Friday, February 25, 2011

Daily Dose - Kanye West ft Rihanna - All Of The Lights

I dont really listen to the radio, so I do know how popular this song is....if you have heard it 1,000 times I apologize. I love the hook and the beat. Great song.

College Study Finds Vita D Helps Prevent Allergies

A new study reveals that kids are likely to develop allergy due to low levels of Vitamin-D in their body.

Researchers from Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University did a study on more than 3,000 children to confirm this report.

The scientists check the serum Vitamin-D levels in the blood collected in 2005-2006. These samples were derived from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) of around 3,100 children and adolescents and about 3,400 adults. Each blood samples were tested with 17 different allergens by measuring the levels of Immunoglobulin E, a protein generated when immune system responds to allergens.

These results were analyzed by Einstein researchers. They did not find any association between Vitamin-D levels and allergies in case of adults. For the children with low vitamin-D levels correlated with 11 out of 17 allergens tested.

The research only shows an association of vitamin-D deficiency with allergy, but does not prove anything.
"The latest dietary recommendations calling for children to take in 600 IU of vitamin D daily should keep them from becoming vitamin-D deficient", Michal Melamed, assistant professor of medicine at Einstein.

She also mentioned that children should consume required amount of vitamins in their diet to stay fit.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Daily Dose: Iron & Wine - Love Vigilantes

Michigan Students Not College Ready

Recent data shows a majority of public schools across Michigan are not graduating college-ready students.
A report released earlier this week from the Michigan Department of Education showed for more than 50 percent of public high schools in Michigan, less than 10 percent of spring 2011 graduates are prepared for college.
The report looked at test scores from the Michigan Merit Exam and the ACT as well as graduation and dropout percentages, spokeswoman for the Department of Education Jan Ellis said.
The study looked at the percent of students in each high school that achieved sufficient scores on each section of the ACT, Ellis said.
“The department wants to assure that all students graduate college-ready,” she said. “The way to do that is to analyze this data and see where improvements can be made.”
According to the report, the “college-ready” grades for each section of the ACT are 18 for English, 22 for math, 21 for reading and 24 for science, with the highest possible score in each category a 36. According to research byACT, meeting each of these benchmarks suggests a random student has a 50 percent probability of obtaining at least a B and a 75 percent probability of obtaining at least a C in the corresponding college course.
Many schools in the state have high graduation rates but have poor standardized test scores, Ellis said.
“We want to make sure there is a value to a high school diploma,” she said. “Numerous schools that have really high graduation rates of 80 percent or more and they are scoring zero on the proficiency tests.”
MSU admissions director Jim Cotter said the study emphasizes a key point — improvements need to be made in many school districts — but is not a reason for people to start pointing fingers.
“Whenever new information becomes available, before reacting we have to step back and ask what it is saying,” he said. “We need to sit down and discuss what are the problems at hand.”

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Daily Dose: Shanghai Restoration Project - Miss Shanghai

Middle Eastern Study Aboard : Future Is Unclear

As unrest topples leaders and turns the political landscape of Middle Eastern and North African countries upsidedown, the future of study abroad programs in those regions rests on shaky ground.
Though the study abroad program at American University in Cairo is the only one to be suspended by the University, Bob Miles, associate dean for study abroad, said his office is closely monitoring countries other than Egypt.
“It is something we take very seriously,” Miles said. “We are constantly taking note of what is happening.”
Miles said future unrest and travel warnings from the state department could suspend other programs. But those scenarios are difficult to predict, he said, adding that two or three students’ plans to study abroad in Egypt this summer might be canceled if the warning stays in place.
“These things are very difficult to predict,” he said. “It is such a fast-moving situation.”
The University does not have programs in Libya, Bahrain or Algeria, the countries Miles said pose the most immediate threat.
Miles said he recommends that students looking to travel to the region visit Jordan if they are interested in languages and to Israel or Morocco to study culture and politics.
While the suspension forced two students who were studying in Egypt to return early, it might spur others to consider taking classes on the region at UNC, said Kevin Hewison, director of the Carolina Asia Center.
“Things happening in the Middle East will increase interest in a positive way,” he added.
Other Triangle and peer universities are also keeping a watchful eye on the region for their own study abroad programming.
N.C. State University and Duke University did not have students in Egypt, and Wake Forest University and the University of Virginia have asked their students to return.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Daily Dose: Mos Def - Ghetto Rock

Quizzes, Checking Grades, and Registering On a Cell Phone?

