Local News

Lead pollution in Indiana

2 hours ago
Aleksei Simonenko/Unsplash

Today we learn about a number of projects aimed at fighting lead pollution in Indiana.

We hear from experts at IUPUI, Indiana University and Notre Dame to find out what they're doing to address it, why the federal government isn’t doing more, and what’s at stake.

Produced by Drew Daudelin.


Friday recap

Oct 22, 2021
Jonathan Farber/Unsplash

Today we revisit a few of the most interesting topics we covered this week, including a preview of the next season of the ¿Qué Pasa, Midwest? podcast, systemic issues getting attention in the world of professional baseball, and the many ways people define success.

Produced by Mariam Sobh.


Mareea Thomas
Director of Digital Media, WNIN

Harry Marino
Executive Director, Advocates for Minor Leaguers

Kieran Lovegrove
Career Minor League Pitcher, Rocket City Trash Pandas in Alabama

Gemma DiCarlo/WVPE

The real estate group that owns Elkhart’s Concord Mall is being ordered to pay almost $7 million dollars in unpaid expenses. 

How we define success

Oct 18, 2021
Lindsay Henwood/Unsplash

How do you define success? Is it how much money you make? Graduating at the top of your class? Being a good parent?

Today we talk about success, how to define it for yourself, and the relationship success has with happiness and fulfillment.

Produced by Micah Yason.


Gabrielle Wyatt
Founder, The Highland Project

Joe Holt
James E. Jack Teaching Professor of Business Ethics at the Mendoza College of Business, University of Notre Dame

Justin Hicks/IPB News

Two people have now been charged in a South Bend shooting that involved a 4-year-old child. 


On Tuesday, Oct. 5, officers responded to an incident in the 1100 block of Queen Street where a child had been shot in the foot. An emaciated dog was also found at the scene.


The child’s mother and her boyfriend have both been charged with Level 3 and6 felonies for neglect of a dependent. The mother has also been charged with two Class A misdemeanors –  assisting a criminal and animal cruelty.


Duncan C/Flickr

The COVID-19 pandemic is an incredibly complex, historic event, and since it began many historians have been looking back, to learn what they can from similar catastrophic events in our past.

Today we go back to the Middle Ages to learn about the bubonic plague, also known as the Black Death, to find out what impact it had on labor markets at the time and what it can tell us about what we’re experiencing today.

Jakob Lazzaro / WVPE

Michiana firefighters and EMS workers are getting some hands-on training on handling railroad accidents involving hazardous materials this week after Norfolk Southern’s training train made a stop in the company’s Elkhart yard on Tuesday.

Matt Cashore/University of Notre Dame

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito spoke in defense of the court’s emergency docket at the University of Notre Dame Thursday. 

City of South Bend

South Bend is holding a series of neighborhood planning workshops for the Kennedy Park and Rum Village neighborhoods this October.

In a news release, the city said residents will be able to provide feedback and input on topics such as housing, infrastructure, land use and amenities during two visioning workshops.

Those will be followed by a priorities workshop for each neighborhood that will determine important projects, policies and programs. Responses will be used to develop the Kennedy Park and Rum Village neighborhood plans.

Gemma DiCarlo/WVPE

Back in August, the South Bend Common Council passed a resolution to explore an updated comprehensive plan for the city’s west side. Community leaders held a town hall Tuesday to discuss what needs to be in that plan.

Justin Hicks / IPB News

For the month of September, we're bringing you stories of workers across Indiana, about what they do and how they find meaning in their jobs. This week, Indiana Public Broadcasting’s Justin Hicks profiles Dexter Loftin, a friction welder at Manufacturing Technology Inc. in South Bend. Dexter started working there through a prison re-entry program. 

Gemma DiCarlo/WVPE

Since the 1970s, Hotel Elkhart has served as an assisted living facility, low-income apartments, an office building and more. But as of Tuesday, the newly-renovated building is back in business as a boutique hotel.

Captured via YouTube / NBC's The Voice

A local South Bend band has advanced into the competition on the NBC singing reality show The Voice. Girl Named Tom is made up of three siblings — Caleb, Joshua and Bekah Liechty.

During the Monday night premiere of The Voice’s twenty-first season, the acoustic pop trio performed Crosby, Stills & Nash's "Helplessly Hoping” in a blind audition where show’s celebrity judges listen to the performance while facing the audience.

Gemma DiCarlo/WVPE

Purdue University President Mitch Daniels paid a visit to South Bend’s Purdue Polytechnic High School Thursday. 

Provided by WNDU

U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona praised the efforts of educators and focused on the importance of masks to keep schools open as he visited classrooms in northern Indiana Wednesday. The stops in Elkhart and South Bend were part of a multi-state bus tour across the Midwest, highlighting the return to in-person school.

