spring /summer 2009
Education,Careers &PersonalGrowth Going Back To School
Is It Worth It?
The “Hidden” Job Market Dealing with Frustrating Job Searches In a Tough Economy Paying for College Stand Out From the Crowd Among Other Applicants
Many Options for One Great Education.
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Health & Fitness companies have invested over $500 million in Colorado facilities since 1996 … will you be a part of that explosive growth? Trainers can expect hourly wages from $18 - $21 to start and can build incomes from $50,000 to $75,000 annually through their client revenue base within one to five years!
Your Guide To Education, Careers & Personal Growth
SPRING/SUMMER 2009 Volume 1, Number 1 Publisher James Diaz
SALES MANAGER Bud Simon
Career Opportunities for Personal Trainers Include: Health & Fitness club positions Nutritional counseling Group instruction (e.g. spinning, kettlebells, yoga, pilates)
Assisting medical professionals, chiropractors, physical therapists, etc. Corporate Wellness Programs Private personal training
The National Personal Training Institute has been providing the health & fitness industry with educated and experienced professionals...since 2001! Unlike some schools who offer personal training education as something they “also” do … personal fitness training is ALL that we do! Students choose NPTI Colorado for the BEST QUALITY in education and practical training for their personal fitness training careers.
At the National Personal Training Institute of Colorado, you WILL kick start your health & fitness career with: A Personal Fitness Trainer course (certified by the State of Colorado Department of Higher Education) offering over 1,000 hours of combined classroom, special projects, and hands-on education COLLEGE LEVEL anatomy, exercise science, physiology, and nutrition texts by the National Strength & Conditioning Association (NSCA) and the American Council on Exercise (ACE) A 100+ hour focus on diet & nutrition, specifically, you’ll learn what’s necessary to pass the ACE Lifestyle and Weight Management Consultant (LWMC) certification
250+ hours of practical hands on EXPERIENCE and client specific program design prior to graduating A comprehensive project covering the BUSINESS of personal fitness training A certified vocational school with federal, state and local credentials Over a dozen pages of JOB OPPORTUNITIES on the website www.NPTIColorado.com … jobs that employers specifically asked us to offer up to our graduates
Over 150 combined years of degreed instructor education & experience APPROVED for VA EDUCATION BENEFITS! CALL NOW! Follow your PASSION. Start your CAREER as a PERSONAL FITNESS TRAINER! Call today to sit in on a class: 303.238.9999 or phil@NPTItrainer.com
Managing Editor John Cargile
CREATIVE DIRECTOR Yashpal Singh
ASSOCIATE EDITOR Ryan Peacock
CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Jeanne Fischer Caitlin Kelly
Art Directors Marissa Ayres
OFFICE MANAGER Theresa Hall
Kim Beethe Anne Kremer Ellen Schneeweis Ellen Smith Tony Sollenbarger Char Stunkel
EDU Colorado is published by Metro Mountain Media, LLP, an E.W. Scripps/MediaNews Group Company. EDU Colorado 3801 East Florida Avenue, Suite 100 Denver, Colorado 80210 Phone: 303.954.3456 Fax: 303.758.3378 To order a copy or find subscription information please contact EDU Colorado Magazine. at: firstname.lastname@example.org Visit us on the Web: www.educolorado.com www.metmtn.com Metro Mountain Media also publishes Ever After, Mountain Vacations, Front Range Family and Shopping Sense magazines.
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7 The “Hidden” Job Market 9 Going Back to School—Is It Worth It? 11How to Get Money for College 13Tips for Getting into College 14The Associate’s Advantage How networking can clue you in to hard-to-find jobs
Weighing the risks and benefits of furthering your education Find the best resources for financial aid
BECOME A PROFESSIONAL PERSONAL FITNESS TRAINER!
Your PASSION. Your CAREER.
Learn what you can do now to get into the school of your dreams
What can this two-year degree do for you?
16 How Achieve Success with Quick and Easy Goal Setting to improve your work and personal life in just one hour per month 18 You How to Thrive in Today’s Work Environment can achieve success at work even when the economy is hurting 20Paying for College Later In Life Going back to school? Learn how to finance your continuing education 22The Benefits of an Online Education Learn about the benefits of online education and how to finance it 24The First Step To Your Dream Job May Be A Vacation Vocation Vacations can help you make your dream job a reality 26Perfect The Secrets of Resume Writing your resume with this expert advice 32Great Dealing with Frustrating Job Searches in a Tough Economy tips to help when finding a job seems impossible 34Learn Top Ten Jobs Requiring a Two-Year Degree about these exciting career paths 35Considering Occupation and Wage Estimates a career change? Check out the descriptions and wage estimates of popular jobs 39Adding Stand Out From the Crowd a cover letter to your resume can help you stand out from other applicants 41 Directory 49Several Resources Denver-area organizations are dedicated to helping you through tough times 50The How to Get Help With Your College Application college application process can be overwhelming. Find out where to go for help Spring/Summer 2009 •
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networking By Barbara Locke
0<99242 ;<A 3<? F<B, Consider a Career in the Ironworking Industry.
Ironworkers can do it all: ß Structural ß Reinforcement ß Ornamental
ß Heavy Rigging ß Sheeting ß Welding
The “Hidden” Job Market Forming a social network can clue you in to hard-to-find jobs.
Get Great On-the-Job Training, Earn a Great Living, Start Your New Career Today!
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• Spring/Summer 2009
any jobs aren’t advertised in the daily newspaper, at local career centers or at temporary employment agencies. So how do people find these jobs? Many people forget about an important and valuable resource: word of mouth. For years, everyone’s talked about the “Good Old Boy” network, traditionally a group of men with similar interests, education, and social class who have bonded together in an informational network to give each other a helping hand and to keep as many of themselves in power/jobs as possible. The system works, and it can work for you, even if you’re not old or a boy. First, you need to reach out to friends and acquaintances who understand your skills and employment goals. Would you like to work in a floral design shop? Get to know some people who work in the field. Maybe you know someone who works in a shop already, or you know someone who teaches floral design at the local community college. Ask around to see if they know someone who might be hiring, especially if their busy period is coming up. Many businesses hire extra help around the holidays— if you do a great job, you could be asked to stay on. Let your friends and family know what kind of job you’re looking for so they can let you know what job openings might be available at their workplaces. They can ask their neighbors and spouses for you, as well. If you ask ten friends for information, and they each ask ten people on your behalf, your inquiry could get out to as many as 100 people or more. In a small town, that might be enough to get you to the door of your future employer. If you don’t have the perfect training for a job you’d like, consider accepting a different job within an
organization and take extra time after hours for some on-the-job training for the position you originally wanted. Sometimes when an employer sees how hard you’re willing to work to achieve your goals, he or she will be inclined to offer you just what you want. If you want to catch an employer’s eye and you’re not hurting for money at the moment, another way to impress someone is to volunteer. You can pick up the skills you need as you work on site, and when a job becomes available, you’ll be on the inside when it’s time to apply. The more contacts you make, the wider your network, and the more likely you are to land a job. In small towns, there’s an average of 25 to 50 applicants for every clerical opening, and big cities may have five times as many. Personal contacts can give you a much-needed leg-up when competition is fierce. Let people know you’re looking and have them pass on a recommendation or a good word, if they can. Be a name-dropper—remind the employer someone he or she knows recommended you. Because you’ve made a personal contact with an employer or other crucial person once doesn’t mean they’ll remember you. Make contact again, even if you’ve left a resume or had an interview, to remind them of your interest. If common business practice says it takes the average person seven times hearing something before they remember it, the same is true of your name and face. You’ll find persistence pays! edu Spring/Summer 2009 •
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As the real value of your personal income drops, you must weigh your career choices more carefully.
