Michaela Tucker

Health Reporter

Michaela Tucker is a Minneapolis native currently studying broadcast journalism at the University of Missouri. She is also a co-founder of KBIA’s partner program Making Waves, a youth radio initiative that empowers Columbia Public Schools students to share their stories.

Missouri Office of the Attorney General

  Americans are living longer, and in most cases, that comes with more healthcare costs, especially at the end of life. In a study this year, researchers at the University of Missouri found more Americans are preparing for the end of life through conversations and legal documents, and are reducing health care costs along the way.


Mike Tobias / Harvest Public Media

The population of monarch butterflies has declined so dramatically in recent years that the iconic insect is being considered for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s endangered species list. In Nebraska and across the other areas of the Midwest, a stop on the monarch migration route, efforts are underway to determine the scope of the decline.

 


The circuit science workshop in Columbia is one of Daniel Boone Regional Library’s most popular regular events for kids. The workshop allows elementary school-aged children to play with Snap Circuits, a hands-on learning kit that helps illustrate how electricity works. On a recent fall afternoon, kids and their parents gathered at the library to make musical motion detectors, sound-activated switches and more.

“Programming like this is more free-form, so they can be very creative,” said Katie Long, a public service associate with the library’s children’s team. “There’s less structure and rules that they have to follow.”


Tyler Adkisson / KBIA

A number of state and national politicians released statements Monday in response to former UM System President Tim Wolfe's resignation.  

Samantha Kummerer / KBIA

From Friday night football games to Saturday volleyball matches, a new figure is taking a spot on the sidelines.

According to a 2015 study by the Korey Stringer Institute, 70 percent of public secondary schools nationwide have access to an athletic trainer. That total is up from 1994 when only 35 percent of high schools reported having access to an athletic trainer.


Jared Wong / Flickr

Researchers from the University of Missouri released a study tying mental health to forgiveness in older adults. By analyzing data from the Religion, Aging and Health Survey, Associate Professor of Human Development of Family Science Christine Proulx found a significant difference between how forgiveness impacts men and women's mental health.


2jaysjoju / Flickr

Research shows that the Earth’s warming climate can have a massive impact on many parts of the ecosystem, from the ocean down to the tiny bee. Recently, bees have been dying in increasing numbers due to environmental changes.

Some sub-species, however, seem to be putting up a better fight than others.


Sarah Kellogg / KBIA

  It’s a clear Wednesday night, and visitors on top of the University of Missouri’s Physics Building are playing the waiting game. A solar flare is about to appear in the night sky and everyone’s heads are craned upwards. Suddenly, a satellite moves across the sky, becoming brighter and causing spectators to cheer. Although there isn’t always a satellite passing by, visitors can take advantage of the Laws Observatory’s rooftop view and telescope every Wednesday night from 8 to 10 p.m.


File photo / KBIA

Heartland is a small community in northeast Missouri and is home to the state's largest dairy. Heartland Dairy is under investigation from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) after a worker died on the job in September. It's the third death there since 2012. But many of the employees at Heartland aren't the typical dairy workers; they're participants in a rehabilitation program.


Logan Layden / Harvest Public Media

Generations of tilling and planting on the same land have left the nation’s soil in poor shape. And if farmers don’t change the way they grow crops, feeding the future won’t be easy.

As farmer Jordan Shearer from Slapout, Okla., puts it, “we’re creating a desert environment by plowing the damn ground."

 


Missouri Department of Conservation

Researchers from the University of Missouri are working with the Missouri Department of Conservation on a five-year study of white-tailed deer in the state. The study's goal is to find the survival differences of deer living in north east counties compared to south central counties.

The team of researchers are tracking the movements of deer using GPS collars in Nodaway, Gentry, Andrew, DeKalb, Wright, Texas, Douglas and Howell counties. Once the study is over, the Department of Conservation will use the data to reevaluate deer population management through strategies like hunting.

KBIA's Michaela Tucker spoke with Jon McRoberts, the project coordinator and wildlife researcher at the University of Missouri, about the progress of the study as it approaches the end of its first year.


Michaela Tucker / KBIA

When a woman is trying to leave an abusive relationship or unsafe domestic situation, shelters offer a safe space for her to stay and get back on her feet. But leaving an abusive relationship can be difficult for any woman.

According to the National Domestic Abuse Hotline, a woman seeking help will be in and out of a shelter seven times on average, before leaving the relationship. For deaf individuals, that number doubles.


Amy Mayer / Harvest Public Media

Farmers and agriculture officials are gearing up for another round of bird flu this fall, an outbreak they fear could be worse than the devastating spring crisis that hit turkeys and egg-laying hens in the Midwest, wiped out entire farms and sent egg prices sky-high.

The potential target of the highly pathogenic avian flu this fall could be broilers, or meat chickens, as the outbreaks have been triggered and carried by wild birds, which will be flying south in great numbers this fall through several U.S. flyways.

 


United States Census Bureau

The number of uninsured residents in Missouri and throughout the U.S. is down, according to the 2014 American Community Survey. The United States Census Bureau released the survey Wednesday as the first compilation of data since the introduction of the Affordable Care Act.

The survey showed 8.8 million fewer Americans were uninsured under the first year of the Affordable Care Act. Dr. Timothy McBride, a health economist at Washington University in St. Louis, said it's the first national report on the ACA.


L.E.A.D. Institute Executive Director Dr. Stephanie Logan sits at her desk, the same one she's had her whole career at L.E.A.D.
Michaela Tucker / KBIA

The deaf community has its own language, culture and set of obstacles, and most hearing people will never interact with it. But Dr. Stephanie Logan was thrust into the deaf community when she lost her hearing at the age of 23.

Logan was studying psychology at the University of Georgia when she contracted spinal meningitis. In less than a week, her hearing was completely gone.


Michaela Tucker / KBIA

Protestors and supporters of Planned Parenthood lined the sidewalks of Providence Road outside the Columbia clinic Saturday morning. Protesters from groups like 40 Days for Life came out from across the state as part of a national day of protest. Kathy Forck, the organizer of the protest, said over 300 rallies were held around the country.

Michaela Tucker/KBIA

Spring has arrived at Granny’s House. Kids threw footballs and ran around outside on Thursday afternoon. Granny’s House is a non-profit, supported by Columbia churches and businesses that provides a safe space for children who live in public housing from 3-6 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Pam Ingram and her husband Ellis, who are also known by “Granny” and “Poppy,” have run the program for 14 years. In addition to the after school program, the Ingrams coordinate other activities for the kids, like Science Club and Bible study.

Michaela Tucker

True/False festivalgoers headed home after the close of the four-day event on Sunday night. The 12th annual documentary festival featured old favorites like the March March parade and original music alongside a new selection of over 40 films. This year, the festival adjusted to the temporary loss of Jesse Hall and screened films in smaller venues across the University of Missouri’s campus and to digital projection for all the films. 

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