Technology helps bridge language gap


How many languages do you speak? If you’re reading this in America, chances are high that it’s only one. According to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, only 18 percent of Americans can speak another language in addition to English. With only a basic understanding of Spanish, I find myself in the language-handicapped 82 percent.

Have any of you 82-percenters attempted to speak to an individual who speaks a language other than English? If yes, then you know just how difficult the task can be. Yesterday I found myself in this situation while conversing with a Japanese exchange student in my communications class. He spoke little English. The few words he could say I had to piece together like a jigsaw puzzle in order to understand his thoughts and questions.

View the full story at the Post.  

A night with the homeless

There is a version of reality in Cincinnati that most encounter every day but rarely see. It is a reality that, until experienced, can never be understood. I only experienced a fragment of it when I chose to spend a recent Friday and Saturday in the world of the homeless and impoverished of the inner city.

A friend presented the idea with a simple mission: Sleep for the night with this community in an attempt to understand how those in it live. Some may say we are naïve, while others could describe us as fools unaware of the potential danger. How we are defined is not of importance but what we saw and learned are. I would like to share both.

View the full story at the Cincinnati Enquirer.  


Athens startup teaching employers diversity 

A local startup is helping employers from a select group of professions train their workforce on social issues in today’s diverse and technology driven world.

Cory Frederick started the Athens-based company, iEd Worldwide, to educate workers in the helping professions. This includes most who are employed in the industries of education, health care and social work.

“These professionals need to have their license re-certified every so often, so by taking courses with iEd worldwide they’re able to meet those needs,” Frederick said.

View the full story at WOUB


Fisher houses helping veterans and their families


America's veterans help protect their country and both them and their families deserve care when they are in time of need.

That's the philosophy that Carol Holden, Huron County Veteran Service Officer, operates on and that is the philosophy that sparked her interest in the Fisher House Foundation.

The Fisher House Foundation dedicates itself to providing the families of wounded military veterans a free and comfortable place to stay while there family members recuperate in a nearby hospital.

"It (Fisher House) is a place to stay when you are scared and want to be close to your loved ones," Holden said.

Fisher Houses are free of charge to military family members and as of now there are 43 located throughout the United States and Europe.

View the full story at the Norwalk Reflector.  

Chocolatier breaks ground on new store in Athens

An Athens chocolate business opened on Court Street last Tuesday after two years of selling the sweets at farmers markets and other small businesses.

Owner Stacy Peters moved to the Athens area around six years ago and has been making chocolate since 2010.

Peters said she decided to open the shop to make her products more familiar to the public.

“I started making the truffles as gifts and eventually started selling at the farmers market on East State,” said Peters. “After awhile I expanded and started putting the bars and truffles at other locations.” The Athens Village Bakery on East State Street was one of those locations.

View the full story at 33 Corridor News


Lausche heating plant to see renovations 


The Lausche Heating Plant, located on Ohio University’s West Green, will switch from operating on coal to natural gas in 2014.

OU’s Board of Trustees met on Friday in Lancaster to discuss possible alternatives for the 45-year-old heating plant. 

The plant currently runs entirely on coal and provides heat to most of Ohio’s campus buildings.

The Environmental Protection Agency emissions and regulations and a commitment to sustainability have led the university to change much of the way it produces energy. 

The renovation of the facility is included in a $977 million, six-year capital improvement plan, which includes the renovations of many residential halls. 

View the full story at WOUB.