Friday, August 31, 2012

Meanwhile, just over the mountains in North Carolina

Appalachian State is celebrated on the fifth year anniversary of its upset of Michigan.  Tempus fugit.  From The High Country Press.

ASU’s ‘Crowning Achievement’ About to Celebrate Five-Year Anniversary; Receiving National Media Attention

It was the day that college football changed forever. Sept. 1, 2007. When the clock hit 0:00, Appalachian State University had defeated No. 5 ranked Michigan 34-32. Now, as we close in on the five-year anniversary of what Head Coach Jerry Moore called the “crowning achievement,” the win is receiving national media attention again. 
If you visit CBSSports.com’s college football section, you will see Dennis Dodd’s story on the upset as one of the featured stories of the day. Additionally, a story published yesterday by Jerry Hinnen for CBS Sports reads: “The choice for the biggest upset of the past five years of college football is an easy one: Appalachian State 34, Michigan 32 in the opening week of the 2007 season, the jaw-dropping, history-making upset whose five-year anniversary CBSSports.com’s college football coverage is celebrating this week.”

First time I've seen higher education budget cuts linked

To employee theft. And The Advocate's Koran Addo isn't talking about taking pencils home...

UL budget cuts cited as thefts rise

The University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors heard Tuesday that state budget cuts caused a wide range of dismal conditions in the state’s higher education system, from low morale and program cutbacks to tuition hikes and faculty layoffs. 
Board members for the system that oversees nine public universities received testimony that state budget cuts may be the cause of an increase in employee thefts on campuses, particularly the institutions that haven’t been able to keep a full-time internal auditor on staff. 
Board members learned about the increased thefts moments before adopting a $762 million operating budget, which leaves the system’s nine universities with about $38 million less than last year. 
“There is a lot of cash on campus and we’re starting to see where the cash is not getting into the bank,” said Robbie Robinson, UL System vice president for business and finance. 
Without going into specifics, Robinson mentioned an ongoing investigation on one UL System campus, where administrators believe an employee diverted about $40,000 into a credit card account.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Now, if you're looking for a California winery trip, look no farther than TCU

But for other locations, including just across the mountains in North Carolina, look at this list from MainStreet.  And I learned a new word: viticulture.

Fall Winery Trips That Don't Require a California Flight

North Carolina 
Tobacco road is apparently also on the grapevine. North Carolina has always been a popular vacation place from the Smoky Mountains to the Atlantic coast and Cape Hatteras, and wine is one more reason to plan a trip to the state. There are three major viticultural areas: Yadkin Valley, Swan Creek and Haw River Valley, and with 74 wineries throughout the state making 1,381,370 gallons, there's a lot of variety.

The Marshmallow Test

Wait for it....From Slate.

Delaying gratification in preschool is linked to weighing less as an adult
Have you heard of the marshmallow study? Between 1968 and 1974, about 650 4-year-olds in a nursery school at Stanford were offered a selection of marshmallows, cookies, and pretzels. After they chose one (let's say it was the marshmallow, though I'd have picked a cookie myself), they were told they could either eat it immediately, or wait a few minutes and get two. The researcher giving the kids this choice then left the room. The kids tried to wait. As Jonah Lehrer describes (I know, I know, but this piece is in The New Yorker so it was fact-checked), "Some cover their eyes with their hands or turn around so that they can’t see the tray. Others start kicking the desk, or tug on their pigtails, or stroke the marshmallow as if it were a tiny stuffed animal." 
Most of the kids lasted less than three minutes, on average. But about 30 percent waited 15 minutes for the researcher to come back and give them their second marshmallow. "These kids wrestled with temptation but found a way to resist," Lehrer writes. And over the years, it has turned out that the kids who knew how to delay gratification at age 4 tended toward higher SAT scores and social competence. As a group, they were better at planning and handling stress. And now a new study shows that all the way into adulthood, they are also less likely to be overweight or obese.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Urban Dictionary Word of the Day


Digital snow dayRefers to a work day interrupted by an internet outage that effectively shuts down all productivity, especially at a .com.

Co-worker 1: Our internet is down.

Co-worker 2: Woo hoo! Digital snow day! Let's go get coffee.

Washington County Tennessee is one of the top 25 counties

In CNN Money's Best Places to Live: Where the Jobs are. We come in at #24.  Franklin County, TN, is #10.

Where the jobs are
24. Washington County, TN
Towns include:  Johnson City
Job growth (2000-2011): 10.5% 
  
Washington County is ready to serve you. From its many call centers serving companies like AT&T and Citigroup to a thriving health care industry, opportunities abound for individuals who can deliver top-quality service and care. 
Situated in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, the area was once a major steel production center. But in recent decades, the county has aggressively made moves to adapt to major economic shifts.  
Health care is now a major industry in Washington County, with many jobs concentrated along the Med-Tech Corridor, where Mountain States Health Alliance system -- the area's largest employer -- is based, along with a slew of medical facilities and East Tennessee State University's medical school.

