9:16 am
Mon March 2, 2015

Ready Or Not, Students, New Florida Exam Is Here

The new Florida Standards Assessments begin today. Most students will take the exam online, though some students will take a paper and pencil version of the writing exam
Credit Extra Ketchup / Flickr

At Miami’s iPrep Academy, getting ready for the state’s new standardized test includes rapping.

Two students are recording the daily announcements, telling classmates when and where they need to be starting today.

“Monday is ninth graders, with last name A to G,” one student raps, in a rhyme that’s no threat to Miami’s Rick Ross.

“On Tuesday, it’s ninth graders with last name H through Z,” his partner continues.

“All testing is in room 2 – 0 – 4!” they conclude together, Beastie Boys-style.

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StoryCorps: Tampa Bay
8:00 am
Mon March 2, 2015

StoryCorps Tampa Bay: "Cause You're a Girl'

Carol and C.J. Albernathy shared their story in the StoryCorps booth in St. Petersburg in 2014.

In this installment of StoryCorps Tampa Bay, Carol Albernathy talks about overcoming inconveniences and challenges in college and at law school because she was a woman. She attended Stetson University in the 1950s and later law school in the ‘70s.

  Carol Albernathy’s advice for women today is, “don’t put up with any crap."


“It's a Man's Man's World” by Etta James from the album, All the Way.

This week's StoryCorps Tampa Bay was produced by Yoselis Ramos.

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9:52 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

Not So Fast, Jamestown: St. Augustine Was Here First

Park Ranger Mike Evans at the Castillo de San Marcos says the Spanish were roping cattle and pruning their citrus groves in St. Augustine before the British even set sail for Jamestown.
Peter Haden NPR

Originally published on Sat February 28, 2015 10:40 am

Clyde and Corrita Warner came to St. Augustine on vacation from Louisville, Ky. They know their history.

"Well, I knew that this started before the pilgrims landed and before Jamestown," says Corrita. "You know, this area was first."

St. Augustine treasures being the first — and oldest — city in the United States. So when the area around Jamestown, Va., adopted the title "America's First Region" a while back, the gloves came off.

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The Two-Way
12:23 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

ISS Spacewalkers Perform Tricky Cable, Antenna, Installation

Astronaut Terry Virts points to his helmet as he sits inside the International Space Station on Wednesday.

Originally published on Sun March 1, 2015 9:35 am

Astronauts at the International Space Station have ventured outside to perform a challenging cable installation on their orbiting platform.

Spacewalkers Terry Virts and Butch Wilmore have 400 feet of cable to install as well as two sets of antennas.

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12:04 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

Adjunct Faculty Demand More Pay, Security

Eric Webb-Fiske asks students to sign a petition, calling for better wages and more security for adjunct faculty.
Credit Daylina Miller / WUSF News

On Wednesday, Eric Webb-Fiske canceled two classes to participate in National Adjunct Walkout Day.

Webb-Fiske, an adjunct instructor at Hillsborough Community College and a graduate assistant at USF, stood in front of USF's Marshall Student Center, trying to get students to sign a petition that calls for better pay and more security for adjunct faculty. 

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12:02 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

Volunteers Reach Out to Homeless Youth

Jeremiah Kerr and Nicole Marchman contact homeless youth
Credit Quincy Walters / WUSF News

On Thursday, Hillsborough County conducted its annual homeless count. Volunteers canvassed neighborhoods in an effort to get a better picture of the homeless population.

The Ybor Youth Clinic focused on an often unnoticed demographic: homeless youth. 

At 8 p.m., in a room of the YMCA on East Palm Avenue in Tampa, the Clinic's volunteers were on phones, looking for anyone under 25 without a home. 

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10:23 am
Sun March 1, 2015

To Curb Bear Population, Florida Reinstates Hunting Season

This black bear was spotted atop a tree in Tampa, Fla., on May 17, 2013. The bear population has been on the rise, so state wildlife officials are calling for a bear hunting season.
Skip O'Rourke MCT /Landov

Originally published on Sat February 28, 2015 6:39 pm

For the first time in two decades, Florida officials have scheduled a bear hunting season. It's a response to a rise in bear attacks — but it has some environmentalists upset.

Experts say there's plenty of room for humans and black bears to co-exist, but the smell of food is pulling the animals out of the woods and into neighborhoods.

If you want to understand the situation, take a trip to Franklin County, in the pandhandle. A few months ago, a bear attacked a teenager there while she walked her dog near a convenience store.

