Monday, October 31, 2011

The Top 10 Valedictorian Speeches on Youtube

Being the valedictorian of your high school class is a huge honor, and one that you can proudly put on resumes and internship applications for years to come. It does, however, come with a small challenge attached: giving a speech to your entire graduating class, their families, and whomever else might be in the audience. For many a valedictorian, this will be the most nerve-wracking and stress inducing part of graduation.

There are many routes to a successful graduation speech, however, and there really is no wrong way to do it so long as its sincere. Some choose to make their speeches inspiring and moving while others aim to get their fellow students to laugh until their sides hurt. Here, we've collected some of the top graduation speeches on YouTube, so you can hear the inspirational, silly, strange, and even crazy things some valedictorians have chosen to include in their speeches. It may inspire you to write your own amazing, YouTube-worthy speech or if even if you're not so inclined, it will show you that public speaking isn't all that bad.

  1. A Musical Journey Through the High School Experience

    This humorous take on a valedictorian speech will take you through the high school experience with a little musical accompaniment to keep you entertained and more than a few silly quips and quotes. Don't miss out on the hilarious metaphor comparing the dating world to applying to college — it's particularly apt.

  2. Ralph Nguyen's Funny Graduation Speech:

    Awkward, funny, and ultimately sincere, this speech has all the ingredients that make for a truly memorable valedictorian speech. Currently at Stanford, Nguyen showcases the high school experience with wit, solid one-liners, and self-deprecating jokes that kept his audience laughing and engaged.

  3. Booker T. Washington High grad Deonte Bridges' Valedictorian speech

    If humor really isn't your thing when it comes to valedictorian speeches, then check out this inspirational gem from Booker T. Washington High in 2010. In it, Deonte Bridges explains the many hardships he had to overcome to make it where he is today, including the tragic death of his brother. Emotional, heartfelt, and incredibly inspiring, Bridges' speech will make you want to work harder and be a better student.

  4. Alaine Caudle Valedictorian Speech at Doniphan West High School

    It takes some guts to give a speech in front of hundreds of your peers and their families, but it takes even more guts to rap that same speech. And that's just what valedictorian Alaine Caudle does, delivering her speech in rhyme form, so catchy that her classmates can't help to clap along. A truly memorable speech that will have you smiling from start to finish.

  5. East Jermaine High School Graduation Speech

    One part valedictorian speech and one part stand-up comedy routine, this speech is sure to leave you laughing. With references to tassels as "strange cat toys" and encouragement to the staff to play "Freebird" instead of "Pomp and Circumstance", the speech is packed with humor. Yet it's also a sincere look back at the high school years and towards the future that will likely leave you inspired and ready to tackle those much-hyped college years.

  6. Wooten High School Graduation Speech

    This high school grad would like to thank his parents, teachers, friends, and … Chipotle? Throughout his speech, he brings back references to this fast-food burrito place. It sounds bizarre, but somehow it works, with humor and wit, and makes for one unforgettable valedictorian speech.

  7. Pokemon Graduation Speech

    Looking for some inspiration to write your own speech? This example will show you that inspiration can come from, well, anywhere. This valedictorian equates the abilities of Pokemon to that of high school students, starting off as small and weak and growing through experience and practice into formidable opponents. The metaphor may be a silly one, but it does make sense (we promise) and his fellow classmates are unlikely to ever look at Pikachu the same way again.

  8. Autistic Student's Inspirational Graduation Speech

    While Eric Duquette isn't technically a valedictorian (he is the salutatorian), we couldn't resist including this speech on the list. Eric has autism and for the first five years of his life, couldn't say a word. With hard work and help from his parents and his teachers, Eric emerged one of the top students in his high school class. If his speech doesn't put a tear in your eye, you might just have a heart of stone.

  9. Lady Gaga Disney Hall Valedictorian Speech

    It's probably fair to say that this graduating student is a little obsessed with Lady Gaga. Citing her as the real reason he chose to go to Columbia College, he moves through the speech, drawing on her life and her quotes to inspire and entertain his classmates. It begins on a humorous note, but is ultimately inspiring and heartfelt, hitting all the right notes.

  10. Brandon Rizario Valedictorian Speech

    This speech is a pretty good example of how not to give a valedictorian speech. It has its funny moments, but also includes some pretty offensive racial and ethnic slurs that landed this speech giver on the front page of his local paper — perhaps not the kind of recognition his parents would have liked.

Taken From Online College

Why I Wish I Could Plug my Brain Directly Into the Web

When I got my first computer, I thought that what I was getting was a glorified typewriter that came with an enclosed encyclopedia. Now, of course, my former state-of-the-art Commodore 64 is beginning to show some signs of age. All right, I know the world is moving into a 4G framework, but some of the early attractions still remain. The internet is an awesome research tool. The trick now is to filter extraneous material, whereas old-school library research was almost diametrically opposed; students were hard-pressed to come up with enough material to fill up a good report.

The dizzying array of content can be exasperating, to the point where I wish I could just literally plug my brain into the web, and maybe turn my mouth into a printer. What are some of the scenarios where this Calvin & Hobbes transformation would actually be of some positive value? It isn’t as difficult as you might think.


Term Paper – The perfect term papers would be one of the results of direct linkage to the web. No fact would escape, no theory would be left untested, and no conclusion would be unsupported by mounds of data. If I could just make myself get up to go to class.

Banking Snafus – No more lost deposits, no more banking errors. No more hidden charges, nothing buried in fine print. My identity, now valuable because of my ability to plug my brain into the web, would never be stolen.

Mapquest v Google Maps v Yahoo Maps – I’d be able to really pick the best route, the one that gets me from Lexington, Va., to Lexington, Ky., without being routed through Lexington, Al. or Lexington, NC. or Lexington, Mo. or Lexington, Ma. or. . .

FaceBook Scrabble – If I were plugged in I’d know, automatically, all the “Q” words that don’t contain “U”, and I’d be able to block everyone while I set up incredible combinations of high-point letters that fall on every “double” and “triple” score on the board.

Malware P.I. – Nobody, but nobody, would be messing with me if I were tuned in. I’d identify all the bad guys and send them stuff that would literally melt their little hard drives.

Web MD – No cold remedy would be unturned, and I’d be able to self-diagnose every sniffle and ache and pain, without having to lump it all under “fibromyalgia”.

Other Web MD – I would actually be able to diagnose and remedy any bugs and viruses that might try to infect my computer brain with their nasty germs.

Multitask – Yes, I would be able to game to my heart’s content, and still get my work done.

Taken From Internet Service

Sunday, October 30, 2011

10 Literary Trends that Need to go Away

What constitutes "literary trends that need to go away" is purely a matter of opinion, of course, and one of debatable education at that! And so, dear, sweet Internet, do try and curtail any possible combustion over subjectivities. It really is quite silly!

But yeah, these really exist as quite ghastly little numbers, poisoning beloved bookstores and libraries for far too long. Some have wreaked havoc for decades while others — if bibliophiles are lucky, anyways — might blink away as just another disposable fad. Either way though, they all deserve a giant booting so worthwhile reads can take their place.

  1. Lackluster graphic novel/comic book adaptations

    Excellent graphic novels and comics, such as the Pulitzer-winning Maus, stand on their own as classic, essential literary works. So the medium itself isn't the problem here. Neither are lovingly-reproduced adaptations showing the utmost respect for the source material. L. Frank Baum enthusiast Eric Shanower and lively artist Skottie Young collaborated on the Eisner-winning, New York Times-bestselling comic books relaying myriad stories from the Wizard of Oz universe. All the included series preserve the novels' and the most popular musical's whimsy, imagination, wit, characters, atmospheres, themes and all those other lovely literary buzzwords, even if the comic creators did have to play with its progenitors to fit the medium a bit.