The U.S. saw more than 400,000 extra deaths in 2020 compared to the previous two years. Much of this excess death was caused by COVID-19. But new research from the University of Notre Dame suggests that around 15 percent of these deaths are not directly related to the virus.

Gemma DiCarlo/WVPE

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas gave the 2021 Tocqueville Lecture at the University of Notre Dame Thursday. Thomas is only the second Black justice appointed to the court and is currently its longest-serving justice.

WVPE Photo of the Week

Sep 16, 2021
Sam Lima

 This is our gorgeous WVPE Photo of the Week. It's called 'Hidden Heron' from Sam Lima in South Bend.  The picture was taken from a kayak with Twyckenham Bridge in the background.  If you would like to share, email your pics to photo@wvpe.com. Your entry could be selected as the next WVPE Photo of the Week.  


WVPE is a proud media sponsor of the South Bend Symphony - now  presenting Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings. Plus works by Montgomery and Neiman with two concerts at Notre Dame’s DeBartolo Performing Arts Center Saturday evening September 25th at 7:30 and Sunday afternoon September 26th at 2:30. Find out more and get tickets at SouthBendSymphony.org   


City of Elkhart

The Elkhart Common Council dedicated $6.6 million in federal COVID-19 relief funding to two city infrastructure projects at its meeting Sept. 13. 


The first project, estimated to cost $3.6 million, will install new water and storm sewer mains in the area of Lasalle Street, McKinley Avenue and Benham Avenue. 


Gemma DiCarlo / WVPE Public Radio

Several thousand Michiana residents were left without power following Tuesday’s severe thunderstorms.


As of 8:45 p.m. Tuesday, Indiana Michigan Power had 6,090 customers without power. About half of those customers were in the Three Rivers area, which saw almost 2,900 outages.


Almost 1,600 customers lost power in the Elkhart area and over 1,100 in the Benton Harbor area. I&M did not have an estimate for restoration Tuesday night.


The St. Joseph County Department of Health is warning Michiana residents to guard against mosquito-borne diseases this Labor Day weekend.

Though there have been no human cases so far, the health department says the West Nile virus has been detected in Mishawaka, Osceola, South Bend, Clay and Penn Townships and Elkhart County, as well as in Berrien and Cass Counties in Michigan. 


Health officials say Eastern Equine Encephalitis has also been detected in lower Michigan –– though again, no human cases have been reported.

Jakob Lazzaro / WVPE


An Elkhart police officer shot and killed a man Friday morning who police say was suspected of shooting and killing a toddler a few minutes earlier. Elkhart police say they responded to a report of a shooting with injuries at 514 West High Street at 10:22 a.m. on Friday.

Princeton University Eviction Lab

Judy Fox is a University of Notre Dame law professor and directs the school’s Economic Justice Clinic. She’s represented low-income clients on eviction cases for more than two decades but said now is the worst she’s ever seen.

(Jeanie Lindsay/IPB News)

Starting Thursday, masks will be mandatory for students, staff and visitors at all Elkhart Community Schools. The ECS school board approved the mandate Tuesday in a 4-3 vote. 

Sheila Muhammad tested positive for HIV more than 30 years ago and her life quickly changed. But as the years passed, attitudes and treatments of HIV changed.

Muhammad spoke with Side Effects Public Media's Darian Benson about the power in education and understanding of the virus. A transcript of Muhammad's comments is below.

“My name is Sheila Mohammed I'm 57 years old. I have three children and seven grandchildren and four great.


South Bend city officials gave their first overview of the city’s 2022 budget at a personnel and finance committee meeting Wednesday evening. 

The city proposed a total budget of $382.1 million dollars, not counting any federal funds from the American Rescue Plan. $305.6 million of that would go to baseline spending –– what the city needs to operate –– and the remaining $76.5 million would go to strategic spending, or what the city spends to improve residents’ quality of life.


Gemma DiCarlo/WVPE News

Updated 2:15 p.m. Friday, Aug. 13.

Several days of severe weather this week left thousands across Michiana without power. At the peak of the storms, more than 15,000 households and businesses in the Elkhart area lost power. 


Elkhart County Emergency Management Director Jennifer Tobey says severe weather is normal this time of year, but the series of storms and accompanying extreme heat complicated cleanup and restoration efforts. 


South Bend Department of Public Works

South Bend utility rates will rise over the next five years following a common council decision Monday night. However, not all rates will rise immediately, and none will rise this year.

Justin Hicks / IPB News

The trend towards youth apprenticeships in Indiana is continuing despite challenges from the pandemic as a program in northern Indiana recently received $500,000 to continue paid career training for high schoolers.