She's got the write stuff

CHAMPAIGN — Composer Stacy Garrop really enjoyed the experience she had several years ago as a composer-in-residence with the Albany (N.Y.) Symphony Orchestra.

So after she discovered the latest Music Alive composer-in-residence program, she asked Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra conductor Stephen Alltop whether he would want to pair her with the orchestra to apply.

Studio Visit: Michael Collins

Michael Collins, 37, of Homer is an artist and the lab coordinator for the 3-D Fabrication Lab at the University of Illinois School of Art + Design.

When did you start making large-scale sculptures?

Wired In: Sushobhan Sen

SUSHOBHAN SEN, a Ph.D. candidate in civil and environmental engineering, and his adviser Jeff Roesler, a University of Illinois professor, are working on a project to identify and model urban heat islands to improve public health. They've spoken to departments of transportation to see if they were interested, and they were.

Entertainment listings, Dec. 29, 2016-Jan. 5, 2017


This weekend


What: The 53rd annual Urbana Christmas tradition of the neighbors living on Grant Place decorating their homes for Christmas as a group. Drive cautiously and turn off headlights.

When: Every evening from 5 to 10 p.m. through New Year's Day.

Just 1 Question: Gifford middle-schoolers' 2017 resolutions

The new year is fast approaching, and adults aren't the only folks thinking about self-improvement. Ahead of the holidays, Nicole Lafond asked middle-schoolers from Gifford: What's your resolution for 2017?

UI grad among last class of Obama White House interns

Jaylin McClinton arrived in Washington for his White House internship just in time for the momentous 2016 presidential election.

Teacher of the Week: Michele McMahon

On Wednesdays, we'll spotlight a difference-making area educator. To nominate a teacher, tweet to education reporter @Nicole_Lafond with the hashtag #TeacherOfTheWeek.

This week ...

Housing authority to rewrite data-sharing deal with Urbana schools

URBANA — The Urbana school board has asked the Housing Authority of Champaign County to rewrite an agreement it'd like to make between the two parties,  regarding the sharing of student attendance data.

Top of the morning, Dec. 28, 2016

Champaign Central is one of 12 high school jazz bands — and the only one from Illinois — selected to participate in the prestigious 2017 Savannah (Ga.) Music Festival.

I asked director John Currey if he could go ahead and guarantee a first-place finish.

Carle properties would be $10 million boon to Urbana schools

URBANA — If the Illinois Supreme Court rules against Carle health system's tax-exempt status, the Urbana school district could see an almost $10 million increase in the money it gets through its tax levy next year.