    The issue lay with the idea behind graphic novel and comic book cash-ins just because it's the thing to do, paying little heed to the original story, the medium or both. Manga Shakespeare, for example, seems to exist more to bank some sweet-sweet coin off the last vestiges of America's late-'90s, late-'00s lust for Japanese comics. While its intent to make The Bard "more accessible" deserves applause, the frequently uninspired art and cringe-worthy liberties (Hamlet set in a "cyberworld in constant dread of war") do little to promote the author or the diverse medium. It's as if the publishers desired to whip out some manga and added Shakespeare later to push more product. No shame comes taped to playing with the familiar stories — Throne of Blood elegantly welded samurai culture to Macbeth – but half-assing it just to make a quick buck disrespects the original author, comics themselves and (most importantly) the readers.

  2. "Self-help" guides doing more harm than good

    Fun Fact: That The Secret thing the kids were into a few years ago? The whole "law of attraction" thing essentially foists the blame of abuse and suffering onto innocent victims. What a concept! If only displaced genocide survivors knew they could prevent losing their loved ones and homes with THE POWER OF THINKING HAPPY THOUGHTS REALLY, REALLY HARD!!! Self-help guides always have been and always will be a thing, but the entire genre shouldn't be dismissed because some of the most prominent and egregious examples do the exact opposite of what they tout. Chained to the Desk, intelligently — and with empathy — toutlines a very real psychological condition (workaholism) and offers highly accessible advice for patients, their loved ones and healthcare professionals. It's one of the best examples of an effective self-help book doing exactly what it's supposed to do — outline an issue, proffer solutions and back it all up with scientific (not anecdotal!) proof.

    Unfortunately, the pulp getting so heavily pushed doesn't typically possess the same detail, research and psychological intent as Chained to the Desk. Most are relatively harmless, offering generic inspirational bromides in lieu of anything substantial, but causing about as much internal and external damage as a fluffy little down feather. Garbage like the aforementioned The Secret and the ever-so-popular depression "cures" involving nothing but positive thinking, however, pretty much wreak psychological havoc. The former and its ilk blame victims already plagued with trauma, guilt and stigmatization, while the latter refuses to acknowledge the true complexities behind a serious mental health issue. Journalist Barbara Ehrenreich published Bright-Sided to delve deeply into this unfortunate trend, which probably won't dissolve completely anytime soon.

  3. Bandwagon-jumping:

    Twilight was crap, but at least it attempted something a little different by making its vampires sparkle. And its baffling success kicked off the most recent young adult literary trend: angsty teen fantasy-horror-romances. The list starring vampires alone contains enough titles to fill a generous library shelf. Exploiting narrative and trope trends is about as new as the Marianas Trench and probably won't stop happening until never. While some of the shameless rip-offs might actually prove worthwhile reading, the problem here lay more with homogeneity than anything else. With so many trendy tomes crowding stores and libraries, curious readers looking for something completely different might experience a more difficult time finding something suiting their tastes. Plus, focusing too much energy on riding a contemporary's coattails precludes an author's own personal creativity. One wonders how many interesting, innovative stories ended up shunted to the sidelines because publishers preferred trendy opportunism rather than trying to launch their very own trends and innovations.

  4. Self-indulgent celebrity memoirs

    Every once in a while, a celebrity memoir like Steve Martin's heavy, evocative Born Standing Up or even Bruce Campbell's campy and fun B-movie romp If Chins Could Kill prove that the genre isn't an entire fame-whoring waste. Unfortunately, so much of it proves absurdly formulaic and self-aggrandizing (with the requisite mock humility), savvy pop culture critic Nathan Rabin has taken to regularly reviewing and observing the phenomenon. Publishing resources that could go towards brand new, talented writers with something fresh and interesting to say instead supporting the same old "fame totally happened, oh man I lost everything, but yay, spirituality" narrative. These people get (or got) enough attention as it is, earned or not.

  5. "Revolutionary" diet plans

    The PR says "revolutionary," the cynics say "fad," and the medical professionals say "potentially dangerous." Here's the only diet plan anyone needs. Exercise regularly. Practice portion control. Eat a diet comprised primarily of nutritious foods. No book necessary.

  6. Celebrity authors who just can't write

    So that ghastly Snooki wrote a novel, launching a thousand lazy jokes about whether or not she's even literate in the first place. The obviously autobiographical result, A Shore Thing, proved just as vomitously cringe-inducing as one would imagine, and her name actually ended up in a larger font than the book's title. Probably because it wasn't really the novel being sold at all, but the Snooki brand. Lauren Conrad, another bafflingly famous "personality" who arguably doesn't really do much of anything, pulled something similar and ended up on the bestseller list. Twice. Meanwhile, once again, real writers enjoy fewer and fewer opportunities as the marketing machine plows through their art like so many Lawnmower Men. Apparently fame in one area automatically translates to talent in another, even though both "authors" shilled efforts whining about their luxurious lives.

  7. "Women's literature" with reductionist views of women

    Scientific studies reveal a link between romantic comedy consumption and unrealistic — if not outright unhealthy — attitudes towards relationships. So it stands to reason that their bookish equivalent known as "chick lit" might result in a similar effect. Enjoying fluffy, escapist reads carries absolutely no shame, but the problem lay with some of the disconcerting tropes. Like how "women's literature" tends towards problems involving men and shoes, painting its protagonists as shrill, empty-headed, materialistic archetypes instead of real people. Or the fact that so many books ostensibly about the ladies always seems to involve men. Specifically, attracting, keeping and tolerating the fact that they just aren't perfect. The Confessions of a Shopaholic series is probably the genre's most prolific example, though nonfiction like He's Just Not That Into You also egregiously explore similar territory. Literature aimed at a female demographic should continue being a thing, of course! But maybe someday authors concerned with writing unique, interesting, relatable characters instead of insulting their audience by essentially painting them as high-maintenance, boy-crazy bimbos. The ladies deserve much better than that. The Color Purple concerns women's issues and identity, but jettisons the scary credit card debt and griping about boyfriends farting in bed.

  8. Remixing the classics

    Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was funny at first: a fresh, postmodern take on Jane Austen's Regency classic. And then Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters happened. Followed by two more Pride and Prejudice and Zombies sequels, Little Women and Werewolves, Jane Slayre, Little Vampire Women, Mansfield Park and Mummies and many, many more mashups. Although this definitely falls under bandwagonning, the added element of building on popular public domain works adds an extra literary dimension. Yeah, the cheekiness definitely amuses, but the market's become quite saturated with them. Enough already!

  9. Assuming genre fiction has nothing to say

    This article has probably expressed a rather harsh attitude towards genre fare, but the egregiously terrible and/or overtly, unabashedly derivative examples shouldn't speak for all of them. Frequently, a ponderous work like Fahrenheit 451 or Lord of the Rings score sweet syllabus deals, but most end up ignored or outright dismissed. When it comes to science-fiction, for example, Snow Crash says just as much about the human condition and experience as most classics with a grounding in reality — and considering its technological themes (even prediction of services such as Second Life!), eerily resonates today. Rebecca and some Sherlock Holmes books really deliver academically when it comes to mysteries, but how about The New York Trilogy? And so forth. Scratching the surface makes a great introduction to different genres, but try and find examples beyond the tried and true to really diversify the canon.

  10. Dismissing all self-published literature

    With so many celebrity tell-alls, "reality star" "authors," dangerous dieting and dismissive self help reads taking up publishers' time and money, it's no wonder so many writers decide on DIY jobs. Some do it to avoid over-editing and compromising their main ideas. Others just like masturbating their ego over adding "published author" to their resumes, quality levels be damned! And even more think the process far easier than the one involving agents and marketing departments and whatnot. Out of all of these motivations, the only books anyone ever focuses on (of course!) are the narcissism-driven and/or terrible. In reality, self-published writers run the gamut from creative, thought-provoking and talented to those so genuinely frightening and outright offensive linking them here would probably cause the FBI to shut this whole site down.

    So just like books published through more traditional venues. When exploring this brave new technological world that has such diverse people in it, head over to Self-Published Review first. The minds behind the site do an excellent job of de-stigmatizing the process and offer up informed commentary on the excellent, good, bad, weird and absolutely godawful dreck available. More readers should hear them out and perhaps find their next big favorite.

