How to Support Those Directly Impacted by Covid-19

Since the beginning of 2020, the world has experienced a dangerous outbreak of the COVID-19. A virus that started in Wuhan, China, has spread worldwide, killing people as it disrupts people’s social, economic, and political lives. The numerous deaths and changes of customary burial practices have left victims psychologically, emotionally, and mentally hurt.
The following are ways in which COVID-19 victims can get support in overcoming the trauma:1. Explore safe ways in which patients and loved ones may get contact.
Up-to-date and accurate information regarding the family’s risk during contact with the patient should be made available. Such connections are essential since COVID-19 patients require psychological support from their families. Psychological counseling to victims will help them face reality.

2. Role of spiritual advisors, religious leaders, and local leaders.
The health practitioners should work closely with the community leaders and religious leaders in exploring alternative practices that will allow physical distancing during the funeral process. Some communities may become resistant to the authority’s measures; hence, religious and local leaders’ involvement in coming up with an amicable solution. The process must incorporate the religious and cultural values of the people.

3. Provision of end-of-life companionship by Health workers to those without close relatives.
Some of the victims of the COVID -19 have got no close relatives to give them emotional support. The health care system should come up with an end-of-life companionship program to support those in critical conditions.

4. Open and transparent communication with the family of the deceased.
Open and transparent communication with the family of the deceased helps in eliminating any uncertainty that may arise. It also helps reduce the psychological and emotional effects on the bereaved.
The family members, community, and religious leaders should get all the information on the planned care protocols, but they should be allowed to identify the burial sites.

5. Strengthening of the physical, administrative, and human resources for local mortuaries.
Strengthening of the local mortuary capacities is an urgent matter as they have never faced such a pandemic. Caring for the deceased should also be enhanced to reduce the emotional stress on their families. There should be proper handling of the deceased in a manner that will accord them the necessary respect.

6. Proper psychological support systems for Health care workers.
Health care practitioners exposed to high mortality rates are becoming stressed; hence need to be supported emotionally. Counseling services are, therefore, essential for health workers.

It is the role of everyone in the community to support those affected by COVID-19. The media plays a very vital role in reporting about the pandemic. Credible journalism is very critical as some sensitive images have a huge psychological impact on the victims. However, media influence will help reduce the spread of the pandemic.

Preparing For College Finals

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November is here and that means that finals season for college students is right around the corner. For most universities, finals week hits shortly after Thanksgiving break, and many students end up smacked in the face with a mountain of work and studying to do. This can lead to tons of stress and exhaustion, which means you may not do as well on your exams as you want to do. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for finals week if you’re a college student (especially if it’s your first finals week).

Start Early

One of the best ways to prepare yourself for your finals is to start studying early. If you haven’t started yet, you might want to look into it! While cramming may work for some students, it’s generally better to study in intervals, such as 30 to 50-minute increments and taking breaks in order not to exhaust yourself. How early you choose to start may be based on how many finals you have to take and what kind of subjects you’re studying, so feel it out and make sure you give yourself enough time to fully understand all of the content.

Find A Study Partner

This may not be for everyone, but studying with another person can be a great way to make studying engaging and fun. Often times having someone else with you to help study can help you better understand something you’re struggling with, or vice versa. You can ask one another questions to make sure you fully understand the content and make a good friend in the process. It’s often best to avoid studying with a very close friend because it’s easier to get distracted, which is the last thing you want when preparing for a test that might make or break your grade for the semester.

Make Sure You Eat and Sleep

The most important part of preparing for your finals is making sure you don’t neglect important things like rest and food. While you may feel the need to pull an all-nighter to make sure you understand the content, it’s actually rather detrimental and can make it difficult to concentrate as well as putting extra stress on your shoulders. It can also be tempting to order greasy foods from restaurants open later in the evening, but this is also a bad idea. Be sure to fill your meals with healthy food, and plenty of water in order to make sure your brain is in tip-top shape before heading into your finals.

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Best Undergrad Majors for Aspiring Lawyers

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Many people dream of becoming a lawyer their entire life. A career in law can be quite lucrative and is a great way to help others in many different ways. When it comes to studying law, there are different paths one can take. A lot of students choose pre-law as their major in undergrad when they are aspiring to become a lawyer, but there are other studies that can be a benefit in law school and in your law career. 

Business

One of the best choices for aspiring lawyers in undergrad is a business major. Majoring in business offers skills ing leadership, project planning, communication, and management. For the students who have an interest in corporate law will find that classes in management and economics will give them much of the knowledge they need for their postgraduation career. When majoring in business as an aspiring lawyer, it’s important to have electives in humanities and liberal arts for analytical and critical thinking.

