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Providing Willing Students the Tools to Maximize Their Potential

Finding Your Strengths and Weaknesses. What Works For YOU?

weak link Finding Your Strengths and Weaknesses. What Works For YOU?Identifying your strengths and weaknesses will help you learn about yourself. Evaluating these skills is a step in the right direction. The more knowledge you have of your capabilities, the better you are to make decisions about your future.

Strengths

Examining your hobbies is a good way to determine your strengths. If you lead a busy life but still find time to cultivate a hobby, then there is something about that hobby that interests you. When you’re interested in a hobby, you tend to be motivated in developing your skills. Take a look at your hobbies. What kind of skills do you use for that hobby? Does your hobby require you to use your hands? Does your hobby require you to calculate math problems? Finding the skills that are needed in your hobby helps you understand your strengths.

Also examine subjects that interest you. Ask yourself why you are interested in particular subjects. Do you love to read about modern art? Do you enjoy watching historical movies? Do you like to play sports? Determine what aspects of these subjects keep you interested. When you identify your interests, you will begin to gather information about your likes and dislikes.

Weaknesses

Identifying your weaknesses is another way for you to identify your strengths and skills. First find out what you’re not good at. Be honest with yourself here. Are you horrible at math? Do you hate to read? Ask yourself these types of questions.

There are two types of weaknesses: weaknesses that should be improved and weaknesses that are dislikes.

After you identify your weaknesses, figure out if they are skills that you need to improve. Just because you are not good at something doesn’t mean you’ll never have to learn those skills. If those skills are needed for the path you want to follow, then by all means spend some time improving those skills.

You will find that some weaknesses are just dislikes. Maybe you’re not good at working in an office environment. This is not necessarily a weakness that needs to be improved. This shows a lack of interest in being cooped up working in an office all day. Don’t force yourself into situations that you don’t like. You may be the type of person that needs to work in the outdoors or in non-office environments such as hospitals or warehouses.

Finding your strengths will help you make decisions about your direction in life. Finding your weaknesses will help you improve your skills but will also help you find your dislikes. You will be much more equipped to make decisions when you have identified these aspects about yourself.

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Do Employers Mind If My Degree Is From An Online University?

Maybe you're considering getting a degree from an online university. Maybe you've just earned one and in preparing to apply for new jobs that will make the most of it, you're wondering whether or not prospective employers will see your resume and have bad associations with your online degree. In a word, the answer is no.

Employers who require employees to have a college degree care that you have one from somewhere. Traditionally, there are about 20 colleges in the United States (the Ivies and a handful of other prominent schools) that make employers sit up and take notice about where your degree came from. If you did not attend one of these places, you are like most people, who find that the name of their school is less important to their employers than how they performed academically, and what they studied.

In fact, your online degree may set you apart in a positive way from the rest of the pack of applicants. Successfully obtaining your degree online tells prospective employers that you are a person who will get the job done even when no one is looking. Online degrees testify that their recipients are self-motivated individuals who are capable of managing multiple priorities. And whatever job you're applying for, rest assured that those are two qualities all organizations prize.

Furthermore, online universities are becoming more and more popular. While your online degree can set you apart in the aforementioned ways, you should have no fear that it will stigmatize you. Each day, it becomes more and more likely that the person you sit down to interview with may have attended the same online school that you did!

Another benefit of the online university experience in the eyes of employers is that it is designed in large part for working professionals. The fact that you've made it through an online degree program tells your prospective employer that you have had intense exposure to the types of collegial interactions you will face in the working world. Online universities emphasize and develop the ability to work with others, to manage and meet deadlines, and to be responsible for learning on your own. When you consider all of the things a degree from an online university says about you, you should realize that you're more of a proven commodity, a "safer" hire than recent graduates from brick and mortar universities.

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Free Money??!! Apply For A College Scholarship Now!!

Have you started applying for your scholarship yet? No? WHY NOT!?! This is free money for your education. Following these quick and easy steps will help make this process painless.

First, Eliminate the Scholarships That Don’t Apply To You
There are many scholarships available for people who want to attend college. The most practical approach to winning the money you need or want to go to school is to do some research and figure out the scholarships for which you’re eligible. Because of the overwhelming amount of scholarships out there, you will save yourself a lot of time and potentially wasted effort if you identify at the outset of your process which scholarships just don’t apply to you.

