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Study: Health and longevity of Baltimore residents improve

The health and longevity of Baltimore residents rose between 2008 and 2010, according to a study by New York's Social Science Research Council that was featured in Forbes. 

The research council put together a "heat map" that ranks each U.S. state on a scale of 0 to 10 — with 10 being the highest — on their overall state of well being. The council factors in education, income, health and longevity to come up with its number. 

"The five metro areas with the greatest increases in their index scores from 2008 to 2010 did so largely on the strength of improvements in health and longevity: Baltimore, Washington, DC, San Antonio, Dallas, and Boston," Forbes writes.

Connecticut fared the best among the states, with an index of 6.17 and high life expectancy and education levels. Maryland got a 5.94 on the index. You can see the entire story here.

Baltimore ranks as one of the best cities for college graduates

Baltimore is the fourth best city for recent college graduates, according to a report from personal finance site NerdWallet.

The analysis took into consideration factors such as the percent of residents in the 18–24 age group, the city's entertainment options, transportation, cost of living and job prospects.

The list placed Baltimore just below Denver, Colo., and above Philadelphia, Pa. Boston ranked No. 1, followed by Seattle. 

Baltimore got on the list because of its high percentage of young people, its walkability and its moderate cost of living, according to NerdWallet.

The list also included a chart that showed additional characteristics of the ranking cities, such as the cost of a Pizza Hut pizza and local movie ticket prices.

See the list and chart here.

John Waters says Baltimore has the 'edge' in HuffPo interview

Why does John Waters still live in Baltimore?

Well it's got the "cutest boys" and it's where the writer-director has the most fun, Waters tells the Huffington Post.

"It's where I get all my ideas. It's where the cutest boys are. I have the most fun here. It's the most mixed. It's the most radical. We got edge here. Come on down."

Other highlights of the Q&A: The "Hairspray" director likes making Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley "umfortable;" he decided to hitchhike last year because at his age, he needs to take chances; and, he's not on Twitter because he already knows enough people.

"The only reason for any of that is to see people you wanted to have sex with," Waters says of using Twitter. 

You can read the entire interview here


Entrepreneur magazine says Maryland is the best state for starting a business

Maryland, Colorado and Virginia support innovation and their high-tech workforce, according to the fourth annual Enterprising States report from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. 

Entrepreneur magazine features the list of states, which also included Utah and Massachusetts in the top five. The U.S. Chamber took a look at the number of high-tech businesses, STEM job concentration and programs that support entrepreneurs. The report credited the Free State for its Activate program at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and the Maryland Entrepreneurs Resource List. 

Read the entire story here

Baltimore among the 20 best places for recent college graduates

Now there's more proof that Baltimore is a good place for young professionals.

Apartment Guide places Baltimore No. 19 on its list of the top 20 U.S. cities for recent college graduates, USA Today reports.

Baltimore didn't fare as well as its neighbors New York and Washington, D.C., which came in at No. 1 and No. 2, respectively. Philadelphia, Seattle and Minneapolis rounded out the top five. Baltimore was also recently named one of the best East Coast cities for young adults

Apartment Guide took into account the number of bars, restaurants, entertainment venues and other factors to come up with its listing. You can see the list and USA Today story here.

Fast Company says Maryland is the third most innovative state

Maryland is home to a thriving startup community, says Fast Company. The magazine ranks the Free State No. 3 on its list of the most innovative states.

Florida, Texas, Arizona and Alaska rounded out the top five. Mississippi, Oklahoma and Virginia were at the bottom three of the list, which ranked the 50 states and the District of Columbia. 

Maryland also ranked No. 4 on Fast Company's breakdown of the number of startups per million residents.

The magazine culled data from a variety of sources to come up with the ranking: the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity and others. 

Baltimore ranks No. 14 on list of most walkable cities

Baltimore may not be as pedestrian friendly as New York or San Francisco, but it's more walkable than Denver or San Diego.

That's according to Walk Score, which ranked the 50 largest cities according to walkability. The Big Apple and San Francisco took the No. 1 and No. 2 spots, followed by Boston, Chicago and Philadelphia.

Walk Score came up with the rankings based on whether a city's residents can walk to nearby amenities and manage without a car. The Seattle organization promotes walkable neighborhoods.

Baltimore named one of the best East Coast cities for young adults

College seniors graduating this May from area universities should consider staying put.

A recent study from the Business Journals places Baltimore No. 4 on its list of top cities for young adults on the East Coast. Washington, D.C., came in at No. 1, followed by Boston and New York.

The study factored the strength of the job market, cost of living and number of young, college-educated, employed adults to come up with its ranking.

In its national ranking of 102 cities throughout the U.S., Baltimore came in at No. 23. Austin, Texas, came out on top, followed by San Jose, Calif., and Washington, D.C.

You can read the entire story here.

