Attorney Salaries To Rise 3.1% In 2014 As Other Legal Services Go up 2.7%

A recent report published by attorney Robert Half suggests that starting salaries for attorney’s across the board will rise 3.1% in 2014. This is good news for a job market that has been dismal to say the least over the last few years.

Other careers in the legal field will see their salaries rise 2.7% or so according to the same report.

What Does This Mean For Aspiring Attorneys?

Rising salaries indicates one thing: The market is becoming less saturated. Supply and demand dictates that having three qualified lawyers for each available job holds, or drives, salaries down. This has been the case for the last few years, however apparently we are starting to turn that corner.

The normal cycle of any business or industry is as follows:

  • Salaries are good, people get involved, jobs are filled
  • People see good salaries and well-paying jobs, so more people get involved
  • The influx of new people saturates the market, and salaries start to stagnate
  • The market is completely saturated, salaries continue to stagnate if not actually decrease (when adjust for inflation)
  • No longer looking attractive, less people join the industry and things normalize
  • After normal, a shortage starts to appear and people, again, see the opportunity.

This cycle repeats itself over and over again – it is the essence of the free market.

How To Take Advantage In 2014

It’s actually too late to take advantage in 2014. Law school requires around three years of your life and then you have to pass the bar and jump through the rest of the hoops to become an attorney (that whole attorney vs lawyer debate).

The cost of living average over the long-run is around 3%, which means that attorneys are barely beating it. Other jobs in the legal field will actually see their salaries shrink when compared to the average cost of living increase. Currently, inflation is held very low due to a struggling world economy, but at some point that will take off.

Certain positions, such as a paralegal for example, will see their already meager salary slowly shrink or not grow as fast as it should due to the depressed wages we are currently experiencing. Unfortunately, even in positions outside of the legal field, there isn’t much anyone can really do. Wages across the board are flat, making the news that attorneys will see an increase above 3% a welcome site to the law community at large.

How Intelligent Do You Have To Be To Get A Career In Intelligence?

Jobs in the CIA are often left out of the normal equation of careers. It is often believed that in order to get hired by the the agency, one must be extremely intelligent. However, a massive IQ is not always necessary in order to get one of these coveted jobs.

IQ as a Gateway to the Central Intelligence Agency

All agents likely score above average on an IQ test. As the individuals who are most directly responsible for keeping the United States safe, these professionals need to be intelligent, aware, and mentally and emotionally stable. Having a poor score on an IQ test is enough to disqualify you from being accepted into the agency. However, it may not be necessary to have insanely high IQ scores. Those with an above average intelligence and a special skill set can still make it into the Central Intelligence Agency.

Having an extremely high IQ score could, in itself, make you an appealing candidate for the US secret service. However, IQ alone is not going to get you accepted in to the agency. A battery of tests will screen applicants on a variety of factors. Agents need to be mentally sound, trustworthy, able to handle extreme stress, able to work well with others, and a wealth of other personality traits that are necessary to the job. Having a high IQ is only one component that the agency is looking for in its agents.

Here are some more pointers on what it takes to become an agent:

Specialized Skills

The path of entry for many agents is having a specialized skill set. Some agents are appealing simply because they have a large IQ and can process the information given to them quickly. But language abilities, ability to solve codes, and the ability to work quickly under pressure are also extreme assets that a the secret service may be interested in.

Since the secret service has such a wide range of positions to fill, the agency needs people who are the best in their respective fields. Studies in psychology and international relations can be particularly valuable for getting accepted into the agency. Students should have exceptional grades in their fields of study, which may indicate intelligence but does not necessarily correlate.

More about the secret service:

Another special skill that is useful for agents is the ability to speak many languages fluently. People who have shown mastery of several languages are of immediate interest to the CIA. These individuals can help understand messages and codes sent by other nations, and they can also help with surveillance of high profile individuals in other nations. In short, there are many things that can qualify an individual for a Central Intelligence career, and intelligence is only one component of the job description.

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Are We Seeing A Shift in the Way Teachers Are Trained

The Rise of the Online Teaching Degree

Studying the landscape of America’s teacher training system, it is shocking to see just how prevalent graduates of online programs are in today’s classrooms. The Huffington Post recently commented on the rise of online education degrees, and the numbers that they provided are startling. In 2001, the University of Phoenix, the nation’s largest provider of online teaching degrees, awarded 72 students degrees in education.

By 2011, this number grew to a staggering 6,000. The newspaper notes that while the majority of education degrees are still awarded by traditional universities, the online programs are altering the face of America’s education system for better or worse.

