Thursday, January 19, 2012

How to Keep Social at College While on a Student Budget

In general, being a starving student and having a social life doesn't seem to go hand in hand. This does not have to be the case! You can have tons of fun when not cramming for exams, researching for papers or studying. All it takes is a little creativity and opening up your mind to exciting opportunities for adventure and relaxation. We've got some great tips up our sleeves to stir some ideas and give you the opportunity to have some real fun without having to worry about breaking the bank.

Tip #1 Enjoy the Outdoors

Do not underestimate your surroundings! Even if you are not the outdoorsy type, if you are gifted with nature's playground surrounding you, give it a go and explore some of the many trails in your area. If hiking isn't your thing, try setting up a camping trip with your friends. Splitting the costs of the camp site rental for the weekend along with splitting the costs of supplies can be a great getaway from stress and gives you the opportunity to enjoy nature and your friends without the interference of the internet, smart phones etc. In this day in age it is important to "unplug" once in a while to rejuvenate.

Tip# 2 Dinner & A Movie: Budget Friendly Style

Heading out to a movie and dinner these days can be quite pricey especially if you throw popcorn and snacks into the equation. You can have just as much fun or even more fun by holding your own "movie night" at your own place. Rent a movie you think your friends will enjoy and have everyone bring their own snack for everyone to share. You can even set a theme night by tying in the food with the type of movie.

Tip #3 Head to the Museum

If you have a keen interest in art and history, check out your local museum! Not only will educate yourself, but exploring new and old works of art can be interesting and exciting. Many museums offer a discounted admission during the week.

Tip #4 Hold a Spa Party

As much as you would love to sign up for a pampering spa, it can be relaxing but super expensive - why not throw your own spa party? Have all of your girlfriends bring spa tools such as nail files, massage oils, towels and nail polish and practice your techniques on each other. Why not throw in snacks and a chick flick to go along with it? This option can be much more entertaining!

Tip #5 Check out Free Events

Check your local listings for upcoming events in your town or city. Depending on the population of your town, the amount of events being held may vary. However if you check your community newspaper and city websites through social media, surely there are many free events happening in the summer whether they be cultural events, free concerts, outdoor movies etc.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

How To Get Into MIT

MIT admission requirements are very different from that of other educational bodies. When applying to get into Harvard or other rivals, students are asked to fill out the Common Application, MIT has its very own procedure. Whilst other bodies will ask applicants to write an essay, MIT will ask you to write a number of essays. The interview at other institutes has no bearing on your acceptance, at MIT it could be essential. Let's discover this in a bit more detail.

The Common Application is appropriately titled. For it is the common set of student forms used by more than 4 hundred education bodies around the US. At MIT though, you will be asked to go through a unique process and create an MIT account.

Maybe you adore writing. Perhaps you do not. Maybe you have read the classics and may recite Dickens. Equally you may barely able to barely recite the headlines of yesterdays tabloids. In any case, you'll need to understand just what MIT expects from you. MIT has its own unique process for assessing students. Right here you'll be provided a series of 'essay prompts' or questions, and you'll be asked for your interpretation.

Whilst students dread the admissions interview, it is usually not justified. At Harvard, for example, the procedure is a mere formality. Not at MIT. MIT has Educational Counselors around the globe. These are volunteers and alumni who'll meet you at your nearby library or while having a cup of coffee to discuss your application. If there's no one inside your locality a Skype call will be enough.

MIT stats reveal just 1.4% of those that pass-up the interview are offered acceptance. Do the essentials, take the right steps to make sure your voice is heard.

Entering MIT isn't like warming-up for American Idol. There are no scowling ego's sat behind a desk sneering at a missed note. They're former students who'd like to witness a shining application. They want outstanding students who they will be proud of approve. MIT has an extraordinary history. Ask yourself, are you really capable of succeeding America's elite? If not, it's time to change your approach.

Getting Into MIT will alter the course and direction of your life. It will impact your career and you'll make lasting friendships. How much is the that worth to you?

Ensure you prepare. Do yourself justice. Be that 1 in ten.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Manual Trades Stand Strong in a Digital World

It is no surprise that certain trades are quickly diminishing with the incessant rise of digital technology. If we take audio technology as an example, any development grew to the point of washing out its predecessor. The vinyl was taken over by cassette tapes, which were then taken over by compact discs, which, with the introduction of the MP3, have become nothing more than dusty reminders of our youthful past.

It is true that many analog technologies have enough die-hard aficionados to prevent them from completely vanishing. There are still enough people actively using record players to warrant the production of vinyl records, albeit quiet the small production run.

Nonetheless, our digital preferences have not affected all trades. Sure, audio, instant cameras, and even letter pressing are hovering over their extinction date. But there still remain certain manual trades that, for now, seem to be up and running in the same manner they did way back when.

The vital difference between analog technology and manual crafts is that the latter chiefly relies on human skill, while the former relies merely on passive usage. The disappearance of dark rooms did not occur because no one practiced photography anymore; but rather, because a newer, more convenient way to practice photography was introduced. Instead of photography strictly being a specialized trade, it is open to anyone who can get their hands on a camera. The same does not go for manual trades. We will always need buildings to be built, concrete to be laid, furniture to be designed, and pipes to be assembled, and unlike the analog world, manual craftsmanship has yet to be overshadowed by digital counterparts.

That is not to say that manual trades have not changed with the increase of digital developments. Modern day mechanics, for example, must master all the digital gizmos-GPS, trackers, embedded TV screens, reverse-mode cameras-we have come to love, things their counterparts of fifty years ago didn't need to know about.