Johns Hopkins among the top schools in world reputation ranking

Johns Hopkins University generally does well on U.S. rankings of the top colleges. 

But how does it stack up against institutions of higher learning from around the world?  Not bad. It ranks No. 19 in the Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings of the top 100 universities from around the globe. The University of Maryland, College Park also comes up on the list, at 95.

The British publication put Harvard, MIT and England's University of Cambridge in the top three. 

The Times Higher Education says it determined its ranking through an "invitation-only survey of academic opinion." 

Johns Hopkins among 10 best writing colleges

Johns Hopkins University has won accolades for its world renowned academic studies in medicine, public policy and engineering.

The Baltimore school's writing program is also among the best, according to CollegeDegree.com. The site, in conjunction with USA Today College, placed Johns Hopkins No. 3 in its ranking of the ten best writing programs for college students. 

"Their English department boasts a long history of producing well-received and distinguished writers," CollegeDegree.com writes about the Charles Village school. "While they do offer courses in creative writing, Johns Hopkins focuses much more on literary writing, critical analysis, and literature education to improve writing skills."

Hopkins came behind Emory University in Atlanta and Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y.

You can see the entire list here

Forbes reviews Baltimore's Digital Harbor Tech Center

The South Baltimore Recreation Center has officially reopened as a neigborhood technology center, thanks to the efforts of the Riverside community and Digital Harbor High School supporters.

Forbes takes a look at the new venue, where Balitmore City school students can learn about web design, mobile app development and digital media production. 

"The center’s grand opening was a packed house, where excited participants got to show equally excited visitors the fruits of some of their early work, providing a taste of what’s to come from the space," the magazine writes. "Shelly Blake-Plock, the executive co-director of the Digital Harbor Foundation, delivered such an impassioned welcome speech that you could almost see where all this excitement was coming from."

You can read the rest of the story here

Forbes Says Baltimore is a Tech Hot Spot

America's new hotbeds of technology innovation are not in the major cities like New York, Los Angeles or Chicago, but smaller ones, according to Forbes. And ranking No. 4 on Forbes' list is the Greater Baltimore region, where jobs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) grew nearly 18 percent between 2001 and 2012.

The Washington, D.C., metropolitan area got the top spot, followed by Riverside-San Bernadino, Calif., and San Antonio-New Braunfels, Texas. 

New York, L.A. and Chicago, in contrast, all lost tech jobs in the past decade, according to the data crunched by Praxis Strategy Group

"As the social media industry matures and consolidates, employment is likely to continue shifting to less expensive, business-friendly areas," Forbes writes.

You can read the rest of the story here

Matthew Porterfield's New Film to Premiere at Sundance

Baltimore filmmaker Matthew Porterfield is debuting his latest film, "I Used to Be Darker," at Sundance next month. The movie tells the story of a runaway who goes to live with her aunt and uncle in Baltimore and confronts a family struggle afterwards. "Darker" is one of ten films in the film festival's NEXT program, which highlights innovative storytelling in film. 

You can read more about the NEXT films here on film site Indiewire or in this writeup in the New York Times. 

Porterfield garnered rave reviews for "Putty Hill" in 2010. The Wexner Center for the Arts at Ohio State University selected the Hamilton native for its 2012-2013 Artist Residency Awards. Porterfield has also won the Sondheim Prize and was included in the Whitney Biennial. 

Towson U. Among Most Vegan-Friendly Campuses

Serving up lentil burgers and veggie deli "meats" has earned Towson University and the University of Maryland a spot on the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals' (PETA) list of most vegan-friendly colleges.

PETA 2 —  the arm of the animal-rights group that targets the younger crowd — nominated both schools. Voting for Round 1 continues until 5 p.m. Oct. 16 and winners will be announced Nov. 15.

PETA 2 determines who makes it to the next round based on four factors: quality vegan food options, the total number of votes, the enthusiasm demonstrated by nominated schools and feedback from campus students on their vegan dining options.

The University of New Hampshire, Cornell University and Alabama's Troy University are among the other nominated vegan-friendly schools. 

Forbes Names Hampden One of the Hippest Neigbhorhoods

Whoever thought that a neighborhood in Baltimore would be featured alongside Williamsburg, New York City, Silver Lake, Los Angeles, and Chicago's tony Wicker Park?

Forbes has done the favor to Hampden, ranking it No. 15 on its list of hippest hoods. 

"Bars, restaurants and independent coffee houses co-mingle with two-story rowhouses harking back to the neighborhood's days of mills and factories," Forbes writes of this "retro cool" neighborhood. 

Silver Lake took the top spot, followed by San Francisco's Mission District and Brooklyn's Williamsburg. 

San Francisco's Nextdoor.com helped Forbes compile the data, assessing each neighborhoods walkability, number of food trucks, locally owned eateries, art galleries and other hipness factors. You can see the entire list here

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