Going Back To School Is It Worth It? H
ave you experienced the frustration of earning an education credential only to find that your chosen career path was a dead end? Because it is perfectly understandable to change careers, you might consider the option of earning a different credential. When you think about all of your career options, the decision to go back to school comes down to economics. Can you afford to leave your present career path to pursue a new degree? For many Americans, there is a more important question than what path they want their career to take. They are concerned with the health of the U.S. economy. Everyone is wondering where is the economy heading? What type of income will they need in five years to maintain their present lifestyle (i.e. their current mortgage payment)? Will they be able to afford their bills with wages resembling their present earnings? According to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis report for July 2008, “Personal income decreased $89.9 billion, or 0.7 percent, in July, in contrast to an increase of $7.4 billion, or 0.1 percent, in June and an increase of $218 billion, or 1.8 percent, in May.” Realize that your future ability to afford your present bills is endangered by rising prices for goods and services, from electricity to groceries. You might need a higher earning capacity as early as next year, or you might need more ways to condense your budget. In challenging economic circumstances, you can ponder the customary questions like whether you can afford to leave your career path, how much you can spend or borrow for your education, and how long it will take you to finish. Additionally, consider these questions:
What will the demand for this career be after you finish school? You can search for economic forecasts of the job sector over the next few years. You can weigh the demand for this job versus the future prospects of your present career choice. www.educolorado.com
What will your earning potential be when you are finished? Sometimes looking at demand is not enough. Your future career might double or even triple your earning potential after graduation. That is an economic benefit to which you should give serious thought. What are the future needs of your family? A career change may require different working hours than you presently work. In two years or four years, think about what age your kids will be. Will your new career be compatible with your parenting obligations? How will you balance your job with your spouse’s workload? How does this prospective program match with your personal financial goals? Beyond the demand for this new career and its earning potential, think about the long-term feasibility of this career. Gauge your personal commitment to pursuing this career over many years. Do you have what it takes to stick with a new career path and simultaneously achieve your financial goals? The option of returning to school is a huge decision when your personal income depreciates because of economic factors beyond your control. Look down the road and decide if investing your time and money in additional education is your best choice. edu Spring/Summer 2009 •
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financial By Benjamin Lomax
Denver Academy of Court Reporting From the courthouse to TV networks, court reporters, deposition reporters, and broadcast captioners are in demand. In fact, the nation’s top court reporting schools are reporting near 100% placement rates. And, the U.S. Department of Labor reports that opportunities in captioning and realtime reporting are expected to healthily grow during the next decade. Court Reporting is a career that’s vital, exciting, and rewarding, with coast-to-coast opportunities at your fingertips. Reporters can work in the legal community, provide communications access for people with hearing loss, be an independent contractor, or run their own reporting firm. Reporters are part of exciting events and history in the making – from reporting high-profile trials to captioning the Super Bowl!
How to Get Money for College The more thorough your search for financial aid, the less burden you will bear when you finish your education and begin your pursuit of a career and a fulfilling life. Exhaustively pursue every avenue, and seek help from every available source.
Court Reporters Earn A Great Living. U We offer the flexibility of either day, evening or online classes U Learn from highly trained experts in the field U Career planning assistance U Financial aid is available to those who qualify
Online delivery of our program is now available!
Tip 1: Gather your information before applying In order to qualify for most financial aid, you must have confirmed admission to an educational institution, and nearly all sources of aid will independently verify your admission. The type of institution, course of study, and part of the country all will have great effect on what types of aid you are eligible for. In addition, gather as much information about your background, both personally and educationally, for maximum effect. Many private scholarships have ethnic, gender, household income, or other qualifiers. Since these are privately funded (the majority of available financial aid is private), there are no restrictions on what the funding agency can require.
Tip 2: Go big first The Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) is the starting point for every search for financial aid. This form is incredibly simple to fill out, requiring virtually no verifying information. With that, you have applied for the most widely available sources of aid, most specifically Pell Grants and Stafford Loans. Both are funded by the federal government based on income level and tuition, regardless of academic achievement. Pell Grants are not repaid, but they are very limited, and fail to fully fund even public school tuitions. Stafford Loans are larger, and come in two categories, subsidized and unsubsidized, but their funds must be repaid. The only difference is that unsubsidized loans accrue interest while the loan recipient is attending school full-time, while subsidized loans do not accrue interest until after full-time attendance ceases. Tip 3: Look for local scholarships There are many listings, both electronic and manual (books and ad listings), with thousands of scholarships of every variety, from $100 stipends to full rides. But to look manually through all these listings will take weeks and result in lots of frustration, dealing with vague requirements and reams of red tape. You are best served to use a free scholarship search engine. The largest and easiest is Fastweb.com, but other effective engines include Scholarshipexpress.com, College-scholarships.com, and Scholarships.com, among many others. It is suggested that you use a few very effective engines to optimize results. Maximize your search efforts by focusing on those scholarships that are the best matched to your qualifications and desired goals. The application may be long, but it is very important. Quality time will be spent interviewing with agents of funds whose goals are complicit with your own. Tip 4: There is no such thing as overkill when applying for scholarships Apply for as many scholarships as possible. Maximize your results by applying for those scholarships that match you best, as discussed above, but remember there are a million fish in the sea. Keep
YOUR FUTURE IS AT YOUR FINGERTIPS! CALL US TODAY
(303) 427-5292 denveracademy.edu
btaining funds for your education is nowhere near as difficult as it seems. There are thousands of sources that you can research, and nearly everything can be located and applied for without charge. There are more than a billion dollars in unclaimed scholarships and educational funds every year. Why not try to get your piece of the pie?
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f iena at n u cr iea l
preparation By Sarah J Sky
Apply for as many scholarships as possible. Maximize your results by applying for those scholarships that match you best… but remember there are a million fish in the sea. Keep throwing out your line!
throwing out your line! You never know what the applicant pool is like, so the more you apply, the better your chances of getting to the vital second step: the test or interview. Tip 5: Prioritize local funds Local agencies like to provide scholarships to local candidates, someone they can hold up to their members as being part of their society. It also is much easier to interview for and test for local funds, and many funding agencies will not even consider someone outside their area, regardless of how great their qualifications are. This also applies to state funds. In California, there is an equivalent to the Pell Grant called the Cal Grant, with the same rules but even lighter on the funding. However, they are also very easy to apply for, and qualify thousands of students every year, so not applying for these local type funds is missing out on easy money
Tip 6: Steer Clear of Debt! Stafford Loans have great interest rates, but it can be tempting to apply for every bit of funding you can get. Stafford Loans include books, housing, and other household expenses into your need basis for funding, and can provide thousands of dollars a year beyond what you actually need to pay for tuition or other mandatory expenses. Remember that every dollar must be re-paid, and chances are that as a new graduate, you won’t make a million dollars a year. To avoid the burden of excessive debt, only apply for what you need. This applies doubly to independent (nonStafford, locally funded) loans, where the interest rates may start off low, but increase once you graduate. The more thorough your search for financial aid, the less burden you will bear when you finish your education and begin your pursuit of a career and a fulfilling life. Exhaustively pursue every avenue, and seek help from every available source. This hard work will profit you immensely in the future. edu
THE WOMEN’S COLLEGE of the University of Denver
A collaborative and vibrant
women-centered learning community.
