Mya Acosta

Mya Acosta is a sophomore at Wichita State University pursuing a degree in Communications with an emphasis in Electronic Media.

Last year, while attending Bethany College, Mya interned with the Lindsborg Ad Hoc Round Table, writing newsletters about events in Lindsborg. Through that experience, she was immersed in a passion for storytelling which she hopes to expand on even more through the KMUW News Lab internship.

State parks across Kansas will participate in the annual First Day Hike Event in which people are invited to hike on New Year’s Day.

Twenty-one Kansas state parks are taking part in the national event and will host free guided hikes this year.

Linda Lanterman is the director of the Parks division of the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism. She says the goal of the event is to encourage healthy lifestyles by getting people outside.

Two naturalization ceremonies held today at Century II welcomed and recognized 175 new U.S. citizens who will be living in Kansas.

The new citizens came to the United States from more than 30 different countries.

Officials at Eisenhower National Airport are urging people to prepare for an increased volume of passengers when traveling during the holiday season.

Jay Brainard, Transportation Security Administration security director for Kansas, says the Wichita airport will see a spike in the number of travelers they screen. He says the week before Thanksgiving is even busier for traveling than the week before Christmas.

"Here at Wichita, on average we screen about 2,600 people a day," Brainard says. "During the busy holiday time, that number is going to exceed 3,300."

Law enforcement agencies will collect unused prescription medications as part of a Drug Take-Back Day program on Saturday.

Vaping devices and vape cartridges are also being accepted.

The nationwide program, coordinated by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration, has collected unused and unwanted medications since 2010. In Kansas alone, more than 88 tons of prescription drugs have been collected through the Take-Back Days program, according to a news release.

Agencies across Kansas are warning drivers to take additional caution as deer mating season begins, bringing higher levels of deer activity.

Sedgwick County had the highest reported cases of vehicle-deer collisions in the state last year with 418 cases. Butler County followed with 384 collisions.

Shawn Steward from the AAA of Kansas says the average cost per claim from car damage due to animal collisions is nearly $4,300.

Reginald Robinson is the new president and CEO of the Kansas Health Foundation.

The Health Foundation, based in Wichita, is a philanthropic organization geared toward helping Kansans live healthier lives.

Robinson is currently the vice chancellor for Public Affairs at the University of Kansas. He has an extensive background, including former president and CEO of the Kansas Board of Regents. Robinson also has served in several senior positions within the U.S. Department of Justice.