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Immigration, Brain Health, The End Game, Preschool

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • May 19, 2015
  • 01:42:42

World Events That Matter (1:04) Guest: Quinn Mecham, BYU political science professor Quinn Mecham is back for his monthly analysis of three international events we should be paying attention to: the British election, attempted coup in Burundi, political prosecutions in Egypt. China Immigration to U.S. Overtakes Mexico (24:15) Guest: Eric Jensen, statistician and demographer at the US Census Bureau Which country do you suppose sends the most immigrants to the United States? If you guessed Mexico, it's a good one. That has long been true. But as of 2013, Mexico ceded the top spot to China, which is now the leading country of origin for immigrants coming to America. A recent report by US Census Bureau demographer Eric Jensen found of the 1.2 million people who immigrated to the US in 2013, 147,000 came from China. That's 20,000 more than came from either Mexico or India, which are tied for the number two spot. Brain Health (34:07) Guest: Gary Small, director of the UCLA Longevity Center at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior and the Parlow-Soloman Professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine. He's also the co-author of "2 Weeks to a Younger Brain" "My memory's just not what it used to be." How often do you hear someone say that? Research out of UCAL's Longevity Center has found memory loss doesn't just plague us when we hit 40 or 50. It starts as young as 20 and it's tied to subtle changes in the brain as we age. But there's also a lot of research suggesting that with the right approach, you can be middle-aged, but have the brain of a much younger you. The gray matter needs exercise just like the rest of our muscles. The End Game (50:22) Guest: Corey Abramson, professor of Sociology at the University of Arizona. His book, The End Game: How Inequality Shapes Our Final Years, will be published by Harvard University Press later this year Dream vacations, bridge tournaments, leisure time by the pool or on the golf course-there's a definite "golden tinge" to the way Americans like to envision spending their twilight years-just check out all the vibrant pictures and travel advertisements on the AARP website. But the reality is some 23 million Americans over the age of 59 are "economically insecure." Social Security and Medicare are meant to be a safety net, of course. And there's a prevailing notion among sociologists that inequalities earlier in life fade away in the end: the challenges of aging arrive in much the same fashion, no matter how much money or education you have. Corey Abramson challenges this theory in his new book: "The End Game: How Inequality Shapes Our Final Years." Preschool (1:10:43) Guest: Libby Doggett, Deputy Assistant secretary for Policy and Early Learning at the US Department of Education Having established the fact that the effects of inequality stay with us to the end of life, let's look at one proposal to try and level the playing field right from the start: preschool. There's a new push from the US Department of Education to give more children access to high-quality preschool, including additional grant money for states to create publicly-funded preschool programs. Summer Homework (1:28:21) Guest: Denise Pope, senior lecturer at Stanford University School of Education and co-founder of Challenge Success, a research and student intervention project. In the coming weeks, kids will be racing home from the last day of school. Inside the backpacks they ditch in hallways and kitchen corners will likely be a packet the kids - and their parents - prefer to forget for now. Summer homework assignments are meant to counter the "brain drain" that can leave kids a little rusty when they show up for school again in the Fall. But is homework the answer? Show More...

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