Taken From Accredited Online Colleges

10 Important Items for a Nanny's First Aid Kit

firstaidkit 10 Important Items for a Nannys First Aid KitEvery nanny should have her own first aid kit that travels with her wherever she goes. You can buy first aid kits already prepared and filled, but a nanny has to prepared for injuries to children, in particular. These are ten items that should always be included in a nanny’s first aid kit.

  1. Antiseptic wipes – When there is a scrape or wound, the first step is often to clean the area around the wound to prevent infection. Antiseptic wipes usually come prepackaged and ready to use for this purpose.
  2. Tweezers – A pair of tweezers are an important piece of nanny’s first aid kit. Children seem to find slivers easily and a pair of tweezers are often necessary to grab hold of these tiny bits of wood.
  3. Burn ointment – A burn ointment or spray is recommended for the treatment of mild burns and sunburn. These products can help relieve some of the pain of a burn. Of course, sun block with a high spf rating should always be applied to the children’s skin prior to spending time out of doors, to help prevent sunburn from occurring in the first place.
  4. Instant cold packs – These are a great addition to the traditional first aid kit. No one can keep ice available at all times, but these little packs will work as a temporary solution to help keep down swelling from a bump or other injury that might swell.
  5. Poison control number – When and where children will ingest a substance that isn’t meant to be swallowed cannot be predicted. It is important to always have this number handy to get immediate, professional advice on how to handle a situation of potential poisoning.
  6. Bandaids – A nanny should have several different sizes and types of bandaids. Some of them could be the more kid-friendly kind, with more than the bland flesh colored covering, for those little hurts that are healed best with a smile.
  7. Antibiotic ointment – A scrape or cut should be cleaned with an antiseptic wipe, as mentioned above, but adding some antibiotic ointment underneath the bandaid will add further protection against infection.
  8. Anti-itch cream – For bug bites and mild allergic reactions, hydrocortisone or Benedryl cream should be carried in the first aid kit.
  9. Acetaminophen and ibuprofen – Age appropriate fever reducers and pain relievers should be carried in the first aid kit also. These items do have expiration dates on them, so they should be replaced regularly.
  10. Scissors – These are a much more important part of a first aid kit than many realize, until they need to use them. Many times they are used to cut the clothes off a patient in order to more effectively treat the injury. Scissors are just an all-around handy tool to have for many different reasons.

In addition to these general items, a nanny will also want to carry any prescription items necessary for emergencies with her particular children. This may mean inhalers for asthma sufferers or a bee sting kit for a child allergic to bee stings.

Taken From Nanny Pro

30 Proven Ways to be More Persuasive

Whether we realize it or not, we use persuasive techniques every day to get the things we want by influencing others. While it may seem like some people are born to charm their way through life, persuading others with an enviable ease, the whole shebang at its heart is a science — something that anyone can learn to master with enough practice. If you’re looking to brush up your persuasion skills, whether to get your foot in the door at a business, sell a product, or even get a promotion, here are some tricks and tips that can help give you that desirable silver tongue. Backed up by loads of social science research, these techniques are sure to give you an edge in any negotiation or debate.

  1. Be the first to give

    Reciprocity is a powerful force in our society and one that can be used to sway others. Doing a favor for someone you want to persuade can help to put them in your debt, and may make them more willing to help you out in the future. One study found that waiters who gave diners mints before they placed the bill on the table got consistently more tips than those who didn’t.

  2. Admit your weaknesses

    When others see you as being more trustworthy, they’ll be much more likely to go along with what you’re trying to persuade them to do, whether it’s hire you or buy what you’re selling. It may sound counterintuitive, but studies have confirmed the validity of admitting weakness. One such study sent out identical resumes with different cover letters, with one of the letters admitting a weakness. The honest cover letter-resume combo received many more call backs than the other which focused only on the positives.

  3. Highlight not only what others have to gain, but also what they have to lose

    Most people who are looking for a job highlight only what employers have to gain by hiring them, but research supports the importance of also pointing out what others stand to lose in a deal. Potential losses actually create a bigger impact than potential gains in the decision-making process, so no matter what you’re trying to convince others to do, show both sides of the coin.

  4. Showcase the reactions of others

    Humans are highly social animals, and we often make decisions based on the actions and beliefs of others. For instance, hotel guests are more likely to reuse their towels if they are shown a message stating that many others are already doing this, rather than one that promotes the environmental aspects of reuse alone. For those in the working world, testimonials and recommendations can be powerful factors in helping others to make decisions.

  5. Find common ground

    Likeability is often a key factor in winning people over and studies have shown time and again that one of the key factors in influencing how much a person likes another is how many similarities they share. So if you’re seeking to persuade, take time to find out about the other person’s interests and determine what common ground you two may share.

  6. Get a foot in the door

    Sometimes effectively persuading someone comes in baby steps, and getting them to stay yes to something small can lead to a greater chance that they’ll be on board with a larger idea in the future. A study on this phenomenon found that homeowners who agreed to place a small sign in their windows asking drivers to slow down were much more likely to agree to put a larger, more obtrusive sign in their yards later on than those who were not asked to display the smaller sign.

  7. Use previous opinions and behaviors

    No one wants to be seen as inconsistent or a flip-flopper, and you may be able to use this to your advantage when trying to persuade. Highlight the past opinions and behaviors of others to encourage them to behave in a way that’s consistent with those positions or actions. However, if you want to get people to change from past behaviors, reinforce that circumstances have changed and that it’s natural to have different opinions in the present.

  8. Smile

    You’re not likely to influence anyone unless you have a smile on your face, but that smile has to be authentic. Humans are masters at detecting a fake smile. A genuine smile makes you more likeable, trustworthy, and ultimately more successful at convincing others.

  9. Keep things simple

    Want your writing and speech to be the most persuasive? Keep it simple. Studies have shown that writing is much more persuasive when penned at the eighth grade level, even with those who are capable of understanding much more complex language. Simplicity makes things easy to understand and easy to remember, and is a highly effective tool in getting your way.

  10. Focus on the positive

    Even if there are negative aspects of what you’re trying to persuade others to do, spinning these elements as positive helps create a more overall positive view. Take this study as an example. Researchers created three different ads, one playing up a restaurant’s cozy atmosphere, one simply advertising the restaurant but mentioning its lack of parking spaces, and one combing both the cozy aspect and the lack of parking. The third was the most positively viewed, as the participants felt the lack of parking made the restaurant even cozier.

  11. Sandwich the preferred choice

    When given a choice, people will most often choose the middle-of-the-road option. If you want to influence someone to choose what you want them to, sandwich your choice between two more extreme choices. Chances are good that they’ll pick the middle option.

  12. Employ “because”

    One of the most powerful words in the persuasion arsenal is “because.” Studies have shown that this simple word can make almost any explanation seem rational. In one study, a researcher experimented with jumping the line at Kinko’s. In one case, the researcher said, “Can I jump the line because I’m in a rush?” Ninety-four percent of people complied. In another, the researcher asked “Can I jump the line because I need to make copies?” Ninety-three percent of people complied, despite the reason being the same as everyone else who was waiting in line.

  13. Talk face-to-face

    No matter how tech-dependent we become, face time will always trump e-mail or phone time when it comes to persuasion. It builds personal relationships, trust, and understanding in ways that take much longer to accomplish over long-distance methods of communication. One study found that people who met face-to-face before being asked to come up with a solution to a disagreement were five times as likely to come to a resolution.

  14. Repeat yourself

    When trying to persuade, saying things once sometimes doesn’t cut it. While you want to be concise, research shows that you’ll be most persuasive when you repeat that shorter message over time, in different ways.

  15. Appeal to both logic and emotion

    While we like to think that the decisions we make are always logical, the reality is that even when we think we’re being logical, much of our decision making is based on emotion. Logical arguments are key to persuading others, but you need to make your audience not only think, but feel your message. The right balance will make you infinitely more persuasive.

