Thumbs-up: To DeKalb’s “American Idol” contestant, Ephraim Bugumba. Many of us have endured hardships in life, but Bugumba, 22, walked a winding path to end up in DeKalb. As a child, his family fled the Democratic Republic of Congo, and after relocating from one country to another, wound up in South Africa. After a decade there, he was able to come to the United States, first attending high school in Mobile, Alabama, and then moving north. Now he’s performing on one of America’s top talent shows. We wish him well and hope others facing difficult circumstances will be inspired by his story.
Thumbs-down: To the continued threats against schools in our area. This week, a 13-year-old was arrested after making “very specific threats” against Genoa-Kingston Middle School, including a date when an attack could be carried out. It’s sad to see children act out in such a disturbing manner that they’re taken to juvenile detention – but school and police officials have to take threats seriously. Children need to understand that such talk is never a laughing matter.
Thumbs-up: To 50 years of Kishwaukee College. Local people and college officials gathered Thursday for a ceremonial kick-off to what will be an ongoing celebration marking the 50th anniversary of the college’s opening in 1968. Kish has been an integral part of our community for five decades, and the contributions it has made to help people access higher education and to grow personally and professionally should be celebrated. We look forward to future events; more information is available online at www.kish.edu/50th.
Thumbs-up: To teaming up to preserve local history. Two of the largest local history organizations, the Sycamore History Museum, 1730 N. Main St., Sycamore, and the Joiner History Room, 103 E. State St., Sycamore, plan to pool their efforts as they seek to preserve local history and kindle curiosity among residents. The new DeKalb County History Center building is planned for the history museum property. Our area has a long and rich history filled with unique, important, and quirky stories. We’re pleased to see local historians teaming up to do the best job they can to keep the memories of our area’s past alive.