Michigan targets teacher education programs

Whose graduates test poorly on state exams.  By Lori Higgins, writing in The Detroit Free Press.

Olivet, Lake Superior St. must phase out training programs after poor exam scores

Lake Superior State University and Olivet College must begin phasing out significant portions of their teacher preparation programs, mainly because student scores on a state exam for teacher certification aren't high enough. 
For Lake Superior, that means it can no longer admit students to eight programs, including those that prepare students to become teachers in English, economics, history and biology. 
For Olivet College, students can no longer be admitted to nine programs, including English, music education, biology and social studies. 
Those programs are targeted because their pass rates on the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification (MTTC) are below 80%. The programs will have to be phased out, Flora Jenkins, director of the Office of Professional Preparation Services at the Michigan Department of Education (MDE), told members of the state Board of Education during a meeting Tuesday.

Nashville State is expanding

Into Clarkesville.  From The Leaf Chronicle.

Expecting big things

Nashville State Community College, the first community college in Clarksville, opened its doors Thursday and will begin classes on Aug. 27. Dozens of local officials, students, faculty and supporters were present to show their support for the new educational asset in the growing community of Clarksville-Montgomery County. 
The new school is expected to have rapid growth in its student population and a big effect on Clarksville‘s economic development. 
“Our programs should place a lot of students in the job market,” said NSCC President George Van Allen. “What we hope to do is put more people to work and more students into the university setting. That’s our two primary purposes.” 
In August 2011, Van Allen, along with Tim Hall, president of Austin Peay State University, and local state officials Senator Joe Pitts and State Rep. Tim Barnes, announced a satellite campus of Nashville State Community College would occupy the former Clarksville Saturn dealership at 1760 Wilma Rudolph Blvd.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Pruning higher education in Tennessee

It bothers me that politicians who had liberal arts majors as undergraduates and attended college when it was inexpensive now want to change the playing field.  Incentives work so perhaps we'll get funding bonuses for each program we cut.  And if you read the rest of Kevin Hardy's article in The Chattanooga Times Free Press, you'll learn that Unum's vice president for human resources really doesn't like sports management majors....

Governor: Cut some higher ed programs to fund new ones

To get state funding for new programs in Tennessee higher education, older ones will have to go. 
"What we want to know is: If you want to invest in something new, creative, what are you going to divest? Most great businesses do that," Gov. Bill Haslam said Thursday at a roundtable of legislators and business and higher education leaders in Chattanooga. 
Still, while he said he's committed to ending Tennessee's decades-long practice of slashing post-secondary education funding, it doesn't appear that new funding will be available anytime soon. 
Haslam spoke at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in the seventh and last in a series of statewide discussions. The listening tour was meant to inform the governor's policy decisions as he sets out to overhaul higher education. 
With continued cost increases, particularly for Medicaid, Haslam said, colleges and universities must prioritize where they spend their money. The state has cut higher education funding for decades, putting more burden on families and students through tuition and fee hikes. 
"When we look at capital for post-secondary education, we're going to look at: Are we putting that where the demand is? ... I think you'll see us funding post-secondary education more strategically because of some of these conversations," Haslam said. 
"Part of the issue is on us. And part of it's on post-secondary to figure out how we're going to do this in a more effective way."

Once again, we're thankful for Mississippi

Tennessee's ACT scores inch up to 19.7 from 19.5.  On the other hand, we are a state that requires all high school seniors to take the exam, not just college-bound.  By Lisa Fingeroot, writing in The Tennessean.

Tennessee ACT scores scrape bottom

For the second straight year, Tennessee’s high school students scored so poorly on a national college and career readiness test that only Mississippi students received a lower overall score. 
Just 16 percent of Tennessee’s 2012 graduating seniors were fully prepared for college, according to a report released today by ACT, the organization that sponsors the college admissions test of the same name. 
But the finding that raised the most concern among some state and local educators was the growing gap between white and black students. 
Only 7 percent of black students earned scores showing they were ready for college in three or more subjects, a number that hasn’t budged since 2010.

This is race weekend at the Bristol Motor Speedway, and ETSU starts classes on Monday

NASCAR 101: The Beginner's Guide to NASCAR


NASCAR 101: The Beginner's Guide to NASCAR - An infographic by the team at Quicken Loans Racing

Sunday is

Women's Equality Day.  And don't forget the topless rally over in Asheville that celebrates the holiday. From Holiday Insights.

