The Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis is hosting a series of open houses this school year (2013-2014). These events give prospective students, families and community members an opportunity to visit campus and see what life is like at NCTA.
Guided tours around campus will take attendees to interactive classrooms, meet the dean, visit residence halls and get a chance to win prizes. For more information and to register, visit NCTA Open Houses.
Open House Dates:
- October 12, 2013
- November 11, 2013
- March 10, 2014
- April 12, 2014
This is the most impressive marching band routine I’ve ever seen — Absolutely amazing!
If you don’t have time, here’s Ohio State band’s movie tribute, in 11 seconds of super-speed.
What do you do? Are you in school or working? If you’re in school, what do you hope to do with that education? Are you doing any career-related activities? And if you’re working, what do you for a career? Are you where you want to be? If not, where do you hope to go?
These are all questions you should know the answers to. Why? So you can have a plan? Not really — although, that should be the obvious. The real reason is so that when given an opportunity, you can quickly share who you are and what you’re about. Why is this important, you might ask? Well, we always hear “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” Sounds nice, but how do you get to the point of meeting and getting to know people? Remember those questions? That’s how.
Reach Out And Engage
Whether you’re out in public, or on the Internet, there are opportunities to meet people. Personally, I always appreciate in-person conversations the most. Next, you need to take advantage of these opportunities. Now this depends on your personality — some find it easier than others to engage in conversations with strangers, but just try. I think you’ll be surprised — it might feel weird at first, or you might not get the results you want, but it will pay off.
Be Curious… Genuinely Curious
It’s not just about talking about yourself — ask questions… and lots of them. The more you genuinely care about others, the more you’ll appeal to and intrigue them. Emphasis on “genuinely” — don’t be fake about this. If you struggle with genuinely caring about others, well… that’s a whole different post.
So, what inspired this post?
Today I visited a coffee shop that I hadn’t been in before — I love checking out new places, and since it was just across the street from the bike shop I was picking up my bike from being repaired at, I decided to hang out there for a bit.
The owner was super friendly and asked me if I was going to school — I get this question nearly every time I meet someone new… and it’s not surprising given that there are two major universities in the area I live. I explain that I’m actually working as a freelance writer and do some computer repair and web design on the side. A guy behind me perked up and asked “Do you have a card?” Not hearing him (TIP: always be alert), I walked over to a table and set my stuff down. Thankfully, he was persistent and came over and asked me again. For sake of his privacy, we’ll name him “Craig”. I promptly gave him my card, which I highly recommend everyone having… yes, everyone. Need reasons? Read point number three of this article on College Info Geek. We talked for a bit — I mainly listened to what he does, and he said he’d email me later. Now, will he? I don’t know. “Craig” actually talked to another web designer at this same coffee shop, so he’s certainly keeping his options open.
That leads me to what happened next, I overheard a little bit of the conversation between “Craig” and another guy, who was also a web designer and writer. So after they parted ways, I introduced myself to this other guy, who I’ll name “Trevor” for his privacy (which was also what I actually thought he introduced himself as at first), and we struck up a great conversation. Turns out “Trevor” is around my age and is also an entrepreneur. Now, I could see him as competition — he talked to a potential client, and far longer than I had — but I don’t. In fact, it doesn’t really matter to me who “Craig” would go with, him, me, or someone else. What I do care about is that “Craig” works with who he jives with the best. So instead of being “competitive”, I’d rather build connections — that approach has proven much more useful for me time and time again.
Where do you go from here?
Be patient. Be consistent. And be focused. Keep your professional goals in mind. This applies to you whether you’re a student or if you just graduated and are trying to build your career, or potentially if you have even been in a specific line of work for a while — fresh connections are always beneficial.
I firmly believe that students especially should be actively connecting with people in their field of interest. Twitter is an awesome place for this, but so is meeting random people — you never know who they will know (which is what LinkedIn is built around, if you were wondering what the point of it is). Examples of this would be to find businesses or organizations to work at or even volunteer at while in school — don’t wait for graduation or your internship to come to start looking for opportunities — build them now. Even if you make less than you would working at that coffee shop down the street, it’s about experience right? And with that another thought on “experience” just came to me, but I’ll save that for another article to keep this one on topic.
So now the ball is in your hands — and I’d love to hear back from you on this! What are you doing now to kickstart your professional goals? If you’re not doing anything now, what do you plan to do?
My very first article on College Info Geek, just posted not too long ago. It’s about how I created my entire workstation on a super tight budget, resulting in getting everything for free or very cheap without compromising on quality. Check it out (click the photo) and let me know what you think!
