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Greenhill School's Student Stock Portfolio is Worth $100K, For Real


Five stories that have North Texas talking: Stock club at Greenhill plays the market with real cash, one-shot adults may not have enough immunity to fight off measles, coyotes rattle Irving residents and more.

Students at Dallas’ Greenhill School start their new year today. Some kids walk the halls anxious about tough courses; others are watching the markets with hawk-eyed intensity. That’s because Greenhill’s investment club has put up $100K of real money so students can play the stocks. When interviewed by Marketplace earlier today, the kids were up about $500, but things could change quickly. On Friday, they were down about $100.

The club used to use virtual dollars to build their portfolio, but students say that didn’t work out. Players only chose “name brand” stocks like McDonald’s and Chipotle or went all in on risky investments. At the end of the day, it just wasn’t realistic, so the school decided $100K of actual, not theoretical, cash might change things up. So what happens if the market swings heavily in the students’ favor? The profits will be put aside for Greenhill scholarships. If their portfolio tanks, well, better luck next time.

  • One Shot Isn’t Enough: The latest victim to come down with measles in DFW is an adult health care worker. Health officials say he was the 21st victim and had been vaccinated as a child. The problem is, he never got a second booster shot. According to the Dallas Morning News, the measles vaccine is typically administered when a child is 12 months old as a combination measles-mumps-rubella shot. In the mid-1990s, the government began recommending a booster shot before kindergarten. So it looks like adults who were only vaccinated once as a child aren’t protected if they’re exposed to the highly infectious disease.

  • Companion March In Austin Was Small, But Meaningful: The March on Washington in 1963 was a turning point for the civil rights movement in America, but one minority group was noticeably absent. Hispanics, for the most part, chose not to participate. Brian Behnken, who wrote a book on the civil rights struggles of blacks and Mexican Americans in Texas, says the lack of participation can be attributed to several different things, including the fact that groups like LULAC weren’t established at the level of national protest. A coalition of black and Mexican Americans did hold a companion march in Austin, which drew roughly 900 people. The marchers, were protesting Gov. John Connally's opposition to civil rights legislation pending in Congress. [AP via NPR]

  • Memories Of A Dream: Many people who attended the March on Washington in ’63 are traveling back to D.C. to mark the 50th anniversary tomorrow. Rev. Peter Johnson, a Dallas civil rights activist, listened to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial as an 18 year-old kid. But he won’t return there for the anniversary; he’ll be in south Louisiana, at his hometown church, to honor the place it all started for him. KERA spoke to him about his civil rights roots and his memories of King’s speech.

  • Coyote Problems: The Hackberry Creek neighborhood in Irving has a coyote problem, and the wild animals aren’t being shy. They’ve been spotted in broad daylight in the middle of the street and on sidewalks. Recently, a family chased one coyote down after it snagged their beloved family pet by the scruff of the neck and carried it off. The 15 year-old Shih Tzu did not survive. Animal control says removing the coyotes won’t work, because other wild animals will just fill the gap. Instead, officials urge citizens to properly dispose of food. They say if you run into a coyote, try “hazing.” That means clapping and making a lot of noise, because coyotes can be scared off. [NBC DFW]
Courtney Collins has been working as a broadcast journalist since graduating from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University in 2004. Before coming to KERA in 2011, Courtney worked as a reporter for NPR member station WAMU in Washington D.C. While there she covered daily news and reported for the station’s weekly news magazine, Metro Connection.