  16. Make it pretty

    Most people have pretty short attention spans when it comes to listening to any kind of persuasive spiel. That’s why it can be a big help to create visual aids to go along with your presentation. Not only will it draw interest, but help people understand and remember your ideas as well.

  17. Showcase both sides

    You might think that only focusing on the virtues of your point of view would be the best way to bring someone over to your side, but studies show that in actuality, people opposed to an idea are much more likely to be persuaded to an opposing position when they are presented with both sides of an issue. For the best results, present both sides and both pros and cons of your view.

  18. Tell stories

    There is a reason that politicians tell stories about everyday Americans they’ve met on their travels. These kinds of stories are relatable, make an idea or a concept real, and build a rapport, helping sell any platform a politician is running on. Borrow this tactic for your own negotiations for much more persuasive speech.

  19. Never underestimate confidence

    Few things will sell an idea or a product better than confidence. Help bolster your confidence by practicing your pitch ahead of time and preparing for any questions and concerns that could arise. More preparation often means more confidence, and thus, better results.

  20. Use personal touches

    Adding a personal touch to something can often make others more motivated to respond and agree to it. One study showed that adding a simple handwritten sticky note to a questionnaire made recipients twice as likely to respond to it. So going the extra mile can really pay off when it comes to persuasion.

  21. Label people

    Generally, labeling people isn’t a good thing to do, but it can be useful when you’re trying to persuade, provided you keep the labels positive. Labeling people into a social group can actually increase participation, as one study found. Those who were told they were more likely to vote because they were labeled as politically active were actually, after the study, 15% more likely to vote than those who were not labeled. The same tactics may just work with anything you’re trying to sell or promote.

  22. Ask and validate

    You can help improve the persuasiveness of your conversation abilities by employing two tactics. First, ask others about their own goals, beliefs, and desires. Try to understand where they are coming from. Later, repeat this point of view and validate it. This will make others much more likely to listen to what you have to say, build trust, and can be incredibly persuasive.

  23. Use “but” wisely

    In any statement using “but,” listeners tend to focus more on what follows the key word instead of what precedes it. That’s why it’s important to make the final part of any “but” sentence the positive part, as that’s what listeners will remember.

  24. Get commitments to be public, active, and voluntary

    The most effective way to get people to follow through on what they’ve agreed to do after you’ve gone through all that persuading? Make sure the commitment employs these three elements. If nothing else, get commitment in writing, as one study found participants nearly three times as likely to show up when they were required to fill out a form rather than just orally commit.

  25. Employ authority

    People are much more likely to go along with the advice of an expert or an authority than the average layman. Studies have shown that people are much more likely to do something, even if they’re uncomfortable with it, if they’re being encouraged to do so by an authority figure or an expert.

  26. Give people an incentive

    Want to motivate people to go your way? Give them an incentive. Many don’t realize the power that an incentive can have, especially in business. Take this study for example. Researchers advertised a new car wash with incentive cards, one that gave a free wash after seven visits and one that was free after ten, with three free stamps on the card. Those who got the free stamps, despite needing the same amount of paid washes, were much more likely to come back.

  27. Phrase things carefully and thoughtfully

    Sometimes, a simple change in wording can make a statement much more persuasive. Need an example? Compare the old standard, “Operators are waiting, please call now,” to “If operators are busy, please call again.” One implies that the operators aren’t busy, while the other implies a high demand for the product. It’s all about phrasing, and it can make a big difference in the success or failure of your persuasive abilities.

  28. Know your audience

    Decisions are context dependent, so the tactics that work in one situation may not work in another. You need to tailor your technique to your audience by learning a bit about their situation, needs, and desires. Do this wisely, and you’re much more likely to see success.

  29. Mirror those you want to influence

    While you don’t want to outright copy someone else, mirroring behavior and ideas of another person can help you to see more likeable, trustworthy, and accessible. One of the most common ways to do this is to adapt your language, picking up on words, speeds, pitch and volume of the other person’s speech. It takes some practice, but can help to build a strong rapport and ease persuasion.

  30. Create scarcity or urgency

    People are much more motivated to make a decision, and often the one you want them to make, when they are given the impression that they must act now if they want something or that there is a chance that they might not get what they want. That’s precisely why sales terms like “exclusive access” or “limited time” are so effective.

Taken From Online MBA

College Football's 10 Most Hyped Games of all Time

No sport does big games like college football. With just a small handful of matchups per season, one loss can result in the ruination of your quest for a national title — of course, the biggest games typically involve the top teams in the nation. The drama is only heightened if the matchup involves two bitter rivals, such as USC and UCLA, who are battling over regional bragging rights and recruiting territory, the latter of which determines how long a program remains a national power. The games listed below have been the most anticipated in college football history because of the aforementioned reasons. In the context of their eras, each was truly thought to be the "Game of the Century."

  1. Notre Dame 18, Ohio State 13 (1935)

    Considered the original "Game of the Century," the 5-0 Irish faced off with the No. 1 Buckeyes before a then-record crowd of 81,018 in Ohio Stadium — OSU officials said that they could've seated 200,000. It was the first time the two powerhouses had met, so a lofty battle was sure to ensue. Favored by many writers, OSU took a 13-0 lead into the fourth quarter. With fewer than three minutes remaining, down 13-6, Notre Dame drove downfield, setting up a 33-yard touchdown pass from Andy Pilney to Mike Layden. The onside kick was recovered by OSU, seemingly ending the game. But, with the less than a minute remaining, tailback Dick Beltz fumbled the football, and Notre Dame recovered. Pilney completed a 30-yard run, but had to be carried off the field due to a knee injury. Bill Shakespeare, an Ohio native, replaced him, and proceeded to toss the game-winning 19-yard touchdown pass.

  2. Army 0, Notre Dame 0 (1946)

    Ranked No. 1, Army was prepared to fight No. 2 Notre Dame to preserve its spot atop the polls and continue its 25-game winning streak. The game was expected to resemble the classics of years past, as each team featured a high-powered offense and Heisman-caliber players — Army fullback Doc Blanchard won the Heisman the previous season, Army halfback Glenn Davis would win it that season, and Notre Dame quarterback Johnny Lujack would win it the next season. Of course, the game unfolded the opposite as expected, finishing in a 0-0 tie. Remarkably, Blanchard and Davis were held to just 79 yards, an incredible feat by the Notre Dame defense. Despite the fact that both teams finished the season undefeated with a tie, Notre Dame was declared the nation champion by the Associated Press.

  3. Notre Dame 10, Michigan State 10 (1966)

    After suffering through a bit of a down period by their standards, the Irish were poised to once again become college football's preeminent program. Michigan State, the defending national champ, simultaneously held No. 1 and No. 2 spots on the polls, with Notre Dame holding the other No. 1 and No. 2 spots. State impressed early in Spartan Stadium, jumping out to a 10-0 lead in the second quarter, while knocking out Notre Dame quarterback Terry Hanratty. Second-stringer Coley O'Brien stepped in and threw a 34-yard touchdown pass to halfback Bob Gladieux, reducing the margin to a field goal at the half. In the beginning of the fourth quarter, Joe Azzaro's 28-yard field goal tied the game, but, a few minutes later, he missed a 41-yard go-ahead attempt following an interception. When Notre Dame got the ball back with 1:10 remaining, coach Ara Parseghian opted to play it conservatively, run out the clock, settle for the tie, and maintain his team's No. 2 ranking.

  4. USC 21, UCLA 20 (1967)

    Led by Heisman favorite quarterback Gary Beban, UCLA was the top team in the nation according to both polls. The Trojans, with the unstoppable OJ Simpson in the backfield, were the Bruins' biggest potential roadblock on the path to the national championship. A heated cross-town rivalry, the pair battled to a 14-14 tie entering the fourth quarter. As expected, UCLA's star came through — despite being hurt — tossing a touchdown pass to Dave Nuttall, but the extra point was missed. Simpson responded with a career-defining, highlight-reel 64-yard touchdown run in which he weaved through numerous Bruins defenders. The extra point gave USC the lead, which it held until the end. The Trojans — not the Bruins — finished the season ranked No. 1 in both polls.

