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Exciting STEM careers and opportunities aplenty in the Navy

11 hours 20 min ago

(BPT) - There’s a big push for students to excel in the subjects of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), and for good reason. The careers available to students pursuing degrees in these areas present students with plenty of exciting and challenging opportunities. What you might not realize is how many of those opportunities exist in the Navy.

The Navy is looking for intelligent students with critical thinking skills who are interested in careers that involve working on the world’s most-advance weapons systems, developing the next generation of medical technology, or a number of other fields of STEM study. It is estimated more than 1 million STEM jobs will be created by 2020, creating a great need in the market for qualified employees.

For these reasons, talented, committed individuals with a STEM education will be needed to maintain the U.S. as a world technology leader. The U.S. Navy is partnering with organizations across the U.S. to help promote an interest in STEM subjects among elementary to college-level students. The Navy STEM for the Classroom tool is available for teachers and students, providing lesson plans and interactive tools to increase learning in these subjects.

One program incorporating STEM subject learning with real-world experiences is the Oceanography and Meteorology lesson, which provides students and teachers in the classroom tools to learn, study and measure the principles of oceanography like waves, tides and currents. Once they understand how these principles affect ocean navigation, students will be able to pursue other exciting opportunities like a hands-on search-and-rescue scenario.

The Navy also offers the Navy Proving Grounds widget, which is an interactive tool for students to test their minds in diving missions, flight school or at-sea trials.

Students with a background in STEM courses have the opportunity in the Navy to work with some of the most awe-inspiring ships, submarines, aircraft and communications systems, develop unmanned vehicles and robotics that keep people out of harm’s way, and pioneer advances in everything from nuclear propulsion to biofuels or medical research. A STEM-related career in the Navy provides almost limitless possibilities for leadership and relevant experience.

Joining the Navy allows students interested in STEM subjects to continue their learning with ongoing development opportunities during nearly all stages of their career. These opportunities include:

* Navy Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC) scholarship program with up to $180,000 available for college.

* Nuclear Propulsion Officer Candidate Program, which offers up to $168,300 for students who finish a degree in math, engineering, physics or chemistry, and allows them to begin the process to become a commissioned Navy Nuclear Officer.

* Civil Engineer Collegiate Program giving students pursuing civil engineering degrees the opportunity to pursue projects around the world right out of college. This program also offers up to $113,100 while finishing a college degree.

For more information about opportunities to serve in the Navy, call 866-408-1241 or visit navy.com.

Categories: Lifestyle

Career colleges play key role in demand for skilled workers

Tue, 08/26/2014 - 12:00am

(BPT) - Education is not a one-size-fits-all system. Much like each public university has its own unique culture, so does each type of higher education institution. In addition, the goals of each student are not the same. Some students are fresh out of high school and looking forward to the social opportunities that a public university will give them, and they are not in a hurry to get their degree. Some are single parents, already working full-time jobs, who just want to go back to school and quickly get a degree and get a better job. For these latter students, a four-year university may not be the right fit for their needs. Instead, career colleges really can be the way to go.

Career colleges - What are the benefits?

Many people are recognizing the importance of skills training in the workplace as it relates to their chances of a promotion and increase in pay, according to a recent article in Business News Daily. These people are turning to career colleges because they know they can quickly learn the skills they are lacking and start moving up the professional ladder through the programs offered.

According to Westwood College – Dupage Campus President Jeff Hill, career colleges “are focused on providing students with hands-on learning and quick degree completion which help develop a trained workforce for employers and can positively impact the economy. Without question, education is one of the biggest factors with regard to economic advancement in today’s society and career-focused schools play a vital role as one - of many - education options for students.” If you’re interested in a new career? Check out Westwood’s degree programs.

Demand for skilled labor plays a huge role in the economy. It is not uncommon for employers to have available jobs, but not enough trained workers to fill them. Many employers discuss their plans to grow their companies and hire more people, but aren’t sure where they will find workers with the skills they need, according to a recent article published by the Newark Advocate. It’s not a problem just for businesses in Newark, New Jersey. Companies across the country face this issue. Many businesses looking to expand or move struggle to do so because it can be difficult to find a town or city with enough skilled workers to do the jobs.