Scrutinizing of Online Education Programs

Many opponents of online education argue that it does not offer students the same level of quality teaching as traditional programs. If this is true, this is troubling for people who are going into the teaching profession to train our students. The Huffington Post quotes C. Emily Feistritzer, president of the National Center for Education Information, on the state of online education degrees. She claims that the programs are, “all over the place, just like they are with college campus-based programs.”

This offers hope for quality online education programs, and is a reason why in some states in the US, the number of educational degrees earned online outpaces that of degrees earned in a classroom. As more and more traditional schools continue to move their content online, the USA Today states that the quality of online programs will continue to get better.

The Attractiveness of an Online Degree

Online educational programs are popular to students due to the flexibility that it provides to would-be teachers. Non-traditional students are able to start a new career or raise a family while attending school. Teachers who work full-time are also able to earn an advanced degree without having to give up their profession.

Since a teachers level of education directly correlates to their salary, it is understandable that they would want to obtain a Masters or PhD. Online content exposes teachers to new content, and it may actually prep them to teach their students who in the future will most likely do the majority of their learning in an online format.

Finding an Online Program for You

Whether you choose a for-profit university or a traditional university, you will want to study your program closely. Earning a degree in teaching in the online format can be rewarding, and a great way to elevate your career.

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Is Canada’s Increase In Education Spending Helping?

Canada’s increased spending in many school districts is intended to increase students’ learning. But is the extra money actually having an affect on the students? The answer depends on where the money is being spent. Here are some of the common areas where increased funds are going.

Increasing Teacher Pay

It is debatable whether teacher pay has a big effect on students’ success in the classroom. Educators of young children might argue that when they are well compensated, they are more generous in spending time on their work. Some support comes from models like Norway, who has a high teacher salary and an excellent educational success rate. Others would argue that there are better ways to spend increased funding in schools.

Canadian teachers can base their arguments on teacher salaries in states like Texas in the US. In schools where teacher salaries are higher, the success of students is also greater. However, it’s hard to measure the exact cause of this success, since these schools are usually the wealthier districts with children from better socioeconomic backgrounds. Some studies could be useful in determining just how much teacher pay affects student success.

Increasing Spending per Student

An alternative to giving extra funds directly to teachers is to increase the spending per student. This could come in the form of buying supplemental materials and textbooks, equipping classrooms with a computer or tablet for each student, or increasing the budget per student for field trips. These methods do have a positive effect on student learning. When students are provided with diverse resources to keep their attention, they can devote more time and energy to learning.

Improving Facilities

The actual school building also has a positive effect on student learning. It is generally accepted that a child’s environment can affect his mood and ability to concentrate. Modern and well-lit facilities with good ventilation and attractive design can make a big psychological difference on a student. This research lets administrators know that there are many ways to tackle student learning problems, and several areas in which to spend additional funds.

Does Increased Spending Equal Increased Learning?

Increased spending in schools can be helpful, if it is done the right way. The most effective methods for spending will create a more pleasant environment for students that is rich in resources. Whether or not Canada’s increased spending is helping students depends on how administrators are choosing to spend the money. When administrators and teachers get all of the money, it may never reach students and it won’t help nearly as much. Likely, a distribution of extra funds across many areas is the best plan for using additional funding.

The Strenghts of Canada’s Education System

Oh Canada, We Have a Quality Education System

Is there a secret formula for the education system in Canada? Our country has an education system that produces students who are some of the highest performers in the world, but what separates our education system from others in the world and what helps us excel, with a few set backs? The answers are simple, and they may not surprise you. Canada is able to capitalize on the things that make us unique as a nation, and the result is a robust and high-performing education system.

Our Education System is Stable

One of the leading factors for the success of our education system is the stability that our educators provide to the system. Since our teachers are compensated well and they are challenged in the classroom, the rate of turnover in Canadian schools is lower than that found elsewhere. Canada enjoys a lower attrition rate than some areas plagued by teachers leaving, and this results in classrooms and teachers who are not having to constantly adapt to new methods and teaching styles.

The more experience that a teacher has in a given school, the more he or she will be able to relate to the students. This is important due to our nation’s diversity.

Not a Federal Program

Another one of the things that makes our education system excel is the fact that each province or territory is able to manage its own education system without interference from a central or federal education ministry. Each province is free to coordinate their education system through the Council of Education, and it has resulted in a system that has produced a literacy rate of 99%.

This is substantially higher than that of Singapore, the country who has the best education system in the world, and should be a point of pride for every Canadian educator. Flexibility at a local level allows are provinces to spend their dollars wisely on their students’ needs. While Canada does not spend as much on education as we do on health care, we are able to maximize the return on our dollars spent.

