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Despite Calls From Students, Sewanee Declines To Rescind Honorary Degree For Charlie Rose

Sewanee, a liberal arts university in Middle Tennessee, has decided it will not revoke an honorary degree it awarded to Charlie Rose in 2016. The veteran news anchor was accused by several women late last year of making unwanted sexual advances in the workplace, and some students at Sewanee: The University of the South had wanted its governing board to take action.

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The Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History

A team of historians and scientists from Middle Tennessee hope to soon welcome home the remains of soldiers who died on foreign soil nearly 170 years ago.

Construction workers in Monterrey, Mexico unearthed the bones of more than a dozen men several years ago: US soldiers who died in in the Mexican-American war. Because of their location, where the 1st Tennessee Regiment fought and later set up camp in the 1846 Battle of Monterrey, historian Tim Johnson believes it’s likely they were volunteers from the midstate.

TN Photo Services

The agency charged with turning around Tennessee’s lowest performing schools has to find new funding. The Achievement School District was born in 2010 out of the Race to the Top program. All of that prize money will be gone next year.

Bobby Allyn / WPLN

The deal Gov. Bill Haslam struck with the Tennessee Hospital Association as part of his push to expand Medicaid in Tennessee is being closely followed by state leaders and hospital executives in other states that have resisted expanding coverage as part of the president's healthcare law.

Chas Sisk / WPLN

Bluegrass fans lined up on a bitterly cold fall night outside the speakeasy-style door of the Station Inn, a tiny, decades-old club in Nashville’s hyper-developing Gulch neighborhood.

Nineteen-year-old Caleb Montgomery took his place near the front. A guitarist, Montgomery already had visited at least a half dozen times since moving to Nashville for college a little over a year ago.

The energy, he said, is incomparable.

“This is a great venue for hearing bluegrass. Best in town, by far,” Montgomery said. “There’s such a small amount of people in there and you’re so close to the performers.”

 

TNGOP

Despite Republicans’ overwhelming majority in the state legislature, Rep. Sheila Butt feels like her party could be vulnerable. The potential culprit, she says, could come from Democrats infiltrating Republican primaries. She says this scenario recently played out in a local mayor’s race in Maury County, and she wants to know if it’s more widespread.

“In our family, at home, our family made our decisions,” she said. “I think it might be time in the state of Tennessee for our Republican family and Democratic family to make those decisions.”

Bobby Allyn / WPLN

Governor Bill Haslam says there’s no way around hiking the state’s gas tax some time in the future. The tax, which hasn’t increased since 1989, is not keeping up with the rising cost of building and maintaining Tennessee’s roads and bridges.

Improved fuel efficiency standards and the rise of hybrid and electric cars are a boon to the environment, but the governor says they hurt gas taxes. What’s more, Haslam says federal transportation funding is always uncertain, noting that Congress’ temporary fixes on the federal highway fund make it tricky to plan long-term projects.

Michael Noirot via Flickr

Thomm Jutz, a Nashville songwriter from Germany (who is now a U.S. citizen), has put out a three-part album about one of America’s thorniest periods — the Civil War. Volume 3 of The 1861 Project, which features singers including Kim Richey and Bobby Bare, focuses on the Battle of Franklin. Take a listen to how Jutz crafted the folk music album.

Emily Siner / WPLN

Nashville’s Music City Center has had 750,000 visitors since it opened about a year and a half ago — and a lot of them have probably gotten lost. 

The convention center spans 1.2 million square feet over several floors. To help people find their way, the MCC released a smartphone app, called Music City Center. I tried it out after the official launch event Wednesday morning.

Tajhiee Cockerham has a small frame, big brown eyes and a baby face. Clad in the standard-issue orange jumpsuit, the 18-year-old joined me in a tiny, bare room where inmates usually conference with attorneys. I wrote letters to Cockerham and the other eight teens who escaped from Woodland Hills in September and have since been placed in Nashville’s Criminal Justice Center, an adult jail. Though most of the them ignored my request, Cockerham agreed to sit down for a conversation. Jail officials gave us 20 minutes.

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Movers & Thinkers The Disrupter

Five decades later, Rip Patton looks back on his role in the Civil Rights movement, from sit-ins to arrests. Supported by MTSU's Jones College of Business and the Nashville Software School.

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Tony Spielberg / Nashville Ballet

When a ballet about the Holocaust was first suggested to Stephen Mills, Artistic Director and choreographer for Ballet Austin, it struck him as the “worst idea ever.” It wasn’t until he met Naomi Warren, who survived three concentration camps while her family did not, that Mills felt moved to create Light / The Holocaust and  Humanity Project. The ballet, which centers around Warren’s story, will receive its local premiere with Nashville Ballet this weekend.

Photo courtesty Zeneba Bowers

Issues around immigration have been particularly prominent and polarizing over the last year. And ALIAS cofounder and former artistic director Zeneba Bowers says that the decision to stage a concert series celebrating the music of American immigrants was the direct result of the current political climate.  

Nina Cardona / Nashville Public Radio

The all-female contemporary chamber group Sound Riot champions new music by living composers. Every year they dial their focus even tighter, presenting compositions of women in their annual "Galentines" concert. This year's performance is at 7pm on February 13 at Nashville State Community College. The ensemble brought us a preview of pieces on that program, including one world premiere.

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