Next, Make A List of the Scholarships That You Are Most Likely To Receive
Once you’ve eliminated the list of scholarships that have nothing to do with you, you’ll probably see that the amount of scholarships is still pretty large. Of course, this is basically good news, but if you are eligible for a very large number, the clock might run out on you before you have a chance to apply to them all. To mitigate this possibility, take your research skills in a different direction by learning about the scholarships you could apply to and prioritizing the ones that you most would like to receive, and/or have the best chance of receiving.

Look Around — Are There Experts Available To You Who Can Help You In Your Quest?
The above tasks may sound daunting. Before you get too overwhelmed, ask yourself if there is someone who could help you make sense of all of the scholarships. If you are still in high school, before you do anything, you should make an appointment with your guidance counselor and let him or her help you figure out which scholarships might be the best for you, as well as which ones you are the likeliest to be awarded. If you’ve been out of high school for a while and are looking to get that college degree, chances are there’s someone in your current circle of friends, maybe someone who’s already been to college and been through this, who can help you cut through all the paperwork to get to the scholarships that are best for you.

Don’t Forget The Internet When It Comes To Tracking Down Scholarships
There are a number of Web resources at your disposal to aid you in your search for money for college. For example, Fastweb.com is a very popular site devoted to helping people match them up with scholarships for which they’re eligible. A great feature of a site like Fastweb.com is that once you enter your profile information on the site, it will e-mail you with news about upcoming scholarship deadlines.

And of course, regardless of how you find out about your scholarships, as soon as you determine which ones you’ll go after, the most important thing is to request the application materials and complete them as soon as possible.

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Creating a Military to Civilian Resume

You’re out of the military and looking for civilian employment. You may be worried that potential employers will see you only as a soldier (or sailor, or pilot, etc.) and not someone who can take on civilian working tasks. To convince them that you not only have a place in the civilian work force, but can be more of an asset than others applying to similar positions, you will have to make your military experience fit into a civilian resume.

The main problem you will encounter in this regard is that the military has a different culture and language than the civilian world. What this means for you is that you must change your skill descriptions and responsibilities so that they have civilian names instead of military ones. If there is not an exact civilian skill, responsibility or job that matches the ones you had in the military, there should at least be something comparable. You can find books that will tell you how to translate military duties and positions to civilian ones. Use these to build your resume.

If you have any civilian experience, such as a job you may have held before entering the service, be sure to include this on your resume, even if it has been some time since you had this position. It is important for you to show prospective employers that you are able to function effectively in the civilian world. If you have not had such a job, don’t worry. Take the military jobs and skills that you have newly translated into civilian speak and present them sequentially in the reverse order of when you learned them or began performing them. This will give your military resume the appearance of a civilian one.

Be sure to consider extracurricular activities. If you have participated in any volunteer organizations or clubs outside of the military that required you exercise certain abilities or taught you certain skills, include those too. Remember, your main goal is to get an employer out of the mindset that you can do little more than march and fire a weapon and into the mindset that you are a brave, resourceful, skilled individual who can be a major asset to any civilian company.

Be sure to highlight skills that have a direct relationship to the job for which you are applying. If these are retitled military skills, they can help emphasize the fact that your military skills have direct civilian applications that can be useful to this employer.

Finally, remember that the resume is only a part of the job application process. If you are able to generate a resume that indicates you are reasonably competent to take part in the civilian work force, you will be invited to participate in an interview. This will require a different set of skills than building a resume requires, but it will give you the opportunity to further emphasize the applications your military background has to civilian employment. If you can do that, the perfect job could be right within your grasp.

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Booming Industry: Dental Hygienists

Dental hygienists play an important role in dental health. As a dental hygienist, you will work under the supervision of dentists and perform a variety of tasks. Qualified dental hygienists enjoy a great salary, job satisfaction, and flexible work hours. With the right training and education, you can become a dental hygienist in as little as two years. You’ll be part of a rapidly growing industry of professionals, as the need for dental hygienist continues to rise.

