The 21st Show

Stories of Survival at the IL Holocaust Museum; Higher Ed Enrollment; Illinois Population Shrinking


Niala Boodhoo/Illinois Public Media

On the 21st: We pay a visit to the Illinois Holocaust Museum and a new exhibit called "Stories of Survival.” Plus, we talk about public universities that were hit hard by the budget crisis that lasted more than two years. Are they finally bouncing back when it comes to student enrollment? But first, we revisit a conversation about what's behind the slow but steady population decline in Illinois.

The Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Skokie has a new exhibit called “Stories of Survival.”

It features photographs of objects with special meaning to people who were imprisoned not just in Nazi concentration camps, but other genocides throughout the 20th and 21st century. These are personal items, often mundane (clothes, toys, notes, and more) but each tell a story.

How do you remember the past? How do you overcome it? And how do you move forward?

Arielle Weininger, chief curator, shard her thoughts as she led Niala on a tour of the museum, which is just northwest of Chicago.

We also spoke with one of the exhibit participants Mike Causevic, a survivor of the genocide in Bosnia-Herzegovina.


Over the past several years, most public universities across Illinois have seen a decline in enrollment.  According to the state’s Board of Higher Education, Illinois is the number two exporter of college students behind only New Jersey.

The numbers this fall are more encouraging at least for two universities, U of I, our biggest campus, and Eastern Illinois University in Charleston.

Ryan Denham has been reporting on this issue. He’s the digital content director at WGLT in Bloomington-Normal, one of our partner stations. He joined us on the line to talk about winners and losers in higher education enrollment.


In 2016, the population in Illinois decreased by more than 37,000, which is more than any other state. You’ve probably seen the headlines about how much our state has been slowly losing residents. There are some popular explanations out there for this: everything from taxes that are too high to regulations that are too unfriendly for businesses and to a pension system that’s overrun with debt.

But, we wanted to know when it comes to people leaving Illinois if the numbers match all the excitement? Or have we become a little too “the sky is falling” about this issue.

The Better Government Association has been reporting on this. This past summer we spoke with their Senior Editor Bob Sector about whether politicians were right that taxesare the main reason people are leaving Illinois.

Rob Paral, a fellow in the Global Cities Program of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, also shared his insight with us on the issue.

Story source: WILL