Rebecca Sheir | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 Contributors

Rebecca Sheir

Host, Metro Connection

Sheir joined WAMU in 2009 as a news anchor, host and reporter. She became the host of Metro Connection in August 2010.

Sheir came to the nation's capital by way of Alaska, where she traveled amongst the moose and mountains as the host of AK, the award-winning show on the Alaska Public Radio Network. While in the Last Frontier, she also did reporting for NPR member station KTOO in Juneau.

Sheir's radio stories have won numerous awards – including the Third Coast International Audio Festival Directors' Choice Award – and have aired on public radio venues and programs, including All Things Considered, Weekend Edition, Marketplace, The Splendid Table, Latino USA, Only a Game, Here & Now, Interfaith Voices, Voice of America, Chicago Public Radio, New Hampshire Public Radio and Iowa Public Radio. She has taught her original radio essay/commentary course, "Radio Voices," at the University of Iowa and University of Alaska Anchorage.

Sheir received her BA from Columbia University in New York City, where she also worked in Off-Broadway theater production: first with Stephen Sondheim's Young Playwrights Inc., then with Naked Angels Theatre Company. She holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from the University of Iowa.


Articles Written by Rebecca Sheir

WAMU 88.5
U.S. Congressman Jim Moran represents a highly diverse district in northern Virginia. And now he's pushing for a national museum that would celebrate the American immigration experience. He's co-sponsor of legislation that would create a Museum of the American People on the National Mall. Rebecca Sheir meets up with Moran to hear more about the proposed museum, which he says would b...
WAMU 88.5
You can find some of the world's hottest peppers growing in Tyson's Corner, Va. Tom Elder, the executive chef at harth, is cultivating his own organic peppers, from the Trinidad Scorpion to the Devil's Tongue to the world-renowned Ghost Chili. The peppers are all pollinated by Elder's very own bees, which, it turns out, work especially hard in the super-hot weather. Rebecca Sheir pay...
WAMU 88.5
What would you do if you lost a string of big-money breweries to fire? In the case of Christian Heurich, you build the city's first fireproof home. Rebecca Sheir visits the Heurich House, to see how extreme personal pyrophobia resulted in a remarkable 19th century house, which soon could become a National Landmark.[Music: "Burning Down the House" by Tom Jones & The Cardigan...
WAMU 88.5
As we slog through D.C.'s hottest summer on record, we head to Virginia for the world's hottest peppers... visit the District's first fireproof house... and meet some local teens trying to stay out of hot water, after several brushes with the law.But first: Washingtonians share their tips and tricks for beating the heat...[Music: "Every Little Bit Hurts" by John Davis fr...
WAMU 88.5
Today we're dealing out a deck of "wild cards": stories that are intriguing, unpredictable, and hard to fit in to neat categories. We'll hear about some rarely-discussed moments in Washington's gay history, and find out why D.C.'s Bikeshare program may inadvertently be encouraging unsafe riding. We'll also learn what a "ring shout" is, and go south to Panama, to hear why local resea...
WAMU 88.5
The District's long-awaited medical marijuana program may soon be reality. The D.C. Department of Health says it will begin accepting applications from potential growers and sellers of medical cannabis beginning August 5th. Rebecca Sheir speaks with people on all sides of the issue, from a man who's applied for a license to grow marijuana in a District warehouse, to an activist who ...
WAMU 88.5
The Maryland-based Association of Adult Musicians With Hearing Loss, is a national group for adults who refuse to let hearing impairments get in the way of their musical passion. Rebecca visits two local members of the group -- a viola player and a classical guitarist -- who say while being diagnosed with hearing loss might not be music to your ears, it doesn't mean you have to change...
WAMU 88.5
An organic garden in Northern Virginia is now home to half a dozen of the world's hottest peppers, thanks to the executive chef at a new restaurant in Tysons Corner.As any devoted spice-phile will tell you, the world's hottest pepper is the ghost chili. Tom Elder, executive chef at härth, is more than familiar with them; he's growi...
