Jessica Nath

News Fellow

Jess is from Elizabeth Borough, PA and is a junior at Duquesne University with a double major in journalism and public relations.  She was named as a fellow in the WESA newsroom in May 2013.

Her career goal is to work as a foreign news correspondent "hopefully in radio."

Fun fact:  "Would love to travel internationally...starting in South Africa."

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Environment
2:00 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Volunteers Plant Native Shrubs at Point State Park on Earth Day

Volunteers cleaned up Point State Park and planted shrubs and flowers that were native to the land during the French & Indian War.
Credit Jessica Nath / 90.5 WESA

This Earth Day, volunteers are taking Point State Park back in time to the French & Indian War — or at least they’re taking the shrubbery back.

About 25 volunteers from the Student Conservation Association (SCA), American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) Association and the Penn State Master Gardeners planted native shrubs and flowers at Point State Park Tuesday.

The planting is part of the ongoing renovations at the park and AEO and SCA’s alternative spring break program, which centers around service projects.

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Governor Elections
3:24 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Coalition of African American Groups Hold Forum for Democratic Gubornatorial Candidates

The coalition wants the Democratic gubernatorial candidates to address issues in the African American community.
Credit Jessica Nath / 90.5 WESA

How are the candidates for governor planning to take on the issues in the commonwealth’s African American community?

That’s what a coalition of African American organizations want to find out during its forum April 22nd.

The coalition invited the four Democratic gubernatorial candidates - Robert McCord and Kathleen McGinty accepted, but Thomas Wolf and Allyson Schwartz were unable to clear their schedules.

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Health Insurance
2:48 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Allegheny County Commits to Highmark Through 2015

Allegheny County employees no longer have to wonder about their health care options for 2015.

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald announced Tuesday that the county will exclusively retain Highmark for health care coverage through December 31st, 2015 - even if Highmark and UPMC are unable to reach an agreement.

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Asthma
3:30 am
Mon April 14, 2014

New Computer Program Helps Identify Causes of Asthma

Can depression lead to asthma? How about over-medicating?

Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) and UPMC are trying to answer these questions with a new computer program that has the ability to track 112 clinical variables for 398 people who do and do not have asthma.

This program can identify various subtypes of the disease such as asthma related to allergies, sinuses or environmental factors.

Wei Wu, an associate professor at CMU’s Lane Center for Computational Biology, said they want to help clinicians better define “asthma.”

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Environment
11:35 am
Fri April 11, 2014

New Exhibit Centers Around Pittsburgh's Water

Chatham University graduate students, Ann Payne and Kristen Reynolds, and their professor have created an entire exhibit about water -- and they hope it has a rippling effect.

“The Drop Project” is an interactive exhibit that shows the relationship among Pittsburgh, its residents and water.

Molly Mehling, sustainability professor and ecologist, said they want to create a networking event.

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Public Safety
5:46 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Center of Victims Asks Men to Pledge to Stop Violence

Center for Victims asked men to pledge to stop violence in honor of National Crime Victims' Rights Week.
Credit Jessica Nath / 90.5 WESA

Wednesday’s stabbings at Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville has left many asking what steps can be taken to prevent these acts of violence.

The Center for Victims thinks an important part of the equation to stop violence is men. 

That’s why the center kicked off its “Men Ending violeNce” (MEN) challenge, which encourages men to pledge to become proactive and speak out if they see violence.

Molly Allwein, Community Relations Coordinator, said men have a voice that women don’t.

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Health
4:11 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

Report: More Cases of Cancer, But Fewer Deaths in Pennsylvania

More people in Pennsylvania are being diagnosed with cancer, but less are dying.

That’s according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), which released the State of Cancer Care in America: 2014 — the first-ever report of its kind.

According to ASCO, the report provides a “comprehensive look” at demographic, economic and oncology practice trends and how they will affect the United States in the future.

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Air Pollution
2:41 pm
Thu April 3, 2014

County Collects Woodstoves, Boilers to Reduce Pollution

Woodstoves and boilers might have helped keep homes warm over the winter, but they also could have harmed the environment.

