Frat House Blues

Fraternity housing isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I’ve been living on campus for the past seven months and I can safely say I’ve contracted at least three diseases. I didn’t expect to be this disgusted with the place but I didn’t understand how gross boys living together could get. My roommate leaves cups of milky coffee sitting for weeks at a time waiting to be discovered under a pile of laundry. I have touched something growing on a sock at least twice. I’m certainly reacting to mould in at least one place, but I’m told lung function isn’t necessary for math majors. I don’t really have much of an argument there if I say so myself.
So I’m now looking for somewhere better for myself to grow and learn by myself. There are many houses to rent near campus and I think I might be able to split one with another math major, Max Meijer from the front who’s tired of the constant trips to the ER for extreme asthma remedies. I am very excited at the prospect of living alone for once. Having my own room, this community college is going to be the kind of place where I can just take the pressure. I know the curriculum backwards and forwards, and it will allow me flex.
I’ll Show them. They have never seen the likes of me, and shan’t again. When my Campaign for world domination was defeated last spring, no one suspected that it would begin again at a small accreted community college,  The FBI have nothing on me, and the CIA wish they had my skills at their disposal. The final step will be the unveiling of my Algebraic Algorithmic  Atrocity Aquation. Remember math major, not English. Soon you all will quake at the name Haley Joel Osmitt.

College Years Are The Best Time Of Your Life

student books

To me, there is no better time in life then when you are a student.  It doesn’t matter if go to college or university in your home town or if you decide you want to experience the whole lot and so you up sticks and move away from every thing you know. Moving away to college can sometimes be the first time you have had any extended period away from the family home, it might be the first time you have not had your mum cook for you.  This is a great thing,  embrace the freedom that comes with being a student, doing your own thing, setting your own time table for learning, meeting new people and socialising.

Whilst you will find you do a lot of socialising at the local student union bar, especially in your first year away, don’t let that impact on your life too much.  Keep up to date with current affairs, it’s what’s expected of students who continue their education.  The internet is a useful source for this, here’s a useful link which can help you watch BBC news live using the internet via a VPN server.

 Make sure you do the study that is required of you, stay healthy by learning to cook properly rather than the usual student diet of takeaway pizza and kebab, and make an effort to remain active by getting involved with team sports and joining the university gym.  if you want to put your student loan money to good use, and save money on gym membership, then you could even think about buying some home exercise equipment like an exercise bike or even an indoor rowing machine.  Making use of your money properly, without drinking it away through continuous partying will keep you fit and motivated – vital for self learning at college or university.

Mental Focus at Community College

It’s easy to get carried away with student life. Indeed for many of us, this is what student life is all about. Late nights, parties and alcohol certainly make for an enjoyable time. However, is this really the best use of our time? In many ways this is part of our transition to adulthood – learning about ourselves and our limits.

Of course, it can be an easy life and in some respects  there’s very little pressure through much of your time there.  I remember distinctly as a tennis fan watching Wimbledon live streaming for over two weeks in the June months before my first year exams.  There is a price to pay however and eventually falling behind with your studies will catch up with you so don’t make that mistake.

spoof ip ipad

To get the most out of the chances which we are afforded at college, it is important that we look after our health. The simplest of which is to make sure we get enough sleep – at night time! Drink plenty of water – dehydration kills concentration. Thirdly, eating right (lots of fruits, vegetables and high energy foods like brown rice, sweet potatoes, etc.) will give us the power to take care of our studies during the day.

As a student, looking at some juicers under $100 might give you some inspiration to live a healthier life. Becoming a student doesn’t mean we have to go out partying every night. In actual fact, college was designed as a place of learning – not of partying!

Enjoying student life is important. Finding the right balance will help you to get the most out of your college experience.

With Thanks


Community College – The Importance of On-Site Day Care

Community Colleges are an amazing resource for modern America.  They have their equivalents throughout many European countries too, but in this post I will focus on those in America.

It is a sad, but statistically proven fact, that a higher proportion of teenage pregnancies occur in women from lower socio economic backgrounds.  Clearly this is not always the case, but more often than not.  The result of a teenage pregnancy can result in the early departure from school in order to raise their baby and/or the strong possibility of under achievement in exams.

So the importance of community colleges for this group of students is even greater.  They have a young family to support themselves, so they must do all they can to secure a prosperous and happy future for them and their child.  This is where the on-site day care becomes invaluable.

