New Festival Foods Building Employs Revolutionary Construction Materials
by Amanda Welch, age 13, Sennett Free Press
Most buildings nowadays are made of metal. However, the new Festival Foods located on East Washington Avenue took advantage of an organic material: ash and red pine trees.
Ash trees in Madison were afflicted with the emerald ash borer disease and were required to be removed. The emerald ash borer, an invasive insect, destroys North American ash trees. The insect’s larvae feed on the tree's xylem and phloem. This cuts off important water and nutrient flow in the tree, causing the tree to die and ultimately be sent to the wood chipper. [Read More]
Edgewood Offers Free College Prep for Underrepresented Students
by Leila Fletcher, age 15
In an effort to reach underserved young people and diversify their pool of applicants, Edgewood College recently created a program that would encourage diversity among its college students. To learn more about this program—the “Edgewood College Math Precollege Program”—Simpson Street Free Press reporters interviewed Steven Post, professor of Mathematics at Edgewood.
“We want students that we can make a difference with to apply to the program,” said Post, who teaches the summer math course that comprises part of the free program. [Read More]
Do Trade Employers Value Work Experience Over Higher Education?
by Enjoyiana Nururdin, age 18
High school graduates looking for a trade career face a difficult decision: spend thousands of dollars on a college degree or seek jobs without the degree. Despite the fact that employers may expect a degree, there’s still hope for those planing to forgo college. Apprenticeship programs are taking the nation by storm, and allow students to get an education while also gaining valuable experience.
However, the reality in today's job market is that young adults can no longer apply for many jobs without a college degree. There is an ongoing debate over whether employers value education more than experience. Companies like Siemens Energy and John Deere have made education available to their employees while also allowing them to accumulate work experience. [Read More]
Solar Power Has Electrified Wisconsin
by Sylvan Bachhuber, age 17
Solar power has taken Wisconsin by storm. In 2015, the state’s installed solar capacity grew by 94 percent and powered more than 3,800 homes. As demand for solar panels has risen, so have associated costs. Recent changes to large-scale energy company’s billing provisions, like We Energies, have made solar power much more expensive.
Among the most notable of these provisions was a change to the timing of utility compensations so energy use would be tallied monthly instead of annually. This has a notable impact on solar panel cost. When panel owners send unused energy back to the power grid, electrical companies reimburse them for them for their contribution. [Read More]
Have you ever asked yourself: why are barns in Wisconsin painted red? Contrary to the myth that farms were painted red so that cows could find their way home, it turns out that this strategy is non-factual because cattle are colorblind to the colors red and green. It'll surprise many to hear that barns weren't even originally red. [read more...]
Simpson Street Free Press is known for hosting academic panels and events throughout the year. Especially vital to the Free Press curriculum is our “Women in Science, Math, and Technology” series. This April, two nuclear engineering students from University of Wisconsin-Madison’s American Nuclear Society (ANS) came to SSFP’s South Towne newsroom to deliver another event in this series. [read more...]
Again this year student reporters from Simpson Street Free Press
will attend the nation’s largest High-Powered Rocket Competition for Native American college students. [read more...]
Foxconn recently updated their plans to build a factory in Mount Pleasant to manufacture liquid crystal display panels. Their plan has created controversy among Wisconsinites who are already concerned about air quality and anticipate even more environmental degradation resulting from the factory. [read more...]
After over three-and-a-half decades at its current location, the Shopko store at South Towne Mall in Monona will close in early May, joining the 173 other Shopko stores closing nationwide amid financial issues. This will leave 109 Shopko stores left in the United States, and none in Dane County. [read more...]
Set to begin summer of 2018, Madison Area Technical College will be adding a new feature to their campus. The largest rooftop solar system in Wisconsin will be implemented on top of the main Truax Campus building. Through a cooperation between Madison Gas and Electric, the program will bring alternative energy sources and new education opportunities to the Madison community. [read more...]
The Wisconsin State Assembly recently voted to lift a restriction on nuclear power production in the state. Assembly Bill 384 now goes to the Senate. Democrats and Republicans alike support the bill. [read more...]
The future is getting brighter for wind and solar energy in the Midwest. Two Madison-based power companies, Alliant Energy Corporation and Madison Gas and Electric (MGE), have recently invested in clean energy sources that will affect thousands of customers across the Midwest. [read more...]
Jay Affeldt has been principal of Madison Memorial High School for four years and has been an important part of the school community since 1999. June 30th marked Affeldt's final day as principal. He is moving on to become the director of student mental, physical, and behavioral health. He will be part of the Student Services Department at the district's central office. [read more...]