Students at Abu Dhabi University will soon be able to register for courses, check their grades, take quizzes and contribute to classroom discussions on their mobile phones.

The university launched its pilot of an application called Blackboard Mobile this week. As many as 75 students will participate in the trial before it is rolled out to other regional universities in September.

Officials say the experiment will determine how the smartphone application might improve classroom involvement and grades.

Half of the students in selected courses will be given access to the application, the university announced yesterday. Officials will compare the first half's progress with the other half through surveys, interviews and test scores.

Some classes are already using Blackboard's online services through the university's website. The educational software maker provides a platform for online discussion forums, campus maps, announcements, online tests and assignments.

"I plan to use it as much as I can," Rhema Bhatti, a finance major at ADU, said of the mobile application. "If I am just looking through my phone because I am bored, there is always an opportunity to connect with my teachers, or with other students."

Teachers can link media or related materials to comment threads, or even send out an announcement if they are stuck in traffic before a class.

Having that information in the palm of students' hands would boost the amount of time they spent focused on classroom content, said Yara Azouqa, an English instructor at the university who will teach classes that use the new technology.

She said it would open up the classroom experience to more students. "It is a new style of learning that allows them to participate, regardless of their personalities, and eliminates the roles they take on in the classroom — the leader, the joker, the speaker, the very cautious, those with softer skills.

Read the full article:

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Daily Dose: Fleet Foxes - Mykonos

Tips for a Eco Living

Minimize waste by finding space for recycling. A common complaint living in apartments is the lack of space. Be creative. Stash a couple of milk crates in the trunk of your car, and store your plastic bottles and newspapers there. Or clean out the floor of a closet and stick a few bins beside your vacuum cleaner.

Cut back energy. Turn your heater down to 68 degrees F and your air conditioner up to 72. Better yet, open a window and turn on a fan. If you can switch out energy-guzzling appliances, do so. Don't just dump your old machine, either recycle it or sell it.

Trim down phantom energy. Turn off your computer after using it. Desktop PCs consume a significant amount of electricity as do TVs. Unplug TVs and audio equipment every night. Or plug them into a surge protector and turn that off when not in use. Unplug all appliances when not in use.

Compost if possible. If you have a yard, start a compost pile to dispose your organic waste. Let the compost decompose thoroughly, and use as fertilizer for a flower bed or herb garden. If you don't have space, try to find neighbors or family that would let you share space.

Cut back on water usage. Since you can't install a low-flow toilet, decrease the water level by adjusting the mechanism in the toilet tank. If you don't know how or you can't adjust the level, fill a bottle completely with water (leaving no air) and screw on the lid. Then submerge the bottle into the tank. Make sure the bottle does not obstruct the flow of the water or block the movement of the flushing mechanism. This will decrease the amount of water in each flush a little bit. If you can change your shower head, install an aerator. Do the same with your sink faucets.

Reuse towels and other laundry when possible. Don't be disgusting and dry off with a filthy, mildewed towel, but use it at least twice before tossing it in the hamper. This will cut back on your number laundry loads.

Take a reusable coffee cup or plastic cup with you when you order take-out. Many coffee shops offer discounts for supplying your own cup anyway.

Buy organic, fair-trade food when possible. Shop at farmers' markets and local suppliers.

Don't focus on buying new things to live a greener life. There are so many new green items on the market that people buy these new items thinking they are benefiting the environment, but they don't realize that they didn't even need that item, or their old item can be just as Eco-friendly with a few adjustments. Think twice before buying anything because fossil fuels were burned and materials were consumed to create it. If you don't need it, don't buy it

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Daily Dose: Local Natives - World News

Study: Why Do Students Drop Out?