Even still, manual trades seem to be of the few things that are safe from extinction in this digital world of ours. Even more reassuring is that trades-people continue to be trained through intense apprenticeships. Typically offered at a college or university, apprenticeship programs allow aspiring trades-people to learn their craft in a very traditional manner, viz. an intense mentor-protégé curriculum. As students learn theory in the classroom, they then have to put the theory into practice by working alongside masters of the trade.

A student enrolled in a plumber apprenticeship will learn everything from layout specifics to welding the final touches. Similarly, a student enrolled in a roofer apprenticeship will be learning about various roofing materials one day, and will be actually laying out fiberglass shingles the next.

The very idea of apprenticeships is quite endearing insofar as it emulates a sort of camaraderie between generations. As the masters of today reach their peak, they pass along their expertise to the young professionals that will follow suit. Regardless of what digital developments come next, I don't think anything can destroy that type of bond.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Specialized Careers With a Focus on Communities

If you are thinking of pursuing a career that allows you to funnel your best skills and qualities straight into the community, you may want to consider earning certification in one of the following areas of specialization:

Instructor for Blind and Visually Impaired

Working with the blind is both challenging and rewarding. With extreme patience and specialized techniques, instructors teach both children and adults who are visually impaired how to move around safely and confidently. Blindness can be a very difficult impediment to live with, and instructors for the blind are a major support system for people who are visually impaired and their families. Areas if expertise include:

- The Eye and Low Vision
- Un-contracted Braille
- Orientation and Mobility
- Sensory Development
- Living Skills

The Autism and Behavioural Science

Autism is a realm of psychology and health studies that is controversial both in the treatments and studies that have been developed. Specialists in the field play a crucial role in guiding parents and other professionals through treatment options, educational activities and social exercises. Areas if expertise include:

- Non-violent Crisis Intervention
- Ethics and Professionalism
- Working with Families and Teams
- Behaviour Skill Building
- Parent and Staff Training
- Planning and Implementation

Social Services Worker

Social Services professional can choose to work with different populations and demographics, including youth and seniors. Working directly with people that are in need of support is a serious and demanding endeavour, and requires you to approach each individual's issue with a broad scope of knowledge and proficiency. The community courses pertaining to this domain will typically focus on the following areas if expertise:

- History and Ethics of Social Work
- Privilege and Oppression
- Working with Children and Adolescence
- Psychology of Adjustment
- SSW Community Change
- Issues Related to Family
- Practice in Organizations
- Social Policy and Law

Personal Support Worker

PSWs assist with providing attentive care to the elderly and to patients who suffer from mental and/or physical disabilities, and chronic illness. The presence of PSWs is crucial to the healthcare system because of the assistance they provide to patients on a daily basis. Students enrolled in a personal support worker program quickly realize that their skill set extends into various areas of expertise, including:

- Developmental Psychology
- Communications
- Health and Illness
- Dementia and Mental Health
- Palliative Care

There are several other community-based careers, including agriculture, early childhood education, and non-profit leadership. More important than deciding which specialization you want to go into is your resolve to dedicate your time and skills to various communities in need.

Visit Mohawk College for more information on early childhood college.

Rima Hammoudi is a Copywriter at Higher Education Marketing, a leading Web marketing firm specializing in Google Analytics, Education Lead Generation, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Mobile SMS Alerts, Social Media Marketing and Pay Per Click Marketing, among other Web marketing services and tools.

Monday, January 2, 2012

University Level Academic Administrators Say the Answer to the Future Is More Research Money

Indeed, we sure hear a lot about how the United States needs to lead the future through innovation and we have academic professors and administrators telling us that they are the way forward - that we must fund University research, because that's the only way. Worse, we have corporations which benefit and get this information for free, along with all of that talent, calling themselves partners, but getting everything if not free completely on the cheap. In many cases we could call this corporate welfare on the taxpayer's dollar. Okay so let's talk about this and take it a few steps further.

It is interesting that University level academic administrators say that the answer to the future is more research funding to their very institutions. Well, of course they are going to say that, and for some reason the citizenry, voter, and taxpaying public allows them to stand behind those podiums and microphones as if they are the authority. However, I can't think of anything more self-serving, neither can I think of a bigger crisis than the trillion dollars of outstanding student loans or the incredible academic industrial complex we have built into the giant bubble that it is today.

The Wright brothers were bicycle mechanics, they built the first airplane. Not all innovations come from the University. Yes, we should fund pure research, but why should the taxpayer fund research at the Universities, so these individuals can write research papers in their publish or perish world, only for our foreign competitors to take that information and run with it faster than we can create the jobs here to take advantage of it all. How does that help us? How does that help the taxpayer, or the poor Joe who would like to get a job?

You see, we seem to have a double standard because when corporations say that we need this, that, or the other thing, and then stand in line to get that juicy government contract, we all cry foul because the lobbyists are buying the votes. And yet, academia gets away with this every single day, no one says anything? Everyone somehow believes that the more people we send to college, the more opportunity there will be for people to get jobs. It's just not so.

In Saudi Arabia they increase the number of people going to college to an incredible number, and in Ireland they gave college education to everyone. Last time I checked, there were high unemployment figures in both of those nations. The taxpayer, and government funding pure research is okay, provided we get results, and we are not giving those results to our future competitors, who are taking our jobs faster than anything, because our companies here at home are so laden with regulation they can't move fast enough.

The system is broken, and merely throwing more money into a bloated academic balloon is not doing our nation any favors in the future moving forward. Indeed I hope you will please consider this, and I'm willing to debate with anyone, I don't care if you're the president of Harvard, Yale, Stanford, or any other university in this country, I will debate you head-to-head on every single point. Put up or shut up! Show Me! That's how we do in the real world, why can't you? Please consider all this and think on it.