Criminal Justice

When studying criminal justice or criminology extensively in undergrad, an aspiring lawyer is given an education in the identification and explanation of criminal behavior patterns which is very valuable knowledge. Many lawyers who studied criminal justice have impeccable skills in critical thinking, investigations, as well as effective verbal and nonverbal communication. Having the foundational knowledge of crime and law, they will have a stronger career. 

English

Unbeknownst to most, English is a popular choice of major among aspiring lawyers. In fact, 3,549 law school applicants held a degree in English in 2016 and 2017 and 80% of applicants with this degree were admitted to at least one law school. A major in English mainly focuses on reading and writing, which helps aspiring lawyers develop excellent skills in processing written information quickly to create analytical opinions as well as arguments and positions. This is why so many students with an English degree are so successful in law school and beyond.

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Tips for Volunteering Overseas

Helping your own community comes with its own benefits, but there is a whole world out there that needs help. There are parts of the world that are far much less fortunate than us and could greatly benefit from eager and dedicated volunteers. Taking the time to help others outside of your borders is a very rewarding and fulfilling experience. When choosing to volunteer overseas, there are a few tips you should follow:

Always Be Prepared

When heading abroad, it’s imperative to be as prepared as possible. Especially if this would be your first time traveling overseas, preparing for the trip is crucial. Make sure to do extensive research on the volunteer program, the destination, budgeting, transportation, projects, and more. Take the time to ask as many questions as you can and getting the answers you need before committing to the overseas volunteer program.

Consider Expenses

Volunteering abroad means traveling overseas to work for free. Some of these projects can take weeks or evens months of time and commitment. Before volunteering abroad, make sure it is something you can afford to do. You need to pay for the airfare, vaccinations, visas, and the charge for the placement in the program itself. This charge will usually cover food, room and board, training, local transport, insurance, and background checks.

Fight the Right Project

There are many different projects that a program will have. When volunteering overseas, consider the different skills that you have and what program would benefit the most from it. For example, if you have a passion or an educational background in animals, consider volunteering for wildlife projects. If you are looking to pursue a career in teaching, opt for a project teaching English to children. This makes sure that the project you are volunteering for will greatly benefit from you being a part of it.

Respect All Cultures

When traveling across the world, you will be introduced to an entirely different way of living. Most volunteer projects take place in third world countries and you will be faced with an entirely different culture. It’s important to remember that you are there to lend a helping hand, not to take charge of their lives. Be respectful of their ways of living and be humble. Not only will this lead to better help them and their community, but it will also be n incredible learning experience for you.

The Best Careers in Higher Education

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For some students, working in high education is their dream career. A job in higher education can be a very rewarding and lucrative career choice. There are many paths to choose from to help students grow and develop in college or university. If you are looking to work in higher education, here are the best career options:

Academic Advisor 

One of the most important people in a college student’s life is their academic advisor. As an academic advisor, your job is to counsel students about their course selection, what they can major in, help resolve academic problems, and relationships with faculty. Academic advisors make sure students get their proper education and help them graduate on time. It is a job that requires a lot of organization and people skills but is very rewarding to help students succeed. 

Financial Services

It is no secret that college requires heavy finances. It numbers is your game, working in financial services at a college or university could be a great career choice for you. Those who work in the financial services at a university oversee the business functions of the college, set policies regarding financial transactions, maintain financial records, and ensure compliance with financial regulations. This is a detail-oriented job that requires a lot of math and problem-solving skills. 

Career Services

Many students struggle with wondering hat happens after college. Working in college services is a lot like being an academic advisor, except you would be advising for what happens after college. Working in career services would mean helping students find internships, develop job opportunities, create and edit resumes, practice interviewing, and much more. This is a great career choice if you enjoy working one on one with others and helping people to achieve their goals. 

A career in higher education much of the time means working with students, even if it’s not being a professor. Whether you’re aiding students or helping the university run smoothly, it is a wonderful career choice.

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Three Education Trends to Watch

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Technology is rapidly evolving, and subsequently, it has the power to transform different industries as well. Though schools and academia have not traditionally been the quickest to pick up on digital trends, that doesn’t mean that change isn’t happening. Today we’re exploring three education trends to watch. 

Artificial Intelligence

Businesses have been harnessing the power of artificial intelligence for its ability to rapidly process vast quantities of data and generate insights. Soon, the education sector can also be transformed with the adoption of this technology. Artificial intelligence is capable of performing tasks such as speech recognition, language translation, and decision-making. The best application for it so far is as a teaching tool, although supporters say that it may help to alleviate teacher shortages in the future. In the classroom, artificial intelligence is being used for personalized learning

Virtual Reality

According to education researcher Melissa Pelletier, “creative learning spaces play an important role in student engagement.” Virtual reality can do just that by creating immersive learning environments for students and help them to experience things like history, travel, and even STEM programs. Imagine virtual field trips through time and space that allow students a deeper and more personal understanding of the material. Products like Google Expeditions and various phone apps aim to make virtual reality affordable and accessible for all.  

