Green in the City

About us

Welcome to “Green in the City,” a five-week environmental journalism reporting academy for high school students. This is our multimedia site.

We have examined the lingering evidence of environmental racism—from food deserts in Englewood to the effects of pollution on urban neighborhoods such as Altgeld Gardens and Little Village.

After taking the “toxic tours” and interviewing those most affected, we highlight here some of the heroes of those communities and what they have done to reverse and alleviate the damages.

You will find stories about urban gardens that have cropped up throughout the city as educational tools and food resources.

We cannot live without water but that most essential source of life has been compromised. We recount a threat to Lake Michigan waters and explain the dangers of the plastic bottles we drink from.

As young environmental journalists, we have told the stories in various forms. We have taken our own photos and videos.

This site reflects our work covering this beat. This is what it means to be green in the city during the summer of 2009.





Bushra Kabir, Northside College Prep

Bri'anna Moore, Waukegan High School

Managing editors

Brenda Becerra, Curie High School

Amairani Galvan, Farragut Career Academy

Photo editors

Jasmine Johnson, Homewood-Flossmoor High School

Kimani Smith, Noble Street College Prep

Multimedia editors

LeJohn Montgomery, Hales Franciscan High School

Morgan Selvage, King College Prep

Contributing reporters

Carissa A. Eclarin, Schurz High School

Vivianna Galvan, Farragut Career Academy

Daniela Jurado, Farragut Career Academy

Safiya Merchant, Lane Tech High School

Demetria Taylor, Lindblom Math and Science Academy

Chad Wilson, Lindblom Math and Science Academy

Professional staff
Nancy Day, chair, Journalism Department, Columbia College

Workshop director:
Brenda Butler, media specialist and former Chicago Tribune senior features editor

Rui Kaneya, managing editor, The Chicago Reporter

Maudlyne Ihejirika, assistant city editor, Chicago Sun-Times

Charlie Meyerson, former Chicago Tribune online editor, now WGN-AM news director

Billy Montgomery, reporter, photographer, professor, Columbia College

Lynn Norment, former Ebony Magazine managing editor, now media relations specialist, Carol H. Williams Agency

Antonio Olivo, immigration reporter, Chicago Tribune

Nancy Traver, professor and writing coach, Columbia College

Avis Weathersbee, former Chicago Sun-Times assistant managing editor, now blogger and writer/editor

Cassandra West, former Womanews editor, Chicago Tribune, now writer and photographer

Mike Zajakowski, picture editor, Chicago Tribune

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