Will Being Diverse In My Interests And Skills Eventually Hurt Me?
This is something I’ve been pondering a lot about lately.
I’m not one to have a single skillset and be remarkable at it. I’m the kind of person that has a lot of interests and a lot of various skills in different areas. But of those interests and skills, they are vary narrow to a specific aspect of that area.
I am very passionate about animals and helping them, I enjoy working outdoors, I care about how businesses are run and ensuring their customers and clients are treated the best they can be, and I am fairly good with technology and computers.
Even to expand on my interest with animals, I’m more interested in exotic and wild animals, than dogs and cats. And I would like to work in the field, not at some indoor research facility. I want to rescue and rehabilitate them, and make their lives better. That said, I’m not a Vet student, nor am I a good candidate for one (due to past grades in school). I don’t have my Master’s or even a Bachelor’s in any area of biology — I have an Associate degree in Veterinary Technology, as a Veterinary Assistant, which is lesser than a Vet Tech… unfortunately. So does my passion and interest exceed my educational status? Absolutely. What about my skills? How are they? Well, I’ve done some pretty awesome internships — worked at an emergency clinic in Anchorage, Alaska; worked at two zoos in Nebraska, the Lincoln Children’s Zoo, and the well-known Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha. But Have I really built up my skills enough to be profitable to someone? I don’t know. And lastly, this area is extremely competitive. So competitive, that most organizations don’t pay their workers, and if you do get lucky enough to be paid, you’re one of the few, and it’s not very much.
As far as my business “skills” and interests go, instead of liking business as a whole, I’m very particular about what I like — improving a company’s customer service and product quality — two completely different areas, both of which my minor in Agribusiness hardly educated me on. So even if I wanted a job in this area, I wouldn’t be qualified whatsoever. Furthermore, I don’t think that I could work at just any job doing business-related things. I really want to stay away from working at a computer for my whole career.
Technology and computers — this has been something I’ve always been good at, and as I do more, I learn more. But it’s something I like doing because I’m good at it, not the other way around — at least that’s how I see it. So because of this, I really don’t want my whole career based around computers. Like I already stated, I don’t want to sit at a computer day in and day out. Also, I’m not really that talented with computers compared to others in the field. “Well you know more than I do, Aaron.” Well, are you competing for positions and opportunities in the tech department? No? Exactly. I know a little about security, and a lot about the common sense stuff like backing up and using various programs to improve efficiency. Oh, and I can build websites, but don’t know how to code, so there’s that. However, it would be great if the skills I do have could help me obtain a position where my true passion is — working with animals.
If you’ve read this far already, perhaps you see where I’m going… I don’t have one specific area of expertise that I’ve mastered. I’m vaguely knowledgeable in a few areas, but don’t have the skills and/or desire to focus on one specific area. Probably the one I want to focus most on would be the animals, but I’ve already shared my concerns there.
So again, my question remains, when a future employer looks at my resume, which I feel is put together pretty well, will they be impressed by my vast knowledge and interests in multiple areas? Or will they be turned off by the lack of skillset in a specific area?
Those are my thoughts for the day. Thanks for reading (I know it was long) and feel free to share your advice, insight and experiences — I’d like to hear them!
Listen to CollegeInfoGeek Podcast 011: How I Built A Successful Blog And Made It My Job by Thomas Frank
I’ve shared about College Info Geek time and time again — it’s honestly one of the best blogs to follow on the Internet.
Because whether you’re in college OR NOT, you can apply what is covered there to your own professional career.
Learn why you need a blog. Learn how to build a website (and why you should have one… no matter what you do). And learn how to make awesome business cards (and again why you should have them… no matter what you do)
In this podcast, Thomas tells the story of CIG, which not only became a successful blog, but helped him pay off all his college debt of $15K and is now his full-time job.
The Pentagon’s top brass has dealt another blow to a decorated Army officer who was fired last year as a war college instructor because of his teachings about radical Islam, his attorney told The Washington Times.
These are not isolated incidences. This all has to deal with the same thing. It’s a collective movement against American rights.
Here’s an article from the Army Times that you should read as well.
I first heard this story from Dustin Stockton on Facebook. I encourage you to read the whole quote:
Lt. Col Matthew Dooley, a West Point graduate and highly-decorated combat veteran, was an instructor at the Joint Forces Staff College at the National Defense University. He had 19 years of service and experience, and was considered one of the most highly qualified military instructors on Radical Islam & Terrorism.