Depression, a loss of financial aid, increased tuition, unexpected bad grades and roommate conflicts are among key risk factors that lead college students to drop out, according to a study led by Michigan State University researchers.

Not so influential: a death in the family, failure to get their intended major, a significant injury and addiction.

Prior to this work, little was known about what factors in a student’s everyday life prompt them to think about withdrawing from college,” Tim Pleskac, an MSU assistant professor of psychology and the lead researcher, said in a news release this afternoon.
The researchers used a mathematical model they created to analyze surveys from 1,158 freshmen at 10 U.S. colleges and universities, according to the release. In the surveys, which listed 21 critical events, students were asked whether any of the events happened to them in the previous semester. The students were later asked whether they planned to drop out.
We are now better suited to think about what students we should target in terms of counseling or other assistance to help them work through these issues,” Pleskac said.
Colleges across the country are grappling with how to address the needs of students who drop out.

Nationwide, just 60% of students earn an undergraduate degree within six years. In Michigan, there are wide ranges in graduation rates among the state’s 15 public universities. Graduation rates range from lows of 26% at LakeSuperior State University and 32% at Wayne State University to highs of 77% at Michigan State University and 89% at the University of Michigan.

The study was funded by the College Board and included researchers from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and Rice University.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Daily Dose: The Rapture - Whoo! Alright, Yeah. Uh Huh

How To Spot A Craigslist Apartment Scam

Come across a listing that has an eye-catching headline. Typically, the headline will describe a very low rate for an apartment in an expensive area.

Click on the posting to read details. The description will detail a poster's urgent situation and the need to get rid of or sublet an apartment immediately. The scammer may post a story about a sudden job move or another emergency. The scammer will write about trust issues and ask that you be an honest renter. He will also be out of the country, but may not say that in the description.

Notice odd characteristics of the posting. The posting may be written in very bad grammar and include information irrelevant to the transaction. The scammer will request an immediate, upfront deposit needed to distinguish serious renters from others. There may also be a lack of pictures or many appealing pictures that don't match the rental price or the described layout of the apartment.

Communicate with the scammer through email. He'll tell you that visiting the apartment is impossible because of his need to finish getting ready to move, its current messy state or his position in a different country. Scammers may also claim to be traveling or on vacation. The scammer will request that you wire the security deposit to him and promise to send an envelope with the apartment's keys stuffed in it when he receives the money

Resist the urge to wire your money to the scammer. Realize that this is a scam and you won't receive an envelope with apartment keys.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Daily Dose: City and Colour - The Girl

Family Connections and College

According to a recent study, institutions of higher education might value legacies more than previously thought.
Legacies might even be the deciding factor in an increasingly competitive college admissions world.
The study conducted by Michael Hurwitz, a doctoral student at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, reported that applicants with a family member who attended a highly selective college are twice as likely to be admitted as their equally qualified non-legacy counterparts.
For what Hurwitz terms “primary legacy candidates”—applicants with at least one parent who attended the college as an undergraduate—the probability of admission is seven times as likely as non-legacy applicants.
Hurwitz cannot disclose whether Washington University was one of the 30 highly selective institutions that provided him with data. But according to the Office of Undergraduate admissions, the legacy trend is observable at Washington University.
“For as long as I can remember, the Admissions Office has tried to continue family relationships whenever possible,” said Julie Shimabukuro, director of undergraduate admissions. “In the fall 2010 freshman class, approximately 5 percent of admitted students had one or more parent graduate from the University.”
According to Shimabukuro, applicants who have at least one Wash. U. graduate as a parent are admitted to the University at a higher rate than others. For example, last fall, the difference in probability of admission between non-legacy and legacy applicants was approximately 21 to 38 percent.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Daily Dose: Kyle Andrews - You Always Make Me Smile

The song is "ok" but the video looks so fun...