Dedicated Teachers

Small classroom sizes are another plus for our education system that has great teachers. Substitute teaching is a fairly popular pathway to take into teaching, and it is a smart route for schools to take since it gives them a chance to screen a teacher and his or her abilities before hiring them on full-time. The teachers in Canada are superb, and they are a large reason for the success of the education system.

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Canadian Teachers Union Says CCCE Report Is Pushy

The Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE) recently released a report that may hold some bad news for Canadian teachers. In the report, representatives claimed that Canadian teachers’ pay should be based on performance rather than on the number of years worked. Canadian teachers are speaking out against the report, stating that it is pushy and does not represent the situation well.

The Council’s Opinion

The council hopes to create a system that rewards teacher performance. The idea is that teachers are paid to help their students learn, and it shouldn’t be the case that ineffective teachers are paid as much as teachers who do their job well. Many people argue that the current system encourages teachers to become set in their routines, since their pay will continue to go up whether their results are good or not.

Proponents of a performance based system say that the teachers who truly deserve to have high wages will still be compensated well under this new plan.

Teachers’ Opinion

Teachers argue against this new report by the council, calling it pushy. From their perspective, there is no completely effective way to measure a teacher’s performance. Test scores and similar measures may do a fair job, but they cannot take into account the factors out of a teacher’s control, such as student under-performance in testing situations.

Also, the value of a teacher goes far beyond what they contribute in core subjects, and teachers argue that it’s hard to measure a teacher’s effectiveness at teaching life skills or good study habits. Because the teachers’ performance is really a qualitative factor that authorities are attempting to measure quantitatively, teachers argue that the new system won’t work.

Looking at American Counterparts

When Canadian teachers look at the pay of their American counterparts, they may have even more objection to a new system that would reward performance rather than experience. Even though American teachers are facing some of the same objections, their pay scale remains based on the number of years worked. Location is an important detail as schools in more expensive areas often pay better than schools in poorer communities.

When Canadian teachers see how much their US counterparts make in bigger cities, they often object to measures that would serve to decrease the pay for teachers in Canada.

What’s Next

It’s hard to say so far what will happen in this debate between teachers and the authorities. Likely there will be an agreement met that appeases both sides. When teachers aren’t happy with their compensation, it puts students’ learning in jeopardy. Hopefully, this situation can be avoided.

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Should Canadian Teacher Salaries Be Performance-Based?

With authorities talking about creating a performance based salary schedule for Canadian teachers, many educators and parents alike have raised doubts about this potential system. Each side of the argument makes some valid points about this problem, leaving the issue in a gray area. Here are some of the most convincing arguments from each side of the debate.

Arguments for Performance Based Salary

Authorities and many tax payers have shown interest in creating a performance based salary schedule for many reasons. First, having a performance evaluation that affects pay could improve the quality of teaching, these proponents say. The current system allows teachers to kick back and expect to get a raise each year regardless of whether they put in the effort necessary to be good educators.

A performance based system would make teachers’ efforts more transparent and would give schools a reason to keep close tabs on teachers’ effectiveness. Finally, taxpayers could feel more secure in the system knowing that their tax dollars weren’t going to the so-called “lazy” teachers.

Arguments Against Performance Based Salary

Teachers, along with some parents and administrators, present some counter arguments to the performance based salary. They mainly argue that it’s hard to get a good gauge on what is a good performance in the classroom. Tests, supervision, and teacher fit with the school are some tactics that can be used, but they never can account for all of the complexity of the job.

Trying to control a group of high school kids who don’t want to be in the classroom can be a tough task. Even veteran teachers may have trouble reaching some of the toughest students, and this can have an impact on the students’ testing that isn’t quite related to teachers’ abilities in the classroom. Students must be motivated on their own, as well. Even teaching little kids is not as simple of a job as it sounds, and there are many factors that come into play with the students, the home life of the children, and the administration in the school.

The Future of the Debate

It’s not likely that this debate will end any time soon. With many parties having a large stake in the future of this problem, it’s not likely that any side will back down soon. The ideal solution is to create a solution that’s appealing to everyone, but with each side having such radical opinions on this issue, it will take some time before the sides come to see eye to eye.

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Fun Alternative Jobs to the Standard Go-To-College Careers

For those who are not looking forward to the standard 9-to-5 job, there is a world of opportunities available if you are willing to look and persevere. In fact, the days of the standard office job may be on the wane considering our ever-changing world.

For most people, taking such alternative jobs usually happens at the college age when you decide to get in as much adventure as possible before settling for your 9 to 5 job. However, there are alternative jobs for people of all ages, meaning that you can find the type of job that best suits your personality and needs without having to succumb to the same old standard type of employment.