He taught military students about the situations they would encounter, how to react, about Islamic culture, traditions, and explained the mindset of Islamic extremists. Passing down first hand knowledge and experience, and teaching courses that were suggested (and approved) by the the Joint Forces Staff College. The course “Perspectives on Islam and Islamic Radicalism” ,which was suggested and approved by the Joint Forces Staff College, caught the attention of several Islamic Groups, and they wanted to make an example of him.
They collectively wrote a letter expressing their outrage, and the Pro-Islamic Obama Administration was all too happy to assist. The letter was passed to Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff , Martin Dempsey. Dempsey publicly degraded and reprimanded Dooley, and Dooley received a negative Officer Evaluation Report almost immediately (which he had aced for the past 5 years). He was relieved of teaching duties, and his career has been red-flagged.
“He had a brilliant career ahead of him. Now, he has been flagged.” - Richard Thompson, Thomas More Law Center
"All US military Combatant Commands, Services, the National Guard Bureau, and Joint Chiefs are under Dempsey’s Muslim Brotherhood-dictated order to ensure that henceforth, no US military course will ever again teach truth about Islam that the jihadist enemy finds offensive ,or just too informative." - Former CIA agent Claire M. Lopez (about Lt. Col Dooley)
The Obama Administration has demonstrated lightning speed to dismiss Military brass that does not conform to it’s agenda, and not surprisingly, nobody is speaking up for Lt. Col. Dooley.
IT’S A SAD DAY FOR THIS COUNTRY WHEN GOOD LOYAL MEN LIKE THIS GET THROWN UNDER THE BUS BECAUSE NOBODY HAS THE COURAGE TO STAND UP!
Thought of the Day: It’s better to be broke because you saved all your money and spent it ON college, than because you took all your money and spent it IN college.
Dear College, Email! Ussseeee… EMAIL!
Alright… so I am quite annoyed at the moment and don’t have a lot of time, but just wanted to get something out there.
I was just notified today that I missed the Veterinary Technology Assessment for graduation last night which was from 7 to 9. I said I knew nothing about it and was told “There’s a note up on the board about it.”
Aaron, what’s this “board” you speak of? Well let me tell you. It is a bulletin board that is semi-organized consisting of updates in the Veterinary Technology Department at my college. The problem is, most of the stuff doesn’t apply to you, so you have to sift through all the BS to even find something that you might care about or that you should know.
So why didn’t I see this sign whenever it was posted? Because it was posted yesterday. Yes, the day of the assessment. Here’s the clincher… I didn’t even have any classes and the class that I do typically have on that day wasn’t even in that building. And when I talked to another instructor about it, they said there was a sign “a while ago” mentioning that all students in a certain class AND all Veterinary Assistant students not in that class need to take the Assessment. Well, I never saw anything… and I check when I go into that building. Problem is, I’m not always in that building.
So, how do they expect students to ALWAYS know what’s going on when the only “news source” they have is a bulletin board that’s cluttered with class updates, finals schedules, etc. etc.?
EMAIL! Use it! It’s amazing! At least then I know that it went directly to me and then it IS my fault for not knowing because they took the initiative to inform me directly. The argument is made that students don’t check their email or that the email students give the college isn’t the one that they use… that’s easy to fix. Whenever they sign up, they can PICK what email the college uses, whether its the college assigned one, or their personal one. WHAT?! What a CONCEPT! WHOH!
Yeah. Pretty amazing huh? So just tell the students that they NEED to have the right email to receive things such as class updates, major updates… updates about things that could, I don’t know, affect you ever graduating. Probably something good to know…
And it ISN’T just the Vet Tech Department at my school. Not efficiently (notice I said “efficiently”) informing and updating students is a chronic issue campus wide.
Here is a screen shot of what a student posted on the college’s Facebook group.
Thanks for reading this vent-post (as I call them).
Does anyone else have problems with their college or certain departments not doing this?
My anger is very ADD. I was thinking ‘Grr. Stupid colleges and their lackluster money-management skills..’ and then a robin flew by my window and I was like ‘Oooh, birdie!’ :-D
I am extremely against college instructors antagonizing students, especially in front of other students.
More thoughts to come on that in the future when I have time to elaborate. Feel free to share your thoughts/experiences/etc.
So I’m treading on a pretty darn sensitive topic here. But I want to. And I apologize to any readers who are offended by this. That isn’t my purpose.
The other week in my Critical Thinking class this was the topic at hand. Let me tell you, it was pretty intense. And I was not prepared for one of the “reasons” to get an abortion.