The U.S. Department of Labor predicts those jobs that tend to require some form of higher education will grow faster than those you can get with just a high school diploma or less. The department also predicts a shortage of more than 35 million skilled workers over the next 30 years.

Categories: Lifestyle

Giving back to the everyday heroes who inspire you

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 12:00am

(BPT) - When you think of public servants or people who do heroic jobs, do you picture police officers, firefighters and soldiers? While all those people selflessly serve the public, they’re not the only everyday heroes whose jobs contribute to the greater good. The field of public service is broad, encompassing teachers, health care workers, law enforcement professionals and social workers.

Demand is high for caring, trained professionals to fill a growing number of jobs in public service fields. In fact, job opportunities are expected to grow 22 percent for social and human service assistants, 7 percent for firefighters, 6 percent for high school teachers and 5 percent for police officers and detectives, across the nation by 2022 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

Some of the professionals to fill those jobs will come directly from colleges like Kaplan University, where first-time students will pursue coursework designed to specifically prepare them for public service careers. Others will be career changers, like Arthur Chapel and Melissa Bowermaster, who entered public service after enduring personal challenges and were inspired by the caring help of other public servants.

“I was in a bad place, and someone helped me,” says Arthur Chapel, who successfully completed substance-abuse treatment and then decided to change careers to become a counselor. “Now I give back by helping others who need it. I have the satisfying career I always wanted and I get up every day eager to go to work because I know I’m helping people who need it.”

“Working in law enforcement, I saw every day the caring of the human services people I came into contact with,” says Melissa Bowermaster, executive director of Citrus County Child Advocacy Center in Florida. Her interaction with these professionals, especially those who worked with children, inspired her to return to school to pursue a human services degree. After graduating from Kaplan University with a bachelor’s degree of science in human services, Bowermaster went to work advocating for children in need in Citrus County.

Chapel and Bowermaster aren’t alone in finding inspiration from the everyday heroism of public servants. Each day, these professionals have a positive effect on thousands of people across the country. In honor of Public Service Recognition Week, May 4 to 10, Kaplan University is inviting the public to salute the everyday heroes in their lives.

Post a photo and story of your everyday hero – police officer, firefighter, EMS, early childhood teacher, social worker or other – using the tag #PublicServiceStars through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or Google+, and then register at the #PublicServiceStars Wall of Heroes. As a thanks for submitting your story, you’ll have the chance to make a difference in the lives of others. Kaplan University will make a $500 donation to the favorite charitable cause of one lucky participant.

To learn more about public service career opportunities, visit www.kaplanuniversity.edu or the Center for Public Service website.

Categories: Lifestyle

Tips to successfully transform from graduate to employee

Thu, 08/07/2014 - 12:00am

(BPT) - With the start of summer comes warm weather, vacation planning and an influx of recent graduates on the job hunt. In fact, during the 2013–14 school year, colleges and universities are expected to award nearly 5.3 million degrees, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. All those recent grads can easily translate to a highly competitive job market.

As students begin planning for their future outside the classroom and preparing for the next chapter of their lives - finding a job, apartment hunting, paying back student loans - many realize that graduation is an opportunity to refresh one’s persona and digital reputation. This can include social media makeovers, refreshing your tech skills and upgrading your outdated email service to something more suitable for the next phase in life.

“Think of your digital footprint – your email address, social media and even the results of a search of your name – as the first impression you make on a company or recruiter. An excellent one will open doors,” says Karen Elizaga, executive coach and author of Find Your Sweet Spot: A Guide to Personal and Professional Excellence. “Because recruiters and executives receive hundreds of inquiries a day, they need easy ways to weed people out. Many recent grads overlook the importance of their digital footprint and use amusing, old email addresses that undermine the professional image they want to convey, or their social media pages reflect a candidate who is irresponsible, profane or disrespectful, any of which quickly moves someone to the ‘no’ pile. Jobseekers first task: clean up their digital image and make sure it makes a positive impression.”

There are several mail tools and features recent grads should leverage when making the transition from student to newly employed, including:

* Manage your email reputation: Your email says a lot about you. In fact, it can be thought of as your first impression to employers. Whether you need to migrate over from an outdated email address or upgrade to a more professional email username, Outlook.com’s import wizard allows you to import and manage your mail from Yahoo Mail, Gmail and many other email providers. You can even keep your old email addresses, but manage them all from one place.

