OK, so the stereotype of the online denizen (this includes peeps like me who work in front of a computer all day, and peeps like you who study online in front of a computer) is a sedentary, Cheetos munching lot who cringes when the curtains are drawn open and light shines in. All kidding aside though, in today’s modern life, it can be hard to carve out enough time to spend on health and wellness. Kathleen Sebelius, the Obama administration’s Secretary of Health and Human Services, has declared June to be Prevention and Wellness month.In a recent article on the Huffington Post Sebelius said, ” We know there’s more to good health than going to the hospital when you get sick. Good health starts with steps we can all take to avoid getting sick in the first place, from getting regular check-ups, vaccinations, and recommended screenings, to eating a healthy diet and getting enough exercise.” This blogger concurs with this line of thinking and has even taken the drastic step of adding a SECOND walk for his self and his dog Henry every day to try and keep physically fit. So online students, save your work, take a pause and consider what you can do to boost your own health and wellness in June and for the future.
According to a Reuter’s article, scientists have found Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aurelius in raw milk samples in the US and UK. The superbug has been growing in prevalence and represents a significant challenge to medicine because it is an infection that, as the name implies, is resistant to antibiotics. Concurrent to this story is the outbreak of a new strain of E. Coli across Europe. It would seem to this blogger that both these outbreaks are rooted, at least in part, in the practices of large corporate food producers and the sometimes shoddy agricultural processes in which they engage. Read these past posts, here, here and here for more information on both MRSA and animal husbandry/food safety.
Thank you to all the brave service men and women who laid down their lives in the defense of the American way of life and in the name of liberty. Happy Memorial Day to everyone. Never forget the reason for this holiday.
New laptop malfunctioning? Cell phone service wrongly interrupted? Utility company make a mistake on your monthly bill? You’ll have to dial a toll-free customer service number and then navigate through level after level of recorded messages trying to find the answer to your problem. And after an hour on the phone, you’ll be no closer to a solution and about ready to kill someone. Sound familiar? We all have had to deal with customer service issues like this. Well, awesome site, Lifehacker.com recently published this great piece on how to get better customer service when you should need to. Included in the article is a link to an application called “Lucy” that does the “holding” for you so you don’t have to glue the phone to your ear while the company you’re calling is “experiencing unusually high call volumes resulting in long hold times”. That’s a godsend to be sure. And if that’s not enough, and the tips in this article still don’t get you satisfaction, the article provides a link to the Consumerist.com’s list of customer service executives from the world’s top companies so you can call a supervisor direct to lodge your complaint about the sorry state of their customer service department.
Acing the interview is pretty much the key to landing a job. The rock-solid resume gets you in to the interview. But the interview itself is the “make-or-break” step in the job hunting process. If you’ve done enough of these, you know that they typically ask you alot of questions about your background, experience, skills etc. Then at the end, they always ask, “Do you have any questions for us?” Most people don’t know how to answer this and either say, “No” which indicates unpreparedness or worse, being intellectually incurious. Or many respond, “When do I get vacation” or “how much does the job pay?” Both these questions do more damage than good. There are questions you may ask of an interviewer which demonstrate that you are interested in the job and have a good head on your shoulders. Click here to read “The Six Must Ask Interview Questions” as listed by Monster.com’s Joe Turner. He explains why these are the most important questions to ask and what they say about the person who asks them.
AS regular readers of this blog know, we have been covering stories about MRSA, the antibiotic resistant staph infection. Just recently, we published a post about the finding of MRSA carried in bedbugs (yechhh!). In all the stories we’ve produced about MRSA, the news is always pretty grim so that’s why I was pleased to find the story linked here. Evidently, it seems that occurrences of MRSA are able to be accurately tracked using none other than Google! Yes, researchers have studied and found that spikes in Google searched for MRSA are directly correlated to actual outbreaks. This innovative usage of Google clearly illustrates the nexus between the web and epidemiological research. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) will surely make good use of this new tool in their arsenal. Allen School Online students already understand the synergies between internet technology and the study of medically related fields.
Even the most honorable student has contemplated taking a shortcut when stressing over term papers and overall work loads. While most do not opt for this easy (if immoral) option, there are those that succumb to the pressure. Well beware! Educators are getting wise to the online sites used by cheaters to plagiarize content included in their school assignments. Using new online technologies like the plagiarism detector software from www.turnitin.com, instructors are able to scan students’ term papers and learn if any or all of it has been “lifted” from other websites. The top 8 most frequently revealed sites for cheaters to “borrow” from are:1) Wikipedia.com2) Yahoo! Answers3) Answers.com4) Slideshare.com5) OPPapers.com (Other People’s Papers)6) Scribd.com7) Coursehero.com8) Medilibrary.comOf course, some of these, like Wikipedia are simply reference sites. While others like OPPapers.com are designed specifically to sell content to cheaters. Whether you clip a sentence, a paragraph or an entire term paper, it is still plagiarism and it is still wrong. Think twice before stealing copy. After all, you’re only cheating yourself out of learning what you have invested time and money into studying.
As many of our students are New Yorkers, and I myself grew up in and around the metro area, I found the photos at this photo website called “How to Be A Retronaut” particularly interesting. As time marches forward, the storefronts of the Twentieth Century are slipping away, giving way to Twenty-First century updates. There is something about the way these styles look that can bring you back to an earlier place in time.
Researchers in British Columbia, Canada, have found MRSA infected bedbugs. MRSA is an anti-biotic resistant staff infection which this blog has covered before here and here. The researchers found that in impoverished communities (like homeless populations living in close quarters in shelters and residential hotels for) harbor conditions for bedbugs to carry MRSA. They found several dangerous strains of the infection in bedbug samples they collected.There is, according to the scientists in this article on the story, no imminent danger of this development being a vector for widespread transmission of MRSA. However, it is always important to keep an eye on diseases with such potential to spread, unchecked through the global population.
Spring has finally popped here in the Northeast and even if I couldn’t see the greenery outside my window, I would know it was time because I am down to the last few jars of tomatoes and peppers I jarred at the end of Summer 2010. Any day now, the earliest of crops will be ready for consumption heralding a return to the healthy, fresh eating of the warmer months. Strawberries, asparagus, ramps, radishes, and an array of baby greens are all just a few weeks away. In fact, we’re already starting to see them showing up in groceries and farmer’s markets.As busy students, workers and parents, it can be hard to remember to eat well when we have so little time. Grabbing grub on the go often leads to poor dietary habits. This is especially true in Winter months when it is even more difficult and costly to find fresh, healthy snacks. So rejoice! Spring has sprung and the goodies will soon start to arrive. Click here for more about the bounty of Spring produce.