More Than You Think

More Than You Think is an on air and online series exploring how diverse residents of the St. Louis region are linked together in a capacity that goes past race – whether it be religion, gender, sexual orientation, civic group, or neighborhood.

By exploring these linkages, we hope to shed light on regional race matters, news developments, and ongoing issues related to diversity and culture in the community.

St. Louis Public Radio

For the past year, St. Louis Public Radio producer Erin Williams has covered regional race matters, diversity and culture as part of an inaugural fellowship made possible, in part, by a grant from the Public Policy Research Center.

Her last day is today, October 18, 2013, and we wish her well as she continues her journalism career.

Williams' commentary about her one year in St. Louis as well as her conversation with St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh appear below:

(via Flickr/NWABR)

A multi-disciplinary study released today finds that in relation to school dropout rates, health plays a bigger role than one might think.

The study is part of ‘For The Sake of All,’ a five part series from Washington University and Saint Louis University that focuses on the health of African Americans in the St. Louis region.

Erin Williams

The North City Farmers’ Market in St. Louis is in a neighborhood where the majority of its residents are African American.  It’s been a challenge, however, to attract more of them to the market every week.

Community organizers are attempting to change that. Their idea is to feature African American musicians with the hope that shoppers will follow.

Held on the 2700 block of North 14th Street every Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., the North City Farmers' Market will take place through October 12.     

Erin Williams

Linda Kennedy is the artistic associate over education and community programs for The Black Rep, which includes coordinating their annual Summer Performing Arts program for youth ages 8-17.

(Flickr/Claire Cook44)

School system performance is paramount for any family looking to move and start a family, as it was for Rob and Diane Pattershuk, when they moved to Ladue 20 years ago. 

They made a good choice – the district offers a several extracurricular activities, advanced placement classes, and was ranked as the top school in the state on this year’s Newsweek poll of America’s Best High Schools.

Courtesy of College Bound

The school year may be over, but things are just getting started for 17-year-old Destiny Crockett. She graduated from Clyde C. Miller High School in St. Louis with a 4.1 GPA, finished in the top 16 of the Urban Debate League's national competition last month with her partner Cameron Smith, and will be attending Princeton in the fall on a full scholarship. 

Crockett will be the first graduate from her high school and the College Bound program to attend an Ivy League school.

Throughout his career, artist Kerry James Marshall has turned his environment into his muse, turning to the cultural and social landscape of America.

A native of Birmingham, at the age of seven, he moved from the South to the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles.  He grew up there during the Civil Rights Movement.

Marshall now resides in Chicago and is known for creating series of works based on outdoor landscapes and the interactions of black people within them.

Erin Williams

The St. Louis Initiative to Reduce Violence is a new effort for both the city and county to prevent wrongdoing in its tracks by starting at the source – neighborhoods and communities. The grassroots effort is incorporating a partnership of police officers and community leaders to curb wrongdoing by creating a more approachable relationship among youth and families.

(via Wikimedia Commons)

The Mary Meachum Freedom Crossing, on the banks of the Mississippi River in St. Louis, will be turned into a Civil War training camp tomorrow at the 11th annual Freedom Crossing Event Celebration.

Erin Williams

Fast food workers and community supporters passed out flyers at Jimmy John’s in Soulard today in the continuing fight for better wages and the right to unionize as part of the STL Can’t Survive on 7.35 campaign.

The flyers were passed out in the parking lot of the restaurant around Noon and called for better managerial treatment and higher wages.

Olivia Roffle is a college student who works at another fast food restaurant. She says that if Jimmy John’s wants better service, then they need to create a welcoming environment.