training vocational

From Teresa Mathew’s piece on the India’s first transgender school.

“When India’s first transgender school, Sahaj, was inaugurated on December 30, 2016, media organizations reported that it had 10 students and intended to offer accredited online classes through the National Institute of Open Schooling as well as vocational training to trans dropouts in their 20s and 30s. It was the first school of its kind in India, and the first time the Catholic Church had gotten involved in such a capacity with the issue of transgender education.

(Image credit: Teresa Mathew)

anonymous asked:

how does capitalism affect academia?

Oh, there are a bunch of ways of answering this! There’s a shit-ton of literature on the “neoliberalization” of the university (i.e., the university becoming a strictly economic institution). This has meant climbing tuition, increasing administrative bloat, and the stagnation of tenure track hiring. Last I checked, about three-quarters of teaching positions at American universities now are casualized in some way – adjunct, “visiting,” and non-tenure track lecturer positions have become increasingly common over the past couple decades.

Now, the risk in just dealing with the neoliberal university is in slurring over how the university functioned economically before that. There’s a kind of nostalgia you get in accounts from David Graeber, Wendy Brown, Frank Donoghue, and the like, that I find counterproductive. While it’s true that the public university prior to neoliberalization was cheaper (in some cases, like UC and CUNY, free!) and kinder to faculty, it could function this way because it wasn’t really meant to serve everybody. During the public university’s “golden age,” there was still a whole realm of heavily unionized careers, mostly in manufacturing, that one could get into without a university degree. This is no longer the case, and now a B.A. is a prerequisite for most jobs outside of the ballooning service sector. So the neoliberalization of the university is largely a conversion of the university into a vocational school, but that’s because the university needs to assume that function now to sustain capitalism in the First World.

In other words, before de-industrialization, academia used to be kind of a special realm for petty bourgeois kids to feel real smart (and it still is to an extent), but now that most livable careers require a university degree, it’s becoming, of necessity, vocational training, which brings a whole bunch of institutional changes with it.

Hi! I’m Jamie, and I’m here for the fine arts meetup!

Since the age of two, I have been training in various forms of dancing and musical theatre. Currently, I have reached ISTD Advanced 1 Vocational Level training in Cechetti Classical Ballet, Tap, and Modern, and I also have training in musical theatre (singing and acting), hip-hop, and jazz. I am I also studying for my ISTD DDI certificate to make my qualified to teach ballet for Grades 1 to 5.

I’ve recently had my dance school show, Where Bluebirds Fly (based on The Wizard of Oz), which is where that tutu came from. Not being out as transgender has been made especially more difficult with dance classes going on, since not only do you have to wear tight-fitting outfits like leotards, but outfits/costumes and dance styles are all very gender-extreme. If I had transitioned by this stage, I would not be trained en pointe, as males are not. For the show, all my costumes bar one were dresses, and I do not like wearing dresses OR make-up due to my dysphoria.

On a lighter note - ^_^ - I also enjoy many classic forms of literature, including novels and poetry from the 19th and 20th century as well as Shakespeare. I am a writer myself ^_^ I also have a very fond interest of opera!

FESTA DELLA DONNA - MARCH 8 is WOMAN’S DAY in ITALY

In Italy, yellow mimosas symbolize Women’s Day - women receive bouquets and go out to dinner and parties, in groups or with their partners. In 1911, as a result of the Copenhagen Initiative, International Women’s Day was marked for the first time in Austria, Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland, where more than a million men and women attended rallies. In addition to the right to vote and to hold public office, they demanded women’s rights to work, vocational training, and an end to discrimination on the job. The Italian mimosa tradition is said to have started in Rome after WWII. Men began giving mimosas to their female partners, friends, co-workers, and family. Nowadays, the scent of mimosas fills the air and reminds everyone of this day and the fact that spring is coming. Everyone tries to be extra gentle and caring with the women in their lives. Women now also give mimosa to each other. Political rallies remind of the fights women had to endure for their rights and what is still left to do in order to have every member of society be treated equally. 