• Convenient evening/weekend format • Competitively priced • Career relevant, University of Denver bachelor degrees and certificate programs
303.871.6848 12 edu COLORADO
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Tips for Getting into College Grades Overall: Colleges are looking for students with strong overall grades because it is a good predictor of future achievement. It will also free up more college options for you. Trends: If your grades start lower but steadily improve, colleges will be impressed with your dedication. If you maintain strong grades, they will like your consistency. Standardized Testing SAT/ACT: Students come from different schools and backgrounds but take the same standardized test. This levels the field and helps compare you with the rest of the nation. SAT II: Subject tests work in your favor because you can choose your strongest subjects. Many colleges require the SAT II Writing Exam, which tests basic grammar and syntax. Invest in a review book; even a used one will do. AP: If you did well in the class and think you can score well, consider taking the AP exam. High AP scores show readiness for college-level work and national standing — two birds with one stone. Community Service Commitment: Colleges want dedicated students who can balance extracurricular activities and volunteer hours in addition to their course load. Explore a range of groups, causes or hobbies. Select the ones you like and stick with them. The longer you are with your group, the better. Leadership: If there is a group or club you enjoy, get more involved. If you are shy or want to start small, be a project leader; if you are adventurous, run for office. Either way, you will be displaying your ability to lead and take on more responsibility.
Interview: If you are nervous, practice with friends/family until you have the basic responses down. The interviewer is usually an alumnus so this is also a chance for you to talk to someone who went there. Ask questions to appear interested and inquisitive. Ask about their experiences; even, ask for advice. The Schools Have a Plan: Sometimes, dreams do not work out exactly the way you planned. Apply to a range of schools you would enjoy attending; that way, you have viable alternatives in case you do not get into your top choice or cannot afford it. Besides, you can work really hard and transfer later. Some schools have linkage programs too, where you are guaranteed a transfer as long as you do well. Do your research and apply to: •2-3 “dream” schools (schools that you definitely want to go to but may be a bit challenging to get into) •2-3 “zone” schools (schools that have a reasonably good chance of getting into) •2-3 “safety” schools (schools that you can definitely get into) Start early and give yourself the most time to work on all of these components and you will be a strong candidate. Then, you can sit back and let the acceptance letters roll in. edu
Start early and give yourself the most time to work on all of these components and you will be a strong candidate.
The Application Recommendation Letters: Teachers, instructors, and advisors for your extracurricular groups are all great people to approach. These people should know you well so they can attest to your character and your maturity/readiness to handle college. www.educolorado.com
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The Associate’s Advantage Earning an Associate’s Degree can help you find employment, increase your chances of promotion and a raise in pay or lead to further education. In these tough economic times, we all need every edge we can get.
Growth In Associate Degree Careers
Environ. Occupational engineering therapist technicians assistants Paralegals Registered and legal Nurses assistants Radiologic technologists Computer and Computer Science technicians support specialists Industrial engineering technicians Fashion Designers +5%
There are many other career choices available; these are just a few. However, the careers listed above range in salary from $40,000 to over $71,000.
n today’s uncertain economy, job skills and a good education are more important than ever. Although it might seem like an uphill battle, there are options for people who are looking to better themselves and their families. How can you get ahead when the economy is looking so anemic? Consider earning an Associate’s Degree. It takes half the time and half the expense of a four-year degree and the rate of return on the investment is well worth the effort. What is an Associate’s Degree? Completion of a two-year course of business study
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at a community, junior or business college level will earn you an Associate’s Degree. An Associate’s Degree is considered a “transfer” degree, meaning it can count toward the first two years of study for a Bachelor’s degree, which can take another one to four more years of courses to complete, or can be an end product itself. This type of degree is regarded as an “entry-level” degree that prepares students for business from the ground up. A student can then elect to take their degree directly to the work world, or continue on to earn their Bachelor’s. As an “entry level” degree, an Associate’s Degree opens up opportunities and will get your foot in the door of many different career choices. According to the Bureau of Labor, the following careers all show positive growth through the year 2016. How am I Supposed to Pull This Off? Our lives are busier now then they’ve ever been. It’s difficult to fit educational needs into already tightly scheduled days. However, the payoff is worth it, and there are some options as far as getting it done. Grants, loans and scholarships. There is a lot of financial help out there if you know where to look. Research online, talk to students who have completed their degree and ask questions. Call the library, talk to a high school or college guidance counselor. Don’t overlook even the tiniest grant or scholarship—they all add up. Community colleges. Community colleges are often cheaper and centrally located. Some offer special programs for the “non-traditional” student who may be working and supporting a family. Call the college and set up an appointment with the guidance or financial counselor, and see what they can do for you. Online universities. Finding an accredited university online that offers the course study you require is a great option to explore. With online courses, you can study at your own pace, and fees are usually much lower since you’re avoiding campus overhead. However, make sure you find out if any of your grants or scholarships are compromised by taking courses online; some do not support the online format for education. Company support. Some employers offer a
program to compensate their workers for taking courses or earning a degree while employed. Talk to your Human Resources department to see if there is such a program available where you work, and take advantage of it. It’s not a benefit if you don’t utilize it! Earning an Associate’s Degree can help you find
Earning your Associate’s Degree can help you further your career and stay afloat during tough times. employment, increase your chances of promotion and a raise in pay or lead to further education. In these tough economic times, we all need every edge we can get. An entrylevel degree can lead to all kinds of opportunities and is well worth the initial investment. It’s grim out there, for all of us. Planning ahead and acquiring a degree may go a long way toward making things just a little bit more secure for you and your family. edu
making a change. Earn your bachelor’s degree in just three years. Westwood College offers degree programs in technology, business, design, justice and healthcare. At Westwood, you’ll take classes that focus on your career from day one. Don’t wait. Start today. www.educolorado.com
westwood.edu Spring/Summer 2009 •
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f eo aa tl us r e g By Roz Andrews
Achieve Success with Quick and Easy Goal Setting Taking just one hour per month to set goals for yourself can drastically improve your work and personal life.
o you feel as if you are drifting through life without achieving anything? Do you often make excuses for not taking positive steps towards a long-term goal? If so, perhaps you would benefit from setting quick and easy monthly goals in all areas of your life. Here is a system for doing so in just one hour a month: Buy a notebook for the specific purpose of setting your goals and recording your achievements. You may also use a computer, laptop or Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), as long as it is easy for you to consult your list of goals frequently. During the last weekend of every month, set aside one hour to record your goals for the next month. Write the name of the month at the top of two pages. At the top of the first page, write “Work Goals,” and then list all of the things that you would like to achieve at work in the coming month. Once you have finished writing your work goals, put the heading “Personal Goals” at the top of the
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second page and write down all of your personal goals for the month ahead. In this category, include everything that you would like to achieve outside of work, such as goals relating to relationships with family and friends, hobbies, interests, personal development, educational and general interest courses, etc. After recording all of your goals, look at them again and prioritize them. Put a number by the side of each goal to indicate how much of a priority it is to achieve that goal in the month ahead. Write the number one by the side of the goals that are your highest priority. Put a number two next to the goals that you will try your best to achieve, but which aren’t the top priority. Number three is for goals that are less of a priority—it would be good to achieve them in the month ahead, but it wouldn’t be a disaster if they were left until the following month. After you have finished setting your monthly goals, narrow your focus with work and personal goals for the week ahead. Try setting some smaller goals that will lead you towards achieving the highest priority monthly goals. During the week, look at your list of goals often and cross each one off the list as soon as you achieve it. This will give you an instant feeling of satisfaction and motivate you to attain another goal. At the end of the first week, review your progress and set goals for the second week, based on your overall monthly goals and your progress in the first week. If there are any top priority goals that have not been crossed off your list in the first week, transfer them to the second week without being judgmental. If you didn’t manage to fulfill all of your top priority goals in the first week, it doesn’t mean that you are a failure and that you should give up goal setting. The secret of high achievement is to consistently persevere rather than give up at the first hurdle. Repeat this process for each week of the month. On the last weekend of the month, review your progress over the past month. Did you accomplish more or less than you expected to? Did you enjoy
attaining some goals and avoid others? If you achieved less than you expected, perhaps you set yourself too many goals. Try setting fewer goals next month and see if you feel the satisfaction that comes with achieving most of what you set out to do. If there were some goals that you avoided, then listen to what this is telling you about yourself. Perhaps it means that you should change your job or find extra help with your business. If you felt a failure because you didn’t accomplish everything on your list, continue with the exercise and remember that it is an ongoing process. What you do not achieve in one month, you can easily transfer to the next month. Look at all the goals that you did not achieve in the previous month and decide whether you wish to transfer, modify or discard them. You may decide that you still wish to attain one of your original goals, so you would transfer that to the new month’s list. If there was a specific reason for not reaching a certain goal in the previous month, you may wish to modify
The secret of high achievement is to consistently persevere rather than give up at the first hurdle.