Happiest Cities to Work

Commuting through sleet, slush and snow in the Northeast or Midwest isn't enough to make you want to pack up and move south, maybe this will: With the exception of the Bay Area and Washington, D.C., the top 10 happiest cities to work are all in sun-drenched, snow-free locales, according to online career site

No. 1 San Jose
Average salary: $82,635.58
Work-life balance rating: 3.61
Job security rating: 3.13

No. 2 San Francisco
Average salary: $74,745.13
Work-life balance rating: 3.56
Job security rating: 3.13

No. 3 Jacksonville, Fla.
Average salary: $55,532.67
Work-life balance rating: 3.56
Job security rating: 3.47

No. 4 Miami
Average salary: $58,039.72
Work-life balance rating: 3.57
Job security rating: 3.44

No. 5 Washington, D.C.
Average salary: $73,708.26
Work-life balance rating: 3.53
Job security rating: 3.44

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Daily Dose: M83 - We Own the Sky

You Tweet, I Tweet, We All Tweet...The Same?

Think Twitter and other social media networks would cause people all over the world to start talking in the exact same way? Not so, say researchers from Carnegie Mellon University. In fact, the opposite may be true: Regional differences may even be finding space to evolve within Twitter.

Carnegie Mellon computer scientist Jacob Eisenstein and his colleagues looked for geotagged tweets – messages that were marked with their tweeter’s location. They collected one week’s worth of messages in March 2010 from people who tweeted at least 20 times during that week. That gave them a whopping 380,000 tweets from 9,500 users.

The researchers found that well-known regionalisms were thriving on Twitter. Northern Californians used “hella” to mean “very” or “a lot,” and Pittsburgh residents used “yinz” to mean “you guys.” (Southerners, naturally, tended toward “y’all.”)
“When you think about mass media it would be natural to assume regional differences would start to disintegrate as we watch all the same movies and TV,” Eisenstein said, “but there’s strong evidence that the way people talk has become more different rather than more similar.”
Take New York City tweeters' “suttin” as opposed to the more widely used “sumthin,” or the way that mid-Atlantic users tended to employ LLS (rough translation: laughing like poop) instead of LOL. Among the various spellings of “for sure” (i.e. “fo sho” or “fsho”), Angelenos often leaned toward “fasho,” Eisenstein said.
Spelling has historically not been widely examined by linguists studying conversational language, Eisenstein added. But in the Twitterverse, he said, he’s already starting to see the same linguistic processes – such as drawing out the last syllable of a word for emphasis, as in “lmaaaoooooo” – affect the way that people use language when they tweet. 
Sali Tagliamonte, a sociolinguistics professor at the University of Toronto, agreed. “What the Internet offers us is variation in the way words are spelled,” she said. “And that shows us another dimension of language and how people use language to differentiate themselves from another.”

Monday, February 7, 2011

Daily Dose: Tegan and Sara - Back in Your Head

Decorate Your Place On The Cheap

Moving Day is Your Friend - when graduating students move out into the real world, one of the first things they do is dump their furniture. Usually it ends up out on the curb, and in most places, if it's on the curb, it's fair game. The end of the semester is time to grab your friend with the pickup truck and go furniture shopping. Make sure you get out early so you can catch the best pieces before the other scavengers get to them. And you want to get them before they get rained on.

Paint Covers a Multitude of Sins - OK, so you've got that sturdy monster of a desk back to your apartment and up three flights of stairs. Get out the sandpaper and paint. Shallow scratches in wood can be sanded out with a little elbow grease (or leave them in for a little character, you're gonna dump this when you graduate so it doesn't have to look professionally restored.) Now paint it. Stencil it for a little cool factor. Study space. This works for most of your large wooden bulky type furniture, like chests of drawers, coffee tables, barstools, etc.

For couches and easychairs - be careful with these. You may not smell the stale beer reek till you've got it back in your apartment. Anything with upholstery should be checked very carefully before you scavenge it. But, should you get lucky enough to find a serviceable piece. If the fabric looks a little iffy, that can be covered by making a trip to Wal-Mart and checking out the $1 a yard fabric section. No sewing necessary, just tuck it in real good.

Lamps are easy to make or rewire, just make sure you read up on how so you don't electrocute yourself.