  5. Texas 15, Arkansas 14 (1969)

    The presence of President Richard Nixon — and a group of accompanying protestors — signified the importance of this "Game of the Century," which pitted the No.1 Horns against the No. 2 Hogs in Razorback Stadium. The winner would capture the Southwest Conference championship, a Cotton Bowl berth, and possibly the national championship. Trailing 14-8 with 4:47 remaining in the fourth quarter, Texas converted on a surprise 44-yard play-action pass from James Street to Randy Peschel on fourth-and-three. Halfback Jim Bertelsen finished the drive with a game-tying touchdown, and the extra point put Texas on top for good. Half of the nation's television sets tuned in to the game on television, a statistic on par with Super Bowl ratings today. Texas beat Notre Dame in the Cotton Bowl and was awarded the national championship.

  6. Nebraska 35, Oklahoma 31 (1971)

    Before the Big 8 became the Big 12 and Oklahoma and Nebraska joined separate divisions, the rivalry between the two accomplished programs produced some historic matchups, the most memorable of which occurred in 1971. Nebraska, the defending national champion, was ranked No. 1, and Oklahoma was ranked No. 2, coasting on a 20-game winning streak. After Oklahoma's first possession of the game, next season's Heisman winner Johnny Rodgers put Nebraska on the scoreboard first with a 72-yard punt return. The Huskers' claimed a 14-3 lead, but relinquished it when the Sooners scored two touchdowns before the half. It was a back-and-forth affair, with Nebraska claiming the final lead on a 74-yard drive that ended with tailback Jeff Kinney's touchdown, his fourth of the game. At the time, it was the highest-rated college football game of all time. Nebraska went on to win its second consecutive national championship with a convincing win over Alabama in the Orange Bowl.

  7. Penn State 14, Miami 10 (1987)

    They were two teams that couldn't have been more different. Miami represented the glitz and glam of its city, and Penn State represented the conservative nature of its coach, Joe Paterno. The buildup during the days before the nation championship game was intense — Miami arrived to the pregame steak fry in army fatigues, and defensive tackle Jerome Brown tried to lead a walkout after John Bruno, Penn State's punter, made a Jimmy Johnson hairspray joke. On the field, the Canes outgained the Nittany Lions by 283 yards, but gave the game away with seven turnovers, five of which were interceptions from Heisman winner Vinny Testaverde. With 3:07 remaining in the game, Testaverde started a drive that encroached into Penn State territory. They made it all the way inside the five-yard line, but a sack pushed Testaverde back, and on fourth-and-goal, he tossed his final interception to linebacker Pete Giftopoulos, his second of the game, completing the upset.

  8. Notre Dame 31, Florida State 24 (1993)

    Bobby Bowden and Lou Holtz were two of the more colorful coaches of the era, a major reason why both were able to attract top-flight talent. Florida State, ranked No. 1, was led by eventual Heisman-winner Charlie Ward, who did everything in his power to guide his team to victory. Down 31-17 with 1:39 left in the fourth quarter, Ward connected with Kez McCorvey on fourth-and-20. A strong defensive stand on the Irish's possession gave the Noles the ball with enough time to tie it. Ward drove the ball to Notre Dame's 14-yard line, but his final pass was knocked down. Previously ranked No. 2 , Notre Dame took FSU's place atop the polls. But that only lasted a week, as Boston College pulled off a memorable upset in South Bend the following Saturday, allowing FSU to go on to win the national championship.

  9. Texas 41, USC 38 (2005)

    At the time, USC was the two-time defending national champion (according to the AP, at least), having reeled off 34 consecutive victories. Led by previous season's Heisman winner Matt Leinart and that season's Heisman winner Reggie Bush, the Trojan offensive was one of the most talented in history — though Texas led the nation in points scored. Although the Horns were the underdog, they boasted an impressive road victory over Ohio State and they demolished most of their Big 12 opponents. The Horns took a 16-10 lead into the half, and the teams alternated leads in the third quarter. The Trojans appeared to pull away in the fourth, when Bush made a 26-yard touchdown run and Dwayne Jarrett caught a 22-yard touchdown pass from Matt Leinart. But the final 6:42 belonged to Vince Young, who first completed a 69-yard drive with a 17-yard touchdown run. The Trojans attempted to end the game — and keep the ball out of Young's hands — by going for it on fourth-and-two, handing the ball off to their star of the game, LenDale White. It failed, and Texas took over their 44-yard line. Young led them downfield, scoring on an eight-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-five, giving the Horns their first national title in 35 years.

  10. Ohio State 42, Michigan 39 (2006)

    Never before had the Ohio State-Michigan rivalry meant so much, as it was the first time the teams were ranked No. 1 and No. 2 at the time of the matchup. The winner would not only claim bragging rights, but a chance to compete for the national championship. Ohio State benefitted from playing in front of the home crowd, and went into the half with a 28-14 lead. Two Buckeyes turnovers in the third quarter enabled the Wolverines to claw back. Mike Hart scored two touchdowns, making the score 35-31, but Heisman winner Troy Smith demonstrated his worth by completing an 83-yard drive with a 13-yard touchdown pass to Brian Robiskie. Michigan, refusing to be put away, responded with an 81-yard drive and touchdown pass from Chad Henne to Tyler Ecker. Exhausted from the physical toll of the shootout, Michigan's defense was unable to stop Ohio State on its final possession, and time ran out. It was an effort that would've made Bo Schembechler, who died a day earlier, proud, and even caused some pollsters to wonder if the Wolverines deserved a second shot at the Buckeyes in the national championship game. As it turned out, Florida was selected instead, and the Gators proceeded to defeat the Buckeyes in Glendale 41-14.

Taken From Online Certificate Programs

Why I Don't Care How Much My Electric Bill is Right Now

Scrooge-like is the usual manner in which which I handle the power in my little palace, but sometimes that approach doesn’t quite work. There are certain special situations in which even a penurious Scotsman might open up the wallet as well as the heart. This cavalier attitude toward a fast-spinning electric meter wouldn’t be an everyday occurrence, but it could happen. Some of the situations, like just being cold, would have to be pretty extreme, and the missus might have to threaten physical violence, but other potential instances, like the arrival Of Mick Jagger & Co., would be no-brainers. Here are a few of the possible candidates to render the electric bill meaningless.

Brrr! – When the thermometer is broken, or at least it seems that way, and the temperature reading is a constant 10 degrees below zero (inside), it is time to break the piggy bank and crank up an Amish heater in every room in the house.

I’m Melting – The same thermometer, turned upside down, could convince me that 110 degrees is uncomfortable enough to turn on the AC, and I might even be swayed to set the thermostat below 85.

Work, Work, Work – If my boss doesn’t care how much power I use to get a job done, then that’s the time I don’t get to care, either.

Alaskan Fish – After shelling out a gazillion dollars for a professionally guided Alaskan fishing trip, and after spending six days freezing on some forsaken back-bays, I plan on buying a cold storage container and freezing the half-pound flounder (the guides all swore it was near-record-size) for at least six months before eating it. I know all my friends will want to visit and take pictures of the lunker.

Meter Runs Backwards – When my solar panels start sending power back to the grid I will have risen above caring about anything else the electric company might want to do.

Who Foots Bill – If I’m not the one who actually pays the electric bill, I might not care so much about the size of the bill.

Super Bowl, World Series (you pick) – If an important game (any event in which score is kept) is on, and the guys are all coming over to watch it on your home-stadium-Jumbo-Tron-megamillion-inch flat-screen, then the meter is banished from the mind.

Rolling Stones Coming – (to my house!) – When that drawing I signed-up for at the local street fair last summer turns out to be real, and not just a gimmick so someone can get my information to sell me vinyl siding, and the Rolling Stones will be coming to my house to play a free four-hour concert. All that is required of me is to give Keith Richards a place to plug in.