Cruise Ships

Cruise ships have been around for decades entertaining passengers and providing many hours of relaxation and entertainment. Working on a cruise ship can be exciting as well, if you take the right type of job. You can be a part of the entertainment or work the top decks of the ship helping passengers while traveling different parts of the world.

In any event, cruise ships are but one of many different opportunities that await you when choosing adventurous jobs that will bring new challenges and provide many opportunities as well. If cruise ships are not exactly your cup of tea, there are actually new types of structures being built for the hotel industry that are revolutionizing the business.

Exotic Hotels

For the more adventurous types, underwater hotels are arguably the biggest event since the first hotel was constructed. Ranging from a single, underwater room rental in a Swedish lake to plans for elaborate underwater hotels around the world, this new movement to bring visitor to new part of the Earth has taken on a whole new meaning.

The Water Discus Hotel, the latest of grand underwater hotels in Dubai, represents the ultimate expression in this new movement of hotel building. With its expansive, futuristic design, there will be a world of opportunities that accompanies this new underwater hotel. In addition, there are other hotels being planned for Shanghai that are equally striking as well.

Adventure Jobs

There are many different jobs that you can take overseas which will provide you with great experiences while avoiding the standard

There are a lot of great facts about Spain, but the best of them center on the love of bullfighting. You can get a job working at a bullfighting arena or even train to be a bullfighter yourself if that is your desire. Bullfighting is a noble sport with a tradition that stretches back hundreds of years.

However, if bullfighting is not your thing, you can always get an adventure job as a scuba diving or surfing instructor. Helping tourist find their way around the Greek Isles, farming the fields of a South American country, playing online poker and more, you can even find jobs that help you get around the world on the cheap as well. This means that you can take the ultimate vacation and spend a fraction of the money because you worked your way through.

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Forensic Science Degrees Become More Popular, Colleges Staying Ahead

The world of forensic science is certainly well known to network TV watchers with the many programs dedicated to this exciting field. The result is that interest in becoming a forensic scientist has boomed in recent years and now with schools offering these programs the interest level is growing even higher.

The University of Toronto at Mississauga has the oldest forensic science program in the country. Covering a number of different fields including psychology, chemistry, biology and anthropology, this program has developed over the years to encompass different sciences and fields to create some of the best rounded educations in terms of forensic science.

The forensic science program out of the University of Toronto has helped generate more interest in this field to younger students. At Cederbrae Collegiate Institute for example, students in 9th grade and younger are engaging in forensic science studies built around the concept of crime scene investigation. With the support of the University of Toronto, they are learning about how science is applied to the world of law enforcement at a very early age.

What is a Forensic Scientist?

Basically, a forensic scientist is part of a team that investigates crime. They gather documents, analyzing physical evidence from crime scenes, including blood and hair samples along with fingerprints, bullet matching technique and so forth. Often called a crime scene investigator, they use established scientific methods and principles to help solve crimes.

There are currently over 13,000 forensic scientists in the US alone, working mostly for state and local institutions such as police departments, crime laboratories, morgues, and coroner offices. However, the field is rapidly growing thanks to the emphasis on evidence more law enforcement agencies are using to convict criminals.

Getting a degree in forensic science requires earning a bachelor’s degree in biology, chemistry or forensic science with additional training depending on the assignments that they want to handle. A forensic twist on a popular degree like nursing for example can lead to a healthy career in this remarkable field.

The Outlook for Forensic Science

The demand for forensic scientists is expected to grow over the next decade as more law enforcement agencies across North America expand this particular area. Even with wide interest so far, the combination of retiring scientists along with expanding law enforcement means that there will be plenty of opportunities for forensic scientists in the foreseeable future.

From becoming police officers to extensive on-the-job training that requires apprenticeships and the like to learn all aspects of what forensic science is all about. By encouraging younger children into learning about the exciting world of forensic science, it opens up their minds to all types of science fields. This means that while many students will not pursue this type of degree, they may become interested in other fields of science which they may have never considered before.

As odd as it seems, popular television programs that deal in crime scene investigation has spawned a resurgence of interest in science-related fields in which young people have shown a keen interest.

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How Early Is Too Early To Start Kids In Education?

There is controversy over the appropriate age for a child to start his or her education. Many parents start their children in preschool between the ages of three and four. Preschool offers educational classes designed to expose children to letters, numbers and shapes and to teach them how to get along with other children.

According to, children who attend preschool enter kindergarten with better reading and math skills and with a richer vocabulary. Similarly, according to The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s 2012 Kids Count report, approximately 50 percent of the children in the United States attended preschool between 2008 and 2010.