that goal so that it will be more attainable this month. If, however, you have realized that a goal has become unimportant for you, you may discard it. You will waste time and energy clinging to goals that are not a priority or which take up too much of your time to be worthwhile at this point in your life. Repeat the exercise each month for a year and you will be amazed by how productive and wellrounded your life has become. At the end of the year, you may even be pleasantly surprised by the ways in which your goal setting has prompted you to change your life for the better. edu
Only a handful of students from around the country were allowed into the Democratic National Convention, and those selected were Cisco Networking Academy students from Westwood College. Exclusively invited by Cisco, these Networking Academy students helped install the modern technology that did everything from enabling the media to send their news articles back to their worldwide ofﬁces, to allowing the then presidential nominee Barack Obama to place a phone call.
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Westwood students got hands-on experience while obtaining a bachelor’s degree in computer network management or information systems security – the perfect combination for graduates to land a highpaying, in-demand career. Also, Westwood College graduates can obtain advanced certiﬁcations in the Cisco Certiﬁed Network Professional program, giving them another leg-up in the career ladder.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, network and computer systems administrators have an average annual salary of about $65,000(1) and skilled computer network managers are in-demand jobs. A quick search on Monster.com shows that in Denver there are more than 800 information technology and software jobs available today. C:ILDG@6C98DBEJI:GHNHI:BH 69B>C>HIG6IDGHÉ6K:G6<:H6A6GN>H+)!+.%&#
If you’d like to know more about how you can be on your way to earning a bachelor’s degree in information technology in just three years, please visit westwood.edu or call 877-789-7317.
:6GC6768=:ADGÉH9:<G::>C >C;DGB6I>DCI:8=CDAD<N>CI=G:: N:6GH#
Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Candidate — The Higher Learning Commission; Afﬁliate — North Central Association Telephone: (800) 621-7440 or (312) 263-0456 Website: http://www.ncahlc.org/. (1) U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and wages, May 2007
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fe c aa r te ue r es
How To Thrive In Today’s Work Environment You can survive the current economic problems and emerge stronger from the experience
y now just about everyone has noticed the slowdown in the overall economy. The current period of economic weakness has many causes, from the bursting of the housing bubble and the resulting foreclosure crisis to a weak dollar and a weak manufacturing sector. No matter what the causes, however, it is up to all of us to do what we can to survive the current problems and emerge stronger for the experience. And make no mistake about it – it is possible to prosper even in the weakest of economies. As with many things in life, the key to economic survival is preparation, and there are some skills each of us can learn to safeguard ourselves and our careers when things start to go south. Not all of these steps are easy to take, and not all of them will be right for everyone, but chances are you could benefit from these simple yet powerful tips. Tip #1 Grow Your Skills If your employer offers training for its workers be sure to take advantage of every course you can. Even if the courses seem unrelated to your current job duties they may be valuable in the long run. Seeking out training also indicates to your employer that you are willing to go the extra mile
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to improve yourself and your career. Whether your ultimate goal is to land a better job or just enjoy more success in your current one, you can’t go wrong with extra knowledge. The same thing holds true for tuition reimbursement programs. Now is a great time to take those college courses you’ve always wanted, and the fact that your boss will pick up the tab should be enough to seal the deal. If you find yourself wondering how college will fit into your busy schedule, keep in mind that there are many distance learning and computer courses available these days. So talk to your boss and chart a course for your future educational and career success. Tip #2 – Don’t Be Invisible Many long term employees have become so good at their jobs that contributions to the company are taken for granted. If this sounds like you it may be time to make yourself a bit more visible to the powers that be. Simple things like volunteering for an additional project or working on a team your boss is putting together can get you the recognition you deserve and remind everyone that you remain a valuable part of the team. Don’t wait until annual review time rolls around to take note of your contributions. Keep a record of your accomplishments, from day to day routine work that is nonetheless essential to special projects and the important role you played in their success. And most of all, try not to blend into the background. Tip #3 – Keep Your Network Tool Sharp We have all heard the statistics proving that most jobs are found through networking and not through the want ads. Those stories are very true, and it is important for all workers, whether they are content where they are or looking for greener pastures, to build up their network of colleagues, friends and other professionals. Having a network in place will make it easier to land another job in the event of a
layoff, but it will also make it easier to help your own company find workers when they are needed. Tip #4 – Seek Out More Face Time Modern technology has made it easier than ever for workers to telecommute and work from home, but telecommuting full time is not always a great idea. Working from home on a full-time basis can be particularly dangerous when the economy slows down and companies look for ways to cut costs and trim excess workers. If you have been working from home on a full-time basis it may be a good idea to ask about working onsite at least a day or two each week. Making such a move will help you reconnect with coworkers and enjoy more face-to-face interaction with the management team. While backing off from telecommuting may not always be possible, many companies offer flexibility to those employees who typically work out of their houses and on the road. 09-AU-3218 EDU Colorado Ad NEW.qxd
If a part-time return to office based work is not available it may be a good idea to schedule some working lunches and other office get togethers. From formal staff meetings to casual lunches, these events are a great way to get the scoop on what is really happening at the office and with the company as a whole. The information gathered in this manner can be invaluable, whether you are looking for a way up the corporate ladder or just a way to protect your current job. The downturn we find ourselves in has been a different sort — at least so far. While many previous downturns in economic growth were accompanied by sharp rises in the unemployment rate, so far these issues have not arisen. There is of course no guarantee that a steep rise in unemployment will not materialize, and smart workers will need to be prepared for this eventuality. So why not use the steps above as a guideline to protect yourself, your family and your career goals? You will be glad you did. edu 10:13 AM
And make no mistake about it — it is possible to prosper even in the weakest of economies.
if you want to teach, learn to reach. As an educator, your ability to engage and inspire is key to success. That’s why all of Argosy University’s education programs emphasize the interpersonal skills you’ll need to make the grade. Because knowledge is one thing, teaching it quite another. At our Denver campus, you can earn your Master’s, Specialist, or Doctoral degree in:*
• Educational Leadership • Instructional Leadership • Community College Executive Leadership In addition, Argosy University’s 19 campuses across the country offer degree programs in Psychology, Counseling, and Business.
Classes Enrolling Now – Call Today About Our National Information Session On April 4th.
Learn more today at argosy.edu or call 800.377.0617 Argosy University, Denver | 1200 Lincoln Street | Denver, CO 80203 *Not all degree levels are available for every program. Argosy University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association (NCA) (30 North LaSalle Street, Suite 2400, Chicago, IL 60602, 1.800.621.7440, www.ncahlc.org). ©2009 Argosy University® 09-AU-3218 – 2/09
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f iena at n u cr iea l By Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz
Continuing your education and getting your college degree may be a challenge, but paying for it doesnâ€™t have to be.
o you ever think about going back to college? If so, youâ€™re not alone. Faced with todayâ€™s economic challenges and the need for new and different job skills, many adults are considering some type of continuing education. Going back to school can be exciting but expensive. Not only do you need to consider tuition, fees and books, but also additional costs such as childcare and transportation. If you plan to take time off from work while you study, the decrease in income should be factored into your overall cost as well. The numbers can add up pretty quickly, but donâ€™t be discouraged. With a little creative thinking and some research, you can find ways to help pay for education at any point in life. Where to get information Start with your school. Many universities now offer financial aid specifically geared to re-entry or nontraditional students. Next, talk to your employer.
