Journalism showcase features senior capstone reporting projects

Opioids, the new “Heartbeat” law, vacant property fires and Youngstown’s future as “Mealtown USA” are among the topics featured at the Youngstown State University Journalism Senior Project Showcase 5 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 8, in the atrium of Bliss Hall on campus.

Students from the YSU Journalism Senior Project capstone course will be on hand to share their projects:

 Jack DawsonMealtown U.S.A.: Explores the recent explosion in restaurants and other pop-up eateries in downtown Youngstown, the impact this business influx has on the local economy, and how innovative approaches to traditional favorite foods are changing “Steeltown USA” into “Mealtown USA.”

David FordIdora Park: Youngstown’s Million Dollar Excursion: A historical news chronology of Idora Park theme park that explores its impact on Youngstown, its development over time, and what has become of it today, including interviews with the Ameys who run the “Idora Park Experience” museum.

Danielle GarnerThe Divide between Choices and Autonomy: Explores the issue of reproductive rights in light of Ohio’s new “Heartbeat Bill,” and the different resources to which people have access when attempting to exercise their reproductive rights.

Chris McBrideI’m building me a home – the Great Migration in Youngstown: Explores the historical migration of African-Americans to the Youngstown area and how they overcame racism, segregation and legalized discrimination to build a community and form political and business connections in Youngstown.

Tanner MondokRevitalizing Youngstown One Home at a Time: An in-depth investigative feature exploring work done by the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation, the Mahoning County Land Bank, the city of Youngstown and others to purchase and renovate homes around Youngstown that can be rented or sold to residents for a fair price and with the long-term goal of neighborhood revitalization and improvement.

Marah MorrisonVacant Properties’ Fate is Trial by Fire: An in-depth investigative feature exploring the increase in vacant property fires in and around Youngstown over the last decade. Includes interviews with fire department officials and city renovation and community redevelopment organization officials and includes recent statistics related to fires in Youngstown.

Morgan PetronelliFinding the match that sparked Ohio’s opioid fire: An in-depth investigative feature that explores various factors that have increased Ohio’s opioid epidemic, including the rise of ‘pill mills’ and an increase in heroin dependency, and what is being done health-wise and legislatively to stem the rising tide of addictions, overdoses and deaths related to opioid drug use.

Tyler RothbauerDealing with lead-based paint in Mahoning County: Based on successful efforts made in Cuyahoga County to reduce the presence of lead-based paint in homes and reduce lead poisoning rates in infants and children in the county, this in-depth investigative feature explores what is being done in Mahoning County to affect positive change in this area and help families stay safe in their homes.

Victoria RemleyCreative Arts Colleges Disappearing One by One: An in-depth investigative feature exploring the national trend in higher education to eliminate programs in the arts, and exploring YSU’s arts programs and how they manage to ‘buck the trend.’ Also explores ‘town-gown’ relationships between YSU’s arts programs and the arts in Youngstown.

John StranWhat it takes to raise a child – life inside a youth residence facility: Explores issues related to group homes in the Youngstown area, including various issues (criminal, social and otherwise) experienced by residents within these group homes and the 600+ runaway/missing persons reports filed from one group home in particular over the last five years in Youngstown (and potential reasons for/implications of this).