Women's Equality Day
When : Always August 26th 
Women's Equality Day commemorates the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, granting women the right to vote. 
In 1971, after much work, and at the urging of U.S. Representative Bella Abzug (D-NY), Congress designated August 26 each year as“Women’s Equality Day.” This day was selected to commemorate the passage of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution on August 26, 1920. This amendment granted women the right to vote.  This was the culmination of decades of effort by women suffragettes and other groups.  Their efforts dated back to first women’s rights convention in 1848 at Seneca Falls, New York.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Princeton Review names ETSU as a 2013 ‘Best Southeastern College’


East Tennessee State University has been named a 2013 “Best Southeastern College” by The Princeton Review, an education services company known for test preparation programs and college and graduate school guides. 

The 136 institutions named as “Best in the Southeast” may be found in “2013 Best Colleges: Region by Region” on the company’s website at http://www.princetonreview.com/best-regional-colleges.aspx.

Robert Franek, The Princeton Review’s senior vice president and publisher, says, “We’re pleased to recommend these colleges to users of our site as the best places to earn an undergraduate degree. We chose them mainly for their excellent academic programs.”

Among the student comments, one describes ETSU as a place for “a good education, meeting new friends, having new experiences and making dreams of a better future come true.”

Pride Week starts today


East Tennessee State University is once again gearing up for the annual ETSU PRIDE Celebration, Aug. 23-31.

The theme this year is “ETSU PRIDE: Proud to be a Buccaneer!” and many activities are planned throughout the region for students, alumni and friends.

Organizers say this annual effort makes a positive impression of the university and the Tri-Cities region on new students and families. It also allows the ETSU family and community to celebrate the start of a new academic year.

This is the first ETSU PRIDE celebration for the university’s ninth president, Dr. Brian Noland.

For more information, call the ETSU National Alumni Association at (423) 439-4218, or visit www.etsu.edu/alumni for a schedule of events.


It's always a thrill a minute at TSU

It's never a good thing to be led away in handcuffs from the faculty senate meeting.  From Brian Wilson, writing in The Tennessean.

TSU Faculty Senate leader arrested

Tensions at Tennessee State University reignited Monday as a vocal faculty member opposing university leadership was taken away in handcuffs from a meeting. 
After campus police arrested the chair of the Faculty Senate, Jane Davis, on a charge of disorderly conduct, the Senate voted to remove her from her leadership position — a vote she claims is illegitimate. 
Davis, an English professor, has been an outspoken critic of several policies and decisions made by TSU interim President Portia Shields, who has clashed with some faculty since her arrival in early 2011.

Number two with a bullet

My alma mater is climbing the ranks of party schooldom.  From number four to number two in one short year! Interestingly enough, two of the top five are located in cities named Athens.  What this means, I don't know. From The Gazette.

University of Iowa ranked second-best ‘party school’

The University of Iowa is the nation’s No. 2 “party school,” according to an annual review that ranks things such as academics, campus life, politics and extracurricular involvement. 
The Princeton Review ranks the UI second on the party school list in its 2013 guide, right behind West Virginia University. Ohio University in Athens, the University of Illinois and the University of Georgia round out the top five. 
The UI ranked fourth in last year’s party school survey.

Via: TakePart.com

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

If you are a student or know a student in adult education


November 12-14, 2012
Sheraton Austin Hotel at the Capitol, Austin, Texas

Bonus for Graduate Students!

Graduate students whose main focus is adult continuing higher education are invited to join ACHE in Austin on our dime! Well... almost. This year, ACHE is sponsoring 10 student registration grants of $225 each which cover all but $75 of the student registration fee for the conference. Eight grants are still available.  Find out more and apply...


I can't believe I missed national rum day!

Six days ago.  Larry Olmsted samples old rums.  From Forbes.

Today is National Rum Day: Try Some Really Old Rum

Tweet police

Athletes at UK and UL have their social media monitored.  Probably not a bad idea.  I have some Facebook friends I'd like monitored.  From The Courier-Journal.

University of Kentucky, Louisville flag hundreds of words from athletes' tweets

Student-athletes at the University of Kentucky and most at the University of Louisville surrender their online privacy to their coaches under a social media monitoring system used by both schools and others across the country. 
As a condition of participating in sports, the schools require athletes to agree to monitoring software being placed on their social-media accounts. The software emails alerts to coaches whenever athletes use a word that could embarrass the student, the university or tarnish their images on services such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and MySpace.  
U of L flags 406 words or slang expressions that have to do with drugs, sex or alcohol. The University of Kentucky flags a similar number, of which 370 are sports agents’ names. 
The words range from the seemingly innocuous “pony” — a euphemism for crack cocaine — and “panties,” to all manner of alcoholic drinks and sexual expressions. 
UK also has flagged “Muslim” and “Arab” — though after being questioned about it by The Courier-Journal, the school said it will no longer do so.
Data Never Sleeps

