Carol Jackson

Digital News Editor

Carol Jackson has been with WUNC since 2006. As Digital News Editor, she writes stories for wunc.org, and helps reporters and hosts make digital versions of their radio stories. She is also responsible for sharing stories on social media. Previously, Carol spent eight years with WUNC's nationally syndicated show The Story with Dick Gordon, serving as Managing Editor and Interim Senior Producer.

During her career in media, she has won a number of awards for producing innovative media projects, including numerous EMMY citations and a WEBBY (commonly called The Oscars of the Internet). Previously, Carol served as Director of Educational Production for Maryland Public Television. She grew up in Epsom, NH and attended Emerson College in Boston.  Carol and her family are happy to be in North Carolina – near to her husband's extended family in Smithfield and Apex.

Ways to Connect

NPR's award-winning correspondent is hosting her first-ever "Ask Me Anything" on Reddit today.

Linwood Watson, MD, Rex Express Care of Knightdale
Still from Youtube video

Several area doctors star in a new video that is getting some buzz online. The video aims to answer the question of when it's appropriate to go to urgent care, and when one should head to the emergency room:

The video features doctors from Rex Express Care in Knightdale, Holly Springs, Wakefield and Cary.

This is the story of how Jovian, a Coquerel’s sifaka, became the the "leaping, prancing otherworldly star" of the PBS KIDS show Zoboomafoo. Jovian died Monday at the Duke Lemur Center. He was 20 years old.

Megan Malkowski with hands raised, 2011
Will Folsom / Flickr/Creative Commons

All this week, many area colleges and universities are waiving their application fees. Costs usually run between $40 and $100 per application, so for those students who are applying to several schools, the savings can be substantial. Don't wait till the weekend, though. The special program ends on Friday, Nov. 14.

Here is a complete list of participating colleges and universities:

Here's what NC's early vote looks like http://wapo.st/1x8ulLQ
@PostReid via Twitter

This is our election night blog. Complete election results can be found here.

Criminal's episode art is by Julienne Alexander
Julienne Alexander

Criminal is a new podcast that's gaining some buzz. In August, the Huffington Post called it the Best New Radio Show In America. A couple of months later, it was included in Buzzfeed's list of "12 Podcasts That Will Make You A Better Human."

WUNC ran a month-long project where we asked teachers to give us a snapshot of their lives.

Many teachers shared photos of exciting things happening inside their classrooms. But many also shared frustrations. Teacher pay and workload topped the list:

We asked a variety of educational leaders in the state to review all of the responses to #TeachingInNC. We asked a simple question: what do you see? 

At the beginning of this school year, WUNC ran an experiment. We asked teachers a simple question: "Give us a snapshot of your life, in words or pictures."

By the end of the month we had 1,400 responses, mostly on Twitter.

Teachers talked about their pay, their frustrations, their surprising moments, their working weekends, their plugged up classroom toilets. They took photos of t-shirts kids wore and notes students left. We saw a remarkable number of ways teachers are using technology. In short, we received just what we asked for, a window into the teaching profession in North Carolina today.

>> Look at the archive of responses here. Look at how educational leaders across the state responded to the project here.

Nancy Gardner is one of the teachers who contributed to the project. Gardner is National Board Certified Teacher with over 26 years of experience in grades 7-12. She currently teaches senior English at Mooresville High School in Mooresville, N.C. where she chairs the English Department. We asked Nancy to review the tweets and Instagram contributions and tell us what she saw:

"I am inspired, and yes, a little weepy, when I read and view all of these at one time," writes Gardner. "Although some of these mention the salaries and frustrations with all of the issues facing NC teachers, the 'narrative' continues to reinforce the dedication our teachers have to helping all students become successful, in spite of the challenges."

Gardner then provided this list, something she calls "broad takeaways":

"No longer do we have rows of traditional teaching with the teacher in the front of the room," writes Gardner.  "All levels, K-12 are in small groups-and the lessons are teacher facilitated or coached."

Madison Bumgarner grew up in North Carolina. He was drafted into the major leagues in 2007 out of high school. This week he led the San Francisco Giants to a World Series win. It's Bumgarner's third such title. This is an interview with his dad.

Holden Mora shows his new hand, and a pumpkin spice cookie.
Carol Jackson

Seven-year-old Holden Mora's hand is something that Iron Man might envy. It's bright red, and appears indestructible. Holden was born with something called Symbrachydactyly, and his hand didn't develop properly in the womb.