Help from Uncle Sam While private loans and scholarships are definitely worth researching, there are several federal loans that offer lower interest rates and better repayment terms, depending on your financial situation. Some loans that may apply to nontraditional students include: â€˘ Stafford loans: The most common type of college loan funds, for both undergraduate and graduate students, has two varieties: subsidized loans (based on need) that defer interest on the loan for specified periods, and unsubsidized loans where need is not a factor. For both kinds of loans, you must be enrolled at least as a part-time student. â€˘ Federal Perkins Loans: A Federal Perkins Loan is low-interest for both undergraduate and graduate students with â€œexceptionalâ€? financial need. Aside from need, you must also be enrolled halftime to qualify. These loans are just the tip of the iceberg. A school financial-aid counselor can help you explore other government-sponsored loans and grants. Tax Advantages The IRS offers a variety of aids and incentives to continue your education. â€˘ 529 College Savings Plans: Many parents turn to 529 Plans to benefit from tax-free growth while saving for their kidsâ€™ college. But you can also open a 529 Plan for yourself. Most 529 Plans require low minimum contributions and allow you to contribute monthly, so thereâ€™s a plan for every budget. Earnings grow tax-free, and as long as you use the proceeds to pay for qualified education expensesâ€”tuition, room and board, books and anything required by the programâ€”you donâ€™t pay taxes on withdrawals; there are other state and federal tax issues to consider so it pays to do your homework ahead of time. â€˘ Tuition tax credits: A tax credit allows you to subtract the amount of the credit from your federal income tax bill, dollar for dollar. Two credits that apply
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specifically to tuition and fees are the Hope Tax Credit and the Lifetime Learning Tax Credit. Although there are different parameters for each tax credit, both have family income limits of between $47,000 and $57,000 for single filers and between $94,000 and $114,000 for joint filers. For eligibility specifics and how to claim the credit, consult IRS Publication 970, financial websites or talk to your tax adviser. â€˘ Tax deductions: A number of tax deductions for tuition, fees and student loan interest are all worth exploring. Once again, talk to your tax adviser. Every dollar saved is a dollar toward your education costs. Finding money in your backyard If youâ€™re a homeowner fortunate enough to have equity in your home as well as a home equity line of credit, you may have a viable option for funding your education. In this case, you could most likely borrow at a favorable rate â€” and the interest may be tax deductible.
And while I would never recommend borrowing against your retirement savings, you can, in fact, withdraw money from both a traditional and a Roth IRA without penalty for education expenses. However, you may be required to pay federal and state income tax on your withdrawals. All in all, although this might be a choice, Iâ€™d consider it a last resort. Whether itâ€™s for job advancement, salary increase or personal enrichment, donâ€™t let finances keep you from pursuing your education goals. It may cost money to do it, but it may cost more in lost opportunity if you donâ€™t. edu Carrie Schwab Pomerantz is Chief Strategist, Consumer Education, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc., Member SIPC. You can e-mail Carrie at askcarrie@ schwab.com. To find out more about Carrie SchwabPomerantz and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com. COPYRIGHT 2008 CREATORS SYNDICATE INC.
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Spring/Summer 2009 â€˘
Paying for College Later in Life
If youâ€™re going back to school to enhance your work skills, your company may have tuition assistance available for employees. If you are interested in a particular field, be sure to look into industry-specific scholarships. And donâ€™t forget your local community. There may be grants available through community associations or the chamber of commerce.
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degrees By Glen Shikunov
The Benefits Of An Online Education Online programs offer a convenient, cost-conscious way to earn your degree and land a career in the field you truly want for yourself.
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hroughout America, busy people are struggling to make a decent living with no degree and change nowhere in sight. These people never had a chance at a college level education, an education that everyone deserves. Colleges all over the world have set up online classes to help individuals like these, but some people are still skeptical. The online programs are new and the public is questioning their credibility. The answer to these concerns is simple: online classes have the same credibility as campus-based classes. Online schooling provides an easy-to-access way for adults and teens alike to take classes at the college level without the need to attend the campus. The
benefits of these types of classes are immense. An online education gives you freedom, above all else, to take the class whenever you see fit. Most adults work a standard nine-to-five job and cannot attend early classes on campus. With an online based education you can access your class material at any point of the
day, any time of the week, and do the homework, testing, and readings whenever you find time. Lower Tuition Costs Online classes have the luxury of immensely lowering your tuition costs as well. Most online classes give you the in-state rate per credit of that school, and at times even lower then that. Instead of the tens of thousands you’d pay at a campus-based program, online schooling may cost as little at fifteen hundred dollars per year for full-time students. Expensive tuition is a big factor when it comes to deciding whether to go back to school for adults, don’t let high costs prevent you from majoring in the field you actually enjoy and not the one that you use to pay bills. Lastly, convenience of travel is a big factor when it comes to a comfortable environment to take your classes. Taking classes from home in the morning with a cup of coffee at hand sounds much better then waking up early to drive to some classroom with five
hundred other people. Comfort level has always led to better results, and I believe you will find out for yourself that the comfort of your own home is the best environment imaginable to get your degree in. A Better Paycheck An online education will lead you toward a better path in life. Your transcript does not state where you took the classes, but simply what school you took them from so there is no need to worry about some employers frowning upon online schooling. Online programs offer a convenient, cost-conscious way to earn your degree and land a career in the field you truly wanted for yourself. Classes are filling up fast, time for you to get in on the action. Sign up today and strive hard toward the degree of your dreams. Online classes are in no way easier then campus based classes, but if you apply yourself, a degree in your preferred field will be waiting for you in the future, and with that a better paycheck as well. edu
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fe c aa r te ue r es By Lloyd Mayerson
The First Step To Your Dream Job May Be A Vacation
Experts agree that volunteering is an excellent way of not only testing an occupation, but also gaining the practical experience needed to launch a new career.
