STATE OF OPPORTUNITY. Can Kids in Michigan Get Ahead?
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This special reporting project wrapped up in May 2017. Read more.

Top five things on our mind (and yours) in 2015

A Health Blog
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Here's an overview of our most popular topics and stories this year:


Race was a focal point in national reporting throughout 2015, and State of Opportunity was no exception. Our most popular piece of reporting this year was, by far, Dustin Dwyer's piece on white fragility, a theory about why all white people are racist but can't handle being called racist. The extended interview for this piece also made the top-10 list. 

The rising cost of college

We focused a lot on issues of college access and affordability as we noticed even higher tuition prices in 2015. We looked into which students are hit hardestby the debt crisis and how Michigan can make college more accessible. We also talked about support services that help lessen the burden off, like college food pantries

What it takes to get ahead

Jennifer Guerra reported on how low-income, first-generation students navigate campus life at the University of Michigan. We learned that social support can play a huge role in helping these students feel at home. 

Another thing that helps people get ahead? Networking. If you missed our documentary Connections: The Power of Networks, it is definitely worth your time. 

Michigan's drug epidemic 

More than 3,000 people have died in the last decade alone from drug addiction. State of Opportunity's documentary The Hidden Epidemic uncovers how Michigan developed a problem with opiates and what the state is doing to fix it. 

Education efforts that work 

We visited a school in the Upper Peninsula where American Indian kids are thriving despite the obstacles stacked against them. We also talked to an Iowa school principal who adopted a trauma-informed approach and saw some pretty impressive changes in school climate as a result. 

What's next for 2016? You tell us! Share your stories and ideas here