Often somewhat disadvantaged or estranged from their own family, teenage single parents rely on the day care in order that they can improve their prospects.  The day care centres from my experience are fun, functional and most importantly safe places to leave your children.  They have indoor and outdoor play areas with bonded rubber mulch surfacing and play equipment.  Inside there are reading and writing desks as well as more soft play areas.

These centres are often grant/government assisted in order to keep the costs down allowing consistent uptake from those wishing to educate themselves.  This funding is well deserved as the centres are key in up skilling and further educating a segment of society most likely to end up involved in the crime industry seen throughout America and indeed the world.

Community Colleges Prepare Students for the Future

The curriculum at community colleges now more so than ever prepares students of all ages for successful careers in almost any discipline.  Just ten years ago finding a college that offered courses in online marketing or web analysis was an impossible task. Today it has become the norm.

There has clearly been a shift in the types of courses offered at most community colleges.  The course work more closely aligns with the types of jobs that are available in the job market.  Students are able to take one or two courses in a subject to help them decide where their strengths and interests lie.  Modern subjects like Search Marketing can help a student decide if a web-related job is right for him or her.

Many community colleges even address subjects that appeal to internet entrepreneurs.   Course work can help a student with basics, like what kind of business to form, as well as more advanced subject matter, like filing for a trademark.  With the right web knowledge, a student can graduate and go on to build out a successful web business in almost any area.

Ecommerce businesses in almost every industry have been growing by double digits over the last few years.  Even a business that focuses on something as specific as ink cartridges can earn an entrepreneur a nice salary.  With the right idea the web makes anything possible.

Taking Community to Heart

I received my first four year college degree almost three decades ago.  Yet, I still spend several days a month at my local community college taking courses.  I take these courses mostly for my own enjoyment and entirely for my own benefit.  I support my local community college because it’s a place I enjoy spending my time and I believe it has a great impact on my community.


I found out the school would take my car as a donation, and I gave away my old car to them right away.  There’s a real sense of community at my community college, and that’s a feeling I never got while attending university some 30 years ago.  The students and faculty come from all walks of life and corners of the globe and it’s a real joy to spend time with them studying in the library or having a coffee in the cafeteria.  Yes, there’s nothing wrong with a university, but I’ll take my community over a university any day.

Further Information

Online Learning  – US IP Information

James Collins

US V Scotland It’s a Draw!

I met a guy from the States who I became quite friendly with at Uni and we spoke a lot about the comparative merits and failures of our educational systems. I have, like many others , seen a great deal of American TV and they talk about college and grade point averages, things that we hear but do not understand. So he put me onto a site that gives people like me the low down on their system and made it easier for me to understand he differences.

I don’t pretend to be an expert on the subject but I think I could hold my own in conversation now. So I asked him to drop by my flat for a beer and I would set him on the path to understanding the offside rule in the true game of Rugby. Horror, I managed to spill my curry all over the carpet, and it was stinking the place out.

In came my American pal and he was all sort of ‘bummer’ and ‘you’re over man’ really big help. But I got out the laptop and found carpet cleaning Glasgow who would fix this in jig time. If the landlord saw this I was out on my ear. So while we’re waiting for the arrival of the carpet angels we get back to talking about college in the states, and especially community colleges.

Once again he referred me to the site to answer my questions and told me that when he was at community college his grades were so good that he was a shoe in for a full university place in the States, but that the ones he really wanted to get into held some kind of prejudice against community collegiate and so he came here to get away from the elitism within their system.

I told him it was the same here and he laughed, try getting into Harvard or Yale from a community college, same here I replied try getting into Oxford or Cambridge from Drumchapel Secondary I said.

Common Educational Misconceptions on Climate Change

How can we say that global warming is really happening when Antarctica is getting colder?

The term “global warming” is confusing because not all places on our planet are getting warmer. The truth is that our average global temperature is on the rise (see graph). To reduce confusion, scientists use of a more accurate term—global climate change— to reflect the idea that climate is the earth’s energy management process that is balanced by all earth’s systems.

Not only is there a change in our average global temperature, but also changes in precipitation and more intense storms as well as changes in our oceans, ice and biological systems on the planet. We encourage teachers to use the term “climate change” and help students correctly understand the term so they grasp the bigger picture.


Climate Change and the Ozone Layer

Students often associate the hole in the ozone layer with climate change. Either they think that carbon dioxide depletes the ozone layer, or that the hole in the ozone layer “lets in more heat.” Let’s clear these issues up one at a time. The major gases that deplete the ozone layer are CFC’s and halons, not CO2. While the ozone hole high up in the stratosphere is still a concern, we’ve seen significant improvement since 1987, when nearly 200 countries agreed to reduce the use of these chemicals.

