Monday, September 18, 2017

Ideas, Actions, and Inspiration for a better Tomorrow - September 18 Edition

History, War

“Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s ten-part, 18-hour documentary series, THE VIETNAM WAR, tells the epic story of one of the most consequential, divisive, and controversial events in American history as it has never before been told on film. Visceral and immersive, the series explores the human dimensions of the war through revelatory testimony of nearly 80 witnesses from all sides—Americans who fought in the war and others who opposed it, as well as combatants and civilians from North and South Vietnam. Ten years in the making, the series includes rarely seen and digitally re-mastered archival footage from sources around the globe, photographs taken by some of the most celebrated photojournalists of the 20th Century, historic television broadcasts, evocative home movies, and secret audio recordings from inside the Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon administrations. THE VIETNAM WAR features more than 100 iconic musical recordings from greatest artists of the era and haunting original music from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross as well as the Silk Road Ensemble featuring Yo-Yo Ma

The second part airs tonight on PBS. The first episode aired last night, September 17. You can view it and the entire series online HERE

Job Retraining, Education, Coal Mining

(Read or watch the entire interview.)

HARI SREENIVASAN: Brandon Dennison grew up in Appalachia, but left to study social entrepreneurship. After earning his master’s, he returned to retrain displaced workers.

BRANDON DENNISON: The moral arguments, I’m not interested in on coal, but it’s like investing your money. You never put it all in one investment account. You spread it out, you diversify.

HARI SREENIVASAN: In 2010, Dennison formed a nonprofit called the Coalfield Development Corporation. With financial support from the Appalachian regional commission, the nonprofit launched new businesses that Dennison believes will generate sustainable jobs, everything from furniture making and solar installation, to home building and agriculture.

BRANDON DENNISON: What we need is a diversified economy, with lots of different businesses and lots of different opportunities for all different types of people.

HARI SREENIVASAN: Coalfield crew members are paid $11 an hour and given 33 work hours per week, an amount that doesn’t come close to their former coal job wages. They must also attend three hours of life skill classes, and six hours of community college. Money to pay crew members comes from sales, contracts, and private and public funders.

BRANDON DENNISON: We are not just creating a job for these folks, many of whom still need a lot of job training, but we’re also enrolling them in the local community college. And then we’re providing three hours a week of personal development to figure out how business works and to be successful.

HARI SREENIVASAN: Chris Farley is now an honors student working toward his associates degree in applied science and agriculture.

CHRIS FARLEY: I can still pay my bills. I’m getting an education that I would never thought I would get. I never thought I would be in school. I never thought — never dreamed I would have a 4.0 GPA.

Entertainment, Music

Dame Judi Dench knows how to spit some hot bars.

The Academy Award-winning actress can now add rapping to her repertoire after she joined British grime star Lethal Bizzle for a lyrical lesson.

In video that LADBible shared online, the 82-year-old learned some of the words to his hit tracks “Celebrate” and “Pow.” The “Victoria and Abdul” star then helped the 33-year-old London-based musician perform both of the songs.”

Economics, Education

The CORE initiative was mentioned on the Marketplace Morning Report today (go to their website to listen to the podcast). It is a free program designed to teach economics in a more accessible and understandable way, using narrative and applying it to real-life situations rather than in the abstract. CORE is an international collaboration of experts in the field—scholars, researchers, teachers.

"CORE is an open-access, interactive ebook-based course for anyone interested in learning about the economy and economics.

CORE is a question-motivated way to learn the tools of economics.

CORE is based on recent developments in economics and other social sciences.

CORE is a community of learners and teachers collaborating to make economics accessible and relevant to today’s problems. Join us."

Please click on the link above to learn more.

Learning, Technology, Excel

“You'll be hard-pressed to find an office that doesn't use Excel for one purpose or another, even as more sophisticated solutions hit the market. Heck, my first business model was done in Excel.
Excel is prized for its perceived simplicity, but that is really a fa├žade, as it is far more capable and complex than it appears.

Sure, filling in cells is a snap, as long as you use the right formatting.
However, failing to follow Excel's rules can lead to panic, especially when seemingly innocuous input shifts into something unrecognizable after you finish with the field. Also, formulas can be tricky, and preparing spreadsheets for mail merge can be downright migraine-inducing.

But there is a way to offset these risks and improve your comfort level; the good old standby, more education.

Now, before you roll your eyes and assume I'm recommending you go back to college, hear me out. You don't have to attend formal classes at a university to get a grip on Excel. There are numerous free resources available that let you learn the program from the comfort of your home.

So, put on your favorite "Netflix and chill" outfit, grab a snack or a tasty beverage, and prepare to understand Excel like you never have before thanks to these 11 places where you can learn Microsoft Excel for free.”

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