In Ancient Rome, the year ended with February; its Latin name, Ferbruarius Mensis, meant something like “month of cleansing or finishing up” for the new year. February was followed by several intercalary days to get the calendar back on track, then the new year began on March 1, which was also the first day of spring (primo vere). March 8 was one of the first of the springtime festae, a day sacred to Ariadne, whom Thesius had abandoned on the Island of Naxos after promising to marry her if she helped him slay her father’s pet Minotaur. Seduced and abandoned, she was a prototype for ancient Mediterranean womanhood. Before WWII, Women’s Day had been celebrated on different days in early March in several Italian cities, now March 8 is the day all over the country.

Professional programmer for 10 years, undergrad in engineering, master’s in software engineering. This is some long-winded advice I give to people considering careers in programming. If you really want to do it for the right reasons, great! But you should also be aware of the pitfalls of the industry. It has a sheen of glamor right now because of “technology,” but it’s certainly has its drawbacks…

Think about why you want to do it. Do you really really enjoy it? Do you get a thrill when you make the little pixels on your monitor show in the correct pattern that your boss told you to make them show up in? Does the idea of spending most of the rest of your waking life sitting on your ass staring at a screen appeal to you? This is a career that many many people get into, but very few actually become good at, and far fewer do it for their entire careers – they burn out, they realize how much it sucks, and they get discouraged, and/or the salary ceiling is just too low once they start having a family or living in more expensive areas.

Imagine if you were looking for a plumber to connect a toilet to the water line in your house (fun fact: plumbers make about the same amount of money per year as programmers, and residential plumbers make far more, on average), but you’re having a hard time finding someone. One plumber says “oh, sorry, I only plumb sinks” another says “I only unclog drains” and you finally find some toilet-connecting plumbers, but they all do a terrible job, and the toilet randomly springs leaks, and often refuses to flush for no reason.

In programming, this would be totally normal. You finally find a programmer that has the exact skillset you need (because they only do front end, or they only do DBs, or they only do APIs, or whatever), and if you just pick a self-declared one at random, they are probably going to do a shitty job, because they heard programming was easy to get into and you could make a lot of money, and they just don’t give a fuck. They don’t really enjoy it, but they look at all this computer stuff around them, and the big push for programmers in the US, and they think “well, this seems like the right direction to go in”

People go into plumbing after years of vocational training, apprenticeships, and going through a licensing process. They decide they’re going to be plumbers and then they work the steps and do it. Most programmers go into programming after studying JavaScript for a weekend and applying for jobs. They take on new challenges thinking they’ll Google it as they go, and build shitty code because they copy/pasted from Stack Overflow to make it fit their situation, and don’t know how to put together a robust and flexible architecture to save their life.

Take the job seriously and it will serve you well – you have a solid foundation you can build on, you understand everything about computers and networks, there’s rarely a task that’s outside your area of expertise, and you can become respected in your field, comfortably support a family, and never worry about job security. Don’t take it seriously and you’re giving programmers a bad name, you’re giving your employer long-term code debt, and, while you may make more money than you do right now in the short term, you’re not going to get past a relatively low salary cap, and you’ll be at the mercy of bad work conditions/long hours because you can’t say “fuck you” and get a better job, because your resume’s already shot with job hopping and contract work, and you’ll be less appealing after 35 or so to the clueless hiring managers who hire clueless programmers because they look young and hip.

So be a programmer or don’t be one – neither decision is nobler or more admirable than the other. If you want to be a programmer, dedicate yourself to it. Study C, Python, Java, the evolution of JavaScript, HTML, and CSS. Read the WC3 standards and the RFCs. Study design patterns, UML, and start viewing the world as one giant set of relational tables and interacting classes. Know when something’s been done before and when you’ll have to design your own way of handling it. Learn to spot sneaky NP problems from a mile away, be able to look at a front end design and visualize the APIs and the data – immediately understand what should be calculated front end and back end, and why. Know when to use a CMS, which one to use, and when a site should be created from scratch.