Job Duties of a Dental Hygienist:

As a dental hygienist, you’’ll be involved in cleaning and maintenance, teeth and gum health, routine examinations, and the promoting of proper oral hygiene. You will also prepare lab test samples, take x-rays, and plan root and filling placement. Dental hygienists act as a consultant for patients and will frequently communicate with them to find solutions for current dental problems, plan a course of action for maintaining a great smile, and translate the dentist’s order and diagnosis into terms that everyone can understand.

Because the need for dental hygienist varies from office to office, some dental hygienists work part-time in several different offices. This provides great flexibility and convenient work schedules. On the other hand, some dental hygienists prefer to work full-time for one office.

Education and Training:

Dental hygienist programs are available throughout the country. Although certificates and shorter programs exist, you should at least hold an associate degree from an accredited school. Some colleges and universities offer bachelor and master degree programs, which is required to advance in your career and receive higher pay. In addition to classroom and practical learning, most states require you to take written and clinical examinations for licensure.

You can start off with a one year certificate course and work on your associate or bachelor degree around your new job. Dental hygienists who are already employed and have previous training can usually apply to online and distance learning programs to continue your education. This is one of those few careers where you can work while learning and advancing.

The Job Market for Dental Hygienists:

In the United States, dental hygienists are in demand. It is a growing career field that is expected to increase at a faster rate than most other professions. The reason for this exponential growth lies in the fact that older dentists are leaving the field and newer dentists are entering the market. Recently educated dentists tend to hire more dental hygienists since it was highly emphasized during their training.

In addition, dental hygienists are more cost-effective than dentists. Many of them are able to perform a variety of tasks, but don’t require a dentist’s salary. Even so, dental hygienists still enjoy a high rate of pay for their hard work. Dental hygienists with more experience and advanced education earn a much higher salary. All in all, it is a prosperous and rewarding career with potential for growth. If you desire a long-lasting career in a rapidly growing field, dental hygiene may be perfect for you.

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Interested in a Sports Science Degree?

What Can You Do with a Degree in Sports Sciences?

The field of sports sciences is vast. With a degree in sports sciences, you can go into exercise science, kinesiology, personal training, sports coaching, sports management, sports medicine, injury prevention and performance enhancement among others. This degree can lead to employment in clinics, educational institutions and even professional sports organizations.

How Do You Prepare for a Career in Sports Sciences?

To prepare for a sports sciences career, you first need to figure out the area in which you want to work. This will determine the type of education and training you will need. Degrees in sports sciences are offered at all different levels from certificates all the way up to doctorates. Many fields in the sports sciences require advanced degrees with specific concentrations and clinical practice. For example, to work in sports management, you would likely consider a bachelor’s degree in sports sciences with a concentration in business and management. A job in personal training can be acquired with a certificate. However, your chances of gainful employment would be improved with an associate’s degree in sports sciences and a supplemental certificate or concentration in personal training. Sports sciences degrees include a curriculum heavy in anatomy and physiology, kinesiology, nutrition and exercise.

Online Degrees in Sports Sciences

To enhance your sports sciences degree or advance your career, online learning and degree completion programs are extremely useful. Even with a full-time job and additional responsibilities, with online education, it is possible to complete additional degrees, fortify your credentials and expand your knowledge base. Many institutions are now offering online degrees in several areas of the sports sciences. Most programs are designed for the working professional – classes can be taken wherever and whenever – no commuting and no classroom meetings. Institutions that offer these degrees online include California University of Pennsylvania, Simmons College, University of Alabama, and United States Sports Academy.

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Advantages of Taking Online College Courses

If you need some college courses to complete your degree you might be thinking about taking those courses online, rather than at a traditional college or university. There are a number of advantages to taking college courses online. In addition to the obvious advantages, including the convenience of taking courses at home rather than having to travel to a campus and the reduced costs associated with taking online courses as opposed to attending a traditional college, there are some pluses you may not have considered.

Online Courses Offer The Widest Variety

If you are looking for very specific courses, you may not be accommodated by the local college or university, if there is one. Online however, you are likely to find whatever courses you are searching for. You have the entire Internet at your disposal, and location is not a factor.

Online Courses Allow You To Work at Your Own Pace

In a normal college environment, you are working as part of a group. You can only progress as slowly or as quickly as the professor and the other students will allow. When you take your college courses online, the only one responsible for your progress is you. If a certain subject comes easily to you, you can move forward at a faster pace. If something proves more difficult, you can take it more slowly, and go online for support if you need it.

