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VOL. 41 | NO. 42 | Friday, October 20, 2017

Five Nashville hotels make Condé Nast list

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Hotel Preston (No. 8), Thompson Nashville (No. 9), Hotel Indigo (No. 13), 21C Museum Hotel (No. 15) and Hutton Hotel (No. 19) are among the top 40 hotels in the South, according to Condé Nast Traveler’s 30th annual Readers’ Choice Awards.

Four of the Nashville selections are located downtown, with the lone exception being Hotel Preston, which is located on Briley Parkway near Nashville International Airport.

Four additional 21c Museum Hotels were named as Top Hotels in the South, including 21c Lexington, 21c Louisville (No. 17), 21c Durham (No. 22) and 21c Bentonville (No. 37) rounding out the list. 21c Cincinnati and 21c Oklahoma City earned the No. 5 and No. 25 spots respectively as the Top Hotels in the Midwest.

The rankings are based on the quality of rooms, service, food and dining, location and overall design.

More than 300,000 readers submitted millions of ratings and tens of thousands of comments, voting on a record-breaking 7,320 hotels and resorts, 610 cities, 225 islands, 468 cruise ships, 158 airlines and 195 airports.

Lipscomb listed in Best Education guide

Lipscomb University has been named to Best Education Degrees, a leading guide to educational careers and colleges.

The publication has listed its ranking of the “30 Best Bachelor’s in Secondary Education Degrees for 2017.”

Miami University in Oxford, Ohio ranked first; University of Wisconsin - Platteville second; and Hunter College – CUNY in New York City third.

The rest of the 27 schools were listed in no particular order.

“Schools are strengthening content knowledge with frequent fieldwork, something that fits the nature of teaching as an art,” says Nick Plato, managing editor of Best Education Degrees.

“As a high school teacher myself, I have been through both undergraduate and graduate education programs and my experience confirms what universities are doing to improve their training.”

HarperCollins Leadership launches with first book

HarperCollins Leadership, a new imprint providing integrated, values-based material, began business in Nashville in mid-October.

The new imprint operates and is a part of HarperCollins, a subsidiary of News Corp.

HCL, launched with the release of “Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen,’’ by New York Times bestselling author, Donald Miller.

HCL will publish and produce content designed for individuals looking for inspiration, insight, and tools for leadership potential.

In addition to traditional book publishing, HCL will focus on creating materials that can be consumed efficiently and concurrently in a variety of formats. Each book will be accompanied by ancillary content, including online learning tools such as video courses, blogs, podcasts, and digital apps.

“We are thrilled about this new opportunity to come alongside emerging leaders, both in businesses and communities, providing a versatile platform to communicate their messages in creative and effective formats,” says Brian Hampton, senior vice president and publisher of HCL.

Miller’s title will be followed by “Developing the Leader Within You 2.0,’’ by John C. Maxwell set to be released on January 16, 2018, a major update of the book that launched the modern leadership movement.

LKQ’s headquarters under construction

Nashville-based LKQ Corporation is starting construction on its new 100,000-square-foot office building.

LKQ Corporation is a leading provider of alternative and specialty parts to repair and accessorize automobiles and other vehicles.

The new facility is located off Interstate 24, at the intersection of Old Franklin Road and Crossings Boulevard and will serve as the headquarters for LKQ’s North American Operations.

With approximately 400 employees in the Nashville area, this new facility will allow LKQ to consolidate its current corporate support staff employees from their Grassmere Park and La Vergne offices into one centralized location.

LKQ will increase its current workforce by 150 new jobs over the next five years.

Municipal Auditorium’s renovation complete

A major renovation of the Metro-owned Municipal Auditorium has been completed, including new dressing room space.

The 55-year-old venue will give the general public new seating that includes restored wooden chair backs and new seat cushions. Upgrades were also made to the facility’s plumbing system, ticket windows, and floors. New security measures will be implemented later this fall, including the installation of metal detectors.

“The Municipal Auditorium has played a significant role in building Nashville’s identity as a major destination for the nation’s top musical acts,” says Bob Skoney, the Auditorium’s general manager, who has worked at the venue for 40 years.

“From rock and roll to R&B, to country, there is no other venue in Nashville that can boast the wide variety of performers who have graced the stage of the Auditorium.

At 55 years old, this is an iconic building with a rich history, and I’m excited that the city is working in partnership with Live Nation and Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum to ensure its future.”

The renovations are valued at $3.2 million and were completed as part of the city’s agreement with concert promoter Live Nation, which has a preferred concert promoting agreement with the venue and does the majority of the booking of musical acts there. Skanska USA managed the renovations to the dressing rooms.

Public school students improve on ACT

Tennessee public school students earned an average composite score of 20.1 on the ACT, according to an announcement from School Education Department Commissioner Candice McQueen.

State public high school students improved from the 2016 average of 19.9, with more than 3,500 additional students taking the exam this year.

The results also show that about 1,800 more public school graduates became eligible for the HOPE scholarship by earning composite scores of 21 or higher.

Additionally, public school students improved in every section of the ACT by increasing their average score in English, reading, math, and science.

The average ACT score for public school students in each subject area was:

  • 19.6 in English, up 0.1 points,
  • 20.5 in reading, up 0.1 points,
  • 19.4 in math, up 0.2 points; and
  • 20.3 in science, up 0.2 points.

Tennessee has focused on increasing ACT results over the past several years. The class of 2017 was the first one to have access to a free opportunity to retake the ACT, which the department expanded this year to ensure more students can retake the exam.

Nearly 26,000 students in the class of 2017 participated in the department’s first ACT Senior Retake Day last fall. Of those, nearly 40 percent increased their overall score.

Tennessee is the first and only state in the U.S. to offer this opportunity on a statewide scale.

Nashville sees uptick in youth killings

NASHVILLE (AP) – Twenty-one people younger than 20 have been killed in Nashville this year, making 2017 the deadliest year for youths in more than a decade.

The Tennessean reports that Metro Nashville police records show the youth death toll by October has surpassed the death toll of 20 in 2015, the most violent year since at least 2005.

Seventeen of the youths killed have died as a result of gun violence.

Nashville Mayor Megan Barry says the city must do more to rid the streets of illegal guns. Barry has also championed the Opportunity Now initiative with the intent of connecting at-risk youths to jobs and internships.

Metro police Sgt. Mike Fisher says the department has increased patrols in certain areas and implemented overtime initiatives.

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