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UIC News Tips

Office of Public and Government Affairs                    (312) 996-3456 /

Week of Jan. 25, 2016

Contact Anne Ranallo: (312) 355-2523 /

Chicago has a higher percentage of unemployed, out-of-school minority youths than other large American cities, according to a report conducted by the Great Cities Institute for the Alternative Schools Network. Teresa Cordova, director of the Great Cities Institute, can discuss the findings in the report.

Prescription Drug Overdoses
Contact Sharon Parmet: (312) 413-2695 /

Prescription opioid drug overdoses have been on the rise for many years, and are partially responsible for the decrease in longevity among white, middle-class Americans. The rise in overdose deaths can be partially attributed to overconfidence in the safety of FDA-approved drugs, says Trevonne Thompson, assistant professor of emergency medicine and toxicology in the UIC College of Medicine. But now the government is cracking down on opioid drug prescriptions, which in turn is driving a rise in heroin addiction. "Opioid drugs are more expensive than heroin," Thompson says. "When opioid drugs are harder to get, people hooked on painkillers may turn to street drugs like heroin." Thompson can also speak on fentanyl overdoses, which spiked earlier this fall.

Flint's Water
Contact Sharon Parmet: (312) 413-2695 /

Flint, Mich. water has been declared unsafe to drink due to dangerous amounts of lead. Even very low levels of lead exposure can have long-term and severe health effects, especially on children. Dr. Susan Buchanan, clinical professor of environmental and occupational health and director of the Great Lakes Center for Environmental and Occupational Health at UIC, says that Flint's children may experience a decrease in academic achievement and an increase in behavioral issues caused by lead over the next few years. Buchanan is working with public health officials in Flint to help them develop messaging for parents and the public on lead and how the recent disaster may impact children there.

Zika Virus
Contact Sharon Parmet: (312) 413-2695 /

The World Health Organization has just announced that the Zika virus, a mosquito-borne virus that causes babies to be born with underdeveloped heads and brains and can cause neurological symptoms in adults, will likely spread across the Americas in the months to come. Dr. Richard Novak, chief of infectious diseases in the UIC College of Medicine, says that the spread of Zika is similar to that of other mosquito-borne illnesses, but that its impact, if it reaches the United States, may not be as serious. Novak can talk about the spread of the Zika virus, its symptoms, and what people can do to protect themselves.

Super Bowl Ads
Contact Jeffron Boynes: (312) 413-8702 /

Super Bowl 50 is set. Marketers are finalizing commercials for the event. Some ads will generate huge buzz. Others will quickly be forgotten. Alan Malter, UIC associate professor of marketing, can discuss media fragmentation, the Internet and customer ads trends.

27, Wednesday | Free | Call: (312) 996-2950

Panelists will discuss Spike Lee's film "Chi-Raq." Salamishah Tillet, associate professor of English and Africana studies, University of Pennsylvania; Beth Richie, UIC professor of African American studies and criminology, law and justice, and gender and women’s studies; David Stovall, UIC professor of educational policy studies and African American studies; and Elizabeth Todd-Breland, UIC assistant professor of history. 4:30 p.m. Jane Addams Hull House, Residents' Dining Hall, 800 S. Halsted St. 

29, Friday | Free | Call: (312) 413-8088

Sixteen urban planners, activists and artists will explore the inner workings of urban innovation in affordable housing, bike infrastructure, historic preservation, the role of data in urban planning, and the role of artists in placemaking. Day session: 9 a.m. - 1 p.m., Student Center East, 750 S. Halsted St. Evening session: 7 - 10 p.m., National Museum of Mexican Art, 1852 W. 19th St.

Black History Month Opening Reception & Trivia Night
Feb. 2 | Free | Call: (312) 413-5070

UIC will host a Black History Month opening reception featuring trivia celebrating the achievements and contributions of African Americans. 4 - 6 p.m. Student Center East, Illinois Room, 750 S. Halsted St.

'Beyond the Headlines: My Sister's Story'
Feb. 4 | Free | Call: (312) 413-5070

Sharon Cooper, sister of Sandra Bland, discusses the life and legacy of her sister, as well as developments in the legal case. 5 – 7 p.m. Student Center East, Illinois Room, 750 S. Halsted St.

Thru March 12 | Free | Call: (312) 996-6114

Olga Stefan curates photography and videos by 17 artists who explore life in post-communist Romania -- a time of hope and disappointment in which the transition seems to continue forever, and during which neoliberalism and communist-style corruption and methodologies clash. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Saturday, noon - 6 p.m. Gallery 400, 400 S. Peoria St.