Virginia Prescott

Host, Word of Mouth

Prior to joining NHPR, Virginia Prescott was editor and producer for the nationally syndicated programs On Point and Here & Now, produced at WBUR in Boston. Virginia grew up in New Hampshire, but began her radio career at WWOZ Radio in New Orleans. She moved to New York City and worked for the team behind NPR’s Peabody Award-winning Jazz from Lincoln Center series with Ed Bradley. Virginia then joined WNYC to launch the station’s website and oversee all its interactive media sites. Throughout her radio career, Virginia helped set up independent radio stations in developing regions in southern and West Africa. She has also trained journalists in post-conflict zones from Sierra Leone to the former Yugoslavia. She was awarded a Loeb Fellowship at Harvard University where she studied how broadcast media could spark dialogue and build community across terrestrial borders.

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Word of Mouth
7:54 am
Tue December 18, 2012

Are Video Games Art?

The Museum of Modern Art in New York recently added 14 video games to its permanent collection. Killscreen says they helped.

Killscreen co-founder Jamin Warren explains how, and helps us answer the burning question, are video games art?

Word of Mouth
12:26 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

Will Politics Influence Gun Laws?

Credit Scrumshus via Wikimedia Commons

At an interfaith vigil last night, President Obama offered the love and prayers of the nation to community members in Newtown, Connecticut. The President also promised political action designed to prevent future tragedies, saying our society will be judged by how we care for our children.  For the Obama administration, it was a timely but vague first foray into the gun control debate. 


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Word of Mouth
12:08 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

The Great Toy Aisle Divide

Credit theloushe via Flickr Creative Commons

If you have kids, odds are you’re trying to track down at least one hard-to-find toy this holiday season. Those in the market for high-quality educational toys might have to look a little harder. The toy aisle divide between big chain stores and smaller, independent retailers is growing, and it may determine whether or not you’re able to find the ideal gift for your child.


  


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Word of Mouth
12:36 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

Yucca Mountain High

View of Yucca Mountain
Credit NRCgov via Flickr Creative Commons


Energy is big business and a big issue inextricably linked to politics. Rising gas prices and huge natural gas and oil finds in the U.S. thrust energy into the 2012 presidential arena, but little was said about nuclear power—which supplies about a fifth of America’s power. Although some environmentalists are now advocating for nukes, the question of how to safely isolate existing waste has been plaguing the industry and government for decades.

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Word of Mouth
12:01 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

Sign Language for Science

Credit Wikimedia Commons

Imagine trying to learn astrophysics without using the word “light-year”. Or study biology without being able to say “photosynthesis”.  That’s the dilemma facing deaf students hoping to pursue careers in the sciences—where new terminology is being coined and communicated on a daily basis. 


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Word of Mouth
11:20 am
Thu December 13, 2012

Slow News Is Good News on GoKicker

Credit GoKicker.com

A 2007 study by Harvard University found that the rank and file of “Generation Y” is consistently less engaged and less knowledgeable about current events than their elders. Former New York Times editor and entrepreneur, Holly Ojalvo, is looking to staunch the growing tide of current events ignorance.  She’s the founder and editor-in-chief of GoKicker.com, a website that’s adapting the news cycle for the 35-and-younger set.

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Word of Mouth
11:13 am
Wed December 12, 2012

The 10 Best NH Employers

Credit Harry Pujols via Flickr Creative Commons

Some employers are willing to try anything to incentivize employees to work harder and increase productivity. But what exactly are employees looking for in a job these days, aside from the pay?  Business NH Magazine's annual competition identifies the top ten best New Hampshire companies to work for and what makes them so great. Matthew Mowry is editor for Business NH Magazine and he joins us to talk about who came out on top.

Word of Mouth
1:54 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Matchmaking for Medical Research

Dating sites like E-Harmony and Match.com use complex math to bring people together. Now, a project funded by the Michael J. Fox foundation is leveraging similar matchmaking algorithms to link people with Parkinson’s disease to appropriate clinical trials. 


Journalist Neal Ungerleider wrote about the Fox Trial Finder tool for Fast Company. 

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Word of Mouth
1:38 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

The Queens of Comedy Podcasts

Credit Sonia Blanco via Flickr Creative Commons

2012 has been a fantastic year for funny ladies on television. Comedians Chelsea Handler, Whitney Cummings, Mindy Kaling, Amy Poehler and Joan Rivers all star in their own shows. A number of lesser known laugh-out-loud women are reaching new audiences with self-produced podcasts, and networks are paying attention. 

Jean Railla, a writer and cultural observer based in New York City tells us more.

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Word of Mouth
10:58 am
Tue December 11, 2012

The History of Boredom May Interest You

Credit aagius via Flickr Creative Commons

We spoke with Linda Rodriguez McRobbie about the history of boredom. Not surprisingly, scientists avoided studying the subject until the last century.  Studies suggest that boredom can lead to depression and other adverse health conditions, even death.  


To keep the doctors away, we've curated a motley assortment of "boring" film and television clips.


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Word of Mouth
2:30 pm
Mon December 10, 2012

Science Busts Gift Giving Myths

Credit kevinthoule via Flickr Creative Commons

A number of recent psychological studies on gifting have been published, debunking some popular gift-giving myths. Sumathi Reddy, health columnist for the Wall Street Journal, compiled a few, spoke with us about how to avoid common pitfalls this holiday season.

Word of Mouth
11:00 am
Fri December 7, 2012

Word of Mouth 12.08.2012

Credit Leo Reynolds via Flickr Creative Commons

Word of Mouth's weekly program. This week's show features an art blog that uses Google Earth images to show the battlefields of drones, a radio show produced in an an insane asylum, Ty Burr's "Gods Like Us," and history's badass-iest nuns. Plus, webcast funerals!

Part 1:

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Word of Mouth
12:11 pm
Thu December 6, 2012

Higher Ed Gets an Online Overhaul

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As more and more students head to American colleges and universities to advance their education and economic prospects, there is dwindling faith in the quality of a four-year degree, especially given the high price tag. Meanwhile, a whole new model of learning is quickly gaining ground. Massive open online courses (MOOCs) offer education to anybody with a reliable internet connection, often for free.  MOOCs are attracting massive amounts of students, investment capital, and accolades.


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Word of Mouth
12:10 pm
Thu December 6, 2012

Forget the Wrapping Paper on These Gifts

Credit kevinthoule via Flickr Creative Commons

It’s not terribly surprising that for the second year running, the national retail federation claims the hottest holiday present is a gift card. But are we losing something when we focus on the material aspects of gift-giving? With us to rundown some alternative ideas for experiential gifts you can’t fit under the tree is Rick Broussard, editor of New Hampshire Magazine.


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Word of Mouth
12:08 pm
Thu December 6, 2012

Living with Hackers

Credit stanescoo via Flickr Creative Commons

The 1995 film “Hackers”, a young Angelina Jolie and baby-faced Johnny Lee Miller star as digital rebels dressed in a punk aesthetic with the power to takeover anything that dares to exist on the internet.  Nearly two decades later, it’s clear that that hackers can’t be identified by dress, ethnicity, or any other one specific trait, but evidence of their presence and power in our increasingly digital world is everywhere. 


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