That’s why for the second year, the Allegheny County Health Department is collecting old woodstoves and outdoor wood-fired boilers that do not meet the current national emission standards.

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Health
7:46 am
Wed April 2, 2014

Donate Life Month Kicks off in April

More than 120,000 people across the United States are waiting for an organ transplant — 8,300 in Pennsylvania alone.

April is National Donate Life Month, recognizing those who need transplants, those who have donated and encouraging more people to do so.

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Community Colleges
5:52 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Students, Faculty Want More Money for Community Colleges

More than 200 students and faculty lobbied Tuesday for an increase in community college funding in the 2014-15 state budget.

The Pennsylvania Commission for Community Colleges wants a $12 million increase for the 14 community colleges throughout the commonwealth.  

Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa (D - Allegheny), who is also a member of the Community College of Allegheny County’s Board of Trustees, joined them at the State Capitol rally.

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Technology
3:30 am
Mon March 31, 2014

New App Connects Tourists, Residents with Mount Washington Businesses

Not only does Mount Washington have a famous view -- it now has an app.

“The app is designed so that anyone coming up to Mount Washington can download it for free and very quickly find any businesses nearby, whether they’re hungry, they need an ATM, they need a gas station,” Christina Howell, the Manager of Outreach and Events at the Mount Washington Community Development Corporation (MWCDC), said.

Howell said users of “The Mt. Washington Guide” app can either type in a business’s name or search by category.

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Community
11:35 am
Wed March 26, 2014

Through Community Service, 300 Area Teens To 'Repair the World' This Weekend

"Tikkun Olam" is a Hebrew phrase meaning “repairing the world,” and that’s what 300 teenagers from Allegheny, Beaver and Butler County plan to do during the ninth annual J-Serve Pittsburgh Sunday.

The teens will participate in 25 different community service projects in Squirrel Hill.

Lisa Sobel-Berlow, J-Serve Coordinator, said they want to encourage community building and connections across religious and societal lines.

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National Arts Advocacy Day
10:10 am
Tue March 25, 2014

The Arts Turn Political on National Arts Advocacy Day

Art is more than decoration; it is an industry that supports the economy and education system in the United States.

That is the message arts leaders from Pittsburgh and across the nation are delivering to Capitol Hill today for the 27th National Arts Advocacy Day.

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Health
3:30 am
Mon March 24, 2014

Pitt Researchers Working to Build Better Regrowing Arteries

University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering researchers are developing a way to help arteries regrow with less risk of an aneurysm after a coronary bypass surgery.

Arturo Valentin and his team are attempting to use new polymers in artery replacements as a way to prevent aneurysm formation.

He said they are working to create an “in host remodeled graft.”

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Education
9:35 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Two Legislators Create Bills to Stop Schools from Hiring Abusers and Sexual Offenders

Two state legislators want to stop “passing of the trash” in Pennsylvania’s education system, but whose bill will “pass” first?

The “Stop Educator Sexual Abuse Misconduct & Exploitation” (SESAME) bill was on track toward the governor’s desk.

Sen. Anthony Williams’s (D-Philadelphia) bill was approved unanimously by the Senate and the House Education Committee.

However, a seemingly identical package of bills introduced by State Rep. David Maloney (R-Berks) was introduced early this year.

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Essential Pittsburgh
4:55 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Dem. Candidate Schwartz: Corbett's Affordable Care Act Response a Failure

Credit 13th Congressional District, Pennsylvania / flickr

Allyson Schwartz, a Democratic candidate for governor, said Pennsylvania is looking for someone with a proven track record to replace Gov. Tom Corbett and his “failed leadership.”

On Tuesday, she said one of his “failures” was his response to the Affordable Care Act, which she wrote provisions to as a U.S. Representative.

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Casinos
1:38 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

PA Casinos See Drop in February Revenue

While the overall casino revenue for February decreased 5 percent, the Pennsylvania table games had a bit more luck.

Table games at the commonwealth’s 12 casinos grossed $57.1 million this year — a 3.25 percent increase over February 2013.