Blockchain

Blockchain is a technology used to connect, house, and encrypt digital data. Through blockchain, the stored data is not centralized in any one location, making it publicly accessible, easily tracked, and very difficult to corrupt. As such, this has the potential to revolutionize the way that student and faculty records are stored, among a myriad of other possible applications.

Artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and blockchain the three digital trends at the top of our list for the 2019-2020 school year. What are some other trends in education that you think we should watch for in the coming year?  

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3 Ways That Education is Changing

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Our world is rapidly changing, and, as a result, our education system is quickly transforming as well. Here are three of the ways that American education is changing:

1. Personalization

Schools in 2019 are making moves towards personalization. Whereas once students were all taught the same way, today we recognize that some people learn differently than others. We also know that, although learning differences exist, they are not necessarily a reflection of intelligence or potential. These realizations have resulted in a collective effort to ensure that all students are being taught in a way that gives them the best chance of success.

Large-scale education is difficult to personalize, but schools are making efforts nonetheless. Private and public schools often address personalization differently. In general, though, teachers can personalize learning by incorporating several learning styles into their lessons. For example, a Kindergarten teacher may be teaching about the life-cycle of a butterfly. He or she could read about it to their students, show them pictures or videos, or bring in caterpillars and allow the students to witness the life cycle for themselves. The teacher will know what learning styles they need to incorporate for their unique body of students, but using methods that like this covers multiple learning styles— allowing each student to learn in their own individual way.

2. Technology

Technology is rapidly changing and infiltrating our education systems. It’s not unusual to see students as young as elementary-age with IPads or other tablets. Video has become commonplace in the classroom and will likely be seen even more in the future.

Online and blended classrooms, which are a mix of online and face-to-face meetings, are also becoming popular in schools throughout the US. The inclusion of technology in education has made it more accessible. Knowledge is easier to obtain than ever. Technology has also “breaks down the walls” of traditional education by allowing students to “travel” anywhere in the world with the help of video.

3. Standards

In the early 2000s, each US state had its own educational standards. These standards, however, were not consistent across the country. In one state, high schoolers could be required to know certain things or demonstrate specific skills to graduate. Meanwhile,  the high school students in a neighboring state may have been able to graduate without the same knowledge or skills. These discrepancies led us to the system of education we now know as “Common Core.”

Forty-one states have adopted the Common Core state standards. CoreStandards.org defines the Common Core as “a set of high-quality academic standards in mathematics and English language arts/literacy (ELA).” These standards were put into effect in 2009 after state leaders pulled together to create high and consistent goals for all students in American classrooms.

Although personalization and standardization seem to be opposite in some ways, both are being pushed in today’s education. We want all of our students to have the same opportunities to learn and succeed, but we also understand that’s it is necessary to ensure that standards are met in our schools. Personalization and standardization can work together if they are appropriately balanced.

We can expect to see our education system continue to change with new technology breakthroughs, new learning discoveries, and as standards are proven to be effective (or ineffective). Who knows what education will look like 20 years from now? Only time will tell.

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Is Law School for Everyone?

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Law school is one of those life-altering decisions that many people face, whether it’s a decision in their early years or later on, as a second career choice. In either case, it’s a major commitment that must not be entered into lightly.

The Cost

Unless you are independently wealthy, be prepared to pay a lot of money to get your law degree. After paying for four years of undergraduate school, there are still another four years of law school to pay for, in addition to exam fees ranging upwards of $200. The honest truth is the better the law school, the higher the likelihood of a decent clerkship and job offer upon graduation.

The Time

Getting a law degree takes time. Although any type of undergraduate degree is accepted in order to apply for a law school degree, there are some that provide a better backdrop than others. Degrees in history, philosophy, criminal justice, and political science are the areas of focus that will give you the best head start in pursuing a law degree. In addition to requiring an undergraduate degree and real-world law experience, a law degree demands a passing Law School Admission Test (LSAT) grade before getting into grad school. This is a test that measures analytical thinking, critical reading, and verbal reasoning in order to determine whether you are eligible to attend law school. Once accepted, plan on at least another four years of schooling. If you are working at the same time, you should budget accordingly. In many cases, it takes longer than eight years to achieve combined undergrad and postgraduate studies.