Most children must enter kindergarten no earlier than five years of age but no later than six years. The age depends on the state’s date requirement. For example, in Alabama a child must have turned five years of age no later than September 1 of the school year. If a child does not turn five until September 2, he or she must wait until the next school year to begin school. Parents have the option of holding their child back a year if they feel that the child is not ready to start school if the child will be no older than six by the state’s mandatory date for beginning school.

According to, schools are increasingly being held accountable for its student’s performance. Since older children tend to have higher performance scores, many schools are now advocating for children to begin their education at six or seven years of age. Advocates argue that older children are more mature and better able to understand and absorb instruction. Others disagree and argue that children mature at a different rate and should not be made to wait until they are six or seven if they are ready before that time.

Regardless of the age controversy, educators must be prepared to provide quality instruction by getting a degree in early childhood education. They must be prepared to teach children regardless of their maturity and are paid quite well for doing their job. According to the Bureau of Labor statistics, preschool teachers earn approximately $27,000 per year. Unlike in the US, Canadian educators earn approximately $47,000 per year according to

Whether a child attends preschool or begins his or her education in kindergarten, all children in the United States are required to attend school without regard to their maturity or skills. Educators are required to teach those children the skills required to advance to the next level of education.

An Honest Look at a Teacher’s Salary

Public school teachers are commonly regarded to be underpaid and overworked. However, many factors go into determining the overall pay of any worker. If we are to take an honest look at a teacher’s yearly salary, we have to consider four major factors:

1. A teacher’s annual salary.

According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook of the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, which can be found at, the median pay for elementary school teachers was $53,090 per year in 2012. This means about half of teacher made under $53,090 nationwide while half of teachers make more. For high school teachers, median pay was slightly higher, at $55,050.

2. Comparative annual salaries.

When considering whether a teacher’s salary is worthwhile, one should look at other professions that require a B.A. Some college-educated professionals, such as actuaries, industrial engineers, and human resource managers have a median income ($75,000) that considerably outstrips that of teachers, while other college-educated professionals, such as fundraisers, interior designers, event planners, and social workers have a lower median income. The median household income was $51,324 in 2012, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. That means the median teacher makes slightly more than the median household.

3. The number of hours worked per year.

While the average school day in the United States lasts 6.5 to 7 hours, teachers often have to come early and stay late. They need to prepare lesson plans and grade papers at home. During vacations, they frequently have to attend in-services or other continuing education opportunities.

On the other hand, many other middle-class workers have a standard nine-hour office day and also put in unpaid overtime. According to a 2008 analysis conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, on average, teachers work approximately three fewer hours per week than most other professionals, and that’s not even counting vacation time. They typical middle-class job offers less than five weeks of vacation a year, and many workers do not get off federal holidays such as Martin Luther King, Jr. and President’s Day. So, when considering the value of a salary, it’s important to divide your anticipated annual salary by the number of hours you expect to work in a year.

4. The benefits.

Most teachers have health insurance, pension programs, retiree health benefits, and strong job security. Potential teachers should compare benefits and retirement packages and consider whether or not they will have similar job security and retirement benefits in another profession.

Teachers have to earn both a bachelor’s degree and a teaching certificate. Before they do so, many would-be teachers want to know, “How much is that piece of paper worth?” Taking a look at these four factors will help potential teachers decide if preparing for the profession is a worthwhile investment.

How Do The Requirements To Teach In Canada Differ From The US?

Canada has many rules and regulations with regards to becoming a teacher. The overall process in Canada is similar to the path taken in the US; with a few minor differences. The difference in educational requirements is problem one of the single most marked differences between the nations.

In Canada, teachers have to have, in addition to a standard bachelor’s degree, completed a certification program as well. Contrarily, in the US, a bachelor’s degree in education is more than enough to secure a position teaching in the public education system. In fact, in certain situations, you don’t even need a bachelor’s degree.

Pathway To Teaching

While each situation is unique, and a teacher’s job description is about as unique as the pupils in the classroom, there are definitely a few set paths that are the most common from which you can arrive at the desired destination as an educator.

  • The straight-forward way: Receive a degree in education, do the required student teaching portion of the degree, pass any state certification necessary depending on the state and find a job.
  • The path less traveled: Finding a teaching position in an area that is impoverished or otherwise less desireable (i.e. inner city) is easier for people who want to make their way into teaching without a traditional background. While these jobs are not necessarily the most sought-after, they can be the most rewarding.