The ozone layer (up high) protects us from harmful UV rays. The greenhouse effect refers to the earth absorbing visible light and then giving off infrared radiation (heat). That heat is absorbed by greenhouse gases and re-radiated back to earth. Although ozone depletion can contribute to climate change, it is not the primary cause. Ground level ozone is a greenhouse gas and an air pollutant however. The primary ingredient in smog, ground-level ozone is largely produced by emissions from automobiles. Pollution is one of the important risk factors of heart disease, high LDL cholesterol & various cancers.


Climate vs. Weather

Weather is often confused with the climate. We’ve heard many people – even the meteorologists on TV – jokingly write off climate change when two feet of snow fell this year before winter had officially started.

Let’s go back to the basics:

Weather is what’s happening outside at a particular place, in a particular time. Perhaps it’s sunny, 22F, and windy. This may be common weather for early January, but that’s all it is, weather.

Climate refers to the typical weather patterns for a specific region which is a result of interactions between all earth systems. It’s a measure of average weather over a period of several years. Average rainfall and average temperature range are two common measures of climate.

Recent large snowfall amounts are symptomatic of climate change due to a change in the water cycle. Higher global temperatures result in more water evaporating into the atmosphere, and that water has to come down somewhere. Lucky for us, this year it came down in the form of snow.

Find out more on:

Community College Instead of High School

When I was 15 years old, I took the ” homeschool” option at my high school and instead of learning typical high school classes, I started taking classes at a community college instead.  Because I was so young, I mainly took online classes until I turned 17 and felt comfortable taking classes with other community college students.

This option was relatively new in my day, however online learning has become a serious option for virtually all levels of study now.  It’s mainly to do with the growth of MOOC (massive open online courses) which now cover virtually every subject and at every conceivable level right up to Harvard degrees!  Some still have restrictions but it looks like education will be a truly global opportunity as these course develop.  The restrictions can be bypass though – for example use an England proxy to access UK only online courses.

It was amazing how much I learned in my two years at community college.  In fact, it was in community college that I first heard about a power of attorney form.  That little form, as simplistic as it is, started my fascination with the legal world and started me down the path of a paralegal education.  Once I finished up my two years at community college, I headed to a four-year college in my community to receive the remainder of my education.  Of course with the increased online options now, I actually might go that route because even if you invest in  the most secure VPN service you can find it’s a huge saving being able to study from home.

It was amazing how much money I saved by starting at a community college first.  As touched upon in a previous blog post, starting at a community college and then transferring really is the way to go.  You save money, you still get a great education, and you still can get a degree from a prestigious four-year school.  I never felt like I missed out on the college experience by starting at a community college – in fact, I felt smarter than my peers for going the less expensive route!

Educational Resources for Students Online

There are so many more education resources available to students today than a few years ago. Most of these are based on the internet and in many ways the playing fields have been levelled for students everywhere. It used to be the case that the better the University or College, the better the educational resources available. If you’ve ever visited the Bodleian Library in Oxford, or perhaps the impressive Widener library in Harvard it would be very apparent of the advantages.

But really the internet has changed all these advantages, of course there are still huge positives in prestige, teaching and opportunities afforded to pupils at the best universities. But access to knowledge and research materials is pretty much available to anyone in academia.

It gives students a great chance to conduct research on their own, most academic institutions post most of their material online. If you need to get access and it’s not available publically don’t be afraid to contact a college via email and just ask for access. The dispersation of knowledge is a core aim of any University or college they’ll normally help you out.

Don’t just use other colleges though, if you search online you’ll find most organisations put a huge amount of resources online. Most are easily accessible and again if they’re not just ask. I remember my friend who was studying a very basic introduction to astronomy in technical college showing me how he could submit requests online to a real observatory in England!  The jobs would be queued for the telescope and the results emailed when processed.

Foreign language students for example could invest in VPN connections which allow them to watch the TV online in the language they are studying. You can use them to watch BBC Iplayer Abroad or a French student could watch their favorite American comedies on M6 Replay in French to practice.  To find out how it’s done – check this out.

So ensure you explore the options that the internet can give you in your chosen subject. You research doesn’t have to be limited to Google and Wikipedia – find where the experts in your field are publishing material. Of course you should still validate sources, many students make the mistake of copying false information from the internet. Check and research, use the internet fully but don’t neglect other sources.

James Carwin