Online Courses Make Full Use of Modern Technology

When you take college courses on your computer, you allow yourself the full range of the benefits of modern technology. E-mail, streaming video, and web browsing play a prominent role and give you the most efficient learning experience possible.

Online Courses Allow You to Express Yourself

Although you are studying on your own, you are not studying in a vacuum. You will participate in online discussions with a professor who is an expert in the subject and with other students, which will allow you to demonstrate your understanding of the course material and share your thoughts and opinions with others.

Online Courses Accommodate the Differently Abled

For those with physical handicaps, online courses are a great option. Individuals who are unable to travel due to disability will clearly benefit from online education, but online courses can also easily accommodate the deaf and blind through measures such as closed captioning and audio lectures.

When you are searching for college courses online, be sure to select an accredited online college or university. There are many qualified institutions online that will allow you to learn the material you need to get the degree, credential, or training you want. Once you have the right education, the career you deserve will be that much more within your reach.

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10 Ways To Maximize Your Time Off From School

College life can be tense and a bit stressful at times. Students who excel in college are self-disciplined and know how to manage their time. The constant managing of time and priorities does not suddenly stop when your vacation starts—it’s an ongoing process.

Here are 10 ways that you can maximize your time when you are off from school:

1. Review what you have learned
Although your classes may all be completed for the quarter (or the semester), it’s not a bad idea to review what you’ve just learned over the course of many weeks. Reread your notes, papers, tests and skim through the books you’ve just read. Finalize the imprinting of fresh information in your mind so that you can retain what you’ve learned over the long term.

2. Read ahead
If you already know what courses you will be taking in the upcoming quarter, start reading ahead. If you are going to have some time to kill, might as well get a jump start on your upcoming classes. Contact your professors and collect copies of syllabi. Purchase your materials and begin reviewing them before your class begins.

3. Go back to your roots and reconnect with family and friends
Go home. Say hi to the family and reconnect with old friends. College isn’t about severing all of your previous ties. Keep up your network and pay the people you love a visit.

4. Stick around and explore the town
Forget about going home. Stick around and explore your college town. Find new places to buy groceries and new bars to frequent. Take a mini-road trip to some nearby destination that you’ve always wanted to see. Take your time off of school as an opportunity to experience your surroundings.

5. Travel
Drive cross-country or travel abroad. See the world, or a tiny piece of it. Take your new outlook on life and expose yourself to different peoples and places. Visit a destination or place of interest that you have just studied. Travel with a partner, in a group, or go venturing off on your own.

6. Get an internship
Find an internship in the field that you are studying. Supplement your classroom work with real life on-the-job training. This way when you graduate, you will already have solid academic and professional experience.

7. Lay the groundwork for future employment.
Explore your career interests. Market yourself and your abilities. Try to find an organization that you want to target for employment once you’ve graduated. Find out what the minimum professional and educational requirements are for the specific job that you are interested in. Take measures to fulfill those requirements before you graduate.

8. Explore the course catalog and schedule of classes
Get lost in the pages of your course catalog. Map out different schedule scenarios. Find out if that class you really want to take is offered in alternate academic years, and then plan your schedule accordingly. Pick a focus in your major and consider all the courses that you’d like to take. You’ll be surprised how quickly your time in school will fly by, so you need to construct a solid schedule.

9. Apply for scholarships
Find some more money. Buy a book or do Internet research. Apply for as many scholarships as you can. Each application may seem like a bit of a hassle, but the results could seriously alleviate any financial burdens you may have accrued.

10. Just relax and take a break
Don’t do a damn thing! You’ve spent months cramming, pulling off all-nighters, and wowing you professors with your polished intellectual abilities. You’ve earned a break, so enjoy it, and come back to school refreshed and ready for anything.

If you utilize your vacations properly, you will be a better student. Just remember not to stress out too much. Whether you are in school or not, you are in control of your life, so make the most of it.

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Achieving Excellence – Tips for Achieving Career Excellence

College is very challenging and at the same time very rewarding. You need to take your time in college seriously, so that you can create a functional and fulfilling college experience.