—  Reddit
Today in Black History for February 11th
  1. 1990 - Nelson Mandela is released
    Nelson Mandela’s greatest pleasure, his most private moment, is watching the sun set with the music of Handel or Tchaikovsky playing. Locked up in his cell during daylight hours, deprived of music, both these simple pleasures were denied him for decades. With his fellow prisoners, concerts were organized when possible, particularly at Christmas time, where they would sing. Nelson Mandela finds music very uplifting, and takes a keen interest not only in European classical music but also in African choral music and the many talents in South African music. But one voice stands out above all - that of Paul Robeson, whom he describes as our hero. The years in jail reinforced habits that were already entrenched: the disciplined eating regime of an athlete began in the 1940s, as did the early morning exercise. Still today Nelson Mandela is up by 4.30am, irrespective of how late he has worked the previous evening. By 5am he has begun his exercise routine that lasts at least an hour. Breakfast is by 6.30, when the days newspapers are read. The day s work has begun. With a standard working day of at least 12 hours, time management is critical and Nelson Mandela is extremely impatient with unpunctuality, regarding it as insulting to those you are dealing with. When speaking of the extensive traveling he has undertaken since his release from prison, Nelson Mandela says: I was helped when preparing for my release by the biography of Pandit Nehru, who wrote of what happens when you leave jail. My daughter Zinzi says that she grew up without a father, who, when he returned, became a father of the nation. This has placed a great responsibility of my shoulders. And wherever I travel, I immediately begin to miss the familiar - the mine dumps, the colour and smell that is uniquely South African, and, above all, the people. I do not like to be away for any length of time. For me, there is no place like home. Mandela accepted the Nobel Peace Prize as an accolade to all people who have worked for peace and stood against racism. It was as much an award to his person as it was to the ANC and all South Africa s people. In particular, he regards it as a tribute to the people of Norway who stood against apartheid while many in the world were silent. We know it was Norway that provided resources for farming; thereby enabling us to grow food; resources for education and vocational training and the provision of accommodation over the years in exile. The reward for all this sacrifice will be the attainment of freedom and democracy in South Africa, in an open society which respects the rights of all individuals. That goal is now in sight, and we have to thank the people and governments of Norway and Sweden for the tremendous role they played. Personal Tastes Breakfast of plain porridge, with fresh fruit and fresh milk. A favourite is the traditionally prepared meat of a freshly slaughtered sheep, and the delicacy Amarhewu (fermented corn-meal).

  2. 1989 - Penn’s 1996 Baccalaureate Speaker is The Right Reverend Barbara Clementine Harris, a Philadelphian who was the first woman ever to become a bishop in the Anglican Communion. Bishop Harris entered the priesthood after a long and successful career in public and community relations in Philadelphia between 1949 and 1977. On graduation from the Charles Morris Price School she joined Joseph V. Baker Associates Inc and rose to president. She also held senior posts with the Sun Company from 1968 until 1977, when she began her theological studies at Villanova University. Studying later at the Urban Theology Unit in Sheffield, England, she then graduated from the Pennsylvania Foundation for Pastoral Counseling, and was ordained a deacon in 1979 and a priest in 1980. Before she was consecrated a bishop in 1989, she had been Priest-in-Charge of St. Augustine of Hippo in Norristown, serving also as as a prison chaplain and as counsel to industrial corporations for public policy issues and social concerns. Named executive director of the Episcopal Church Publishing Company in 1984, she was also publisher of The Witness, and she held the additional post of interim rector of Philadelphia’s Church of the Advocate in 1988. Bishop Harris is a member of the Union of Black Episcopalians, and among other activities she represents the national Episcopal Church on the board of the Prisoner Visitation and Support Committee, and is vice president of Episcopal City Mission of the Diocese of Massachusetts.

  3. 1976 - Clifford Alexander Jr
    Clifford Alexander, Jr. is confirmed as the first African American Secretary of the Army. He will hold the position until the end of President Jimmy Carter’s term.

  4. 1971 - Whitney Young Jr., National Urban League director
    Whitney M. Young, Jr. was Executive Director of the National Urban League from 1961 until his tragic, untimely death in 1971. He worked tireless to bring the races together, and joined the tenets of social work, of which he was an outstanding practitioner, to the social activism that brought the Urban League into the forefront of the civil rights arena. Whitney was constantly in search of solutions to the racism that plagued Americans and caused black Americans to be regulated to second-class citizenship in the land they fought and died for. A relentless advocate for the poor, he visited rural and urban communities and advocated their cause to the nation. He was a close adviser to Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, and conferred with President Nixon; helping to shape the policies of three administrations and playing a major role in the development of the War on Poverty. He was a key figure in bringing the now-legendary 1963 March on Washington to fruition; and was a major force in bringing black leadership together in a united front for progress. Whitney’s eloquent testimony before Congressional committees and his powerful appeals to business, professional and civic leaders helped create an environment in which African Americans forged ahead to win new opportunities.

