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Economic Opportunity and Student Debate Advice: Wednesday’s Show (September 21, 2016)

All this week, NPR and public radio stations nationwide are taking part in this week’s A Nation Engaged project which asks, “What can we do to create economic opportunity for more Americans?” On this edition of Houston Matters, we turn the question towards economic opportunity here in Greater Houston. First, Michael Hagerty talks with Bill Gilmer, Director of […]

All this week, NPR and public radio stations nationwide are taking part in this week’s A Nation Engaged project which asks, “What can we do to create economic opportunity for more Americans?”

On this edition of Houston Matters, we turn the question towards economic opportunity here in Greater Houston. First, Michael Hagerty talks with Bill Gilmer, Director of the Institute for Regional Forecasting at the University of Houston’s Bauer College of Business about Greater Houston’s role in creating economic opportunity for more Americans, and what economic sectors offer those opportunities here in the region now and in the coming years.

Then, we discuss economic opportunities in Greater Houston from three perspectives, as we talk with: Patrick Jankowski, Greater Houston Partnership’s Senior Vice President of Research; Laura Perez-Boston, Harris County Campaign Director for the Texas Organizing Project; and Ghulam Kehar, founder and CEO of Amaanah Refugee Services. We’ll talk about how that economic opportunity can manifest itself for Houstonians in different ways: by lifting up those who live below the poverty line, by supporting refugees after their initial resettlement, and by enticing corporate relocations and spurring start-ups.

Also this hour:

Houston High School and College Debaters’ Advice for Presidential Candidates

On Monday night, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will square off in the first general election presidential debate of 2016. And media outlets, including NPR, are seeking out professional political analysts and pundits to share how they would prepare the candidates. Well, we here at Houston Matters thought we’d go another way: we turn to some high school and college debate students and coaches to learn how the debates they do work, how they differ from the sorts of political debates that we see on TV, and, yes, we give them a chance to advise the candidates. We talk with Richard Garner, Interim Director on the Policy Speech and Debate Team at the University of Houston, Rice University speech and debate team member Vera Ranneft, and Dikla Taylor, a member of the debate team at Lamar High School.

Exploring What’s Behind the Decline of the Monarch Butterfly

Former First Lady Laura Bush is calling on Texans to improve the habitat for monarch butterflies. Mrs. Bush founded a statewide initiative called Texan by Nature, a community-run conservation effort. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is currently studying the monarch to determine if it should be listed under the Endangered Species Act. By some estimates, the migrating population has dropped by as much as 90 percent over the last two decades. Houston Matters’ Maggie Martin visits with Dr. Nancy Greig at the Cockrell Butterfly Center at the Houston Museum of Natural Science to learn what’s behind the decline.

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