ave you ever been stuck in a clogged traffic artery during your morning commute, feeling numb about the day ahead and wondering what it would be like to have a career you loved? Well, that’s exactly what happened to Brian Kurth before he left the telecommunications and dotcom industries behind to found VocationVacations, a one-of-a-kind company that gives people a chance to try out a “dream job.” “As a teenager, I was going to become an architect. I also loved travel, and I love animals,” says Kurth, a former product marketing specialist with AT&T and Ameritech. “I wanted to test-drive being a dog trainer and dog day care owner, but there was nothing out there like VocationVacations at the time.” How It Works Eventually, Kurth’s lack of contentment with his work inspired him to create a business that helps others explore their passions and find fulfilling careers. The idea is simple. Under the guidance of expert mentors, “vocationers” can sample a new career path in an intensive, hands-on training program lasting up to three days. These dream job vacations are designed to give adult participants maximum exposure to their field of interest, and Kurth aptly refers to them as mini-internships on steroids. Vocationers don’t just shadow and observe their mentors. They’re immersed in the work. Since starting in 2004, Kurth has enlisted career mentors in more than 150 vocations across 30 states. Among the featured occupations you may have only dreamed of pursuing are Antique Dealer, Fishing Guide, Make-Up Artist, Private Investigator and Wine Maker, just to name a few. But also available for test-driving are a number of gigs you may have never dreamed existed such as Horse Adoption Agency Director, Flight School Owner, Music Therapist, Pageant Producer and Sword Maker. Or perhaps you’d like to learn the ins and outs of working as a professional voice-over artist. Joe Thompson of Huntingdon, Pennsylvania did. “I walked away with a real 58-second demo…that I can use to interview for potential work,” Thompson explains. “I also came away with a clearer vision about where my niche will be and how to move ahead.” A Good Start Moving ahead, for many, is the key. Although some people participate in the programs simply for fun or to expand their horizons, nearly 75 percent are looking to change careers. As Kurth is quick to point out, however, taking a VocationVacation is only the beginning of the process, which may entail returning to school, developing a business plan, and budgeting for the cost of the transition. “It’s the first step in a series of many steps to get to your ultimate dream job or dream business,” Kurth says. Nevertheless, the results have been positive. Approximately
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20 percent of all vocationers to date have either completely switched careers or undertaken a course of action to turn their dreams into reality. Baby Boomers and GenXers make up the majority of the participants, but vocationers have ranged in age from 18 to 80 and include people with very diverse backgrounds, from attorneys, IT developers and insurance executives to teachers, students and clerical workers. The most popular VocationVacation categories are culinary, entertainment, sports, fashion, design, hospitality and animal care. But Kurth is adding new programs all the time. “Probably the one that’s most exciting that we’re just launching is archaeologist. And that’s one that we’ve been trying to get for four years.” Kurth is also growing his company by offering similar VocationVacations in different geographical locations across the country. To fuel this expansion, he’s begun partnering with university alumni associations to create incentives for their graduates to join his pool of mentors. “We want one in every major city,” Kurth says, “so people don’t have to travel if they don’t want to.” Funding the Change VocationVacations generally cost between $949 and $1,199 and include career coaching, an optional online Myers Briggs Indicator (MBTI) assessment and a journal for documenting the VocationVacation as it happens. While Kurth’s company offers no funding or financing advice, he suggests that career changers talk to an accountant since these types of expenses may possibly be tax deductible. Kurth also notes that some people have had the cost of their VocationVacations covered through outplacement services after being laid off from their jobs, and some have even managed to secure their own grants in order to pursue their passions. And in the end, passion is what drives most people to take a VocationVacation. “The common denominator,” according to Kurth, “is they want to be fulfilled at the end of the day, and they simply want to be happier because they realize now that work and home life are not mutually exclusive. It sounds corny, but it’s the pursuit of happiness.” For more information, you can visit VocationVacations at vocationvacations.com or call toll-free at 866-888-6329. edu
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fea r s tu umrees By Jaimie Marzullo, Certified Professional Resume Writer
The Secrets of Resume Writing Re-vamping your resume may be the key to finding your dream job.
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verybody knows the basics of resume creation: name, contact information, education, experience. The majority of people even know “advanced” resume-writing guidelines, such as using bulleted statements and relevant verbs. So why do some people get a lot of interviews from their resume, while other people get few or none? It’s the most frustrating and sometimes infuriating part of a job search: figuring out where you went wrong when the interview offers just don’t come. Is it your skill set? Are you too old or too young? Does that short-term job in a different field make you appear less dedicated? Do they think you’re not ready to take that big step up? Whether those statements are true, we can’t know for sure. What we can address here is this question: is it your resume? The answer to that is almost certainly, “yes.” The reason this can be said with a degree of certainty is that if you are applying for positions for which you are reasonably qualified and are not getting interviews, then something on your resume is missing the mark. This is where we get into the heart of resume writing, the part of it that makes some people stand out and is comprised of more than just the right verbs or layout: the real secrets, the tips and tools that are rarely shared because instructors don’t know them or they’re committed to teaching specific formats and writing styles. The lack of
knowledge regarding these resume guidelines creates a troublesome skill gap, as a resume that seems polished on the surface leaves no clue that the sender may have more to offer than can be seen on paper. Before you apply for one more job, take a few minutes to review your resume with the following guidelines in mind. Resumes and recruiting are subject to trends Hiring preferences change over time and hiring managers can immediately spot a resume written under outdated guidelines. The danger in this has less to do with appearances than it does with seeming current. Industries evolve and companies need employees with expertise in modern systems and processes. Submitting a resume with obvious hallmarks of days-gone-by, such as creation on a typewriter or use of an “Objective” statement, will instantly peg you as being out of date and/or out of touch in the modern workplace. Some trends are necessary offshoots of technological advances, and this is an especially important consideration. For example, a great number of resumes are submitted by email. Ensuring that a
resume will look the same on the company’s computer as it does on yours is an entirely new concern, one not thought of in the ages of snail-mail and fax. Other trends reflect current aesthetics, important for creating a strong, positive first impression. There are many options for learning what represents current good practices in resume writing. Libraries and bookstores are an excellent source of resume-writing advice. Whole sections are dedicated to the craft of designing the perfect resume. When considering a resume-writing book, remember that a professional binding doesn’t elevate the content to anything more than what it is: advice. And just like taking advice in anything, consider the source before plunging in. There are two things to evaluate before you buy or borrow a resume-writing book: the publication date and the credentials of the author. There are dozens of well-written, highly praised resume books still on shelves that, despite their success, are no longer relevant because they are simply too old. Anything published more than five years ago should definitely not be considered. If it’s common in your industry to submit resumes using technology, try to find something less than two years old. The more recent the publication date, the better. Another option for guidance is web-based resume samples and articles. The same standards for books apply to articles and websites about resume writing: make sure the data is
recent and the author is a recognized expert in resume writing. Read the written advice, but pay particular attention to samples. If you can find them, gather sample resumes that outline professional backgrounds and goals that are similar to your own, then photocopy or print them. If your target job is in a different field than your background, look for samples in each industry and study them for similarities and overlaps in skills. Do not search for resumes of people in your field or on university websites, as those may or may not reflect quality in resume creation — find samples written by professional resume writers. Look for trends and commonalities in the samples to determine what is currently desired. The moral here is, when the time comes to spruce up your resume, remember that you want to model it in the current style. Bypass the old books and pamphlets from your college days or the job search you ran ten years ago. There are no hard-and-fast rules Perhaps one of the greatest disservices done by books, websites and classes that teach basic resumewriting rules is that they often give the impression that those rules are absolute. The result is resumes printed in unreadable 7-point font in an effort to condense an accomplished career onto a single page, or missing the mark because space is designated based on quantity of skills and experience, rather than quality. There are no rules in resume writing that cannot, and should not, be broken under the right circumstances. The goal of the resume is to make the job seeker look good. Period. It’s very much like a television commercial — commercials are filmed on camera and viewed by an audience. Beyond those very basic parameters, though, they differ greatly from one another and each is scripted in order to highlight its product in the best way. In spite of those differences, well-done commercials are all professional and attention-getting. Likewise, all resumes are arranged on a page and will be read by a hiring manager or recruiter. Beyond that, great allowances can be made in order to emphasize a jobseeker’s capabilities, as long as the choices made are executed professionally and skillfully, with respect for the hiring company’s needs. If you are struggling to adhere to a widely accepted “rule” of resume writing, just ask yourself, “Which will Spring/Summer 2009 •
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Re-vamping There are a few components to consider when reviewing experiences, most notably timeline and skills.
