Illinois Youth Media

800 Miles from Ground Zero: 9/11’s Impact on Central Illinois


800 Miles from Ground Zero: 9/11's Impact on Central Illinois is a four-part podcast series that documents how people currently living in the Champaign-Urbana (CU), IL area experienced September 11, 2001. Uni High School students collected perspectives from community members who lived in CU, New York, and Washington on 9/11/01, members of the local Muslim community, veterans who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan, university experts and anti-war activists to uncover how 9/11 influenced our understanding of U.S. foreign policy, our local efforts at “homeland security,” and how those efforts both divided and brought a nation together.

Episode Descriptions:

Part 1:  7:46 CST

The first plane hit the World Trade Center in NYC at 7:46 CST.  This episode takes listeners back to the day of September 11, 2001, and the weeks following. We hear from a variety of people currently living in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois who recount their experiences during a time that horrified, traumatized, and brought together a nation.

Part 2: The Frontlines: War and Protest After 9/11 (9/18/30 release date)

The events of 9/11 led to America intervening in the Middle East through the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Despite having strong support when they first started, the wars resulted in intense controversies throughout America. This episode features multiple veterans, anti-war activists, and experts to understand the different perspectives on the post-9/11 wars.

Part 3: Liberty vs. Security: Domestic Policy Post 9/11 (9/24/23 release date)

This episode discusses the different ways in which the United States as a whole changed, and includes information about the PATRIOT Act, new flight and travel regulations, and homeland security. 

Part 4: Whispering As-salaamu Alaikum (10/2/23 release date)

This episode focuses on how 9/11 impacted the lives of Muslims across the country and locally in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. We cover the struggles that many Muslims experienced due to 9/11 and how they have overcome these challenges and continue to thrive in America today.