In Canada, it is less likely that a person can become a teacher without the proper degree and certification. In fact, currently the market for educators in Canada is fairly saturated; not enough positions for all of the newly-minted teachers out there. Additionally, educators aren’t retiring at as quick a clip as they have been in the past few years.

What About Teaching At The University?

Teaching at the university is a daunting goal in either Canada or the US. Th

Photo credit here.
Photo credit here.

e market is filled with many qualified, or even over-qualified, applicants that the competition is fierce. In addition, a lot of degree’s offered by colleges these days have little to no practical value in the real world; at least on their face.

Most, if not all of, these graduates have to seek positions in education, mostly higher education, due to the lack of options their degrees may provide. The hip trend of getting a degree in English or Humanities may be slowly dying out, but there are still a lot of people who have a PhD in Ancient Medieval Armor And Horsemanship that just aren’t going to be able to parlay that into a high paying job outside of education.

When PhD’s are applying for lower-level jobs at community colleges, as is the current market, it’s quite obvious it isn’t wrought with opportunity.

Canada Offers Educational Opportunity To Latin American Countries: Brazil, Peru

Peru, an eclectic and exotic country, is home to some of the most unique historical sites in the world. Their most famous historical site, Machu Picchu, is one of the current Seven Wonders of the World! Machu Picchu was built in the 15th century by an Incan kingdom and due to its unique historical heritage and amazing architecture, is one of the top traveling destinations on Earth!

But Peru is not the only South American country with unique trivia. Did you know that Brazil is the fifth largest country in the world? It also holds the record for being the longest country on Earth–it clocks in at about 2800 miles from the south tip of its borders to the north tip of its borders.

Because Brazil is so large, it comes as no surprise that it ranks among the highest in the world for a number of other factors, as well, including: the second highest in the number of airports, the second largest population people who identify their religion as Christian, and the third highest in the number of roadways!

It should come as no surprise that the Brazilian government is funding the Ciência sem Fronteiras Scholarship Program. The Ciência sem Fronteiras is a nationwide program dedicated to providing students in Brazil the opportunity to live abroad in Canada while expanding their knowledge in a variety of academic and practical areas–such as science, technology and technological innovation.

The program is available to undergraduate and graduate students in Brazil and, with the cooperation of the Canadian Bureau for International Education and the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada will manage and place these students in Canadian universities or colleges with scholarships.

The selected students will stay in Canada for 12 or 16 months; students who qualify for immediate acceptance into academic classes will stay for 12 months, while students who require English language training will stay for 16 months, with the first few months of their stay focused on the learning of English.

The students chosen for this program will have a wide variety of Canadian academic programs on offer. These include programs in engineering, physical sciences, earth sciences, biology and biomedical sciences, aerospace technology, renewable energy studies, marine sciences, creative studies focused on technological development or innovation, nanotechnology–and much more. Some members of the program may be able to be placed in research or industry positions rather than academic or study positions, depending on their experience and background.

The program also offers the opportunity for Canadian students to travel to Brazil and expand their global worldview, while also improving relations between Canada and Brazil and fostering a relationship of cooperation and understanding. And that is why the primary goal Ciência sem Fronteiras is for both Brazilian and Canadian students to foster the growth of innovation and technology in Brazil and Canada through international cooperation, study and experience.

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Canadian Paralegals Responsibility Increases, US Do Not

People working as paralegals understand a thing or two about support; one of their major job functions is to assist and support attorneys on a variety of issues. They have to be versatile, well-educated, and able to accomplish a variety of tasks when called upon to do so.

These skills seem to be serving the paralegals of Canada well, as they are given a bit more leeway, while their more heavily-regulated counterparts in the United States with specific accreditations and endorsements seem to be falling somewhat behind.

Contrarily, in the United States, paralegals seem to be losing some of their responsibility to technology. As paralegals in Canada seem to be progressing, the paralegal job in the United States, while still strong and slated to grow 18% over the next 10 years (according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics), is seeing a slight decrease in technology taking over some of what they were previously responsible for.

 The Differences

Paralegals in the US generally have a bachelor’s degree. In most situations, they want to attend a school that has an accreditation sufficient for the American Bar Association (ABA). Without this certification, a lot of excellent work experience is generally needed to get the more sought-after placements. The American Bar Association is the regulating body that oversees the legal profession, mainly lawyers, in the US.

Interestingly enough, in the US this additional level of oversight does not indicate more responsibility. As we have seen lately, paralegals in Canada are now able to practice actual law at times while under the supervision of an attorney.

Paralegals can actually specialize, which does give them a bit more autonomy, however still not to the level of actually representing clients. There are many specializations in which paralegals can work; basically as many as there are different responsibilities for lawyers.