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Must be that weight I lost


Tennessee isn't in the top ten of highest percentage of obese residents.  Still, we're a biscuit away from having 30% of our residents obese. Mmmmmm....biscuits. From USA Today.
Percentage of obese residents by state and District of Columbia from highest percentage to lowest:
1. Mississippi (34.9%)
2. Louisiana (33.4%)
3. West Virginia (32.4%)
4. Alabama (32%)
5. Michigan (31.3%)
6. Oklahoma (31.1%)
7. Arkansas (30.9%)
8. (tie) Indiana and South Carolina (30.8%)
10. (tie) Kentucky and Texas (30.4%)
12. Missouri (30.3%)
13. (tie) Kansas and Ohio (29.6%)
15. (tie) Tennessee and Virginia (29.2%)

Monday, August 20, 2012

Loss of summer Pell hurts summer session enrollments

And while community colleges might be affected the most, universities also feel the pain.  Last summer, ETSU had 1171 students using Pell in the summer, generating over $1.5 million.  This year, a different story. From Community College Spotlight.

Without Pell, summer enrollment slips

Without the year-round Pell Grant, which was cut from the federal budget in 2011 in a bipartisan compromise, summer enrollments are down at many community colleges, reports Inside Higher Ed.  College leaders fear graduation rates will fall too. 
President Obama suggested ending the program, which had spiraled to $8 billion in three years, to save the maximum grant of $5,550. The administration said there was no evidence offering summer grants had raised graduation rates. 
With many low-income students, community colleges are especially worried about the effect of losing year-round Pell Grants. 
At Cuyahoga Community College, students have opted to work in the summer rather than stretch their Pell Grant across an additional few months of classes, says Belinda Miles, the college’s provost, who adds that about 850 students were affected by the change. She worries that students who opt not to attend in the summer will take longer to finish college.

Friday, August 17, 2012

I shaved my head once

Once.  Tougher, I did not seem.  Continuing with today's hair theme is this from Cari Nierenberg writing in The Body Odd.

Guys with shaved heads seem tougher, study says

Sometime in his late 30s, after his hair had been thinning for several years, Dr. Albert Mannes decided to shave what was left of his mane. He then noticed a curious thing: "Strangers were more standoffish, more deferential," he recalls. 
"I found that people treated me differently once I started shaving my head, which made me wonder whether my experience was unique," says Mannes. 
This led Mannes, a lecturer at the Wharton School, at the University of Pennsylvania, to design three experiments that tested other people's perception of men with shaved heads. His findings appear in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science. 
All three studies found similar results: A man's shorn scalp was linked with dominance. In other words, men with shaved heads were perceived as powerful by others.

Improve your health

Grow a mustache.  We owe James Hamblin, writing in The Atlantic, for this timely piece.

The Health Benefits of Moustaches

4. Decrease risk of cutting face, untimely death  
The less you shave, the less you cut your face. Without proper antibiotics, a shaving knick that becomes infected can easily kill a person. You can get septic and pass away in short order. Henry David Thoreau's brother John died that way, as did Lord Carnarvon, shortly after discovering the burial chamber of Tutankhamen in 1922.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Only five states have a lower median household income

Than Tennessee's $41,461. Tennessee is ahead of Alabama, Kentucky, Arkansas, West Virginia, and of course, Mississippi.  Maryland is tops at $68,854. From NPR's Planet Money.

What Americans Earn
Some takeaways: Almost one household out of every four (24.9 percent) makes less than $25,000 a year. About one in three households (30.1 percent) made between $50,000 and $100,000. One in five households (19.9 percent) made more than $100,000 a year.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Urban Dictionary word of the day

Shatner textingWhen someone sends several 1-3 word texts to complete a sentence, thought, phrase, or anything that would take a normal person one text to send. This behavior can cause the receiver of Shatner texts to have their phones freeze because of the abundance or texts coming at once. It can also cause aggravation and annoyance because the receiver cannot read the first text because the rest of the texts are strolling in. Not to be confused with spamming. Named after William Shatner's speech patterns.

(Bob texting Mary) 

Bob:What are
Bob:you
Bob:doing later
Bob: this evening?
Bob:I was
Bob:thinking
Bob:maybe you
Bob: and


Mary: Stop Shatner texting me!

Bob: I
Bob:could see
Bob: a movie
Bob: at the
Bob: cinema

Mary:*throws phone*

"Live every week like it's Shark Week."

The Atlantic's Ashley Fetters sings its praises.

The Evolution of Shark Week, Pop-Culture Leviathan

Now the longest-running cable TV programming event in history, Shark Week has cemented itself as a fixture in the pop-culture lexicon, both seriously and meme-tastically. Stephen Colbert and Tracy Morgan (the voices of their generation, of course) have both publicly professed the sanctity of Shark Week in recent years: In 2006, Morgan's character on 30 Rock sagely advised a colleague to "Live every week like it's Shark Week", and Colbert proclaimed it the second holiest annual holiday next to the week after Christmas in 2010. (Putting that in perspective: When last year's 150th anniversary of the Civil War spawned a similarly formatted Civil War Week on the History Channel, it opened to mixed reviews and little fanfare—and it doesn't even have a single drinking game to its name.)  
Every summer since 1988, the little educational-programming week that could has drawn in massive audiences, hitting 29 million viewers in 2008 and close to 30 million last year. But at its humble beginnings, Shark Week was just a shadowy, elusive idea, lurking in the wet depths of the Discovery Channel creators' imaginations. 