  5. 1961 - February 11, Robert Weaver sworn in as administrator of the Housing and Home Finance Agency, highest federal post to date by a Black American.

  6. 1898 - Owen L. W. Smith of North Carolina, AME Zion minister and educator, named minister to Liberia.

  7. 1783 - Jarena Lee was born
    The daughter of former slaves, born in Cape May, New Jersey. Jarena Lee is the considered the first female preacher in the African Methodist Episcopal Church. In 1836, she published her autobiography, THe Life and Religious Experiences, of Jarena Lee, a Coloured Lady, Giving an Account of Her Call to Preach the Gospel. Her maiden name is unknown and the year of her death is uncertain. She married Joseph Lee, a minister of a Black church in Snow Hill (Lawnside - about 6 miles from Philadelphia) in 1811.

  8. 1644 - First Black legal protest in America pressed by eleven Blacks who petitioned for freedom in New Netherlands (New York). Council of New Netherlands freed the eleven petitioners because they had “served the Company seventeen or eighteen years” and had been “long since promised their freedom on the same footing as other free people in New Netherlands.”
What’s Wrong with Regular Work?

Why do regular careers never get talked about? Seriously. Why is so much stress put on kids to go to university for as long as possible? I mean if you want to go, that’s great, but what about if you don’t or can’t? My grandma was a hairdresser for 30+ years, my grandpa was a factory mechanic for 40+ years, my uncle has been a construction worker and contractor for 20+ years, my aunt has worked for the courthouse for 20+ years, my cousin has been a diesel mechanic for 6 years. None of them went to university. They did have some vocational training and certification in their fields, but none of them went to university, and they all are living quite well and functioning just fine. Do people forget that there are a vast number of careers which don’t require 6 years of college and are important to society? There is a crippling amount of pressure put on kids in academics. And it tends to make those who aren’t good at verbal-linguistic and logical-mathematical learning feel hopeless and threatened. Just because someone is not gifted in language and math does not mean they are stupid and can’t function in society or live an enjoyable life, but I can’t tell you the number of classmates I had in school who were convinced of this and would call themselves dumb for not being able to pass a written exam with an 70% or higher. Our school systems are a terrible judge of intelligence, but kids don’t know this, because no one’s bothered to tell them that there are several different kinds of intelligence and they are fully capable of supporting themselves on whatever form theirs is. And sure, maybe these careers aren’t glamorous or whatever, but they aren’t horrible, and I think they deserve some respect and attention too. What’s wrong with being a trash disposal person, or a bank teller, or a delivery person, or an office assistant, or a custodian, or a cook, or a day care provider? These are all jobs which employ hardworking people who help the community and there is nothing wrong, or shameful, or lesser in these professions than someone who’s position required a university degree to obtain.

anonymous asked:

I was born with "invisible" but very real and life threatening disabilities and also had mental disabilities that made school nearly impossible for me. No one considered ADHD a disability back then and I was evaluated as highly intelligent so I did have a few select subjects I excelled in. It prevented me from getting special education plans that I needed badly. I did graduate high school but flunked college. So I got vocational training, and got a good job and started a career, but my physical

(Invisible disability anon) condition caused me to become extremely ill and I was fired on a technicality so I couldn’t sue for discrimination. (It would have been useless as they were a small business anyway) I have a new job, but it isn’t enough to move out from my emotionally abusive mother’s house. She uses money to control me and knows it. I have a fiancé thankfully and a few other options, but not everyone is dealt the same hand in life. Sometimes, you’re barely surviving from the start.

anonymous asked:

In other nations, being a "legal adult" means you no longer have to attend school, can be hired for work, and other such things (many laws in place to protect children). I suppose what the letters are asking is in regards to these questions.

Oh. Well, here ponies often begin work once they find out what their special talent is. They might take up an apprenticeship or even start their own enterprise. Finding out what your special talent is takes longer for some than others, it’s a highly individual process of finding yourself.

