Shavonne’s Year

Shavonne Cole—a junior in Media and Cinema Studies at the College of Media at Illinois—documents her life during a pandemic, living and working on campus while attending classes virtually for our new American Portrait | Central Illinois series installment, Shavonne's Year. Join us for new episodes Sundays at 6 pm on Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube.

New reporting series from Illinois Newsroom

boots sits by chair text says risking it all illinois newsroom

For over a year, Illinois Public Media reporters Dana Cronin and Christine Herman have been tracking the pandemic's toll on Illinois farmworkers. This Hispanic Heritage Month, explore their reporting in the ongoing Illinois Newsroom series, "Risking it All".

left: Sinclair Broadcasting, upper right: News-Gazette building in Champaign, lower right: WCIA-TV studio in Champaign

Associated Press, Jim Meadows/Illinois Public Media, WCIA-TV

The 21st Show - October 26, 2021

Who owns local newspapers and TV newsrooms?

As part of our weeklong "Who's In Charge of The News?" special series, we're focusing on the few companies that own TV stations and newspapers in downstate Illinois.

Front entrance of the now vacant News-Gazette building in downtown Champaign. The newspaper downsized and moved to a smaller building, following its acquisition in 2019 by Community Media Group. The downtown building was sold separately.

Jim Meadows/Illinois Newsroom

The 217 Today Podcast - October 26, 2021

217 Today: Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2021

In today's deep dive, we'll hear Illinois Newsroom’s Jim Meadows speak with a Northwestern professor who researches areas with a shortage of news coverage.

A gauge shows the rate of papers being printed at The State Journal-Register in Springfield on Feb. 28, 2011. It was the last local run of the SJ-R — after that, the parent company dismantled the press and moved printing operations to Peoria, one of the early cost-cutting moves in what would be a decade of reductions.

Brian Mackey

The 21st Show - October 25, 2021

What a shrinking newspaper costs a community

Some version of the newspaper known today as The State-Journal Register has been published in Springfield and Sangamon County since 1831, but today, The newspaper of today is a shadow of what it once was. Today on the program, we talk about what's lost when a community sees its newspaper shrinks.

In August, a newspaper rack at the Casey's convenience store in downtown Paxton displayed copies of Ford County's two competing newspapers, the Record and the Chronicle.

Jim Meadows/Illinois Newsroom

The 217 Today Podcast - October 25, 2021

217 Today: Monday, Oct. 25, 2021

In today's deep dive, we'll look at two newspapers in Ford County-- one that just started last year, and another that ended publication last month.

The 21st Show - October 24, 2021

Coming October 25: Who’s in charge of the news?

Next week: The 21st is talking about news deserts, news ownership, and news literacy in Illinois. Share your concerns about local news by leaving us a voicemail at 217.300.2121 or emailing

Rochelle Sennet, a University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign professor of piano, paired suites by J.S. Bach with those by several Black composers for her “Bach to Black” project.

Darrell Hoemann

The 21st Show - October 21, 2021

Bach to Black: Making classical music appreciation more inclusive

Bach to Black is a new project from a University of Illinois professor and pianist that pairs Johann Sebastian Bach's music with works written by Black composers. It's designed to bridge divides in the music community and increase diversity and inclusion in classical music. 

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