Is North Carolina the funniest state?

Who knew?  From Slate Magazine.
North Carolina comedy, from Andy Griffith to Zach Galifianakis
In The Campaign, which opens tomorrow, Will Ferrell is Cam Brady, an ambitious, skirt-chasing politician with a $900 haircut and a remarkable amount of self-admiration. So you could be forgiven for thinking that the setting of the movie, North Carolina, was chosen to highlight a passing resemblance to a certain former Senator and vice presidential candidate. Ferrell’s co-star, Zach Galifianakis, is a native of Wilkesboro, N.C., and his uncle, Nick Galifianakis, represented the state in the U.S. Congress from 1967 to 1973. But that’s probably not the reason behind the choice of setting, either. As it happens, Shawn Harwell, who wrote the film, his first, is also a Tar Heel and grew up in a town not far from Wilkesboro (though he and Galifianakis met for the first time on the set of The Campaign). Harwell’s name may be new to you, but perhaps you’ve seen the show he helps write, Eastbound & Down, set in Shelby, N.C. It was created by Jody Hill, from Concord, a couple hours southeast of Shelby; Ben Best, raised in High Point; and Danny McBride, whom Best and Hill befriended at film school in Winston-Salem. 
The list of contemporary North Carolinian comics doesn’t end there—far from it. Over the last decade, North Carolinians have helped to write Saturday Night Live, The Daily Show, Late Night, and Parks & Recreation, among other humorous TV series. Community features two North Carolinians: Ken Jeong, who also appeared alongside Galifianakis in The Hangover, and Jim Rash, a Groundlings alum who won an Oscar for writing The Descendants. Another of NBC’s Thursday night comedies, Up All Night, was created by Emily Spivey, of High Point and UNC-Greensboro. Anthony King, former artistic director of the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, went to UNC-Chapel Hill about 10 years after fellow UCB-er Peyton Reed, a big-time comedy director whose credits include Yes Man, Bring It On, and, most recently, three episodes of the hit sitcom New Girl. If you go to the UCB Theatre these days, you might see Charlie Todd, who founded Improv Everywhere and graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2001. All these comics can probably appreciate the peculiarities of North Carolina life that have been chronicled by David Sedaris, who grew up there in a big family that includes his sister Amy, a comedian best known for her beloved Comedy Central show, Strangers With Candy. And there are many others.

Monday, August 13, 2012

ETSU Professional Development encourages early registration for clinical medical assistant training

East Tennessee State University’s Office of Professional Development, in partnership with Boston Reed College, is offering a Clinical Medical Assistant Training Program. Early registration for the popular course is encouraged.

The course will meet at ETSU at Kingsport from Sept. 4-Dec. 13. The class consists of 134 hours of instruction, including 42 hours of online training and a clinical externship of 160 hours.
The program fee of $2,520 (which is subject to change) includes textbooks, program materials, externship placement and a certificate of completion.

Clinical medical assistants can pursue employment as health care professionals in a physician’s office or a clinical setting by helping with procedures, caring for patients, performing simple laboratory tests and administering medications.

Also available is a free online information session, “Discover a Career in Health Care,” offering information about careers in health care, training programs, financing options, prerequisites and externships.

For further information, contact Boston Reed College at (800) 201-1141 or www.BostonReedCollege.com or the ETSU Office of Professional Development at (800) 222-3878 or www.etsu.edu/professionaldevelopment.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Deadline nears for Polysomnography Certificate training at ETSU


Polysomnography technicians are qualified to test and conduct diagnostic evaluations of sleep and neurological disorders. Working as part of a team with physicians, other members of the allied health community, and medical equipment suppliers, they assist patients in reaching their maximum functioning potential.

The field of sleep medicine employing Registered Polysomnographic Technologists (RPSGT) is relatively new, and the demand for personnel far exceeds the current supply. RPSGTs are hired by hospitals, independently owned sleep clinics, research facilities, and agencies conducting home visits.

East Tennessee State University, through the Department of Allied Health’s cardiopulmonary science program and the Office of Professional Development, will offer an online and live-class program leading to the Polysomnography Certificate. The program begins Sept. 15 and continues through July 23, 2013, and includes a clinical rotation at local hospitals. Early registration is recommended to secure a place in the program.