The Pay

Naturally, one would assume that Canadian paralegals make more money with their elevated status and job responsibilities; however that isn’t necessarily the case. While the average salary for Canadian paralegals is slightly higher, at $53,000 per year, the starting wage is only $30,600. The actual salary between Canadian and US paralegals is pretty similar, varying by about 10%-15%.

10%-15% is substantial, however when you consider the prices attorneys charge compared to what the paralegal is earning, even on the high end, the contrast is stark.

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Neuromyths: The Achilles Heel Of Canadian Education

Canadian educators are misinformed about one very important subject: the brain. One of the things that holds educators back when looking at making real change within the educational system is the fact that they don’t understand the brain well enough.

When a change is proposed, educators often have misconceptions about how the brain works, thus resisting the change. These misconceptions are called neuromyths; myths about the brain that are widely accepted and spread.

Basic concepts about the brain are generally and widely understood, especially when it comes to education-related environments. For example, most people know that in order to become a good lawyer, you must be logical. However, what we may not understand is that logic, decision making, and other key ingredients in being successful in this line of work come from the executive function center of the brain.

A good example of this is the case of bilingualism. For example, bilingualism has long been thought of as a detractor from successful academic study. It has been billed a waste of brain space or confusing. Recent research, say within the last 10 years, has proved that to be whole-heartedly incorrect. Bilingualism actually increases executive function which in turn leads to better concentration, more decisiveness, and many other benefits that translate well into the educational environment.

A thorough understanding of the brain, it’s anatomy, and how it all works together would have lead educators to stop advising parents to quit speaking the minority language at home. A lack of neuro-understanding, if I may, actually caused professional educators to advocate for practices that hurt the students.

In a recent blog post on the Canadian Education Association homepage, the author goes on to write about other neuromyths such as:

  • Students learn better in their preferred learning style (auditory, visual, etc)
  • Students are either “right-brained” or “left-brained”
  • Humans only use 10% of their brain
  • There is a critical period after which a child can no longer learn as well

In fact, all of the above, as the author points out, are neuromyths.  He continues saying:

“…neuroeducation course should be incorporated into the initial training and professional development of teachers and others working in education.”

While reviewing his article, as well as using my own understandings, I have come to the same conclusion. Educators reach children through the medium of their brain, similar to how a forensic accountant solves cases through the medium of accounting. It isn’t just teaching that is required as a teacher; it’s also an understanding of learning. Learning requires, quite heavily I may add, the brain.

35,000 Sq Ft Good Samaritan Hospital Forges Relationship

Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center in Corvallis, Oregon is the main medical facility of Samaritan Health Services, which serves the Oregon communities of the mid-Willamette Valley and central Oregon Coast, and is the largest hospital in Linn, Benton, and Lincoln counties. Good Samaritan has 188 beds, more than 1,700 employees and 200 volunteers, and operates as one of only four Level II trauma centers in the state with comprehensive cancer care, full-service cardiology and cardiovascular surgery, a sleep lab, neurosurgery, and other regional services in 17 medical clinics.

Good Samaritan is in Corvallis, a diverse and thriving college town of about 55,000 residents. Hewlett-Packard maintains a large operational site in Corvallis, Oregon State University is another economic mainstay and a prestigious academic presence important to the city’s cultural vitality, and hundreds of small local businesses enrich the city’s economy.

Four other, smaller hospitals are parts of the Samaritan Health Services network. Samaritan Albany General Hospital, a 79-bed acute care facility with more than 700 employees, has been in service since 1924. Samaritan Lebanon Community Hospital is a 49-bed general care facility serving eastern Linn County for more than 75 years. Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital with 25 beds has served Lincoln City since 1967. Samaritan Pacific Communities Hospital in Newport has 25 beds, 380 employees, and has been in service since 1952.

The five hospitals have a long history of service to their communities as well as working with local universities in Oregon on research; the history of the Samaritan Health Services regional network is little more than a decade old. Mid-Valley Healthcare in Lebanon and Samaritan, Inc. in Corvallis merged in 1997 to form the nonprofit Samaritan Health Services in the belief that the integrated organization would be more effective and efficient than the separate premerger entities.

Two years later, FirstCare Health in Albany joined them, and in the early 2000s Samaritan Health Services reached the central Oregon Coast, adding the Lincoln City and Newport hospitals under long-term leasing and operating agreements with the North Lincoln Health District and the Pacific Communities Health District. Today, the five hospitals together with affiliated physician clinics, several health plans, and a senior care facility in Sweet Home continue to serve their local communities better than ever.

