Virginia Alvino

Reporter & All Things Considered Host

Virginia joined WBOI in August of 2013. She works to report on often overlooked stories in the community, and uncover solutions as much as difficulties that we as a community face. Virginia began reporting out of the Statehouse in Salem, OR, and has reported for the Northwest News Network and Oregon Public Broadcasting. Virginia is now the local WBOI host of All Things Considered.

Ways to Connect

Rocco Di Frassinello

The Fort Wayne Dance Collective announced their new artistic director Wednesday. New York based John Byrne will take on the role starting in September.

He succeeds the organization’s founding member and first director Liz Monnier who will be resigning after 36 years of service.

Byrne is a dancer and choreographer, alumnus of the Juliard School, the School of American Ballet, and North Carolina School of the Arts. His resume includes classical and modern dance, commercial work, and dance education.

Indiana Tech

Fort Wayne’s only law school suffered a major setback this week.

On Tuesdsay, the American Bar Association denied accreditation to Indiana Tech’s nascent law school.

The ABA made an initial recommendation against accrediting Indiana Tech’s law program in April – and they denied provisional approval last week.

The school has had three deans since its inception in 2013.

Operation Lifesaver

Students at several Fort Wayne Community Schools this week learned about how to stay safe around trains and railroad crossings. 

“Tracks are for trains, not for kids.”

By the end of the presentation by the organization Operation Lifesaver, students at Indian Village Elementary were all chanting the reminder that may help them stay safe to and from school, and over the summer.

2nd graders Julian Conwell, Jodoea Yarbough, and Haley Higgins offer some more lessons learned.

Shane Pequignot / General Motors

General Motors will invest $1.2 billion to expand its Fort Wayne truck assembly plant. The company says it’s among their largest manufacturing investments ever in the U.S.

The automotive company will expand and upgrade the existing facility which builds Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups. The investment will add 1.5 million square feet to the plant, including a new paint shop and expanded body shop. The plant currently employs around 3,800 workers.

The company says the upgrades will improve efficiency and reduce emissions.

Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

And it’s time once again for news...from Down Under.

Okay, it’s not really Down Under, but earlier today hundreds of children got a chance to see  jellyfish, venomous lionfish and about thirty other species at the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo  Australian Adventure. The renovated reef exhibit opened today.

B-cycle

The City of Fort Wayne is exploring the possibility of installing a bike sharing system downtown and along the rivers.  

B-cycle is a company that makes bikes available to rent in 41 cities across the U.S.

The system is part of the sharing economy, like Uber or Air BnB. Here’s how it works – sign up online, choose a bike from a public station, get on, and ride. 

Daily or monthly passes are available, or in some cities you can pay as you go.

Hunden Strategic Partners

The results are in from a study commissioned by the City of Fort Wayne  examining the viability of building an arena downtown.  The findings were released Wednesday. 

The City of Fort Wayne invested nearly $40,000 in the study of a  potential sports and entertainment arena downtown. 

Rachel Patterson/ Emily Stulik

Maybe you heard some “ribbits” in the evenings for the past few weeks – it’s frog calling season, a time for the amphibians to find their mates.  

Frog calls are also used to track their population, which is an important indicator of environmental health. But due to disease, pollution, and loss of habitat, Indiana, and the rest of the world, has seen a declining frog population over the past few decades.

In Northern Indiana however, efforts have been made to restore some wetland habitat to its natural state.

Cheyney Rose

Here's an update for you on a story we reported back in March

The Hope Gap Project, through the Fort Wayne Museum of Art, aimed to bring a wider  diversity of student artists to enter their work into the Scholastic Awards.  That’s the oldest source of recognition and scholarships for teen arts in the country.  

The idea was to inspire students through virtual meetings with successful artists who  come from similar backgrounds. 

Trine University

It’s graduation season, and last weekend Trine University in Angola welcomed  television legend Regis Philbin to Indiana. WBOI’s Virginia Alvino got to meet the cultural icon, and has this appreciation. 

Last Friday, Regis Philbin told journalists he wasn’t sure yet what he was going to say to Trine University graduates. But come on, after more than 50 years in  television, this man’s never lost for words. 

“But they’re all smarter than me," says Philbin, "they’re all engineers, they’re going out, they’re gonna change everything, I think it’s great.”

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