Applicants must submit an application and college transcripts for candidacy in the program. They must have completed at least 30 college credit hours with a minimum grade point average of 2.5 on a 4 point scale. After admittance, they must complete eight hours of observation time in a sleep lab, be certified by the American Heart Association as a CPR health care provider and undergo a physical examination, including current vaccinations.

Completed application packets must be submitted by Aug. 15 for candidacy in the program. The total tuition is $5,075, and the Office of Professional Development works with the participants on payments.

Those who successfully complete the program will be eligible to sit for the Registered Polysomnographic Technologist credential, offered by the Board of Registered Polysomnographic Technologists and considered the highest sleep credential available to non-physicians.

Admission to the program is limited, and the selection process is highly competitive. Each applicant is evaluated on the basis of academic preparation and previous health care experience.

For registration information, the ETSU Office of Professional Development at (423) 439-8084 or visit
Professional Development and click on the “Career/Workforce Development” link.

Tennessee is number five

Among the ten states with the highest unemployment rates in 2011 among residents 20 to 24. Appropriately enough, from a geographic perspective anyway, Tennessee ranked between Kentucky (#6) and North Carolina (#4).  From 24/7 Wall Street.

Ten States Where Young People Can’t Find Work
Historically, things are as bad for young adults in these states as they have been in at least 29 years. Compared to 2001, when the nation was in the middle of its last major recession, the national unemployment rate was roughly the same as it was in 2011. However, the unemployment rate for 20 to 24 year olds was substantially higher. In nine of the states on our list, unemployment rates among this age group were higher than in 1981. In four cases, it is five percentage points higher. 
There appear to be several common trends among the states on our list. Those states with high unemployment among the young have some of the highest proportions of residents without at least a high school diploma. All of the top three states with high youth unemployment were among the 10 with the lowest percentage of 20 to 24 year olds with high school diplomas. 
These states are also, for the most part, extremely poor. Six of them have among the lowest median income in the country. Mississippi, which had the highest youth unemployment in the country in 2011, also had the lowest median income in the country in 2010, the most recent available year. As evidence of the extreme poverty in these states, many of these states have among the highest percentages of residents receiving food stamps. In Tennessee, for example, 17% of residents received food stamps in 2010, the second-highest proportion in the country. . . . 
For Tennessee’s youth, the unemployment rate went up 2.7 percentage points between 2010 and 2011, the second-highest jump in the country. The state has some of the smallest proportions of people holding bachelor’s or advanced degrees, and the second-highest proportion of people on food stamps or enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program at 17%. Tennessee’s state government has recently undertaken an initiative called the Pathways to Prosperity Network to help young people get jobs by focusing on career preparation for high school students who do not go to college.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

ETSU searches for an official tartan


The search is on for an official tartan for East Tennessee State University.

ETSU First Lady Donna Noland announced during the Johnson City-Jonesborough-Washington County Chamber of Commerce monthly membership breakfast that three potential designs have been identified and that the public is invited to participate in the voting process, which concludes Sept. 10.

A tartan is a pattern of interlacing horizontal and vertical bands in multiple colors to form a distinctive pattern. Such tartans have been used in clothing and decoration throughout Scotland since the third century. They evolved from identifying the residents of a region to indicating the members of a specific clan or tribal group.
          
“ETSU shares a Celtic heritage with the tartan through the Scottish and Irish immigrants who were the early pioneers in what is now Northeast Tennessee,” Noland said.  “Each Scottish clan has its own tartan, and by wearing that tartan, members can recognize each other and show their family allegiance.  We want to have a tartan that will forever identify East Tennessee State University.”
          
Traditional tartans weave together carefully selected colors to form a unique pattern. The tartans under consideration for adoption by ETSU include the traditional old gold and navy contrasted with white and highlighted by a contemporary bright gold and lighter navy.
          
Students, employees, alumni and retirees from ETSU as well as members of the community are invited to vote in the tartan selection process.  The voting begins today, Aug. 8, and will continue through Sept. 10.  Voting can be done online by visiting http://www.etsu.edu/tartan/.  Funds raised through the purchase of tartan items will help support ETSU students.

LIFEPATH conference includes wide spectrum of topics for health care workers - 7/30/2012 - East Tennessee State University



Public health professionals can learn new skills and enhance existing ones at an upcoming conference on Friday, Aug. 17, sponsored by LIFEPATH, Tennessee’s public health training center.

“Public Health and You” will feature experts speaking on a variety of topics suited for health professionals, including health educators and administrators, nurses, pediatricians, physicians, social workers, epidemiologists and others. The conference will be held from 7:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

LIFEPATH, which is housed in the East Tennessee State University College of Public Health, provides academic and non-academic training opportunities for the public health workforce across Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. “Public Health and You,” which attracted attendees

Dr. Joy Wachs, director of the ETSU University and Midway Honors Program, will speak on community partnerships.