Here are five tips for getting the most out of your college experience:

1. don’t take classes that you don’t plan on attending, unless of course you need a break in your schedule.

If, at the time you choose your schedule, you have no interest whatsoever in taking a particular course, then don’t enroll. The more disinterested you are in a subject, the worse your performance in the class will be. If you don’t see yourself ever attending lecture, then don’t sign up. If, however, you need a break in your schedule, then by all means find a light course that doesn’t require a lot of work or attention.

2. Study abroad.
Studying abroad is one of the coolest experiences in life, in or out of college. Expose yourself to new things. Learn while in a foreign environment. Develop your language skills, immerse yourself in another culture and explore. It’s so worth it.

3. Make up your own course at least once
Are you dying to do your own research? Are you just tired of the courses that are being offered? Well then find a faculty advisor, and make up your own class. Draw up your curriculum. Create your own research topic, approve your research materials and get credit to follow your interests all by yourself. Outside of a few office meetings with your advisor, you won’t have to go to class at all. No midterms or no finals here, only individual research approved by a professor that likes you.

4. Write a thesis
Many colleges make writing a thesis optional. Instead of producing a thesis on your own, you can take a couple extra classes or enroll in a highly focused, writing-intensive research course. Forget that stuff. Writing a thesis is not easy, but it is personally rewarding. You get to wrestle with your own custom topic for months, and in the end, you have a large research product that you can be proud of.

5. Take advantage of office hours
Get to know your professors. Ask them questions. Display genuine interest and heartfelt curiosity, and you will get better grades. If there is ever drama that you need to deal with, you’ll have a channel of communication already open. While other kids are asking Professor Last Name what they can do about their late paper, you’ll already have talked to first-name-basis pal and explained your situation ahead of time. If you can’t stand your TA’s, then bypass them, and forge a lasting relationship with your professors.

No two college experiences are ever the same. Everyone’s university experience is flavored by the relative qualities of the institution they are studying at. Locations, atmospheres, curriculum, students, faculty members and so on, are different everywhere. There are, however, a few experiences that are commonly found in most universities. These experiences must be enjoyed while you’re still in college. So take only classes that interest you, unless you plan on not caring about a particular course. Study abroad, write a thesis and make up your own curriculum. Befriend your professors and you will have an easier time succeeding in college.

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Make A Lasting First Impression

It may be a cliché, but it’s true. First impressions count. People are psychologically wired to form impressions of people the moment they come into contact with them. Over an extended period of time, if these impressions are wrong, they can be corrected, but when you are showing up for a job interview, you don’t have an extended period of time. You need to impress that interviewer the second you walk through the door, and keep on impressing right up until the time you are offered the job. Here are a few tips on making a lasting first impression.

Dress The Part

For any job to which you are applying, you must dress appropriately. This generally means you are well groomed and wearing a clean suit. You should have at least one and if you don’t, invest in one. Depending on the job, you may be required to wear a suit every day if you get it, so you may need more than one. Even if the job does not require such formal dress, you should dress this way for the interview. If you get the job, you can always adjust your work attire. Make sure your hair and fingernails are neatly trimmed and any piercings or tattoos are hidden (earrings are usually okay for women).

Make Eye Contact

When you meet your interviewer, look him or her directly in the eye and introduce yourself with a firm handshake. You are not approaching aggressively or confrontationally, simply with confidence. If you’re not feeling confident, fake it. Poor eye contact and/or a limp handshake are sure to start things off on the wrong foot. Once the interview begins, maintain eye contact, but do not stare. If you start looking off into space, the interviewer may feel you are not that interested in the job. If you fix the interviewer with a piercing, locked gaze, he or she may become too uncomfortable to consider you for the position.

Remain Professional

Even if your interviewer is a nice person and you begin to feel very comfortable with them, remain with a professional demeanor at all times. Do not curse or use slang. Do not reveal embarrassing personal information, or any personal information beyond what you need to give the employer an idea of who you are and why you are well suited for the job. Do not ask the interviewer embarrassing or personal questions. Do not make comments about other staff members you may have met or other potential applicants.

If you follow the above advice, you will give yourself a good head start towards acing the interview. You will still have to demonstrate your skills and answer questions to the interviewer’s satisfaction, but you will have created an atmosphere that is conducive to a positive outcome.

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