Senior, College of Communication
Certificate: Geographic Information Systems
Thesis Director: Jason Martin, Department of Journalism
Faculty Reader: Chris Bury, Department of Journalism
Bio: Cam Rodriguez is a journalism and geography BA/MA student at DePaul, where she is the managing editor at 14 East, DePaul’s online magazine. In the past, Cam has worked for WTTW, The Detroit Free Press and Cards Against Humanity, and she currently works as a Dow Jones News Fund data reporting intern for USA Today’s national data team. Outside of journalism, she loves learning more about local history and land use, which is what drew her to the topic of Illinois’ nuclear industry, a topic she also presented on during the 2018 Honors Student Conference.
Abstract: Using data analysis and visualization, public records and investigative reporting techniques, this project explores the environmental and economic impacts of the construction, operation and decommissioning of nuclear power stations on towns within Illinois and the historic impact that the industry has on other municipalities within the state. This project doesn’t exclusively view nuclear power plants from a negative lens, but instead looks at the specific relationship between Exelon and the Illinois towns it operates or has operated stations in, and the agency that residents and local lawmakers have in the face of a nuclear monopoly and lack of federal policy.