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make me look better?” If breaking the rule promotes you more strongly, do it. It’s that simple. For example, if you were the hiring manager, which would you rather read: a two-page resume in 11-point type, or a one-page resume in 7-point type? (Readability always wins out over length.) If you know the current trend is to have a paragraph summary at the top of the resume but you struggle to sound educated while writing in this style, then create the bulleted summary that makes you sound fantastic instead. Conveying solid communication skills and a high level of education is more important than following the current style. Be selective in what you share A common misconception is that a resume should be a professional autobiography. Nothing could be further from the truth. The resume is a marketing document. It is far more like a commercial advertisement than it is like a biography. As such, avoid falling into the trap of including experiences just because you have them. Evaluate each experience and judge its value on the basis of what it contributes to your goal: gaining an interview for a specific job. Timeline is the first of these components because it is critical that your resume maintain as consistent a timeline possible (timeline meaning the period of time worked at different jobs and the movement from one position to another). An inconsistent timeline, with gaps in employment or a large number of jobs in a short period of time, is a significant concern for hiring managers, so never create this issue if it’s not necessary. However, if you have multiple overlapping
jobs or an irrelevant position that, if eliminated, leaves a gap of less than a year, consider eliminating those experiences that are not relevant to the job being sought. (Listing work experiences by years, rather than by months and years, can easily mask a gap shorter than one year in length.) Determining what could effectively be eliminated requires an examination of the skills demonstrated in the different jobs. Positions in a different industry than the one you are targeting, or that use an entirely different skill set, can often be removed. The purpose of this streamlining is to ensure that your resume, with every line, is targeting a very specific type of job. Each soundbite on your resume that does not advocate for your ability to perform the job you are applying for is one more detail that makes you seem better suited for another line of work. Write for the future, not the past Another misstep is allowing past education and professional experiences to dictate the resume. This is only effective if the job you are seeking is identical to positions you’ve held in the past. Remember that the resume’s job is to get you an interview for a certain career opportunity. The only way to get that interview is to convince the hiring manager that you have the skills needed to perform that job. It doesn’t matter that you are the most highly decorated dental hygienist ever to work in your city, if what you want to be is a news reporter. A resume that deals extensively with outstanding skills as a hygienist may get you a new patient, but it won’t get you an interview. What will get you an interview is a resume that demonstrates the skills necessary to be a stellar news reporter. Find out what skills are required for the type of job, or specific job, that you are seeking. If you have access to a detailed vacancy announcement, use that as your model and compile a list of the skills being sought. Even better, make a list of the actual verbs used in the vacancy announcement and reiterate them in your document. This will establish the framework within which your experiences should be conveyed. Bearing in mind the skills you’ve identified, review your work history and streamline the data to align with the requirements of the job you want. If you are making a logical, small move in your career this task will be fairly simple, as your recent work history will have clearly prepared you. If you are trying to take a large step, or moving to a different industry www.educolorado.com
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Find out what skills are required for the type of job, or specific job, that you are seeking.
Succeed in a Competitive World altogether, you have more work cut out for you. In these cases, focus on basic skills, rather than job-related tasks or products. If your background is in retail sales and you want to move into office management, interpersonal skills and supervisory experience can be emphasized. Identify the terminology of your target industry and use those phrases: what is known as “customer service” in retail can be labelled “relationship management,” a phrase more appropriate for office management. The skills may have been used in a different environment and to achieve different ends, but at their root, they’re still the same. Don’t highlight the differences. Focus on the skills themselves, allowing hiring managers to envision the ways in which your experience can be transitioned into their environments. Details Matter The fact that details matter on resumes is not a secret. What is not widely known, however, is just how vitally important small details can be. Hiring managers and recruiters often use your resume not only to provide a timeline of your work history, but also as an example of your work quality. Even if the skills and experiences are right, misspellings and grammatical errors can cost you an interview because they indicate a lack of attention to detail. If you are applying for an administrative position requiring exceptional knowledge of word processing software, using a recognizable pre-made resume template will undermine your claims of expertise in document creation. Poorly worded sentences will label you as having sub-par communication skills. Attention will even be paid to how well-balanced your skill sets are: the information you include will be assumed to be what you find most important. If significantly more space is dedicated to leading and reprimanding employees than to teamwork and coaching, your managerial skills will probably be called into question. The best ways to ensure that you are not hurt by unintended errors are to take time away from your
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Earn a Degree, Advance Your Career...and Live Your Life.
Graduate and Undergraduate Degrees resume before proofreading and to have a trusted friend act as a second set of eyes. Spell-check, then proofread yourself. After that, take two or three days away from the document before proofreading again. Lastly, have a friend or family member with good English language skills look the resume over as well. An objective point of view is especially helpful for finding quirky phrasings that make sense to you but don’t flow well for someone else. Aside from spelling and grammar, details to watch out for include: Punctuation: Bulleted statements may end with or without a period — either is fine — but must be consistent. Every statement must have a period, or none may have a period. Margins: Make sure margins are consistent throughout the resume. Clear, consistent margins also give the resume a polished appearance. Font: Use one font style and size throughout the resume, with the exception of headers, which may be larger. Paper: If mailing in your resume, be certain to print it on a high-quality resume paper, not regular printer paper. Above all else, remember that your resume is there to speak on your behalf. Before sending it out, ask yourself, “What is this document saying about me?” Don’t submit your resume until you’re confident that it is conveying the right message. You may have only one chance to get the job of your dreams! edu
Professional Development and Workshops Industry-focused Certificates and Training Online, at a Distance, and Where You Live and Work Academic Excellence, Flexibility, and Personal Attention
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(970) 491-5288 or (877) 491-4336
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By Angela Baca
Dealing with Frustrating Job Searches in a Tough Economy When the economy is in bad shape, finding a job seems impossible. Luckily, there are ways you can find a good job while keeping your sanity.
re your fingers tired from filling out application after application? Are you going cross-eyed from reworking your resume, perusing career sites and scouring the classifieds without any luck? If you are frustrated with the job search in this tough economy, you are not alone. Many Americans have great qualifications, including work experience and higher education but are unable to find employment. Many have turned to temporary employment while they continue the search. If youâ€™re considering temp work, remember that this is not the time to feel haughty about your credentials and work experience. This is the time to be practical, to cast your net far and wide and to do a good job
in your temporary position. The best thing that you can do is stay positive, keep searching and bloom where you are planted. A good job opportunity will surface eventually if you can fight the disillusionment and find patience. To be proactive, you must remember to be your own job coach. With the end result in mind, you must believe that an opportunity is lined up in your future. The present economy does not always reward your hard work with an ideal outcome. â€œIt may be necessary to take a job temporarily that doesnâ€™t meet your expectations. Here are a couple of factors to be prepared for: 1. Payment downsides and upsides. The job might not pay as much as you want to make or were making in your last job. 2. Qualifications. You may be overqualified for the position, but you might have to take it because you really need a job. 3. Upward movement. You may not
see yourself going anywhere in this new position, but having a job is better than having no job. 4. Hidden opportunities. You may not understand why you got this job, but it may be the first step toward a great opportunity for a career that you never considered. 5. Surprises. Life has a way of taking you in new directions that you donâ€™t understand. When you get there, you will be pleasantly surprised. 6. Do your best. Whatever job you find, do your best. You need to have good references and job stability throughout your resume. 7. Experience. Whatever you end up doing in this position, you will be able to acquire more skills and experience to sell yourself later on in your career. Remember, your job search is not in vain. You will find more opportunities because the economy will improve. It always does. edu
5 Little-Known Places to Look for a Job If you have only searched the major Internet job boards or scanned the classifieds in your local paper, then you have missed out on the best places to look for job openings. Avoid old job ads and the competition of other applicants by scouting out these little-known leads. 1. Buy your trade magazine. While the articles may interest you, the classifieds in the back will really grab your attention. People who read trade magazines tend to be dedicated to their profession; at least that is what businesses believe. Businesses that seek to hire highly motivated employees will advertise positions in industry magazines instead of local classifieds. If you are looking for a highly skilled or specialized job, you are more likely to find an opening here than in your local newspaper. 2. Visit a convention. Plan to attend a professional convention to investigate possible job leads across the country. Ask vendors what their companyâ€™s hiring plans are for the future, and you might just get the inside lead on a new job. Remember to jot down
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each leadâ€™s name and number, and leave your business card with them. 3. Ask your Uncle Sam. The government would much rather take your money in the form of taxes than pay you an unemployment check. So many unemployment offices will let you peruse their job database even if you are not unemployed. These job openings come from a variety of sources and are aimed at people with previous work experience. 4. Are you a member? Join a professional organization to get informed about employment trends and job leads. Take advantage of membership perks like newsletters, Internet forums and meetings. Through these connections, develop a network to scoop up that perfect job. 5. Go to the source. Many businesses post job openings on their website before they pay money to list them anywhere else. Most companies do not have a schedule for hiring, so make it a habit to check sites regularly. Also, take the time to see what changes are occurring in the company. If you notice a department has plans to expand, call the department manager to see if they are hiring. You might just be first in line for an interview. Remember, your perfect job may be waiting for you in one of these hidden spots. Tara Gilbert is a freelance writer from the Pacific Northwest.