Planning to Skip Town – If I were, perhaps, a career bank-robber who was planning to head for ol’ Mexico after my next caper, then I might not care about the damage I could do to my credit rating if I didn’t pay my bill.

I’m sure there are more likely scenarios, but having the Stones over would probably trump them all.

Taken From Compare Electricity Rates

Friday, October 28, 2011

‘El Chapo,’ wanted drug lord, grows stronger in Mexico’s Sierra Madre

By  and Published: October 27

SANTIAGO DE LOS CABALLEROS, Mexico — He was the barefoot son of a peasant who became one of the richest moguls in the world, a billionaire entrepreneur with a third-grade education. He controls a vast drug distribution empire that spans six continents, but he still carries his own AK-47. He is generous and feared, a mass murderer and a folk hero. He is a ghost who has become a legend.
In the fifth year of a terrible war in Mexico that has exhausted the military, consumed the presidency of Felipe Calderon and left more than 43,000 dead in drug violence, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, the founder of the Sinaloa cartel, reigns supreme.
His pursuers compare him to Al Capone, Butch Cassidy or Osama bin Laden. But none of these gets it quite right. Guzman is the single largest supplier of illegal drugs to the United States, and though he is in hiding, he is not on the run.
Ten years after he escaped from prison in a laundry basket on the eve of his extradition to the United States, Chapo is more powerful than ever: His networks are deeper, his territory is expanding, and his supplies of cocaine, marijuana, heroin and methamphetamine are essentially undiminished, according to U.S. and Mexican agents and officials, who were grinding their teeth at the news that Guzman’s 22-year-old beauty queen wife was able to travel in August to a Los Angeles County hospital, where she gave birth to healthy twins.
Calderon, reportedly desperate to nail his nemesis and prove himself a winning commander in chief in an increasingly unpopular war that might cost his party the presidency, has raised the stakes to demand that Chapo be taken down before he leaves office next year.
As a sign of the intensified effort, Mexico now operates at least three full-time capture-kill units solely dedicated to ending the reign of Guzman, said officials with direct knowledge of the groups. These special operations teams — one each in the Mexican army, navy and federal police — have been vetted to work alongside agents with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, who have supplied detailed intelligence about Guzman’s possible locations.
Calderon and his top law enforcement officials say they have come close to getting Guzman — within an hour or two — several times in the past two years.
Despite such assertions, Calderon has been dogged by perceptions among many Mexicans that his administration, especially his military, has gone easy on Guzman’s cartel, or even that it’s helping him, while it goes after his biggest rival, Los Zetas, a rising criminal power in the country.
“He’s protected by the government,” said Javier Valdez, a top editor of the Sinaloa-based journal Rio Doce, adding that he doesn’t think any urgent effort is underway to find Chapo.
Elusive mountain ‘lord’
Guzman, one of the most wanted criminals in North America, has proven impossible to catch — even as U.S. drones penetrate Mexican airspace, and Mexican security forces, supplied with sophisticated U.S. eavesdropping equipment, scan the ether for the sound of his encrypted voice. His pursuers suspect he is most likely in a mountain stronghold here in the Sierra Madre range of northwest Mexico, a hardscrabble backwater of Mexican hillbillies that gives new meaning to the words “poor” and “remote.”
Guzman was indicted on drug conspiracy charges in the United States, with the Justice Department putting a $5 million price on his head. Rumors of his whereabouts float through Interpol offices, Caribbean honky-tonks and Mexico’s Federal Police intelligence bunker, with recent unconfirmed sightings in a Buenos Aires condo, a Veracruz seafood joint and the streets of London.
“Of the Mexican drug trafficking organizations, the Sinaloa cartel has the broadest reach into Europe, Australia and Asia,” DEA intelligence chief Rodney Benson said in testimony before Congress this month.
Unlike the 1980s Colombian cocaine king Pablo Escobar, to whom he is often compared, Guzman is not flamboyant — or reckless. He is the hands-on CEO of Cocaine Inc., and, like fellow billionaire Warren Buffett, he is known to drive himself around in a battered pickup truck.
In the mountain towns of Sinaloa and the Golden Triangle region that is the Napa Valley of Mexico’s marijuana and heroin poppy industry, Guzman is a godfather figure. Locals don’t call the 5-foot-6 Guzman by his popular moniker “El Chapo,” or Shorty, but speak of him in whispers as “El Senor,” meaning “The Man” or “The Lord.”
At the outdoor market here in Santiago de los Caballeros, where the arrival of an outsider draws wary stares from young men with brand-new pickups and walkie-talkies, the CDs of narcocorrido bands venerate “The Lord of the Mountains” with songs such as “I am Joaquin.”
I am Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman
The one the government hunts and wants to lock up
They’ve hurt me before, but they should know
I'm not going back to that lonely jail cell
Life and freedom are too beautiful for that . . .
Facundo Sillas, a blue-eyed, 72-year-old cowboy in a white sombrero, said life in Guzman’s domain wasn’t bad as long as one followed El Senor’s simple dictum: “Either you behave,” Sillas said, “or you end up in a hole.”
As he spoke, sitting in the shady central plaza of Badiraguato, the county seat, another man interrupted to interrogate a Washington Post reporter. “What are you doing here? Are you a DEA agent?”
The message? Scram.
“You’ll never get ‘El Chapo’ ”
“If I were a betting man, I would say Chapo is not too far from where he was born. I have been in those mountains, and you could live there for centuries and never be found,” said Michael Vigil, former chief of international operations for the DEA.
In 2009, Hector Gonzalez, the Roman Catholic archbishop in neighboring Durango, announced that Guzman was “living nearby, and everyone knows it except the authorities.” Soon after, the bullet-ridden bodies of two Mexican military officers, suspected to have been working undercover, were found near the dirt-floor village where Gonzalez said Guzman was living. A message beside the bodies read “You’ll never get ‘El Chapo,’ not the priests, not the government.”
According to a 2009 diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks, Mexico’s defense secretary, Guillermo Galvan, told Dennis C. Blair, then the Obama administration’s director of national intelligence, “that Chapo commands the support of a large network of informers and has security circles of up to 300 men that make launching capture operations difficult.”
Chapo moved around among 10 to 15 isolated ranches in the mountains, Galvan said. The arrival of any large military or police convoy on the single-track dirt roads would be quickly reported to Guzman by locals, whose loyalty has been secured through bribery and intimidation — and their deep aversion to outsiders and the government.
A helicopter assault is equally problematic. “He’d have 10 minutes of warning, and, poof, he’d be gone,” said a senior U.S. law enforcement officer in Mexico. Guzman’s men are also thought to wield an arsenal that includes shoulder-mounted surface-to-air missiles.
A drug boss’s long innings
Guzman turned 54 this year, which is ancient for a drug lord in a brutal culture that believes it is better to live like a king for one year than grovel for a lifetime.
Drug-war scholars say Guzman’s Sinaloa cartel has benefited from Mexican security forces’ aggressive pursuit of the Zetas, because limited resources do not allow the forces to confront every criminal group with the same intensity. Although Guzman’s earnings are thought to derive primarily from drug trafficking, the business model of the Zetas relies heavily on kidnapping, human trafficking and extortion.
“Chapo moves a kilo of cocaine over the U.S. border practically every 10 minutes, so he doesn’t need to extort anyone,” said Mexican national security expert Raul Benitez.
Guzman’s dirty work tends to be less newsworthy.
The discovery this year of Mexico’s biggest mass graves in two regions of the country was a case in point. When authorities recovered 193 bodies from crude pits in a Zetas-controlled area in the northern border state of Tamaulipas, the crimes raised an international uproar, as many of the victims appeared to be innocent bus travelers and U.S.-bound migrants. The Mexican government flooded the region with troops and took dozens of Zetas suspects into custody.
In contrast, just a few weeks later, investigators found more than 220 decomposing bodies buried in the state of Durango, Guzman’s territory. That discovery drew little attention because the victims were said to be his rivals.
Although the Mexican government touts its efforts in the lowering of homicide rates in the border cities of Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez, many experts in Mexico say a major reason for the diminished body count is that Guzman’s forces are now in control there, rather than any security improvement wrested by Mexican authorities.
Adding to suspicions that Calderon’s administration has put more energy into going after the widely despised Zetas, whose defeat would bring greater political benefits, are allegations by Vicente Zambada, the son of Guzman’s top crime partner, Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada. The younger Zambada is facing federal drug-trafficking charges in Chicago. He claims DEA officials have been giving the Sinaloa cartel a free hand to smuggle narcotics in exchange for information about rival drug lords. DEA agents acknowledge meeting with Zambada but deny any promise of immunity.
Then there’s the possibility that removing Guzman will unleash an even bigger bloodbath across Mexico, as rivals rush to fill an enormously lucrative power vacuum. U.S. drug agents warily agree. “It will be a zoo,” one said.
Taken From The Washington Post

