Ella Abbott

Ella Abbott is studying journalism and forensic anthropology at Kent State. Abbott has previously held the positions of senior reporter for the Kent Stater, the university’s student run newspaper, and editor-in-chief of Fusion magazine, Kent State’s LGBTQ magazine. Her interests are in public policy and crime.

Ways to Connect

photo of Case Western Reserve University
CASE WESTERN RESERVE UNIVERSITY

With 24 candidates seeking the Democratic nomination for president, it may be mathematically impossible for polling to accurately determine a favorite.

That’s the analysis by a pair of mathematicians at Case Western Reserve University.

Alexander Strang is a PhD candidate who worked on the analysis. He points to something called the Condorcet Paradox.

The paradox considers a situation where there are three choices.

A photo of the Kent State brain sculpture
MICHAEL DERR / FLICKR, CREATIVE COMMONS

According to recent studies, depression continues to increase year-to-year in the college population. Kent State is working to expand counseling services for students.

The university wants to add a $20 fee next year to support increasing the number of mental health counselors on campus.

Senior Vice President Mark Palatajko said the goal is to create a ratio of about 1,300 students to each counselor. Currently, the university has one counselor for every 3,300 students.

A photo of the mural on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad
DEBBY PHILLIPS / CUYAHOGA VALLEY SCENIC RAILROAD

A team of dedicated volunteers calling themselves the “scrappy scrapers” has returned life to a mural on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad.

The mural depicts the everyday life of a group of Seminole Indians and had been covered by carpet since the early 80s.

The team used surgical scalpels to avoid damaging the original artwork.

Carol Schroeder led the effort.

a photo of the Kent campus
KENT STATE UNIVERSITY

After more than a year of negotiations, a new contract is now in place for members of the Kent State faculty union.

The University Board of Trustees unanimously approved the contract at a meeting Wednesday. The faculty union had ratified it earlier in June.

University President-elect Todd Diacon, who takes over Monday, welcomed the decision.

“And we know that the source of our strength as an institution is the quality of our faculty. And for that reason, we’re especially thankful that we have our new contract.”

photo of Akron Beacon Journal
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

Two Ohio newspapers have made the list of the most endangered buildings in the state this year.

Preservation Ohio’s list takes nominations from residents in considering the most endangered historic sites. This year’s list includes 13 sites. Among them are the soon to be vacated Akron Beacon Journal building and the Dayton Daily News building.

Thomas Palmer, the executive director of Preservation Ohio, said he expects future lists to include additional unused newspaper buildings.

A photo of two surgeons
Cleveland Clinic

Doctors at the Cleveland Clinic performed Ohio’s first successful in-utero surgery.

Surgeons operated on a fetus diagnosed with spina bifida, a defect that affects the development of the spine which can lead to brain damage.

Dr. Darrell Cass led the surgical team. He has performed more than 100 fetal surgeries at other hospitals.

photo of compost pile
KABIR BHATIA / WKSU

Acme Fresh Market in the Portage Lakes is working with high school students to keep more of its garbage out of landfills.

The company began a composting program in January.

Carrie Soful, a biology teacher at Manchester High School, reached out to Acme after she saw old cucumbers being tossed in the garbage by workers at the store.

She said students are working with the company to compost about 100 pounds of waste each week, but she wants to go bigger.

a video illustration of the new train car
CUYAHOGA VALLEY SCENIC RAILROAD / YOUTUBE

Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad is creating a new space for young riders. The Edu-trainment is currently being renovated to create an educational and entertaining space for children.

The new car is part of a master plan with the goal of enhancing the railroad.

Bobby Dinkins is the Vice President of Marketing and Development for the railroad. He says the goal for the train is to let kids have fun while getting to learn about the national park.

Entrance, Summit County Courthouse
TIM RUDELL / WKSU

A new study released today looks at the lasting effect of legal aid services in certain Northeast Ohio counties.

Steven McGarrity is the Executive Director of Community Legal Aid which covers eight counties including Summit and Portage. He said the study showed their ongoing impact, but also where they could improve.

a photo of a referee at a basketball game
DAVEYNIN / FLICKR/CC

The Midnight Basketball league returns to Akron tonight in an effort to combat violence in the community.

The program for adults 18 and over was stopped in 2004, but city leadership has decided to bring it back this summer to give people who might otherwise be on the street at night something to do.

Pat Littlejohn is overseeing the program and helped develop it.

“We’re having a lot of violence within our community, so we wanted to bring something back to allow these guys to exercise some of their energy instead of being out in the streets.”

photo of bicycle
BILL RINEHART / WVXU

An Akron woman who’s founded youth programs is taking another step to help her community.

Sheri Yearian has been named an Emerging Cities Champion fellow by the Knight Foundation and 8 80 Cities.

She’ll receive funding to promote cycling by adding more bike racks in the Kenmore area and a bike repair stand.