There is nothing shameful about shopping at Goodwill. Say it with me - there is nothing shameful about shopping at Goodwill. Besides, your money is going to a good cause. There is usually a selection of interesting and very cheap furniture there, and it will be in better shape than the stuff on the curb. You can get dishes and kitchen appliances here, too. Just make sure you scrub them good before you use them.

You may also want to watch for surplus sales. If your university just bought a bunch of new stuff for the dorms, they will be getting rid of the old stuff.

Milk crates are good. They can be stacked for shelves. Use four of them under a piece of plywood for a coffee table. They are just the right size for records if you are into retro non-digital music storage. Put one by the door for muddy shoes and umbrellas.

Use your imagination. College is supposed to be fun as well as educational, and no one will expect you to furnish from an Ikea catalog. Second hand furniture is a great chance to experiment and create your own style. If it's free, or nearly free, you don't have to worry about ruining it, or outgrowing the funky design you painted on it... in four years it will be someone else's found treasure.

Article Found:

Friday, February 4, 2011

Daily Dose: Empire Of The Sun - Walking On A Dream

Four-Year College Not Always The Best Choice

A Harvard University study cautions against the "one-size-fits-all" approach that emphasizes a four-year degree for successful careers.
Just the opposite, concludes the report by the Pathways to Property Project at Harvard University Graduate School of Education. According to the two-year study, the four-year college model pushing students to earn a bachelor's degree fails to address the needs of today's society.
Researchers said that career-driven alternatives to the four-year college model must be part of the debate on school reform.
"What I fear is the continuing problem of too many kids dropping by the wayside and the other problem of kids going into debt, and going into college but not completing with a degree or certificate," said Robert Schwartz, who heads the project and is academic dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Education. "Almost everybody can cite some kid who marched off to college because it was the only socially legitimate thing to do but had no real interest."
According to researchers, only one-third of new job openings in coming years will require a bachelor's degree or higher. About the same amount will require occupational training or an associate's degree from a two-year college.
That should not discourage students from pursuing post-secondary education to prepare for jobs requiring higher levels of skills..
Researchers said students need to be presented with alternatives, such as community colleges and vocational schools.
That model is well established in Northern New York with its four-year public and private colleges, vocational training programs available through BOCES and two-year colleges offering students the opportunity to update their skills or obtain retraining for new career paths.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Daily Dose: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. - Nothing But Our Love

College Stressing You Out?

That first year of college has always been tough. But tight economic times have made it even harder.

Pressures to pay for college and choose studies that will produce good jobs have stressed this year's college freshmen at unprecedented levels.

In a new report, college freshmen rated their emotional health at the lowest level in the 25 years of the survey.

The data, published by the University of California at Los Angeles, mirrored observations of some high school and college counselors.

The report charted an uptick in the number of students who said they were "overwhelmed by all I had to do" in their last year of high school, when they juggled extracurricular activities, academics and college admissions.

Article Found:

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Daily Dose: Walter Meego - Forever

Students Need More Paths to Career Success

The current U.S. education system is failing to prepare millions of young adults for successful careers by providing a one-size-fits-all approach, and it should take a cue from its European counterparts by offering greater emphasis on occupational instruction, a Harvard University study published Wednesday concludes.

The two-year study by the Pathways to Prosperity Project at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education notes that while much emphasis is placed in high school on going on to a four-year college, only 30 percent of young adults in the United States successfully complete a bachelor's degree.
While the number of jobs that require no post-secondary education have declined, the researchers note that only one-third of the jobs created in the coming years are expected to need a bachelor's degree or higher. Roughly the same amount will need just an associate's degree or an occupational credential.
"What I fear is the continuing problem of too many kids dropping by the wayside and the other problem of kids going into debt, and going into college but not completing with a degree or certificate," said Robert Schwartz, who heads the project and is academic dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Education. "Almost everybody can cite some kid who marched off to college because it was the only socially legitimate thing to do but had no real interest."
The report highlights an issue that has been percolating among education circles: That school reform should include more emphasis on career-driven alternatives to a four-year education.
The study recommends a "comprehensive pathways network" that would include three elements: embracing multiple approaches to help youth make the transition to adulthood, involving the nation's employers in things like work-based learning, and creating a new social compact with young people.