However, Richard McGarvey, Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board spokesman, said this increase is not that impressive at second glance.

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Children's Festival
1:44 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Pittsburgh’s Children’s Festival Returns for 28th Year

Children from Brightside Academy pose with Mr. McFeely.
Jessica Nath 90.5 WESA

The Cultural Trust’s Pittsburgh International Children’s Festival is making a “leap” from Oakland to Downtown May 14-18.

The 28th annual frog-themed festival is moving to help fulfill the Trust’s mission to make Downtown a “vibrant and inviting place.”

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Afterschool Programs
5:43 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Pennsylvanians Advocate for Afterschool Programs

Wilkinsburg High School students want an afterschool program -- but they can’t afford one.

About two years ago, the students created the Gym after Dark program but lost funding and had to cancel it after only a year.

That is why they joined a group of 58 children and adults in Harrisburg Tuesday as part of the United Way’s Allegheny Partners for Out-of-School Time (APOST) for the first Afterschool Advocacy Day.

The event aimed to raise awareness of the importance of academic afterschool programs for students of all ages in the commonwealth.

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Infrastructure
4:28 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

After a History of Cuts, Army Corps Funding Up

After a sharp cut this year, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Pittsburgh District has received $176.3 million in new federal funding for the 2015 fiscal year.

“It’s more than we received last year, it’s pretty much standard for what we received in the past few years,” spokesman Dan Jones said. “But last year was just an anomaly.” The Corps received approximately $110 million for fiscal year 2013-14.

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UPMC
3:40 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

Faith Leaders Arrested Again At UPMC Protest

Pennsylvania Interfaith Impact Network faith leaders stand in handcuffs.
Jessica Nath 90.5 WESA

An officer warned the Rev. Rodney Adam Lyde that he would be arrested again if he took part in the rally at the U.S. Steel Building Thursday.

Lyde – who had already been arrested last week – politely thanked him for his concern, but he had every intention of staying.

By the end of the protest, he had been arrested with several other faith leaders for trying to enter the building to speak with UPMC CEO Jeffrey Romoff.

The rally was part of the Pennsylvania Interfaith Impact Network’s new campaign called Love Thy Neighbor.

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Charter Schools
7:43 am
Wed February 26, 2014

Auditor General Holds Meeting on Charter Schools

How can charter schools better help Pennsylvania students succeed? That is the question Auditor General Eugene DePasquale is asking.

At an information gathering session in Ross Township, DePasquale said they want to strengthen the accountability and transparency of the charter school system.

“Our goal in the hearings over the next three weeks is to provide really the best practices and also good points to the Pennsylvania General Assembly so they can take that, incorporate that, in updating and improving the Pennsylvania Charter School Law,” DePasquale said.

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Pittsburgh Public Art
7:37 am
Fri February 21, 2014

New Art Installation Aims to Gather 'Congregation'

People passing through Market Square have the opportunity to become part of an art installation starting February 21st.

The Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership (PDP) is launching the North American Premiere of Congregation, an interactive kinetic light installation.

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Winter Weather
12:34 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

With High Temps Expected This Week, Melting Snow Could Bring Flooding

The National Weather Service is calling for temperatures to reach the low 50s this week, meaning the possibility of a lot of melted snow and ice — and floods.

Werner Loehlein, the chief of the water management for the Pittsburgh Army Corps of Engineers, said the Corps always worries about substantial snow and river ice when the temperature rises.

However, he said the latest forecast from the National Weather Service appears to show that Pittsburgh is safe from flooding.

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Community
1:38 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

PA 2-1-1 to Give Pennsylvanians 'Holistic' Help

The United Way announced a more “holistic” way to assist PA 2-1-1 Southwest callers Tuesday.

PA 2-1-1 is a free human service helpline that connects Pennsylvanians with basic needs such as utilities, housing, employment and food.  It also helps connect people to agencies that can answer questions about the Affordable Care Act or help with free tax preparation.

Bob Nelkin, United Way of Allegheny County president, said people who call 2-1-1 need help navigating what he called a “confusing maze.”

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