As for having to attend school, well, that depends on your specific requirements. Some require more formal education than others.

I studied quite a lot, given that my talents are related to magic, which is a rather academic subject, and of course because I enjoy studying. There are universities for those who require that sort of higher education.

Other ponies may have more practical talents that would benefit from vocational training rather than schooling, so they don’t need to attend school for as long. As much as I like to learn from books, I do understand it’s not for everypony and every skill set.

Furthermore, it’s not uncommon for young ponies to be in school and begin practicing their talents concurrently. They still have things they need to learn about the world and such, as having a common understanding of the basic facts in society is necessary. But that doesn’t mean they have to wait to do what they are meant to.

With Sign Language, I am Equal

It’s International Week of the Deaf
September 19-25, 2016

[Image Description: 8 Squares, each has a title, colour and blurb. In the middle has a white square background, centre has a black circle, with sign “Equal” underneath in black text says: WITH SIGN LANGUAGE, I AM EQUAL" 
Going left - right - 3 rows.

Top Row:
Picture 1: Green banner with white text: BIRTH RIGHT with picture of a pacifier. Underneath: Draws upon the principle of basic human rights in relation to language acquisition at birth. When acquired fast, it enables deaf children to have full communication with people, improving their cognitive and social skills. Deaf children need access to sign language from birth.

Picture 2: Orange banner, DEAF IDENTITY with fingerprint picture. Underneath: Identifies deaf people as belonging to cultural and linguistic community, who use sign language as a mother tongue or natural language to communicate.

Picture 3: Light blue banner, ACCESSIBILITY, with Interpreter sign picture. Underneath: stresses that deaf people need access to public information and services via sign language interpreting, subtitling, and/or closed-captioning. A key factor to accessibility for public services such as, health care, employment, social welfare  or any other government services is provision of and access to sign language.

Middle Row:
Picture 4: Dark blue banner, EQUAL LANGUAGE, with gesture handshape picture. Underneath: Recognize sign language as a valid linguistic means of conveying thoughts, ideas, and emotions. It is a fully operating language with its own syntax, morphology and structure. It fulfills all features serve to define the notion of a language. This has been confirmed in many systematic linguistic research on sign language since the late 1970’s.

Picture 5: WITH SIGN LANGUAGE, I AM EQUAL

Picture 6: Dark blue banner, EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES, with picture of briefcase. Underneath: Sign language competency for communication and provision of interpreters mean that deaf people can do almost any job. It is important for deaf people to equally aspire securing jobs that reflect their interest and competency. The main barriers to employment arise from inaccessible work environment rather than an inability to hear.

Bottom Row:
Picture 7: Light blue banner, BILINGUAL EDUCATION, with picture of graduation cap. Underneath: Urges stakeholders to accept the need for bilingual education for a deaf child and to understand how quality bilingual education should be provided in a sign language environment. Bilingual education is a social-cultural approach of using sign language as the language of instruction in all subjects with a parallel strong emphasis on teaching reading and writing of the language used in the country or society.

Picture 8: Orange banner, EQUAL PARTICIPATION, with group of people in pyramid style, front person with hand up. Underneath: Deaf people need to have equal access of participation in the personal, public and political area as everyone else. More importantly, it is necessary to ensure that deaf people have the opportunity to take up leadership roles, so that deaf people themselves can appropriately advocate for their rights and be involved in all decision-making processes concerning their lives. This is a reflection of the slogan ‘Nothing About us Without us’.

Picture 9: Green banner, LIFELONG LEARNING, with head and 'chains turning’ symbol of the brain. Underneath: Access to education, vocational training, and ongoing professional training and development, is key to gaining and retaining a job and earning a wage that allows independent living.]

Hello everyone, 

This is my first story about my school life and how I climb up the ladder of our education system.