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2:55 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

He Was, And Will Always Be, Our Friend: Remembering Leonard Nimoy

While Leonard Nimoy became famous as Star Trek's Mr. Spock, he was conflicted about the role. He later came to embrace it. He's shown here with actor William Shatner as Captain James T. Kirk.
Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 8:13 pm

In 1966, when Leonard Nimoy was offered a minor role on a new space drama, he was thrilled. As he told Archive of American Television: "You have to understand that prior to Star Trek I never had a job that lasted longer than two weeks in any TV show or movie. Never. Two weeks — max. And here I was, looking at a season of work."

The actor beloved for his role as the pointy-eared half-human, half-Vulcan died of lung disease at his home in Los Angeles on Friday. He was 83.

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Off The Base
7:46 am
Fri February 27, 2015

Meet the 53rd Brigade NCO of the Year

SSG Aidana Baez with the 53rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team.
Bobbie O'Brien WUSF Public Media

The top Non-Commissioned Officers from the Florida Army National Guard this weekend are at Camp Blanding vying for the title of “Florida NCO of the year.”

It is two days of physical competitions, weapons and skills contests, a six-mile “ruck” march and tests on Army regulations.

Representing the 53rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, headquartered in Pinellas Park, is Staff Sergeant Aidana Baez. She won NCO competitions at the company level and  battalion level to earn the top brigade honor.

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7:37 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

In Video: The Great Llama Drama Of 2015

A pair of llamas were on the run in Sun City, Ariz., for about an hour.
Fox 46 via YouTube

Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 6:28 pm

A pair of llamas on the loose in Sun City, Ariz., riveted the nation this afternoon.

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Law & Order
12:24 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

St. Pete Water Main Break Damages Building, Closes Central Avenue

The large hole at 670 Central Avenue has damaged a business and has closed traffic on Central Avenue.
St. Petersburg Police

A water main break in St. Petersburg caused the partial collapse of a downtown building Thursday morning, Bay News 9 reported.

The break in the 12-inch transmission line was noticed about 10 p.m. Wednesday night when water flooded streets near the building on Central Avenue, said Steve Lawrence, St. Pete Fire Rescue Deputy Fire Marshall.

Crews worked throughout the night worked to excavate soil down to the leak itself, but water wasn’t shut off immediately to prevent contamination to the water supply from dirt and debris, according to Bay News 9.

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NPR Story
8:04 am
Thu February 26, 2015

Billions at Stake as State, Feds Negotiate Medicaid

Wikimedia Commons

Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 8:02 am

When the 2015 legislative session begins next week, many of the state’s decisions on health care for the poor are on hold as state and federal Medicaid officials negotiate over funding, behind closed doors. Billions of dollars are at stake.

When it comes to health-care funding, Florida’s in a funny position. The state has twice turned down billions of dollars from federal Medicaid that would have covered care for about a million poor Floridians.

This year may be no different.

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Health News Florida
8:03 am
Thu February 26, 2015

Rep. Hudson on Medicaid Expansion: No!

Rep. Matt Hudson

Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 12:03 am

Florida business groups, insurers, and hospitals are pushing state officials to accept billions of dollars in federal funds to cover the low-income uninsured.

But when the 2015 legislative session opens next Tuesday, this impressive coalition will run into Rep. Matt Hudson, a Naples Republican who chairs the Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee.

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World Affairs
1:59 am
Thu February 26, 2015

St. Pete Conference Takes On World Affairs

2014 St. Petersburg Conference on World Affairs panelist Joseph Ofori-Dankwa discusses African issues with Conference committee member Irma Bridgeford.
Credit St. Petersburg Conference on World Affairs

Some of the major international issues of the day - Cuba, Russia, Syria, terrorism and immigration - will be among the topics of discussion at a Saint Petersburg conference that's drawing experts from around the world to the Tampa Bay area.

The Saint Petersburg Conference on World Affairs takes place Thursday, February 26, through Saturday, February 28 at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg University Student Center.

Almost forty panelists, including 1986 Nobel Prize winner for Literature and expert on Nigerian democracy Wole Soyinka, along with diplomats, academics and military experts will share ideas and information during 16 free panel sessions.

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9:43 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

PolitiFact Florida on Rubio and an Eckerd Professor

It's looking more and more like Florida's Junior U.S. Senator is planning to run for president next year. Recently he traveled to West Des Moines, Iowa and spoke on radio station WHO.  As part of that discussion, Sen. Marco Rubio said that ISIS is now the "predominant Islamist group in Benghazi." 

The PolitiFact Florida team investigated this statement and determined that what he said was "mostly false" on the Truth-o-Meter.  According to Josh Gillin of Politifact Florida, "no one is in charge of Libya's second-largest city."

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