The 3D hand was created specially for Holden by a UNC  biomedical engineering student, Jeffrey Powell. Powell didn't use high-tech prosthetic engineering tools to create the hand. He used a 3D printer.

Jad Abumrad
the artist

Jad Abumrad, MacArthur "Genius Grant" award-winner, and host of RadioLab is coming to Durham, NC, this Sunday Nov. 2. The title of his talk at the Carolina Theatre is "Gut Churn."

This is the voter guide.
NC Center for Voter Education/UNC-TV

U.S. House, State Senate, District Attorney, Board of Commissioners, Register of Deeds, Sheriff, N.C. Supreme Court, Court of Appeals, N.C. District Court...there will be a lot more names on your ballot than those running for U.S. Senate.

In my county, there are 22 choices to be made.

Election Day is Tuesday Nov. 4, 2014
Ludovic Bertron / Flickr/Creative Commons

Here are the top three questions the volunteers at ncvoterguide.org are currently being asked:

1. Is it too late to register to vote?

Yes, it is too late to register. If you didn't register, you can't vote.

2. Do I need any identification to vote?

You do not need any identification to vote. That is due to change in 2016, but for now, just show up.

3. Where do I vote?

This is the Unity Monument at Bennett Place. The vulnerable tract of land is across the street from this monument.
NC Department of Cultural Resources

Update 10/23/14:

North Carolina has raised the more than $300,000 needed to protect land near Bennett Place Historic Site in Durham. The site witnessed the largest Confederate troop surrender of the Civil War.

The money will be used to buy 1.9 acres located near Bennett Place and the "Unity Monument" which symbolically marks the reunification of the country.

The state received two grants of $150,000 each. $13,000 more came in through smaller donations.

Original story:

Kenan Memorial Stadium at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
William Yeung / Flickr/Creative Commons

Update Thursday 9:04 a.m.:

Kenneth Wainstein says academic fraud at UNC Chapel Hill began more than 20 years ago. The former federal prosecutor detailed the findings of his eight-month investigation Wednesday. It’s the latest in a series of investigations that marks one of the worst scandals in the school’s 225-year history.

A nurse from Charlotte has written an open letter to Nina Pham. Pham is the Dallas nurse who was stricken with Ebola after caring for a critically ill patient. "We know how tedious and difficult it is to put and take off on full protective gear over and over again. We know how hot, sweaty and unbearable it gets. .. We know what it’s like standing beside someone for hours at a time, knowing that life is slowly leaving his or her body. We know how much that hurts mentally, physically, and emotionally." Read the letter and listen to an interview on Here & Now:

String-like Ebola virus particles are shedding from an infected cell in this electron micrograph.
NIH/NIAID via Flickr/Creative Commons

Some Chapel Hill librarians are joining in the effort  to respond to the Ebola crisis in West Africa. A non-profit group called WiderNet is making information available to those without Internet access.

WiderNet's project director, Cliff Missen, says only two percent of people in Liberia and Sierra Leone have an Internet connection -- that includes health care workers.

"What we do is something completely different," says Missen. 

A new scavenger hunt will make sleuths and stars of Durhamites this Saturday. In this first-of-its-kind fundraiser in Durham, teams will solve riddles, and then head scatter across town to videotape short scenes from movies. For example, here's a clue:

"Durham’s most famous romance unfolded at an 1880s James Manning-designed house. Shoot a short scene inspired by this iconic silver-screen couple on the porch."

Here's how that clue might play out in the contest:

Edwin Lanier (left) with David Wright at StoryCorps in Durham, N.C.  2006
StoryCorps

StoryCorps fans might remember the stories told by Edwin "Eddie" Lanier, of battling alcoholism and finding peace. Lanier died on October 14th. He was 68. 

The first interview aired on NPR's Morning Edition in 2006. In that interview, Lanier talked with his friend David Wright. After almost drinking himself to death, Lanier had been sober for five years.

When he was a child, Lanier had been told by his father that alcoholism ran in the family.

Cheyenne and Tish at the Durham County Register of Deeds. Monday 10/13/14
Reema Khrais

On Friday, a federal judge in Asheville struck down the state's gay marriage ban, opening the way for the first same-sex weddings in the state.  U.S. District Court Judge Max Cogburn, Jr. issued a ruling shortly after 5:00 p.m. declaring the ban approved by state voters in 2012 unconstitutional. A few weddings happened late on Friday, more on Monday and Tuesday.