Things to know:

cito, is a test you will have at primary school it will help you to choose a elementary school.

vmbo, meaning “preparatory middle-level vocational education” in Dutch) is a school track in the Netherlands. It lasts four years, from the age of twelve to sixteen. It combines vocational training with theoretical education in languages, mathematics, history, arts and sciences. Sixty percent of students nationally are enrolled in vmbo. The vmbo has four different levels, in each a different mix of practical vocational training and theoretical education is combined.

havo, meaning “higher general continued education” in Dutch) is a stream in the secondary educational system of the Netherlands and Suriname. It has five grades and is generally attended at ages of 12 to 17. It provides access to the hogeschool-level of tertiary education.

mbo, literally “middle-level applied education”) is oriented towards vocational training. Many pupils with a VMBO-diploma attend MBO. The MBO lasts one to four years, depending of the level. There are 4 levels offered to students. Right now I do mbo 4 and it lasts 3 to 4 years and prepares for jobs with higher responsibility. It also opens the gates to Higher education.

My story:

When I went to elementary school I was always one of the enthusiastic kids. I wanted to discover and learn, and I didn’t have a lot in common with the other children. I wanted to discover all sorts of things, and I sat in the library for hours. My fellow classmates thought I was a bit odd because my they didn’t have the same interests as I did. They played outside and played the wildest games, I preferred to have my nose stuck in a book. But I always gave my bullies second chances. I have no idea why. I was having trouble with math. But I had to do it -unfortunately- because CITO, the national elementary school exam in The Netherlands, requires you to.

Eventually, I went to high school and I was a happy boy, we had a library and my obsession for books only grew. In high school, I was also the odd one out. I was stuck with my nose in a book most of the time, but because of that I was able to help classmates. I got nicknames like “ The Wonder Child ” (Seriously do not call me that haha) and they said that I actually should be doing a higher level of education than I was doing at the time. But HAVO, that higher level, wasn’t for me because I was bad at math. I actually didn’t want to leave anyway, I chose this path and I wanted to finish it. Half done is not done. I was bullied, an outsider, and I was also very unhappy at the time, but I did what I wanted to do. Some classmates wanted me to start smoking, and for example said that I shouldn’t exaggerate when I had bruised something. My pain was not valid in their eyes.
I was angry because people who do HAVO and VWO went to all these trips and learned a lot of languages so I learned Swedish out of spite. My German teacher looked really surprised. “Can you actually do that?” He asked me, “Yes, why not?“ I replied. I also did mock exams for HAVO.
During my second and third year, I was often told that I would never get a girlfriend or I would never get to MBO, the next step in my path of education. They insulted homosexuals and these kinds of incidents were also the reasons why I sometimes separated myself of from the others. What they did was not okay.
Teachers didn’t believe I was going to do this Graphic Design course called GLR. “But, I’m sorry, Faat,” they asked, “Isn’t that really hard?” “I can’t know if I don’t try,” I replied.

Eventually I came to the Graphic Lyceum. I got a girlfriend, got wonderful grades and saw my bullies leave their studies. They thought it was too boring. Now they don’t talk to me and they don’t try to get on my nerves as before. Because they were so obsessed with telling me I couldn’t do it, they, in some way, motivated me. I used that bullying to help me achieve everything I have achieved so far. I am going to MBO year 4 now and I have two HBO books as well.

The nightmare of the past is over.

There have been many measures taken to try to turn the educational system towards more control, more indoctrination, more vocational training, imposing a debt, which traps students and young people into a life of conformity… That’s the exact opposite of [what] traditionally comes out of The Enlightenment. And there’s a constant struggle between those. In the colleges, in the schools, do you train for passing tests, or do you train for creative inquiry?
—  Noam Chomsky
youtube

10 Things Germans Do Better Than Americans

“Here are 10 things Germans do better than Americans. Germany and the US are both pretty cool countries, but that doesn’t mean they’re the same across the board. 

Number 10. Engineering. Much of it comes down to training. Germany’s vocational system continues to thrive and offers learning opportunities that combine practical application and theory. Among the most sought after programs is a 3-year apprenticeship with the multi-industry innovator Siemens.

Number 9. Beer Gardens. Makeshift sidewalk cafes are plentiful in the US, but actual expansive, dedicated areas where people can sit in large groups and in some cases even bring their own food are quite rare. In Germany, on the other hand, they’re a regular thing.

Number 8. Soccer. As you may know, the 2014 World Cup title went to the German team. It’s expected that their winning streak will continue as the current team has been playing together at various levels for about 10 years, and is now well prepared for world domination.

