Nida Rehman, courtesy of Mu Delta Alpha

UT's First Muslim Sorority Hopes To Inspire Leadership On The 40 Acres And Beyond

At first glance, Mu Delta Alpha might seem like any Greek organization on UT-Austin’s campus. It has letters, colors – teal, white and peach – and had rush week last month. While that may be pretty typical for a sorority, Mu Delta Alpha is different. It’s the first Muslim sorority on the University of Texas campus.

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A federal judge in Hawaii has partially blocked President Trump's third attempt to restrict entry into the U.S. for citizens of certain countries.

The newest version of the "travel ban" was due to go into effect on Wednesday. Like two previous executive orders, it was challenged in multiple courts. The new ruling by Judge Derrick Watson is only one piece of the complicated legal puzzle over the long-term fate of the president's efforts to limit travel to the U.S.

The Trump administration has made a number of changes to health policy in the past two weeks, raising questions about how consumers will be affected. Will the new rules for birth control coverage affect access to an intrauterine device? Might an association health plan help bring down costs for workers at small businesses? And if you're healthy, doesn't a short-term health plan that is cheaper than marketplace coverage make sense? Here are some answers to those questions.

Martin do Nascimento/KUT News

From Texas Standard.

It’s mid-October and kids in Port Aransas are finally going back to school in their own community. Classrooms have been closed in the Gulf Coast town since Harvey made landfall. Though Port Aransas Independent School District finally opened its doors, not all of the classrooms are quite where they need to be.

Paul Cochrum/Flickr

Federal regulators are calling for stricter requirements to fly hot air balloons after a crash near Lockhart last year that killed all 16 people aboard.

The National Transportation Safety Board on Tuesday released findings and recommendations of its investigation into the July 30 accident in which a balloon operated by the Heart of Texas Balloon Ride company struck high-voltage power lines about 30 miles south of Austin.

Rep. Tom Marino, R-Pa., has withdrawn his name from consideration as America's drug czar, President Trump said Tuesday. Marino is stepping back days after reports that legislation he sponsored hindered the Drug Enforcement Administration in its fight against the U.S. opioid crisis.

In what appeared to be a thinly veiled reference to politics in the Age of Trump, Sen. John McCain on Monday warned Americans against "half-baked, spurious nationalism," calling the abandonment of U.S. global leadership "unpatriotic."

Speaking in Philadelphia, where he was being honored with the Liberty Medal by the National Constitution Center, McCain did not mention the president by name, but his words appeared to be aimed at Trump and his administration.

Mentors Help Drive Attendance At Austin Schools

10 hours ago
Claire McInerny / KUT

Students in Central Texas miss more days of school than kids in any other part of the state.

Around 10 percent of local students are chronically absent, meaning they miss more than 18 school days a year. A quarter of Austin 12th-graders miss that much school.

A 61-year-old truck driver has pleaded guilty to two counts of human smuggling leading to the deaths of 10 unauthorized immigrants in San Antonio earlier this year.

James Matthew Bradley Jr. pleaded guilty to one count of transporting aliens resulting in death and one count of conspiracy, according to a statement released by the U.S. attorney for the Western District of Texas. Bradley faces up to life in prison.

The National Sleep Foundation recommends an average of eight hours of sleep per night for adults, but sleep scientist Matthew Walker says that too many people are falling short of the mark.

"Human beings are the only species that deliberately deprive themselves of sleep for no apparent gain," Walker says. "Many people walk through their lives in an underslept state, not realizing it."

Larry D. Moore/Flickr (CC BY-SA 3.0)

From Texas Standard:

While the Trump administration says the "war on coal" is over, market forces are having their say when it comes to the fossil fuel, closing plants in several Texas communities.

Texas' largest generator of coal-powered energy, Luminant, says it is ceasing operations at two plants in the state. The company says Texas' competitive energy market and cheap natural gas  make these older coal-fired plants unprofitable. Another Texas coal operator has already announced plans to close two facilities.

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