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salaries By Sarah J Sky
Occupation and Wage Estimates
re you feeling unsatisfied with your current job? Do you feel ready to take on a new challenge? It may be time to step up and make a change in your life with a new career. Although venturing into a new career may require additional time and training, the long-term financial and emotional benefits are well worth the sacrifice. You deserve a career that is both challenging and rewarding. We have compiled a list of some exciting job opportunities for your consideration—but keep in mind, there are thousands more out there. All you need to do is look. Who knows, you may just stumble upon your dream job!
Top Ten Jobs Requiring A Two-Year Degree Over time, a two-year degree has proved to be much more than a stepping-stone to a Bachelor’s or Master’s.
he career options for two-year grads are vast and varied. Here’s a list from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics on the top jobs that require a two-year degree: Computer Specialist: A Computer Specialist is an expert who provides technical consultation to users, and also offers assistance in the daily maintenance of computer systems and networks. Dental Hygienist: A Dental Hygienist works under the direct supervision of a dentist and teaches patients proper oral health care, including preventative care and maintenance. Depending on state regulations, some hygienists can also become licensed to administer anesthesia, clean teeth and provide tooth whitening. Fashion Designer: A Fashion Designer conceptualizes and designs clothing, shoes and accessories by studying fashion trends, fabrics, patterns and production. Registered Nurse: A Registered Nurse’s duties vary greatly depending upon the chosen workplace, but all RNs evaluate and treat medical conditions by analyzing a patient’s medical history, performing diagnostic tests and administering medications and rehabilitation recommendations. Environmental Engineering Technician: An Environmental Engineering Technician assists
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environmental engineers in the development of methods to monitor and correct all types of environmental hazards. Radiologic Technologist/Technician: A Radiologic Technologist administers x-ray examinations. They also prepare patients by clearly explaining the procedure, positioning them properly, and protecting surrounding areas from exposure to potentially harmful radiation. Industrial Engineering Technician: An Industrial Engineering Technician assists engineers and scientists in research and development in areas of industry. They can have several different specializations, such as logistics, production design, quality, or sales. Paralegal/Legal Assistant: A Paralegal or Legal Assistant provides administrative support to a lawyer, law firm or governmental agency. Working under the direct supervision of a lawyer, a paralegal assists in completing the legal work which is fundamental in sustaining a successful practice. Occupational Therapy Assistant: An Occupational Therapist Assistant works under the guidance of an occupational therapist. As a part of a team, an Occupational Therapist Assistant plays a vital role in teaching patients with physical or mental disabilities to perform everyday tasks. Computer Support Specialist: A Computer Support Specialist provides technical assistance, support, and advice to computer customers or users. edu
Avg. Hourly Wage
Avg. Annual Salary
Analyze statistical data, such as mortality, accident, sickness, disability, and retirement rates and construct probability tables to forecast risk and liability for payment of future benefits.
Administrative Services Manager
Plan, direct, or coordinate supportive services of an organization such as recordkeeping, mail distribution, telephone operator/receptionist, and other office support services.
Advertising Sales Agent
Sell or solicit advertising, including graphic art, advertising space in publications, custom-made signs, or TV and radio advertising time. May obtain leases for outdoor advertising sites or persuade retailer to use sales promotion display items.
Appraise, edit, and direct safekeeping of permanent records and historically valuable documents. Participate in research activities based on archival materials.
Assist biological and medical scientists in laboratories. Set up, operate, and maintain laboratory instruments and equipment, monitor experiments, make observations, and calculate and record results.
Set up, operate, and maintain the electronic equipment used to transmit radio and television programs. Control audio equipment to regulate volume level and quality of sound during radio and television broadcasts. Operate radio transmitter to broadcast radio and television programs.
Computer and Information Scientist, Researcher
Conduct research into fundamental computer and information science as theorists, designers, or inventors. Solve or develop solutions to problems in the field of computer hardware and software.
Computer and Information Systems Manager
Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as electronic data processing, information systems, systems analysis, and computer programming.
Use verbatim methods and equipment to capture, store, retrieve, and transcribe pretrial and trial proceedings or other information. Include stenocaptioners who operate computerized stenographic captioning equipment to provide captions of live or prerecorded broadcasts for hearing-impaired viewers.
Coordinate changes to computer databases; test and implement the database applying knowledge of database management systems.
Clean teeth and examine oral areas, head, and neck for signs of oral disease. May educate patients on oral hygiene, take and develop X-rays, or apply fluoride or sealants.
Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
Produce ultrasonic recordings of internal organs for use by physicians.
Perform variety of editorial duties, such as laying out, indexing, and revising content of written materials, in preparation for final publication. Includes technical editors.
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Occupation and Wage Estimates ..... Occupation Description
Avg. Hourly Wage
Avg. Annual Salary
Executive Secretary/ Administrative Assistant
Provide high-level administrative support by conducting research, preparing statistical reports, handling information requests, and performing clerical functions such as preparing correspondence, receiving visitors, arranging conference calls, and scheduling meetings. May also train and supervise lower-level clerical staff.
Design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs such as packaging, displays, or logos. May use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects.
Insurance Sales Agent
Sell life, property, casualty, health, automotive, or other types of insurance. May refer clients to independent brokers, work as independent broker, or be employed by an insurance company.
Provide high-level administrative support by conducting research, preparing statistical reports, handling information requests, and performing clerical functions such as preparing correspondence, receiving visitors, arranging conference calls, and scheduling meetings. May also train and supervise lower-level clerical staff.
Administer libraries and perform related library services. Work in a variety of settings, including public libraries, schools, colleges and universities, museums, corporations, government agencies, law firms, non-profit organizations, and healthcare providers.
Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technician
Perform routine medical laboratory tests for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May work under the supervision of a medical technologist.
Assist lawyers by researching legal precedent, investigating facts, or preparing legal documents. Conduct research to support a legal proceeding, to formulate a defense, or to initiate legal action.
Prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist. May measure, mix, count out, label, and record amounts and dosages of medications.
Take X-rays and CAT scans or administer nonradioactive materials into patientâ€™s blood stream for diagnostic purposes. Include technologists who specialize in other modalities, such as computed tomography and magnetic resonance. Include workers whose primary duties are to demonstrate portions of the human body on X-ray film or fluoroscopic screen.
Real Estate Agent
Rent, buy, or sell property for clients. Perform duties, such as study property listings, interview prospective clients, accompany clients to property site, discuss conditions of sale, and draw up real estate contracts. Include agents who represent buyer.
Assess patient health problems and needs, develop and implement nursing care plans, and maintain medical records. Administer nursing care to ill, injured, convalescent, or disabled patients. May advise patients on health maintenance and disease prevention or provide case management. Licensing or registration required. Include advance practice nurses such as nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, certified nurse midwives, and certified registered nurse anesthetists.
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