News

WIU Acknowledged for Arts, Creativity

WIU Acknowledged for Arts, Creativity

Photo: Newsradio WTAX

Macomb is a creative place.

The director of the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs, Chris Merrett, says the hometown of Western Illinois University – where his institute is based – rates highly on the “creative class index.”

“It can have an artisanal aspect to it, value-added agriculture, local foods,” says Merrett in explaining what about Macomb may stand out. But the factors Merrett cited have been around for generations; they are by no means new, though the way of looking at them may be. “We know there are many parts of the rural Midwest that are linking these ideas of local agriculture, tourism, the arts, (and) in Downstate Illinois, the wine trail,” he said.

Merrett says it could give hope for the parents who have spent tens of thousands of dollars so their child can get a degree in, say, art history. “I’d like to think the fine arts, the humanities are themselves a marketable skill. You get a group of creative people together in a downtown area, there’s a critical mass of vitality that can be an engine for growth,” he said.

Recent Headlines

in Local

US Rep. Davis: OK With Lawsuit Against Obama

davis

Whether President Obama winds up at the defense table or not, one of Illinois' Republican Congressmen is defending the move to sue him

in Local

Audit: State Wait Times for Nursing Care Claims 3 Months

state_capitol_1

Audit finds may seeking state-paid nursing home care have been waiting more than 90 days for a decision on their cases

in Local

The Fix for Illinois in 98 Steps

illinois flag

Ex-lawmaker, ex-revenue chief co-write new book

in Local

State Fairgrounds Repairs Are Ongoing

state fair logo

IHPA is also short of cash

in Local

A New Law Will Support Community Health Workers

local_news_generic

Sponsor: Current status is unofficial