Tony Benton, CEO of Mountain States Health Alliance’s Franklin Woods Community Hospital, will focus on Accountable Care Organizations, a health care model where groups of physicians, hospitals and other health care providers come together to coordinate and improve care for patients while also lowering costs.
Joe Smith and Josh Smith will bring dual perspectives to the topic of media and public relations. Josh Smith is the evening news anchor for WJHL-TV 11 Connects, and Joe Smith is director of media relations for ETSU’s Office of University Relations.

Dr. Mike Stoots, an assistant professor and undergraduate program coordinator for the ETSU College of Public Health, will discuss how participants can conduct evaluation of their own organizations to better measure outcomes and success.

Admission is free, but pre-registration is encouraged due to advance planning requirements. Online registration is available on the LIFEPATH website at www.tnphtc.org. For more information, contact Paula Masters, director of LIFEPATH, at (423) 439-4421 or mastersp@etsu.edu.


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

According to The Chronicle of Higher Education

The best colleges in Tennessee to work for are Austin Peay State University, Lee University, Maryville College, and Sewanee: The University of the South.  I guess it's not surprising that most of these are private colleges. No community colleges made the cut.  APSU even made the Honor Roll: Let's go Peay!

Great Colleges To Work For 2012

A MOOC point

It's only a matter of time until students start requesting PLA credit for MOOC completion.  Man, that's a lot of acronyms for one sentence. Have your policies updated.  By Paul Fain, writing in Inside Higher Ed.

Massively open online courses, or MOOCs, are not credit-bearing. But a pathway to college credit for the courses already exists -- one that experts say many students may soon take. 
That scenario combines the courses with prior learning assessment -- a less-hyped potential “disruption” to traditional higher education -- which is the granting of credit for college-level learning gained outside the traditional academic setting. 
Here’s how the process could work: A student successfully completes a MOOC, like Coursera’s Social Network Analysis, which will be taught this fall by Lada Adamic, an associate professor at the University of Michigan. The student then describes what he or she learned in that course, backing it up with proof, in a portfolio developed with the help of LearningCounts.org or another service, perhaps offered by a college. 
Generally those portfolios contain a broad array of demonstrated learning, like work experience and training, volunteering or even the voracious reading of a history buff. But MOOCs, such as those from Coursera, EdX, Udacity and Udemy, likely will be part of portfolios in the near future.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Today is

National Lighthouse Day.

National Lighthouse Day

When : Always August 7th

National Lighthouse Day honors and commemorates a beacon of light that symbolizes safety and security for boats at sea. 
On August 7, 1789, through an Act of Congress, the Federal Government took over responsibility for building and operating our nation's lighthouses. The government recognized the importance to ships at sea to find safe harbor during fog and storms. Over the years, lighthouses have saved many ships, and an untold  number of lives. 
Throughout maritime history, Lighthouses have shined their powerful, sweeping lights through the fog and storms, allowing ships of all kinds to find their way back to port during inclement weather. With the advent of radar and GPS technology, lighthouses have taken a back seat in guiding ships to port. However, they remain the universal symbol of safe harbor to ships and communities that rely upon the sea for their livelihood.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Urban Dictionary word of the day

Coffeedence:  The sudden burst of confidence, focus, or creativity one experiences during or immediately following the consumption of coffee/caffeine.

"... I’ve never seen Bob give such a good presentation. He on drugs or something?"
"No, but he had a double shot of espresso this morning -- must be coffeedence."

State authorization requirement is

Reconsidered.  This is good news for all colleges and universities with online offerings.  It was a policy that wanted to target the "bad actors," but wounded everybody.  From Inside Higher Ed.

Backing Off on State Authorization

In a reversal of one of the most sweeping and controversial portions of its program integrity rules, the Education Department said Friday that it will no longer enforce a requirement that distance education programs obtain permission to operate in every state in which they enroll at least one student. 
The change was announced quietly — on the third page of a five-page attachment to a "Dear Colleague" letter that the Education Department sent to institutions Friday — but will likely be cheered by many in higher education. Colleges have fought the state authorization rule both in Congress and in the courts since it was first put forward in October 2010, arguing that archaic authorization rules create too much red tape and financial burden for online programs.

That's what you get

For waking up in Vegas. Make that having kids in Vegas. Parenting magazine lists the top ten worst cities for education in the United States. Las Vegas is the worst, and not a city from Tennessee makes the list. Lots from Texas do, though.

Education in America – Worst Cities
1. Las Vegas, Nevada 
When tough economic times hit a city, the school districts feel the pain. Thanks to Las Vegas' declining tax revenue and state aid, the school district was recently downgraded by both Standard & Poor's and Moody's, thereby thwarting plans for $5.3 billion in school maintenance needed over the next decade. Meanwhile, the school district was at the bottom of our list for pupil/teacher ratio and was in the bottom third for per-pupil spending.

