WXXI AM News

Megan Mack

Connections Executive Producer

Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming. 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

*This hour was interrupted by NPR's coverage of a White House press conference, which led to an abbreviated discussion.

We look at the digital divide -- a serious problem on any day in America, and especially so during a pandemic. But what can be done?

County legislators are looking at ways to bring more connectivity to everyone. They're looking at what it would take to do a municipal internet network. It's not simple, but it's important, and some lawmakers have come to look at the problem as a civil rights issue.

Our guests are Monroe County legislators:

freeimages.com/Shamseer Sureach Kumar

First hour: What would it take to create a municipal internet network in Monroe County? (*WXXI will air NPR's coverage of the White House press conference at the top of this hour.)

Second hour: Discussing the value of doing work that will outlive us

Teachers and parents across Monroe County had to act quickly last week when the county ordered all schools to close. They’ve developed lessons and curricula that can be taught remotely.

This hour, we talk with teachers and parents about the work they are doing, the buy-in from students so far, and their recommendations for families who will be educating kids from home for the foreseeable future.

We also discuss WXXI’s new Learn at Home programming – a special education television block in support of families, educators, and students. Our guests:

  • Marion French, vice president of education and interactive services at WXXI
  • Cara Rager, manager of education training and family engagement at WXXI
  • Erica Davis, music teacher at Williamson Central School District, and parent of three children
  • Kristin Loftus, math coach at Renaissance Academy Charter School of the Arts, and parent of two children

First hour: How to disagree better politically (*This hour was preempted due to the White House press briefing. It will be rescheduled for March 27 at noon.)

Second hour: Discussing how to educate students at home during the coronavirus pandemic

https://libraryweb.org/hours/locations-hours/

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, all libraries in the Monroe County Library System are closed to the public. The libraries have adjusted services, with staff will be available online at http://libraryweb.org and by phone at 585-428-7300 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

We discuss National Safe Place Week. Safe Place programs across the country help teens in crisis find a place to stay and connects them with resources in a variety of areas. Rochester’s Center for Youth is a Safe Place partner, and it works with entities across the community to help teens in need.

This hour, we’re joined by leaders from the program and its partners to discuss how it works and its impact. We also address how it is responding to the coronavirus pandemic. Our guests:

First hour: Infectious disease physicians discuss what we should know about COVID-19 (*This hour was preempted due to a White House press conference.)

Second hour: Discussing National Safe Place Week

We continue our series of conversations about the impact of the coronavirus. This hour, we talk to local small business owners about their concerns. Some have temporarily shut down their operations, others are cancelling their events and weighing their options. They’re expressing frustrations and fear about economic pain and the path going forward.

We talk with them about the difficult decisions they have to make, and what they’d like to see in terms of policies and relief from different levels of government. Our guests:

Local musicians from underrepresented communities say it can be difficult to make their mark on Rochester’s music scene, particularly because there are so many cover bands in town. They argue that original music doesn’t get the love and attention it deserves, especially if it comes from marginalized communities.

We discuss the issue from a number of angles with local musicians. Our guests:

*This episode of Connections begins with an update on the coronavirus pandemic from WXXI health reporter, Brett Dahlberg.

Danielle Ponder and the Tomorrow People

First hour: Discussing what it takes for musicians of color to break into Rochester's music scene

Second hour: How the coronavirus pandemic is affecting small businesses

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