: Keilin Jahnke

Each week, staff writer Paul Wood chats with a high-tech difference-maker. This week, meet KEILIN JAHNKE, a Ph.D. student in agricultural and biological engineering at the University of Illinois.

UI police chief retiring at year's end after 32 years with department

URBANA — Policing has changed since University of Illinois Police Chief Jeff Christensen first signed on as a student patrol officer in 1983.

There's more gun violence, and with publicity about police shootings nationwide, officers have to work harder to win public trust, he said.

Police say Centennial student's post was joke, not threat

CHAMPAIGN — A social-media post that led to an increased police presence Monday at Centennial High School was intended as a joke and was not a "credible threat," according to Champaign police.

SIU faculty vote to oppose eliminating departments

CARBONDALE (AP) — Members of the faculty senate at the Southern Illinois University in Carbondale have approved a resolution opposing the elimination of departments at the school.

New UI provost has helped develop vision for many campus projects

CHAMPAIGN — Andreas Cangellaris once passed up a chance to come to the University of Illinois because of his distaste for Midwestern winters.

At Danville schools, a robot's touch opens doors of communication

DANVILLE — This year, Michelle Craig has a student with autism who never makes eye contact with her or other adults.

"When you talk to her, she always looks down at the ground," said Craig, a special-education teacher at Mark Denman Elementary and a life skills teacher for 3-5 students.

That changed last week when the little girl met Milo.