Friday, August 3, 2012

North Carolina Adult Education Association

2012 Conference is accepting proposals for presentations. The conference is September 28-29 in Asheville, NC. The deadline for proposals is September 1. ACHE members may attend the conference at the member's rate of $50.  Find more information here.


For one thing

You'd better not talk about your boss on Facebook.  More and better advice on working for someone younger from Susan Adams writing in Forbes.

How To Deal With A Younger Boss
According to human resource and career consultants, older workers are reporting to younger bosses more and more these days. A 2010 survey by the jobs website CareerBuilder found that 43% of workers 35 and older said they currently work for a younger boss. CareerBuilder used Harris Interactive to administer an online survey of 5,000 workers. For many, it's a difficult arrangement. Here are some tips to help you cope with a younger supervisor.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The next big thing

Dean Dad reflects on the how the next sure thing in higher education rarely lasts.  Remember telecourses?  Satellite conferencing?  From Inside Higher Ed.

The Last Future
I’m just old enough to remember when evening classes were the hotbed of enrollment growth. 
Back in the late 90’s, when the economy was booming, many employers had programs that paid for employees to take classes at night.  I made a habit of teaching at least one night class per semester, even after moving into administration, just because the night students were so good.  They were mostly older, and for whatever academic rawness some brought with them, they had drive.  They were on a mission, and as any teacher can tell you, that’s half the battle. 
Now, evening enrollments are struggling.  Employer reimbursements are much scarcer than they once were.  (That’s why Amazon’s new program was newsworthy.)  Adult student enrollments are being cannibalized by online programs. 
Oddly, while evening programs are struggling, day programs aren’t.  The most traditional offerings are as solid as they’ve ever been.  From mid-morning to early afternoon, the place is packed.  (Summer is an exception.)  The traditional-aged students like to take classes in the morning and early afternoon so they can go to their jobs in the late afternoon and evening.  And adult students who work during the day are often happier to go online than they would be to schlep to campus after work. 
I’ve seen the shift on the student support side, too.  As recently as a few years ago, the active discussion was about evening coverage in the various offices.  Now, it’s much more about developing online chat capability, and making sure that we have enough tech-savvy people in each area at the right times.  Chat software doesn’t help if there’s nobody at the keyboard. 
We still have evening programs, of course, but we’re in that awkward transitional phase when the old method is declining but still important, and the new one still isn’t universally accepted.  So we run both, with all of the support costs that entails.   
Even weekend classes have been slow to take off.  It wasn’t all that long ago that evenings and weekends represented the new frontiers.  Now they seem like landlines in a cellular age; still useful for limited purposes, but not where you’d put new resources.  For a while, weekends looked like the Next Big Thing, but they never quite made it.  Online courses have supplanted them.

Memphis is the second cheapest place to live

Right after Harlingen, Texas.  No, I hadn't heard of Harlingen before now. From CBS Money Watch.

10 cheapest places to live in the U.S.
Memphis, Tenn. 
Boasting a rich musical heritage, Memphis, Tenn., has a month-long festival each year called "Memphis in May" that attracts visitors from around the world. The average cost of a home here is $180,375, while the average two-bedroom/two-bathroom apartment rents for $726 a month. While housing prices are less expensive than in Harlingen, groceries are pricier. A pound of ground beef costs $2.60, for example. The cost of living in Memphis is 14.3 percent lower than the national average.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

ETSU to present Buffalo Mountain Writers Workshop


East Tennessee State University’s Office of Professional Development will present the Buffalo Mountain Writers Workshop on three consecutive Fridays and Saturdays, Aug. 10-11, Aug. 17-18 and Aug. 24-25. The sessions meet on Fridays from 6-8 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. There is a fee of $59 for the event.

The workshop is designed as an innovative experience covering all writing genres and is open to authors from beginners to experienced writers.

The workshop features Elizabeth Hunter, a freelance writer living in the Bandana community of Bakersville, N.C. A graduate of Radcliffe College and ETSU, she is an award-winning columnist, writer and contributing editor for Blue Ridge Country magazine. Hunter and photographer J. Scott Graham have collaborated on a guidebook and two coffee-table books about the Blue Ridge Parkway.

In addition, Hunter has taught nature writing and journaling at the John C. Campbell Folk School and the Penland School of Crafts. She has also been a volunteer writing instructor at a medium-security prison for the past five years.

Visit www.etsu.edu/professionaldevelopment and click “featured programs” for more information, or call (800) 222-3878.

16 songs everyone over 50 must own

An AARP slideshow. How many of these are on your playlist?

Best-selling author Jacquelyn Mitchard lists 16 songs you should own
Music stokes my mood, keeps me spinning, on the bike and in life, and recalls for me irreplaceable moments we get to experience once, if we’re lucky. 
So I’ve compiled a list of favorites from every genre, each of which speaks in some important way to our generation.