WAMU 88.5
Farar Elliott, curator of the House of Representatives, is in charge of various sundry items that are the property of the House. This includes everything from a two-foot tall baseball trophy, double-tiered with eagles flanking it, to a wooden gavel, to a menu from 1933 featuring something called "pin-money pickles."Elliott is the first curator the House has ever had. She start...
WAMU 88.5
A production full of wordplay ... literallyIn Blacktop Theatre Company's Pun: (noun) a Play on Words, the characters are all, well, words. They are some of the dictionary's keywords, holding the coveted position at the top of the page, like floccinaucinihilipilification."Sure, since I'm the longest word i...
WAMU 88.5
Fringe features much local flavorAll submissions to Fringe are accepted on a first come, first serve basis, and none of them are censored in any way. Any given festival includes see some pretty off the wall stuff on the stage -- in some cases, a makeshift stage, since many venues are vacant buildings that once housed things like cigar shops and churches.More than 100 d...
WAMU 88.5
Steven Weinberger, director of George Mason's linguistics program, started the Speech Accent Archive back in 1999. Since then, he and his graduate students have collected nearly 1,500 samples of spoken English from people of roughly 300 different language backgrounds.English speakers worldwide visit the free online database and send recordings of themselves reading a certain 69...
WAMU 88.5
As the Community Engagement Coordinator at Gallaudet's Visual Language and Visual Learning Center, or VL2, Melissa Malzkuhn often gives presentations to first-year students."I ask them if they think that deaf people see better. And oftentimes the students say, 'Yes,'" Malzkuhn, who is deaf, says through an interpreter. "And so I tell them that science actually says that we don...
WAMU 88.5
Lorraine Treanor publishes the website, D.C. Theater Scene.com and says you can never underestimate the power of a theater audience."A play is such an ephemeral thing, you know?" says Treanor. "It's not a painting you can go see again, it’s not a movie you can go see again. But really it resides in the memory, and the passion, of the people who receive that."And so she...
WAMU 88.5
Demand Skyrockets After PreventionWorks! ClosesBut the group, Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive, or HIPS, is also struggling to keep up with demand. Since the District's main needle exchange program, PreventionWorks!, closed in February, HIPS has been overloaded with requests.Jenna Mell...
WAMU 88.5
A local monument -- the D.C. War Memorial -- honors the D.C. residents who died in The Great War. But the World War I Memorial Foundation has been lobbying to re-dedicate the structure as a national monument.Rebecca Sheir has a conversation at the monument with Foundation director Edwin Fountain, who says most Washingtonians probably ha...
WAMU 88.5
Housed in an old Georgian mansion on Western Avenue NW, the Lisner-Louise-Dickson-Hurt Home offers seniors housing and health care, along with activities, such as cooking, field trips and, like so many senior-care facilities, bingo."Everybody always goes, 'Oh God, there's bingo.' But if we tried to take bingo away from the residents, there...
WAMU 88.5
"It was a southern city, actually had Unionist leanings before the war, and Virginia did not want to secede from the Union. Twice before April 1861, it had voted not to secede. But after the attack on Fort Sumter, in South Carolina in April of 1861, Virginia quickly realized war was inevitable and that it would be the highway to war," Mallamo says.Just a few days after the fall...
WAMU 88.5
Shaw struggled for decades to recover from the legacy of the 1968 riots. Now, new residents and businesses are being lured to the area by new amenities and the neighborhood's proximity to downtown Washington.Neighborhood's earliest daysShaw is named for Colonel Robert Gould Shaw, who led the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, one of the first official black units d...
WAMU 88.5
The car may not seem like the most dramatic thing in the world, but as far as Taffety Punk's artistic director, Marcus Kyd, is concerned, pretty much all cars are dramatic. The company, which Marcus helped found in 2004, is presenting "The Car Plays": three one-act plays about people in a car.In addition to drama, the play presents another advantage for the young theater compan...