Additionally 81 percent of all email users are using multiple email services, making it hard to keep up with numerous or old accounts, a recent study by Radius Global revealed. Consider consolidating to one personal email address to keep you connected and manage your contacts in one place.

* Utilize a shared calendar to organize your networking schedule: Having an always up-to-date address book and shared calendar available across your phone, tablet, and other devices makes networking easier because you aren’t tied to any one device where information might be saved. Your Outlook.com calendar is accessible right from your inbox, so it’s easy to stay up-to-date, subscribe to online calendars, import events from your other calendars, or share your agenda with family to keep everyone in sync. You can also send invitations, track RSVPs, and set notifications to stay on schedule.

* Leverage the tools employers care about most: A recent Microsoft survey looked at the job and skill requirements from 14.6 million job postings from the second and third quarters of 2013 and identified the 20 most common skills required for those positions. Proficiency in Microsoft Office was among the top five skills employers look for in a prospective new-hire. Outlook.com allows consumers to create, open, edit and share Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote for free using Office Online, accessible from your inbox. It’s a great way to create, access and share your resume and there’s no need for you or those you share with to install Office, and your formatting stays intact.

* Remember that’s it’s all about who you know: As the old saying goes, “it’s all in who you know,” so working off one set of contacts that pulls in information from your social networks allows you to check your contacts’ recent status updates, profile pictures, and Tweets while you email them. Additionally, many recent graduates are looking for jobs outside of their current residence. Don’t let distance be a factor in the job hunt by staying connected with Skype chat and video calls right from your Outlook.com inbox.

Staying organized and being informed can be the difference between landing a job and a missed opportunity. For more tips, visit www.MicrosoftForGrads.com to learn more.

Categories: Lifestyle

Overlooking insurance during your job search could cost you

Thu, 08/07/2014 - 12:00am

(BPT) - An improving economy has many people entering the job market and looking for new employment opportunities. But if job seekers are not insurance-smart in their search, they may end up in worse financial shape than they were in their previous role.

Earning a higher salary is the primary goal for many job seekers, but research from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) shows that many job seekers ignore the wider benefits package, not realizing that insurance benefits alone can account for nearly 10 percent of total compensation, according to research from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This could be costly, as 25 percent of job switchers found out. In fact, new employees reported that insurance-related changes in their new position either slightly or greatly worsened their overall financial situation.

If you are exploring new opportunities in the job market, make sure you ask these questions.

Five tough questions to ask when changing jobs

1. Beyond salary, what are the other financial implications of making a job change?

2. What options do I have to cover medical expenses while I’m between jobs?

3. If something catastrophic happens to me between jobs, is my family protected?

4. Have I thought through all of the financial consequences of a job change that includes a long-distance move?

5. All things considered, could this be a good time to start my own business?

Asking yourself these questions will put you in a better position to research new opportunities in an informed way. Before you decide to accept a new position, make some smart insurance decisions to be sure you and your family are protected during the transition.

Five insurance-smart things to do as you change jobs

1. Find out if your new employer has a mandatory waiting period before health insurance coverage takes effect. If so, consider a short-term plan to cover the gap.

2. Conduct a line-by-line comparison of your current health plan with plans offered by your new employer to determine the right blend of deductibles, co-pays and coinsurance for your needs.

3. If you have children and your health insurance coverage is at risk of lapsing, look into government-sponsored programs, such as Children’s Health Insurance Plans (CHIP). These plans may provide coverage at little or no cost to you.

4. See if your current group life insurance plan has a conversion privilege. You may have 31 days from the day you leave your employer to submit an application.

5. Insurance rates and coverage vary greatly from state to state. Before a move across state lines, contact your state insurance department so you know what to expect.

Accepting a new position can be an exciting time in your professional life. By asking the right questions you can ensure your new job is even more profitable for your family than your last. For more tips, tools, videos, interactive games and downloadable apps to help you get smart about insurance during a job change or other life event such as buying a car, buying a home, getting married, becoming a parent or even turning 50, visit InsureUonline.org.

A fun video by the NAIC illustrates the importance of educating yourself on insurance during these life events.

Categories: Lifestyle
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