Series And Specials

Nina Keck / VPR

By the time Gov. Peter Shumlin shined a spotlight on Vermont’s heroin problem in his 2014 State of the State address, Rutland had been actively battling the issue for more than a year, opening a methadone clinic and launching an innovative multi-pronged, community-based approach called Project Vision.

Angela Evancie, Patti Daniels, Angela Evancie, Jane Lindholm, Oliver Parini for VPR, Patti Daniels, Nina Keck, Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

As 2015 draws to a close, we've taken a look through our archives for the sound that best captures some of events that unfolded this year. 

Aleksangel / iStock.com

Vermont’s state government is contemplating at least $1 billion of information technology projects in the coming years. The wish list is long, and some projects — even important ones — are likely to stay on it for a long time.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

If you’ve had a medical appointment lately, you’ve probably seen your provider peering at your medical history on a computer. Many doctors and patients are happy that paper records are giving way to digital information. But there are concerns that electronic health records can be hacked, and that physicians are now spending too much time with computers and not enough with patients. 

Angela Evancie / VPR/file

More than two-thirds of the problematic phosphorus overload in Lake Champlain comes from Vermont. To clean up its act the state recently signed Act 64, the Vermont Clean Water Act. It tackles runoff coming from sources varying from roofs and roads to forests and farms.

Steve Zind / VPR

Statistics abound of families plunged into economic hardship. The reasons are many: Bad luck, bad choices or a bad economy. In their case, Pat Keogh and his wife Cathleen Branon-Keogh found themselves struggling to get by despite their best efforts.

Angela Evancie / VPR/file

Each year, VPR collaborates with the Vermont Humanities Council for "Vermont Reads," a statewide reading program. This year, people around Vermont are reading and discussing Haroun and the Sea of Stories by acclaimed author Salman Rushdie.

Daniel Fishel for VPR

The student population in Vermont is trending decidedly downward. Since peaking at 107,000 students in 1997, the number of students in the Green Mountain State has fallen to around 88,000 today.

Yet, it's been pointed out that the number of teachers and staff in the state remains the same. While some small schools have closed over the last few years, many are still operating with fewer and fewer students.

Looking back at history taught before the 1970s, the stories of men who ruled the world were what mattered. Unless you were a queen and ruled an empire, you didn’t fit into the military, economic, social and political history being taught in schools across the globe. The stories of less prominent women were simply thought to be worth less.

Aaron Shrewsbury

As the Vermont Legislature works to overcome a $100 million budget gap for fiscal year 2016, one of its largest fiscal liabilities remains outside the reach of the annual budget bill. The state gives up about $1 billion in tax breaks annually through policies that have remained largely unchanged in recent years, even as lawmakers struggle to balance budgets.


Photos courtesy Peter Brown, Ariel Brooks, Alex Shevrin, Dan Marchetti, Ben Bonaccio and Maureen McElaney

For VPR's Choosing Vermont series, young professionals from across the state shared their thoughts on living in (or leaving) Vermont. Eight voices were heard on-air, but countless more wrote in to tell us their stories.

We asked that interviewees simply share their individual experiences. We followed up the series with a conversation with Economic Development Commissioner Lisa Gosselin.


Beginning June 28th, VPR presents a five week series of State Of The Re:Union, Saturdays at 1 p.m. Our regularly scheduled program, Spark, is on summer hiatus. State of the Re:Union, hosted by Al Letson, takes us to American cities to meet the people, explore the culture and find out what makes their community unique.  During this series, State of the Re:Union goes to places that we may have a predetermined vision of to find out what they are really like. 

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Fewer than half of the state's preschoolers are ready for kindergarten, according to a recent report. So the state of Vermont is trying to prepare them better. 

Holiday Specials

May 23, 2014
flickr: maf04 /8829571358

Our broadcast of Storytellers on a Mission on May 26th was cut off at the end due to human error with our computer system. We apologize for this error. Attached is the audio for his story, "Love Affair With "Mother-In-Law in two parts.

VPR presents two special programs on Memorial Day.  Teenage Diaries Revisted at noon and Storytellers On A Mission at 7 p.m.

Angela Evancie / VPR

Vermont's Department for Children and Families has come under intense scrutiny following the death in February of 2-year-old Dezirae Sheldon.

Library of Congress

The names of the places around us often tell the unique story of Vermont’s history. Our guide is Vermont Place Names: Footprints of History, by Esther Munroe Swift.

LAMOILLE-Eden

Swift wrote the town “was chartered to some of the Green Mountain Boys’ officers and men and to the heirs of other men who had been killed during the revolution. …The town was chartered to the veterans in the hope that it would be a post-war Eden for them; however as far as can be ascertained, none of them ever settled there.”

In recognition of Women's History Month, VPR again collaborated with the Vermont Commission on Women in March, 2014, to present a series of stories about women from our region who achieved significant success in the arts.

We heard from women who are notable in their own right about innovators and trail blazers in the fine arts, from writers to painters, and designers to photographers.

Jupiterimages / Thinkstock

There are many different aspects to the drug problem in Vermont, but perhaps none is more challenging – and emotional – than the issue of addiction and pregnant women.


AP Photo

Martin Luther King, Jr. grew up listening to and singing church songs, and saw gospel and folk music as natural tools to further the civil rights movement.

In this hour-long special from WQXR and WNYC, "A Beautiful Symphony of Brotherhood: A Musical Journey in the Life of Martin Luther King, Jr.," host Terrance McKnight interweaves musical examples with Dr. King's own speeches and sermons to illustrate the powerful place that music held in his work. He also examines how the musical community responded to and participated in Dr. King's cause.

Flickr: benchilada 2467405983

There's been a spotlight on Vermont's mental health care system since Tropical Storm Irene slammed into Vermont and flooded the Vermont State Hospital in Waterbury. All of the patients at the hospital had to be evacuated immediately and the facility was never reopened. The State Hospital had been funded entirely by state dollars for most of the last decade after safety and security issues caused the federal government to pull its certification. "Let's be candid," says Governor Peter Shumlin, "it was a dump. And we should have been out of there years and years ago."

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