The Actual Job

Unhappiness is so common in the law industry there are blogs, books, and counselors solely devoted to soothing the souls of former attorneys. The main areas of contention are stress and discourteousness among colleagues as well as clients. Some people ended up choosing the quickest job opportunity after graduation, not prioritizing the type of industry they are truly seeking. Some are stunned to learn they aren’t hired by their dream job immediately after graduation. Some only wanted to make money but lacked any passion at all for this industry. There is an element of empathy and compassion for the human race that must be in place in order to pursue the field of law. Otherwise, a growing resentment will cause nonstop stress and hatred towards not only coworkers but the clientele you are supposed to advocate for.

By definition, the nature of the judicial system is going to be adversarial. Having a tough outer shell is paramount if one is to succeed as an attorney, regardless of which side of the opposing counsel fence they base their career choices on.  

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Law Schools Near Milton, Massachusetts

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Some of the finest law schools in the nation can be found in the northeast, namely in the state of Massachusetts. For those pursuing a legal education, the Milton area (a suburb of Boston) offers a variety of law schools, each with unique assets and specific criteria.

One of the most prestigious includes Harvard University whose law program has been accredited since 1923. Nearly 600 students graduate per year, and the acceptance rate is at 18-percent. Harvard Law School boasts the biggest academic law library around the globe. The estimated tuition and fees round out to about $59,000 per year.

Boston University offers an excellent number of programs including American law, banking and financial law, intellectual property law, tax law, and others under its JD and LLM departments. BU’s law program has been accredited since 1925, and about 210 law students receive their diplomas yearly.

Northeastern School of Law is another leading institution for those interested in legal education. The School of Law is highly regarded for its public interest law and cooperative legal education programs. Northeastern doesn’t have grades; instead, a narrative evaluation from professors replaces the traditional student rankings and letter and number grades.

Boston College Law School has an acceptance rate of 25-percent and has had an accredited law program since 1932. Estimated tuition and fees total about $50,000 per year. BC Law takes pride in ranking among the top 25 for graduates who pass the bar and secure full-time/long-term positions. Approximately 250 law students receive diplomas yearly.

Suffolk University Law School features a law program that has been accredited since 1953. Suffolk Law counts 23,000 graduates engaged in every area of legal practice globally, including all 50 states and 22 countries. Estimated tuition and fees run about $47,000 per year.

New England Law Boston graduates about 340 students per year, and the institution offers students an expert faculty, practical experience, and flexible programs. Students can participate in clinics featuring public interest law, criminal law, family law, immigration law and more.

Massachusetts School of Law offers a JD law degree program and has a 65-percent acceptance rate. It takes pride in being one of the most affordable and diverse law schools around. Estimated tuition and fees round out to about $1,000 per year.

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Inspirational Commencement Speeches: Ellen DeGeneres

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Marilyn Gardner Milton - Inspirational Commencement Speeches - Elle DeGeneres

A few weeks ago, I came across a list of the greatest graduation speeches of all time. They were inspiring and made me reflect. Last month, I wrote about Joyce DiDonato’s speech at Juilliard’s 2014 commencement ceremony. This month, I’m writing about Tulane’s 2009 commencement speech by Ellen DeGeneres.

When Ellen DeGeneres graduated high school, she didn’t attend college like many of her other classmates. Instead, she began working odd jobs such as shucking oysters, bartending, painting houses, and selling vacuum cleaners. She didn’t know what she wanted to do and didn’t have a clear plan.

When she was 19, a tragedy struck her life. She was living in a poor, basement apartment with barely any belongings to call her own. Her mattress laid on the floor and the place was flea-infested. One day she was driving down the road, she passed a horrific car accident. Later that night she found out it was her partner that was in the crash and she had passed away.

She didn’t understand why this was happening to her, so she began to do some soul-searching. She thought, wouldn’t it be nice if she could just pick up the phone and ask God why? Instead, she decided to start writing. She wrote what her phone call with God would be like if she was able to give him a ring. Little did she know, this is what would become her big break. A few years later, she was on the Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show performing this one-sided phone call.

After a few years in the industry, she came out to the public, not for any political reasons but to free herself from the heaviness of living in shame and hiding her secret in fear of displeasing others. Through this, she experienced another incredibly difficult hardship. She lost her career, became isolated from friends and family, and wasn’t able to secure any job offers. During this challenging time, she was receiving letters from people, kids, who were ready to commit suicide because of who they loved, and it was Ellen’s bravery that had stopped them. One of the hardest times in her life showed her that she had a purpose on this earth.

In hindsight, Ellen wouldn’t change a thing that happened to her. She had to lose everything to make her realize what was truly the most important thing in life: being true to yourself. She no longer lives in fear and doesn’t carry any burdens of hiding secrets.

When she was young, she thought success meant becoming rich and famous, but she realized that the image of success changes as your grow. She sees success now as living your life with integrity, being an honest and compassionate human being, and finding a way to contribute to the world around you.

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