The 30 Most Social Media Savvy Alumni Groups

Colleges across the nation are reaching out to current and prospective students through social media, helping them learn more about campus events, programs, and what the school can offer. More and more schools are realizing, however, that social interaction with students shouldn’t end once they graduate. Many alumni groups have started taking advantage of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube to keep in touch with students long after they’ve left campus. These tools not only make it easier for alumni groups to do a little fundraising, but can also be a great way for former students to stay in touch and make valuable connections that could help them find work in their post-graduation years.

While nearly every college alumni group has a social media presence, some have gone above and beyond in their efforts to connect with alumni. Here, we’ve highlighted some of the most savvy alumni groups out there (in no particular order) to showcase the true power social media can have in keeping students connected, engaged, and showing their school spirit long after graduation.

  1. DePaul University Alumni & Friends

    DePaul’s alumni society has taken advantage of the many social media offerings out there. They’ve been especially successful on LinkedIn, where the group currently has 12,708 members and reports with rapid monthly growth on the site ever since 2008 when they joined. Students and alumni can use the site to share information about jobs, network, and keep in touch — and many do. The alumni group has also created a presence on Twitter (@depaulalumni) with 1,874 followers, and has multiple pages on Facebook, including both a basic alumni site as well as a page called DePaul Alumni Sharing Knowledge (or ASK), an especially cool application of alumni social networking that lets current students more easily connect with graduates in their field of interest.

  2. MSU Alumni Association

    MSU’s alumni association has leveraged a wide range of tools to help connect alumni. Currently, the school uses LinkedIn and Twitter to share job leads with alumni and offers up advice on the job hunting process through YouTube. MSU has also been acute in understanding that older alumni might not be as social media-savvy as their younger counterparts, and the Alumni Career Services office gives tutorials and presentations about how to use social media at a variety of alumni events. While the group has a fair number of followers on Facebook (just under 5,000) and Twitter (@MichiganStateAA with 2,470), where it has really shone is on LinkedIn — through which there are over 32,500 members connected.

  3. UC Santa Barbara Alumni Association

    UC Santa Barbara’s alumni group is ridiculously well-represented in social media. The alumni association’s website lists hundreds of groups on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, MySpace, and LinkedIn that former students can look at and join, ranging from sporting groups to specific majors. The group’s main profiles on the big social networking sites have tens of thousands of followers, making them incredibly useful places for alumni to connect and learn about the school. In addition to the usual social sites, UCSB’s alumni group also has a Flickr stream, filled with pictures from alumni events, the campus, reunions, athletics, and other things on campus.

  4. K-State Alumni Association

    While Kansas State’s alumni group has a solid presence on a number of social networking sites, the group has developed networking capabilities on its own website as well. Alums can create a profile which allows them to find alumni groups in their area, search for former students, and get access to the monthly newsletters from the group. For those who aren’t interested in joining yet another social network, the school also has popular profiles on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter (@KStateAlumni). Perhaps one of the coolest, though not their most popular offering is a YouTube channel, where alumni can watch sports coverage and hear about campus events.

  5. The University of Iowa Alumni Association

    The University of Iowa’s alumni website has a special page dedicated just to promoting the school’s presence on social networks, as well as buttons to tweet, share, or like just about any content on their site. One of the main ways the group keeps in touch with alumni and keeps them engaged is through their Iowa Insider blog, where the UI Alumni Association staff share information about programs, events and the school. UI’s alumni group also has a very active Facebook page, where users post their own Hawkeye-related photos and content, as well as several profiles on LinkedIn and a regularly updated Twitter account (@uIowaAlumni).

  6. The MIT Alumni Association

    One would hope that a school known for being tech-savvy would have an alumni group that was leveraging the latest technologies to connect former students. Not to worry. MIT’s alumni group has been pretty good about branching out when it comes to social media. Former students can keep up with events at the school through the @MIT_alumni Twitter feed, post pictures and read interesting links on their Facebook page, or get some helping finding work through LinkedIn. Alums can also learn more about MIT, other alumni, and events on campus through the group’s Slice of MIT blog.

  7. Emory Alumni Association

    Emory’s Alumni Association is doing a great job keeping students connected through social media. They maintain a regularly updated blog called EAAvesdropping, have a Facebook page, a Twitter feed (@EmoryAlumni), and a LinkedIn profile. In addition to the social networking standards, Emory’s alumni association sometimes holds online chats with career coaches, allowing alumni can phone in and share ideas and career resources. These chats can later be downloaded as a podcast through iTunes. Even cooler, however, is the school’s mobile app, which not only provides resources for current students, but for alumni as well, allowing former students to connect through the school’s own online social network, EagleNet.

  8. Caltech Alumni Association

    Students who want to keep up with what’s going on at Caltech, have a number of options, as the school’s alumni association is all over social media. The biggest network for the school’s alumni association can be found through LinkedIn, where there is not only a main alumni group, but several others for specific majors and regions. On Facebook, the association maintains both a public alumni page and one exclusive to former students. Additionally, they have a presence on Twitter at @caltechalumni as well as a Flickr page where alums can share and browse photos.

  9. The Aggie Network

    Texas A&M’s alumni group has its own Facebook-like social site, MyAggieNetwork, where students can create a profile and link up with other alumni. There are also several subdivisions of the site, allowing students to engage with campus groups within their specific interests or careers. For students who don’t want to use the in-house network, there are a wide range of other options. The group maintains a budding LinkedIn group, an incredibly popular Facebook page (16,178 fans and growing), and two Twitter feeds, found at @AggieNetwork and @TexasAggie_mag. If students still need more, they can head to the alumni YouTube channel to watch videos about a wide range of campus events.

  10. OSU Alumni Association

    Oregon State University’s alumni association is another group that’s built its own social media site. Called Powered By Orange, the site allows alums to create a profile and network with other former students. Through the site, alumni can also use a Google Maps powered section to post their location, career, graduation year, and degree and to see where other students now call home. OSU alumni who want to show their school spirit can head the association’s Flickr stream to post photos of them with Benny, the school’s mascot. For those who need more, there is also a Facebook page, Twitter feed (@poweredbyorange), LinkedIn profile, and an RSS feed for the associations’ blog.

  11. Texas Exes

    The University of Texas at Austin’s alumni group is a brand in itself, known on the web as Texas Exes. One of the most impressive applications of their social networking presence is their photo sharing site, built just for the group, that allows alumni to share photos of themselves demonstrating the school’s signature "Hook ‘em, horns!" hand gesture, along with a brief bio. Former students can also connect through Facebook (with a whopping 37,193 fans at present), Twitter, and LinkedIn as well as finding fun content about the school through YouTube and Flickr accounts.

  12. Stanford Law School Alumni

    Stanford’s alumni group for their law school has created this own very impressive social networking site for alumni and current students. Not only can current and former students use the site to network, but it also offers access to legal wikis that alums can collaboratively change. The network has been so successful that the school plans to expand it further in coming years. The school is also quite connected outside of its own site, offering alumni the chance to keep up with the school and connect through Facebook, Twitter (@stanfordlaw), YouTube, LinkedIn, and a SLS blog.