Many around the state were on pins and needles Friday, wondering if the state's gay marriage ban would be lifted. WUNC was tracking the information, and reporting all throughout the day.

Update Friday 6:05 p.m.:

A federal judge in Asheville has struck down the state's gay marriage ban, opening the way for the first same-sex weddings in the state to begin immediately.  U.S. District Court Judge Max Cogburn, Jr. issued a ruling shortly after 5:00 p.m. declaring the ban approved by state voters in 2012 unconstitutional.  

Heroin syringe
Thomas Martinsen / Flickr/Creative Commons

"A heroin high .. I ain't going to lie - it's amazing .. you feel like you're Superwoman." 

Wonder why it's hard for some to leave heroin behind? Listen to Jennifer Harris and Brandi Martinez. Both live in High Point, N.C. and both have been clean for two years. (Jennifer talks first.)

Chef Scott Crawford in his home kitchen.
Carol Jackson

Recently I spent much of the day with Scott Crawford. Crawford used to be executive chef at the Umstead Hotel & Spa and their five star restaurant Herons, a place Newsweek called one of the "101 best places to eat in the world."

Crawford has a bit of free time because he's left the world of high-pressure fine dining to try something new. He is staking his future on a new restaurant, Standard Foods, and its proximity to an urban farm.

True Settles (left), Joshua Weaver
Carol Jackson

There's some innovative dancing taking place in North Carolina that's not on a stage; It's in a tiny basement-level space underneath the post office on Franklin Street in Chapel Hill. Two young men, Joshua Weaver and True Settles, are teaching area kids the latest dance moves.  But when the class is over, the two crank the music really loud, and battle their friends. The goal is to out-shine,  out-innovate and out-dance the opposition. Battles can last for hours.

A photo of the North Carolina band Balsam Range
Courtesy of Balsalm Range

North Carolina bluegrass band Balsam Range took home the Entertainer of the Year award at the International Bluegrass Music Awards in Raleigh last night.  The Haywood County ensemble's lead singer, Buddy Melton, was named Male Vocalist of the Year. The awards have special meaning for Melton who suffered major injuries from a farming accident in 2012. 

 "I was loading cattle and the cow kicked the gate I was closing," he told The State of Things host Frank Stasio in an interview last year.

More than 300 teachers across the state have participated so far in our #TeachingInNC project.  It's where we ask teachers to give us a snapshot of their lives, using words or pictures. We hope that, collectively, these snippets will give "the rest of us" a sense of what it's like to be a teacher in NC. 

Most teachers are sending in their snapshots via Twitter, but some are using Instagram. This one made us laugh.

That same teacher also submitted this:

>>Browse all 701+ submissions here.

Lili Morales is a senior at Northern High School in Durham, N.C. As a part of WUNC's Youth Radio Project, she reports on the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy.  Young people who entered the country illegally with their parents are eligible for the program if they are in school -- but they have to renew every two years.  It's a stressful process for some.

Map of fall colors
Dr. Howard Neufeld, Michael Denslow / Appalachian State

What weekend should you go to Grandfather Mountain in western North Carolina to see the fall colors at the peak of perfection? There's a map that was created by scientists at Appalachian State that attempts to answer that very question.

John G. Zimmerman / John G. Zimmerman Archive

In 1952, 12,000 people in Wilson, North Carolina turned out for an amazing event; children and adults gathered to watch a world-class shoeshine competition. Locals danced and played music, competing on showmanship, not just the quality of their shine.

The event was photographed for LIFE Magazine, but the images were never published, and they were almost lost to history.

Alison Moyer poses with Dreadnoughtus' neck bone, which she uncovered.
Alison Moyer

Last week, researchers revealed one of the biggest discoveries ever in the dinosaur world. "Dreadnoughtus" is 85 feet long, two stories tall, and as big as a jumbo jet. It's estimated to weigh as much as seven T. rex dinosaurs put together, and experts believe it was not yet fully grown when it died. Alison Moyer spent several months on her knees in southern Argentina using picks, dust brushes, and tweezers to uncover parts of Dreadnoughtus' skeleton. Moyer is a Ph.D candidate at N.C. State University. This was her first dig.

What was your role?

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