WXXI AM News

Megan Mack

Connections Producer

Megan Mack the producer of Connections with Evan Dawson and Unleashed: The Pet Show. She joined the WXXI News team from WHEC-TV, where she produced newscasts and The Olympic Zone, and from the University of Rochester, where she served as an assistant director of public relations. Her background extends to television sports and entertainment, and to communications and social media management for non-profits.

Megan earned her B.S. in Television-Radio-Film from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, and her B.A. in Italian Language, Literature, and Culture from the College of Arts and Sciences at Syracuse University. She is also a graduate of The Second City’s Conservatory program.

Ways to Connect

It's Dialogue on Disability Week and we kick off our series of conversations on Connections with a discussion about inclusive recreation activities.

The film “Perfectly Normal for Me” tells the story of three children with disabilities as they prepare for a spring recital as part of their after school dance program. We preview the film and talk with local parents, teachers, and education coordinators about finding a balance between independence and structure for children with special needs, and what inclusion really means. In studio:

The new Congress is considering measures related to the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement. The Palestinian-led campaign promotes forms of boycott against Israel with the goal of what it describes as ending Israeli violations of international law.

Our guests explain the debate over BDS and its potential impact. In studio:

  • Iman Abid, chapter director for the Genesee Valley Region of the ACLU
  • Larry Fine, former longtime CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Rochester

First hour: The debate over the BDS movement 

Second hour: Dialogue on Disability - "Perfectly Normal for Me," and the value of inclusive recreation activities

A number of new and evolving technologies were discussed at last week's Consumer Electronics Show. Facial recognition technology and location mapping were among them. 

RIT professor Steve Jacobs attended the show and will share what he learned. We also discuss the ethical and legal implications of those controversial technologies. In studio:

  • Steve Jacobs, professor in the College of Computing and Information Sciences at RIT
  • Larry Torcello, associate professor in the Department of Philosophy at RIT
  • Scott Malouf, attorney whose practice is focused on the intersection of social media and the law

Is your home energy efficient? The goal of the Sustainable Homes Rochester campaign is to encourage community members to install clean heating and cooling systems to improve energy efficiency. What does that look like?

Our guests discuss the different technologies, how they work, and how homeowners can decide what might be the right fit for their energy goals. In studio:

First hour: Discussing the Sustainable Homes Rochester campaign

Second hour: Understanding new technologies and concerns about privacy

Weekend Connections is a collection of some of the most noteworthy moments from the week on Connections with Evan Dawson. This episode includes conversations about:

  • The challenges local students of color say they face in suburban schools;
  • The "sex recession" among teens and young adults;
  • The Netflix film, "Bird Box," and how it depicts mental illness;
  • Why job ghosting is on the rise.

After surveying the events of the last week and the dialogue surrounding those events, local broadcaster Scott Fitzgerald wrote, "I’m surprised at how some of my progressive friends have suppressed the opposition on threads. Subject matter aside, if you ever want the progressive movement to gain mainstream traction, please engage in dialogue with the opposition."

At Connections, we've received a number of emails from listeners who want us to hear this out further, so we do so. Our guests:

  • Scott Fitzgerald, owner of Roc Vox recording and production
  • Colin Coffey, small business owner

NYU journalism professor Jay Rosen is challenging journalists to change the way they cover political campaigns. Rosen writes that voters care about actual issues that impact their lives; meanwhile, he sees journalists becoming addicted to polls – who's up, who's down, the so-called "horse race." Rosen wants reporters to essentially abandon polling coverage, and to stop analyzing whether something someone said could impact so-and-so's campaign.

Our guests discuss it:

  • Jeremy Moule, staff writer for City Newspaper
  • Tianna Manon, editor-in-chief of Open Mic Rochester, and freelance reporter for WXXI News
  • Adam Chodak, anchor and managing editor for WROC-TV

First hour: Should journalists change the way they cover political campaigns?

Second hour: How to engage in dialogue with the opposition

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