The Two-Way
10:37 am
Wed July 9, 2014

Ex-New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin Gets 10 Years In Corruption Case

Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin leaves federal court after his conviction in New Orleans on Feb. 12. He was sentenced Wednesday to 10 years in prison.
Gerald Herbert AP

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 1:23 pm

Updated at 11:20 a.m. ET

Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin was sentenced Wednesday to 10 years in prison for bribery, money laundering and other crimes.

He was convicted Feb. 12 of accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes and kickbacks. The indictment included 21 counts.

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Politics
9:54 am
Wed July 9, 2014

What's Causing The Latest Immigration Crisis? A Brief Explainer

Demonstrators from opposing sides confront each other while being separated by police officers on July 4, outside a U.S. Border Patrol station in Murrieta, Calif.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 6:28 pm

It's turning into the largest influx of asylum seekers on U.S. soil since the 1980 Mariel boatlift out of Cuba.

Since October, more than 52,000 children — most from Central America and many of them unaccompanied by adults — have been taken into custody. That's nearly double last year's total and 10 times the number from 2009.

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The Two-Way
9:53 am
Wed July 9, 2014

5,000 Years Old: Ancient Yew Tree Identified In Wales

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 12:18 pm

It might be the oldest tree in Britain. A yew tree that sprawls over a churchyard in Wales is more than 5,000 years old, according to experts. While it's not exceptionally tall, the tree has a wide canopy. And it dates back to the era of Egypt's pharaohs.

From NPR's London bureau, Rich Preston reports:

"The 60-foot-wide yew tree sits in the grounds of St Cynog's churchyard near Swansea in Wales. Recent DNA and ring-count testing shows the tree to be more than 5,000 years old — making it older than the Great Pyramid of Giza.

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Harvest Public Media
9:38 am
Wed July 9, 2014

My Farm Roots: Touch The Ground

Though he grew up without designs on farm life, Elisha Pullen has embraced rural living on his farm near Bell City, Mo.
Credit Jacob McCleland / Harvest Public Media

As a young man, Elisha Pullen never imagined he would spend his days on the farm.

Growing up near rural Bell City in southeastern Missouri’s “Bootheel” region, Pullen longed to leave the farm and get an education.

“I grew up in the day and time when we had to do a lot of chopping and stuff like that. Hard labor,” Pullen said. “I’m going to college, I’m getting my degree and I’m going to work in the air conditioning.”

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Higher Education
9:27 am
Wed July 9, 2014

KU's Edwards Campus To Add Five New Advanced Degree Options

Students sit in a lecture hall at the University of Kansas' Edwards campus. The Overland Park-based extension will be expanding its programs this fall.
Credit City of Overland Park, Kan. / Flickr-CC

Professionals seeking advanced degrees from the University of Kansas will have five new opportunities from the Overland Park-based Edwards campus starting this fall. 

The five new degree programs are for graduate students in education, business, accounting and international studies.

Christine Falk, Edwards campus marketing coordinator, says that new academic programs should help spur a sense of community and personal growth in the area. 

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Education
9:18 am
Wed July 9, 2014

UM System Expands Academic Tracking Platform To Boost Retention And Graduation Rates

University of Missouri System Seal

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 4:29 pm

The University of Missouri is expanding an early alert system that tracks academic performance to all four of its campuses this fall.

The system, developed by the company Starfish Retention Solutions, is designed to improve retention and graduation rates by better connecting students, faculty and staff.  

The expansion follows the success of a pilot program at the university's Columbia campus that gives advisors real-time grading information on students and tracks performance trends among classes and subjects. 

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The Two-Way
9:14 am
Wed July 9, 2014

Defending Tour De France Champ Froome Quits Race

Britain's Chris Froome gestures to a teammate (right) after getting up from his third crash in two days. Froome, who hurt his wrist in Tuesday's fall, has abandoned the race that he won in 2013.
Laurent Cipriani AP

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 1:32 pm

Chris Froome, who raced to the top of the podium in Paris last July, is out of this year's Tour de France after falling in treacherous conditions on today's stage of the bicycle race.

Today's stage had been predicted to be harrowing, owing to the course's inclusion of cobblestones. But Froome went down twice before the race even reached that point, leaving his riding kit torn on both thighs and one shoulder, where a bloody wound could be seen.

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Arts & Culture
9:00 am
Wed July 9, 2014

WATCH: 'The Winter’s Tale’ Set Comes Down

Crew members pull down 'The Winter's Tale' set.
Credit Julie Denesha / KCUR

The sound of power drills pierced the air on a humid Monday morning as several dozen crew members dismantled the set of "The Winter’s Tale" in Southmoreland Park in Kansas City, Mo.

The evening glow from the set’s blue and gray spires had long faded. From a grassy hill, Greg Mackender, resident composer and musician for the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival stood taking photographs on his camera phone before packing away his instruments.

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Goats and Soda
8:56 am
Wed July 9, 2014

This Kenyan Runner Can't See But He Has A Far-Reaching Vision

Joseph Kibunja guides blind runner Henry Wanyoike (in sunglasses).
Ryan Kellman NPR

When Henry Wanyoike and Joseph Kibunja first started running, it was out of necessity. The childhood friends had no other way to travel the three miles from their Kenyan village to school. So they made the barefoot trek every day, in both directions, regardless of weather.

Thirty years later, Wanyoike and Kibunja are still running together, only now, they're headed to the finish lines of races around the world — and often getting there first.

Although Kenya is known for producing champion runners, the duo stands out: Wanyoike is blind and Kibunja serves as his guide.

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Goats and Soda
8:43 am
Wed July 9, 2014

Volunteer Recap: A Bumpy (And Itchy) Ride Through Tanzania

Nick Stadlberger in Africa.
Courtesy of Nick Stadlberger

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 2:44 pm

Nick Stadlberger, a fourth-year medical student at Dartmouth College spent four weeks this spring in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, working in the infectious disease ward at Muhimbili Hospital as part of his school's global health program.

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