The assignment was to create an outline of the following questions:
- What is the law for abortion?
- Would you change the law?
- What is the opposing argument?
- What problems are solved with your solution?
- What problems are created?
This resulted in me typing out a 2-page outline. I really enjoy this sort of thing, but I won’t bombard you with all of that. Here are my main thoughts on the topic and then to the big thing I wasn’t at all prepared for.
Let’s get off on the right foot. I’m not 100% against abortion. I realize it has its place… a small one, but still there is a purpose to it.
Now Let’s Set This Straight
Currently the abortion law is not consistent across the board. Now, I know that as individual states, each has the right, but there is also a place under federal law. Take murder for example. There aren’t any states that have the law “It’s ok to murder, but only in these situations.” And actually, in all honesty, I chose “murder” unintentionally. I’m not making the argument (yet) that abortion is murder. Because there are so many variances nationwide and state-to-state in the abortion law, there are also loopholes. Even in the states that ban abortion for only “health reasons,” there are loopholes. Let me explain. Currently, mental issues are considered a cause for health reasons to get an abortion. WHAT? I don’t know if you took anatomy… even if you did you should know that the brain of the mother doesn’t have any impact on the child’s birth. This is insane! Basically, you’re killing a child because you have an “unstable mind.” I’m not sure how this logically qualifies as a reason.
Other Excuses For Abortion
Other reasons that people excuse abortion are for rape and incest, but let me tell you, in the US one percent get abortions due to rape and incest. And six percent have an abortion because of health reasons. SEVEN PERCENT? And yet those are the main three reasons for keeping it. Now, what if I told you that 93% got an abortion for social reasons. So now all of a sudden, it seems to me that all the reasons and excuses for having abortion legal are completely irrelevant.
Not Even Rape is OK and the Reason I Wasn’t Prepared For
Let’s go a step further though. I’m not even saying that all seven percent of that should be OK. What Aaron? You think that if someone get’s raped that she should have the kid? Yes. I do. And the reason why is, why NOT? I’ve heard this before: "Well because what if the kid hurts because he or she was a ‘rape baby’ and they don’t feel they belong here?" So that’s a reason to end their life? That is the most messed up reasoning I have ever heard. You need some help. This was the reasoning I heard brought up in class.
Below is an email that I sent to my instructor on the topic:
Hey Jeff, I know the abortion topic is over, but I found something just now that made me think back to what was said in class — about getting an abortion just to keep a deformed child from “going through pain in life.” Which to me is just ridiculous and gut-wrenching to be honest. Anyways, I wish I had thought of this public figure whenever we were talking about it. I’m not sure if you’ve heard of him, but his name is Nick Vujicic. He has no arms or legs. He has one small deformed appendage for a foot. THAT’S IT! If you’d like me to send you some videos I can or you can look him up on YouTube yourself.
[Note: Below is a video that I later sent him. Nick Vujicic has a lot of videos, but this one is very touching and inspirational]
The Email Continues:
But I just thought, I wonder if his parents considered an abortion. Probably not. Because he doesn’t feel sorry for himself. And we shouldn’t. All that statement proves is that people want to make excuses for themselves and their children. He was obviously not pitied as a child, but instead encouraged to make the best of what he had.
Anyways, I just wanted to share that with you. Think about all the people that wouldn’t have been impacted if he would have been aborted. It’s honestly scary.
So those are my thoughts. I honestly don’t agree with any reason for abortion except for health reasons and that is also shady because I don’t agree that “mental health” should have any part. By health reasons I mean life threatening.
What if the baby will die anyways? No.
What if the baby will have deformities? (I think you already know the answer) No.
What if I was raped? No.
What if I can’t take care of the child? So you’re going to kill it? No.
Adoption people! Whether it was a result of a rape, you can’t take care of it, you don’t feel responsible enough to take care of it, WHATEVER. Adoption is the BEST solution! It saves lives and it gives people, YOUR CHILDREN, a chance to live. To impact others positively who may not have otherwise been impacted in that way. To change lives. To bring joy. To make a difference. To do whatever their purpose in life is to do.
So those are my thoughts. Hopefully I have changed your mind some. If you still aren’t “sold,” I suggest you check out methods of abortion. Did you know that one form consists of sucking the brains of the baby out of its head and then removing the rest? It’s pretty gruesome and hard to imagine.
Again, I wasn’t trying to offend anyone and I’m sorry if I may have. I have suddenly become very passionate about this and it has been something I’ve wanted to share for a long time since talking about it in class.
Please share your thoughts, questions, comments below. What do you think?