Austin Population Outgrowing Infrastructure

Austin, Texas is currently one of the fastest growing major cities in the country. Economically, they are growing at an average rate of 6% despite the 2008 financial crisis. In addition, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas also found that Austin has consistently reported an unemployment rate lower than the national average.
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In 2018, The Number of Illinois Breweries Reached an All-time High

By Alex Fashandi

According to data sourced from, Illinois has a total of 229 craft breweries within the state. The Brewers Association, a non- profit organization dedicated to promoting and protecting American craft breweries, has been tracking the growth of Illinois’ craft beer industry since in terms of both production and sales since it’s inception.
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CPD Made 510 Theft Arrests Last Month

By Alex Fashandi

In September of 2019, 5,353 thefts were reported to the Chicago Police Department. Of the over 5,000 reported crimes, only 510 resulted in arrests. According to data from the Chicago data portal, theft has been the largest reported criminal in the city since 2001. A total of 1.48 millions thefts have been reported since the portal began collecting data in 2001, but only 175 thousand arrests have been made. In addition to this disproportion, arrests do not indicate any follow through was made in prosecuting the crime.

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Kamala Surges After Debates, Turkey Distracts From Impeachment

By Alex Fashandi

Following the October 2019 presidential democratic debate, California senator, Kamala Harris trended much higher than her political opponents but does this signify that she did well in the debate?

Unfortunately for Sen. Harris a lot of the online talk like this report from the National Review would suggest that the rise in Kamala Harris searches on Google can be attributed to a very disappointing debate performance. Trevor Noah called her debate strategy of calling for the ban of President Trump’s Twitter account “weird.”

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Milwaukee leads 2019 NBA season

By Alex Fashandi

The 2018-19 season which ended back in June was fiercely led by the Milwaukee Bucks. The team had a very respectable record of 60 wins and only 22 losses.

An article published by the Buck’s community led site, Brewhoop, gives us a couple possible explanations for the team’s lead. It could be the addition of San Antonio native Wesley Matthews who previously has been done well with teams like the Knicks, the Pacers, and the Maverick. Another possibility that the article mentions is the tutelage of the team’s new head coach, Mike Budenholzer.
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Chicago Pride Parade Attendance Skyrockets After 2010

By Alex Fashandi

An analysis of the estimated attendance of the Chicago Pride Parade between the years of 1985-2014 show us just how massive this event has become. The data shows that following the year 2010, the number of parade attendees has grown exponentially. In the years between 1985-2010 the estimated attendance grew from 35,500 to 450,000. While that might seem like a large increase that is an increase of 16,600 people per year which is minor compared to the 137,500 increase per year between 2010-2014.

graphic created with the help of Datawrapper

Here is a link to an interactive version of the graph.

A reflection on the recent UIC Grad Student Strike

By Abi Carlson and Alex Fashandi

On March 19, more than 1,500 University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) graduate and teaching assistants walked out of their classes in retaliation to the board failing to meet their requests for increased salaries, healthcare coverage, and decrease in administration fees.

The results of the strike, which was settled April 5 put a halt to hundreds of UIC classes for three weeks as professors were unable to teach without the help of their TA’s. This left students uncertain about what the strike meant for their future in the class.

After 31 bargaining sessions since March 2018, including nine while the GEO was on strike, the UIC administration and the GEO reached an agreement; is an $815 retroactive raise that graduate employees will see as early as their May paychecks, an overall increase of $2,550 over the next three years, a 50% reduction of the international student fee, and a reduction in healthcare fees from $295/month to $240/month for this year.

Following the successful end of the GEO strike, UIC administration faced the possibility of another walkout, this time from its professors. After a year of unsuccessful contract negotiations, UIC faculty was set to take over their TA’s picket line spot on April 23. The fear of another strike prompted the administration to act quickly and grant its faculty an increase in their salaries, as well as greater job protections for non-tenure track faculty.

“I am particularly excited about new policy protections for our Non-Tenure System faculty, who are integral to the teaching, research and service at UIC. This contract represents significant wins in an ongoing fight for the resources needed to fulfill UIC’s mission,” said Janet Smith, UICUF president.

An interactive timeline of the entire negotiation process can be found here.

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