Number 7. College Fees. The typical college graduate in Germany leaves school with no educational debt. As of October 2014, every public higher learning institution in the country is tuition-free, even for students from abroad.

Number 6. Trains. Sure, Amtrack will get you from one US locale to another, but it’s going to take a while. Thanks to high-speed rail, Germans can travel from city to city in a fraction of the time. The typical train moves at around 180 miles per hour, but express services with fewer stops are available should the regular pace not be quite quick enough.

Number 5. Sundays. It’s a serious day of rest for just about everybody, including people who work in retail. By law, stores in most areas remain closed all day long. There are a few exceptions, but those shopping places are primarily in airports and train stations.

Number 4. Paid Vacation. Employers in Germany are required to not only give workers a minimum of 24 days off a year, they have to pay them for the time away. There are no such mandates in the US, and 25% of the American workforce doesn’t even get one.

Number 3. Healthcare. In addition to healthcare coverage in Europe being generally more comprehensive, the prices of procedures are often significantly lower. For example, in 2007 numbers, a hip replacement performed in Germany cost roughly half of what it did in the US.

Number 2. Castles. One of the greatest things about countries that were architecturally active during medieval times are the amazing castles we see today. Often perched high on mountaintops, their presence lends a fairy-tale feel to the countryside.

Number 1. Driving. Considering many stretches of the Autobahn have no speed limit and analysis shows that fast driving results in more accidents, one would expect Germans to be involved way more fatal crashes than Americans. Yet, they’re not. In 2012 Germany had less than half the number the US did.

What’s your favorite thing about Germany?

(Go to their channel, it’s Americans doing this comparison with several countries.)

Spotlight: Garcelle Beauvais

When I first heard about J/P HRO I was with Donna Karen at an event in New York. Sean got up to speak and started talking about the work he was doing in Haiti. I thought it was remarkable to see how involved he had been after the earthquake and the commitments of A-listers in Hollywood to back his work. I wanted to know more and I have been a fan ever since, supporting J/P HRO by attending the annual gala for the past four years. What makes this organization unique is the high number of individual supporters with a deep love and commitment for Haiti, while devastation continues all over the world. They really put their money where their mouth is.

I was born in Haiti in the city of St. Marc. At seven years of age my mother moved us to the United States, arriving in Massachusetts in the dead of winter. I was unable to attend school at first because I did not speak English so I learned the language by watching Sesame Street. I can remember when I started modeling that I was asked if I “came to America on a boat”.

My mother wanted us to have better opportunities, but there was no difference between her and the other women in Haiti other than that she had the opportunity to leave. There is an inherent lack of opportunity in Haiti that continues to hold the most vulnerable back.

But, what I admire most in Haitian people are the characteristics I saw in my mother. We have the ability to hold our head up high even when we have nothing, our faith is through the roof, and we are a resilient people.

My Grandmother lived in St. Marc. I would visit her during summers when I was younger. My sisters would come with me and we would visit these rural parts of Haiti together. At an early age I began to see the power of opportunity to uplift a family.

When I went back in 2015, I visited St. Marc and saw my grandmother’s house again. She had a store on the first floor and she used to have pigs in the back. Everything looked pretty much the same and it was amazing to see the room where I was born.


Haiti holds such a special place in my heart and this year I will take my two nine-year-old boys to Haiti for the first time. It is important for them to understand that they have to have compassion, and to help where assistance is needed. My heart breaks to see the damage that has occurred across Haiti.

As much attention as there has been on the country, Haitian people do not prosper as quickly as those in other developing nations. Women are still held back from career and social progress. This must change; helping women helps families and communities rise together.

There are lots of young men hanging out in the streets not doing anything. If jobs were created these youth would become higher earners and contribute to the bettering of society.

J/P HRO’s Ray of Light School, the community development center, and vocational training partnerships are innovative solutions that will improve the earning power of vulnerable communities. Let’s help Haitians receive education so that we can help them have jobs.

anonymous asked:

about the college anon, you could try going to community college. it's a good cheap alternative, at least where i live, and you can get the essentials for cheaper for a few years while you figure out what you want to do. then, if you want to pursue more education, there are lots of programs to go to a university guaranteed, or if not then you can get some vocational training. it's like chiller, more lowkey college. that's what i'm doing.