A photo of a store it safe billboard
JENNIFER CONN / WKSU

Billboards in Akron are encouraging residents to lock up firearms, medication and alcohol to prevent suicides. The seven billboards depict the items locked behind a padlock.

The campaign is called “Store It Safe” and is a partnership between Akron Children’s Hospital and the Ohio Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (Ohio AAP).

photo of East CLC
EAST CLC

The GAR Foundation is helping teachers in Akron expose students to career opportunities through the new college and career academies.

GAR is providing a half-million dollar grant to support teacher development, student leadership and communications.

View of Lake Erie
Jeff St. Clair / WKSU

Lake Erie has been breaking water level records over the past month. In May, the lake hit its highest average monthly water level since 1918.

Scott Hardy is an extension educator for the Ohio Sea Grant College Program. He says the lake is about 30 inches above normal and while water level change is a natural cycle, recent research shows that climate change has contributed.

photo of Heroin
Creative Commons/Flickr

Heroin users in Ohio can have a harder time getting treatment when on Medicaid. Researchers from Harvard University posed as heroin users and called over 100 clinics throughout Ohio.

A photo of the snow leopard cub.
THE AKRON ZOO

The Akron Zoo has welcomed a new member to its snow leopard family.

The cub was born April 29 to mom Shanti, the zoo's resident female snow leopard, and her mate, Tai Lung.

Snow leopard populations in zoos have been growing in recent years. The Akron Zoo partners with the Snow Leopard Species Survival Plan which will relocate the cub when she’s old enough.

The zoo’s Elena Bell says it’s typical for snow leopards in the wild to leave their mother in search of a mate.

A photo of the anthropologists in Ethiopia
DALE OMORI

A new exhibit at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History transport visitors to the deserts of Ethopia.

"Fossil Hunters" provides insight into the process of an archaeological dig site with hands-on experience, photography and rare artifacts.

Yohannes Haile-Selassie, curator of physical anthropology at the museum, says he thinks the exhibit will give people an appreciation of the work that goes into new discoveries.

Picture of Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur
KEVIN NIEDERMIER / WKSU

It can be harder to find banks in some of Cuyahoga County’s struggling neighborhoods. Community leaders in Cleveland are looking to change that.

Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur is backing a petition urging the Postmaster General to make Cleveland a pilot city for postal banking.

Narcan kit
AMANDA RABINOWITZ / WKSU

A new initiative in Green aims to prevent overdose deaths. The city was in the national spotlight in 2016 when a teenager overdosed in a hotel in Green.

Now, the city will equip several hotels with emergency NARCAN kits that can be used to reverse an opioid overdose. While Green has seen declining numbers of overdoses in the past four years, a disproportionate percentage happen near the city’s three I-77 exits.

Mayor Gerard Neugebauer said more than half of overdoses in Green are transients.

Medical marijuana flowers at AT-CPC of Ohio in North Akron.
MARK AREHART / WKSU

Medical marijuana is showing results for children suffering from painful ailments, according to a doctor at Akron Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Sarah Friebert is one of two doctors at Children’s licensed to recommend medical marijuana. New products have become available in Ohio that are safe to recommend to children.

A photo of the sign for Loew Park in front of the park's poolhouse
GOOGLE MAPS

A new report finds that Cleveland’s parks have improved slightly over the last year. The survey from the Trust for Public Land ranks the city’s parks as 35th nationally, up two spots from 2018.

The study takes into account park size, investment, amenities and access.

Shanelle Smith is the Ohio director for the Trust for Public Land.

She said parks have an impact on both physical and mental health.

photo of Massillon students in Wintrust Arena
DAVID LEE MORGAN / TWITTER

A group of Massillon students have returned from a one-of-a-kind experience. They witnessed the swearing-in of the 56th mayor of Chicago, a graduate of their high school.

Washington High School journalism teacher David Lee Morgan found widespread support for getting the students to Chicago from both Lori Lightfoot’s campaign and school principal, Dave Lautenschleger. Lautenschleger showed initial concern at the request.

aphoto of the Freedom Trail
SUMMIT METRO PARKS

A property dispute is forcing Summit Metroparks to rethink the path of the Freedom Trail through downtown Akron. The park system had planned to locate a portion of the trail near CSX railroad tracks at East Market Street and College Avenue. It thought the land was owned by a public transit agency. Before the final construction began, CSX claimed the land was owned by them and for safety reasons, it will not allow a trail near the tracks.

a photo of a highway under construction
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A new report found it will cost nearly $4 billion over the next 25 years to keep up with the maintenance on the highways in and around Akron. The budget was announced in the latest Highway Preservation Needs Report from the Akron Metropolitan Transportation Study. The study’s director, Curtis Baker, said the funding could be hard to come by.

photo of recycling
WKSU

The City of Akron has partnered with local sustainability organizations to institute a Recycle Right campaign. ReWorks and Keep Akron Beautiful will work with the city to teach residents how to properly recycle.

Keep Akron Beautiful CEO, Jacqui Ricchiuti, says people need a refresher on what is recyclable.

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