  13. UCI Alumni Association

    The University of California-Irvine has taken a novel approach to getting alumni connected. The school created its own publicly available widget that pulls content from the school’s website. Alumni and fans of the school can access the widget through their phones or even post it on their Facebook profiles, which has helped the school meet some of its fundraising goals. The UCIAA also connects former students through profiles on facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, with a growing number of followers.

  14. BU Alumni Association

    Former grads from Boston University have a number of ways that they can keep in touch with other alumni through the school’s association. Students can register for and use the BUAA Online Community or simply head to the alumni association’s Facebook page, which current has 44,133 fans — a pretty sizeable network. There is also a pretty big following on LinkedIn, with 17,296 members in the group, and on Twitter (@bualumni), with 7,900 followers. Those numbers put the school’s alumni association in the top tier of popularity, as few other schools can boast as many fans, followers, or members.

  15. Notre Dame Alumni Association

    One of the biggest alumni associations out there, Notre Dame’s former students are staying connected when it comes to social media. Through the alumni association’s webpage, students, both current and former, can create a web profile, search for other alumni, and network amongst themselves. Of course, this isn’t the only option to connect with old college friends. Alumni can get job leads through the school’s LinkedIn alumni group, which has 23,022 members and growing. The school has also created a solid Facebook following, with over 7,700 students connecting through the alumni page.

  16. The Ohio State University Alumni Association

    Offers some pretty amazing ways for alumni to stay connected over the web. One of the coolest is an iPhone app that allows alumni and students to check in on a worldwide map, tracking game-watching parties and activities nationwide. Through the application, former students can also access the school’s Facebook page or even earn badges. The alumni group has also created popular connections on Facebook, Twitter (@OhioStateAlumni), and YouTube.

  17. Penn State Alumni Association

    Penn State Alumni Association’s webpage proudly announces their social networking connections front and center — and with good reason. The school’s alumni network on LinkedIn has 33,737 members to date. Their Facebook page is also a popular destination and many alumni post photos, memories, and links. The Alumni Association also shares photos through Flickr, updates alumni through Twitter (@PennStateAlums) and maintains a blog called The Penn Stater that students can follow through any RSS reader.

  18. Alumni Association of Princeton University

    The AA of Princeton U’s website offers a diverse collection of resources to help former students connect. There are TigerNet discussion groups, an alumni career network, and regularly updated streams about career and networking events. The school also gives alumni and current students access to two mobile apps, including one just for alumni reunions, making it easier for them to find information, maps, videos, and more. The school also engages students through Facebook, @princetonalumni on Twitter, and through several groups on LinkedIn.

  19. Nazareth College Alumni & Friends

    Through Nazareth College Alumni & Friends, former students can share photos, find classmates, get updates about events, and more. The alumni association is connecting in other ways as well, including a program to improve reunion attendance. The group created emails that encouraged alumni to forward information to other alums, with built-in maps that allowed them to track where the email went as it was forwarded on. In addition to these efforts, the group has created profiles on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Flickr, and YouTube.

  20. Cal Alumni Association

    With its own blog and @cal alumni community, the Cal Alumni Association’s website is a great social networking resource in itself, but it’s certainly not the only way former UC Berkeley students can connect. They’ve built a huge community of alumni on LinkedIn, with over 26,100 members to date. In addition, alumni can talk and share resources through Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and YouTube. And they may be unique in having their own foursquare account, checking in and providing information at some of the most well-known locations on campus.

  21. Brown Alumni Association

    Brown’s AA offers students some great resources for getting career help after graduation. First, there is BRUnet, the school’s career network, which helps alumni connect and network. The school also has a sizeable network on LinkedIn for students to use, with over 8,600 members. Of course, the Alumni Association reaches out to students who don’t need job help as well, with a very active Facebook page that has made major strides in fund-raising efforts. Perhaps a more fun take on alumni networking is the school’s Facebook page for the iconic Carrie Tower, which has the structure sharing info about campus.

  22. Colgate University Alumni

    Colgate University’s AA has branched out to all the usual places when it comes to connecting with social media, including accounts on Twitter (@colgatealumni) and Facebook. The group has also used social media in more novel ways, integrating Facebook Connect into its donation process and by uploading photos to its Flickr account for former students to look at and comment on. For students who need more content, the AA also uploads content to YouTube and iTunes.

  23. USC Alumni Association

    The USC AA boasts some pretty impressive numbers when it comes to online social networking. Their Facebook page has 12,357 fans and their LinkedIn group offers students a chance to connect with over 24,023 alumni. These, along with Twitter, YouTube, and Flickr accounts, offer students a wide range of ways to connect and the school is making the most of it. What is perhaps more impressive is the number of regional, international, generational, and cultural divisions the group offers. There are dozens of more specific groups alumni can connect with on Facebook and Twitter, making it easier than ever to find alums and perhaps job opportunities in their area.

  24. Auburn Alumni Association

    The Auburn AA has its own social site called the ALUM Network. Through it, alumni can search for one another, network, and keep in touch. Outside of their own resources, Auburn’s social media efforts have expanded to include Facebook, Twitter (@AUAlumniAssoc), and LinkedIn. They also share a wide range of content with current and former students through YouTube and Flickr. Sports fans will also appreciate the Auburn Clubs network, which makes it simple to find alumni in just about any part of the U.S.

  25. Purdue Alumni

    Purdue’s alumni group employs a wide range of social networking tools to promote alumni events and get current and former students connected. The group’s website hosts photos of recent events, as well as providing links to smaller subsets of the alumni group and alumni clubs. Alumni can also stay in the loop with all Purdue news through an RSS feed or tweets rom the@PurdueAlumni Twitter account. Like most groups, they also use Facebook and LinkedIn, building sizeable networks (their Facebook page boasts a whopping 18,277 fans).

  26. GW Alumni

    Alumni of George Washington University can use their alumni association’s website to do some social networking, with features to connect with Facebook, search for other students, or even get career advice. Outside of the home site, alums can follow any alumni events feed through RSS to stay up-to-date on things that might interest them. They can also connect on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Flickr, and YouTube, covering just about every social media base out there.

  27. Ohio University Alumni

    Ohio University’s alumni group has created a well-rounded collection of resources for social network-savvy alumni to use. Their LinkedIn group boasts 14,308 members, with 9 subgroups for those in particular fields or who live in certain areas. Alumni association staff member Yumi Choe also regularly updates a Twitter feed for alumni found at @OHIOAlumni. And, of course, the AA maintains an active Facebook presence. The OU alumni group hasn’t forgot about other social sites, however, and also shares videos of campus events through YouTube.

  28. Georgia Tech Alumni Association

    Grads of Georgia Tech looking for job or career help can take advantage of some of the great social network resources their alumni association has built. On LinkedIn, the alumni group has joined nearly 18,000 grads and 6,079 are fans of their Facebook page. For those who love content more than building connections, the group uses Flickr and YouTube to share photos and videos that might be of interest to alumni.

  29. Columbia Alumni Association

    Columbia University’s alumni group makes use of all the social networking standards including Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Twitter, with a couple of interesting additions. The group has also reached out to alums through the social site MeetUp, letting them know about events on campus or in their regional areas. Alumni shouldn’t just expect to find information on the main alumni group, however, as there are hundreds of subgroups and clubs listed, many of which maintain their own Facebook or Twitter accounts.

  30. Wisconsin Alumni Association

    Former Badgers can visit the WUAA’s to share photos, find friends, and explore some of the many ways the group is making use of social media. Currently, the AA has pretty decent followings on Facebook and LinkedIn, allowing former and current students to connect easily and through a variety of avenues. News and updates can be found through the group’s Twitter feed (@buckybadger) and fun videos and photos of campus events are shared through Flickr and YouTube.

Taken From Best Colleges Online