Samaritan Health Services is a values-driven, church-related organization that seeks to be the first choice of regional consumers in the region and to lead collaborative efforts with those of similar views. Recognizing their similar missions, visions, and values, the community-based hospitals and physicians that formed Samaritan Health Services believed they could create a successful regional health system.

Local community members, physicians and hospital leaders continue to make decisions for Samaritan to achieve the highest standards of care, to create positive experiences for patients, visitors, and co-workers, to act responsibly with the resources entrusted to Samaritan’s care, to demonstrate daily the healing power of the human touch, and to share best practices in the midst of tremendous changes in health care delivery. They are also active in partnering with colleges and universities in many ways, including the best cross of biology and mechanics as well as other forms of health-based research.

Making The Most Of Your Gap Year Before University

From Princeton to Tufts and Harvard to MIT, many of the most prestigious universities in the world are starting to urge high school graduates to consider putting off college for a gap year of much-needed downtime from studies.

Although it has been a common rite of passage in the United Kingdom and Australia for years, the concept is gaining popularity in America as well. While the idea might make some parents cringe in fear, studies show that jumping off the academic conveyor belt of our society can be very beneficial at giving young adults the opportunity to explore their interests for better preparation at choosing a college degree program. If you have decided to take a gap year before the rigors of academic life, read on to find some tips on how to plan the most successful and enriching year off before university.

1. Locate Sources for Scholarships
Since one of the biggest parts of going on a gap year is actually being able to afford it, it is essential that you search for funding options while planning your travels. It is highly recommended that you apply for as many scholarships as possible because there are many programs for gap year students to receive a stipend or even salary during the traveling. However, make sure to always read through the requirements section carefully to ensure you are eligible and submit the scholarship applications well before going abroad.

2. Create a Realistic Budget
Just like when planning any other trip, it is important that you set a realistic plan for how you will save enough money and cover your expenses. Successful budgets typically include cutting back on how much you go out, selling unwanted possessions, volunteering for extra shifts, eating cheaply with homemade meals, and being a little less fashionable on the latest trends. If you save money for your gap year now and work while you travel, it is much more likely that you will reach your financial goals for a smooth trip.

3. Work out an Itinerary
Although you may feel like just traveling at whim with where the wind blows, it is usually best to plan out a full itinerary for your travels. Once you have some destinations in mind, search for internship, volunteering, and work opportunities that suit your interests. You may not want to commit to anything at an early stage, but you should work it out in your head to make the rest of the plans fit easily. After sketching out an itinerary, you will have all the needed information to set up the flights, transportation, and accommodation to make your gap year dreams a success!

Inspirational Quotes For Students

“Even if you fall on your face, you’re still moving forward.”
– Victor Kiam

Source: Going Forward @

“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
– Chinese Proverb

Source: Education Quotes @

“Sometimes you don’t realize your own strength until you come face to face with your greatest weakness.”
– Susan Gale

Source: Being Strong @

“Disappointment to a noble soul is what cold water is to burning metal; it strengthens, tempers, intensifies, but never destroys it.”
— Eliza Tabor

Source: Coping w/ Disappointment @

“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.”
– Henry Ford

Source: Uplifting Sayings @

4 High Paying Careers With An Undergrad Degree

If you attend college, you will need to choose a major at some point. Before you decide what area to pursue, it is wise to look at the job outlook and salary of your field. Here are some of the highest paying careers with an undergraduate degree.

1. Nurses: Nurses play an important role in the healthcare industry. They are responsible for observing and evaluating the condition of a patient. They take vital signs, give injections and perform various medical procedures. Nurses might work in a hospital, clinic or nursing home. Now is an outstanding time to go into the nursing profession because there is a high demand for nurses. People who are going into the nursing field ask themselves, “How much do nurses make?” The average salary for a nurse is about $65,000 annually; however, some nurses make over $90,000.

2. Physician assistants: A physician assistant is not a doctor, but the professional performs much of the same duties as a physician. Physician assistants conduct tests and help diagnose medical issues. They might assist in surgical procedures, and they can prescribe drugs to patients. The physician assistant profession is predicted to see the largest job growth of any of the healthcare profession. Many people wonder, “How much do physician assistants make?” The profession makes from $70,000 to $90,000 a year.

3. Computer engineers: Computer engineers examine, evaluate and inspect computer networking systems. They make sure computer systems operate smoothly, and they help maintain safety and security on the internet. With the advancements in technology, the job outlook for computer engineers is excellent. People who are considering the profession ask, “How much do computer engineers make?” Many computer engineers make more than $100,000 each year. Some individuals even make up to $150,000.

4. Petroleum engineers: These professionals, who help remove oil and gas from the earth, earn on average of $160,000 in a single year.