Five Languages that look great on a resume

Five Languages that look great on a resume

by Jessica Thiefels

According to the latest trends, the following four languages are the most impressive in a resume:

Chinese

To increase your chances of landing a job in the information technology sector, focus your attention on learning Chinese. It’s the most widely spoken native language in the world, according to Languages of the World, with 1.2 billion native speakers across three countries. It’s also a driving force behind the Easy Programming Language (EPL), the world’s largest non-English based computer coding system.

In addition, China is a global game-changer in the digital industry, so speaking the language will make you an asset to employers who communicate frequently with Chinese companies.

Spanish

To increase your chances of landing a job in the healthcare sector, focus your attention on learning Spanish. This language is second only to English in the United States, with more than 40 million speakers nationwide.

Given the surge in growth within the Latin American and Hispanic populations, the demand for nurses, doctors and other medical practitioners who speak their native language has risen too—particularly within the border states of Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California.

Arabic

To increase your chances of landing a job in the telecommunications sector, focus your attention on learning Arabic. This language is becoming increasingly prevalent among media outlets around the world, as most of today’s sociopolitical trends originate in the Middle East.

To cover these breaking current events, journalists often report on-location in Syria, Lebanon and other Arab nations, so knowing the language will enhance your impact as a foreign correspondent.

German

To boost your chances of landing a job in the commercial marketing sector, focus your attention on learning German. This language is prominent on the global investment and trade circuits, and Kiplinger statistics have found that a median salary potential among German speakers outweighs all other foreign languages in Corporate America. In fact, the average marketing manager with a competent grasp on German is projected to gross an annual six-figure income.

Portuguese

To land a job in the hospitality sector, focus your attention on learning Portuguese. This language is spoken by more than 200 million Brazilians who represent one of the top-five nations that boosts America’s economy through tourism.

For example, Walt Disney World—often considered the “gold standard” in the hospitality industry—generates a large portion of its revenue just from Brazil, so knowing Portuguese offers you the advantage in a guest services position.

If you’re looking for a strategy for polishing up that resume and urging those hiring managers to take a second glance, adding “bilingual” to your credentials section just might be the job clincher. The professional development skills you’re bound to acquire from studying a foreign language can impact the whole duration of your career, from recruitment to retention and every promotion in between.

Questions? Let’s chat!

info@weilcollegeadvising.com

A ROAD TRIP THROUGH THE ADMISSION PROCESS

A ROAD TRIP THROUGH THE ADMISSION PROCESS

by Rick Clark, from Georgia Tech

When you apply to college, especially one that receives far more applications than they have seats available and uses a holistic and layered admission review, waiting is inevitable. If I were you, I’d definitely be asking, “What is taking so long?!” Don’t worry. I’m not just going to sigh and tune you out. Read on.

THE APPLICATION LEAVES HOME:

You hit submit. Now what?

MERGING LANES:

At this point, the college matches supporting documents to your application in their database. Supporting documents includes everything from transcripts to letters of recommendation to test scores. The take home message is they’re ensuring your file is complete so they can begin their review.

If it is incomplete, your admission portal will show exactly what you are missing and you will start getting emails/texts/calls/owls about that. (By the way, if you are a senior reading this blog and not checking your email, stop reading this blog and go check your email!)

CARPOOL:

At this point, it depends on the system or style of application review a school has decided to use, but generally speaking the person who visits your school or is in charge of recruiting your city or state will be the one initially responsible for reading your application. At many colleges, file review begins once it’s complete, while others wait until all applications for that round have been received. Seeing all applications from a particular high school allows counselors to understand how your grades, rigor, trends compare to your peers in the applicant pool.

For example, one student receives a 91 in AP World History. That school adds 7 points of “weight” to all AP grades. While an admission officer would already know the A range extends from 90-107 based on the school profile and transcript, reading all applicants from a particular high school in the same day allows them to also see applicants who may have 102s or 104s. What does this mean for you?

  • Holistic review is both individual and comparative, rather than simply formulaic.
  • In a weighted system, two students can both have “4.0s” that look very different (in this example, 17 points).
  • This does not mean the student with the 104 is automatically getting in. Again, holistic means holistic. The entire goal of these processes is to gain and keep perspective, rather than to draw hard lines or apply a purely academic formula.

In some cases, initial review is conducted by a single individual. That counselor reads your application in its entirety, makes an admission decision recommendation and passes it along to another team member (often one slightly more experienced/senior on the team). Think about this as checks and balances. Schools want to be sure multiple people read your file and have a chance to offer their opinion on your candidacy for admission.

In other cases, schools employ Committee Based Evaluation or Team Based Review. The concept here is a simultaneous and synchronous review. Two team members read your application at the same time. One will evaluate you from a purely academic standpoint by reviewing transcripts, testing, and teacher and counselor recommendations. They take a deep dive into your course choice, grade trends, and how you have performed within your school’s context. The second reader tries to understand how you’ve used your time outside the classroom, as well as the impact and influence you’ve had on others through working, clubs, sports, or other pursuits. That staffer also reads your essays, short answer responses, and, depending on the college, may also read recommendations.  Each staff member makes individual recommendations based on their evaluation. They could both agree to admit or deny, or there could be a split decision.

TRAFFIC JAM:

“Are we there yet?”

No! We are still only mid-mirror.