The Milwaukee Health Department has faced scorn in the past about their cursory disregard of the city’s lead poisoning problem. It is estimated that 70,000 homes in Milwaukee currently have lead service lines. That number represents about 46% of all residences. [read more...]
Thanks to the new “Scholars of Promise” program, 150 students at Madison Area Technical College have access to new opportunities. Created by Madison College along with University of Wisconsin-Madison, qualifying students who complete their associate degree will be admitted to UW-Madison, free of cost, to continue pursuing their education. [read more...]
Open records watchdogs and clean government advocates call responses by Madison school officials to open records inquires “ugly.”
A recent report distributed by the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council and published in the Wisconsin State Journal
says the Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) would not fulfill a request for information about public records without payment. Responding to a specific request, filed by the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL), the Madison district required a payment of more than $1,000 to provide the requested information. [read more...]
Dr. Jack Daniels recently announced in a press conference that Madison Area Technical College will open a new campus on the south side of Madison in 2019. The college also announced a new partnership with the Madison School district. The plan is to open an expanded campus able to serve as many as 5500 students. [read more...]
Tensions are rising as lawmakers, environmentalists, local residents and sponsoring companies continue to debate plans for the new Cardinal-Hickory-Creek transmission line. Although project advocates boast the proposed project will provide low-cost and renewable energy, the line poses potential health risks for residents of southern Wisconsin and threatens the surrounding environment. [read more...]
Recently, Amazon Inc., the world’s largest online retailer, announced a new system that allows delivery workers to leave a package directly inside the house of an Amazon Prime member, instead of leaving it outside when the customer is not at home. [read more...]
In rural Wisconsin, there are barns everywhere--or nearly everywhere, it seems. Most of them are red. This is no coincidence. [read more...]
The way people have learned to read and interpret written language is something that scientists have studied for a long time. How is it that simple marks on a mere piece of paper can convey mind-changing ideas? [read more...]
Have you ever wondered what the inside of a technology company looks like and what goes on there? Recently, Simpson Street Free Press
student reporters had the opportunity to visit Hardin Design and Development (HDD), a Madison software and application firm founded in 2008. Vice President and Co-founder of HDD Scott Resnick and HDD employee Anouson Bounket led us on a tour of the start-up company. We also had the chance to sit down with them and ask questions about what it’s like to work in the tech industry. [read more...]
After years of planning, a major redevelopment project is taking shape in Monona. The recently approved project is getting positive feedback from residents and will start construction later this year. The $36 million improvement plan, developed by Galway Companies, will take place. [read more...]
Most buildings nowadays are made of metal. However, the new Festival Foods located on East Washington Avenue took advantage of another organic material: ash and red pine trees. [read more...]
Mary Kolar, District 1 Supervisor and member of the Dane County Lakes and Watershed Commission, and I recently sat down with James Mills discuss local water issues. He spoke articulately and passionately about his work, the environment, and his perspective on water. [read more...]
In an effort to reach underserved young people and diversify their pool of applicants, Edgewood College recently created a program that would encourage diversity among its college students. To learn more about this program—the “Edgewood College Math Precollege Program”—Simpson Street Free Press reporters interviewed Steven Post, professor of Mathematics at Edgewood. [read more...]
Michelle Richardson came into our office with a smile on her face and a map in her hand. She is the GIS Analyst at the Dane County Land and Water Resources Department. We spent the morning discussing her career, personal life, and experiences working at the department. She was very kind and conversational, asking us about our school and lives. [read more...]
Solar power has taken Wisconsin by storm. In 2015, the state’s installed solar capacity grew by 94 percent and powered more than 3,800 homes. As demand for solar panels has risen, so have associated costs. Recent changes to large-scale energy company’s billing provisions, like We Energies, have made solar power much more expensive. [read more...]
Did you know that you, yes you, can help own a credit union? I learned this the other day when I visited Summit Credit Union to open my very own account.
About four months ago, I began to work at Simpson Street Free Press. In the newsroom, I kept hearing the phrase “financial literacy.” I didn’t know what this meant, so I asked my editor Deidre. [read more...]
Ever since World War II, all U.S. citizens have been required to pay income taxes. The income tax affects many states including Wisconsin and targets many top-earning businesses. This has led to an expansion of the national tax system over time. [read more...]
High school graduates looking for a trade career face a difficult decision: spend thousands of dollars on a college degree or seek jobs without the degree. Despite the fact that employers may expect a degree, there’s still hope for those planing to forgo college. Apprenticeship programs are taking the nation by storm, and allow students to get an education while also gaining valuable experience. [read more...]