“But the driver and passenger both agree to head a certain direction.”

True. However, there are other cars on the highway, so now most files sit for a while.

“What does a while mean?”

You know how your Waze App has varying levels of red for traffic? Yea. Kind of like that. Sometimes it’s a dark pink, and often the time just keeps adding up.

“Why?”

Because admission decisions at selective institutions (those invariably using holistic review) are both individual and collective. Students are evaluated based not only on their performance in their school setting, and the other students in their high school (see example above), but also in comparison to the entire applicant pool.

Now counselors move on to that work. They begin reading other applications from schools, cities, or states they are responsible for, and they also help the rest of the team complete their first round of review.

As an example, if a college receives 20,000 applications in their Regular Decision round and has on average 10 pairs of people reading 50 applications a day, five days a week, it would take eight weeks to complete the first round of review. But you know life (and road trips) are never going to be that simple. There are holidays, sick days (for staff or their own children), as well as other recruitment responsibilities. Throw in some technology challenges, a fire alarm triggered by someone microwaving fish in tinfoil, and a good old snow day or two and you’re easily pushing 10 weeks.

“Why don’t you just hire more staff?”

Please call me on a secure line.

RECALCULATING….RECALCULATING….

Next, schools move into “committee review,” or “cohort review,” or “class shaping.” Deans, directors, and VPs provide additional direction about institutional priorities and empower larger groups of staff to review applications on both an individual and comparative basis. Typically, in this phase discussions are informed by specific targets. Do we have enough admits from certain counties, states, or nations? How are particular majors doing in terms of their specific enrollment targets? Geography, academic major, ROTC, special talents, first generation, financial need, demonstrated interest may all come into play. Some or all of these student attributes, and potentially many more, are discussed as applications move through the committee review stage.  If faculty engage in the admission process, this is a logical time frame in which they’ll be consulted or asked to weigh in on student fit to their programs or the institution overall.

At some colleges, all files are reviewed again in committee, while at others only those who had a split decision in the first round enter this phase of review. Many colleges make admission offers to applicants about starting their academic career on a different campus, abroad, or in an earlier or later semester than the one for which they initially applied, which means committees are also attempting to hit targets for those institutional needs.

How long does this take? Well, that depends on the number of applications, the number of staff, and how bad flu is that year, but it usually takes several weeks. These are often tough and complex decisions that involve more people in the room weighing a series of macro factors and goals.

RE-ROUTING:

We are almost to the far-right side of the mirror. Decision release day is approaching. Your calendar is marked and so is ours. Everyone is nervous. At this point, deans and directors are consulting with their data analysts to gauge their mathematical models for “yield” (the number of admitted students who actually choose to enroll).

Let’s say a college has a yield rate of 34% (this is actually quite common nationally). The dean knows her president, board, and faculty are counting on a class of 1,400. The current number of admits after committee is 5,000, which would result in a class of 1,700 students. The dean knows about 100 of the students who deposit do not ultimately enroll (this is known as “melt”). With residence halls and dining halls built for 1,400 new students, she is over by 200.

Accounting for yield and melt, a small group of senior-level admission folks take on the unenviable task of further reducing the number of admits (in our example by about 600+ students). This pushes previously slated admits to the waitlist, and as a result has a cascading effect on both the number and percentage of students who end up with that particular decision.

OWNER’S MANUAL:

Every road trip and car system varies. I’ve tried to provide a general overview of how colleges review applications. If you want the full details of the operating system from a school you’re considering, check their website or consult one of their admission counselors. As an example, Georgia Tech made a video to illustrate our process.

BUCKLE UP! 

I’m sorry this process takes so long (I’m also sorry this blog is so long). I don’t like to wait either. In fact, I don’t think I’ve never heard anyone say, “You know what I really love… waiting.”

If you are a junior just entering the college admission experience, I hope this gives you some insight and questions to ask as you consider specific colleges. When you visit or talk to one of their representatives, listen for their explanation of the process. Speak up and ask questions if it is not clear. You are going to put a lot of time and effort into applying. It is your right and responsibility to understand how they make decisions, as well as a clear timeline in which they do that.

If you are an applicant still waiting for the car to pull into the driveway, I hope you will take a holistic approach to waiting. Like admission officers, your goal is to keep perspective. You only have one senior year. Enjoy it. Go to games, hang out with friends, take trips, and have fun! Nobody ever looks back and says, “I wish I stressed out more and wished away the spring of my senior year in high school.” (Kind of like nobody says, “I want to marry someone mean,” or “I prefer to overpay for my meals.”)

Look around you this week in school.  I am asking you to fight the temptation to look to far ahead. Slow down. Remember this–  most of the folks you see every day now will not be around (in person) at this time next year. Give them a hug. Grab a meal together. Go see a concert. Just enjoy being together.

Ultimately, it is the things we have to wait for in life are the ones that shape us the most. You will come to the end of the mirror soon enough. Take in the sights. Share the road. Enjoy the ride!

Written by Rick Clark

Georgia Tech – Admissions

Net Price Calculators: Focus on Net Price, Not Sticker Price

Net Price Calculators: Focus on Net Price, Not Sticker Price

by Big Future

College may seem expensive. But the truth is that most students pay less than their college’s sticker price, or published price, thanks to financial aid. So instead of looking at the published price, concentrate on your net price — the real price you’ll pay for a college.

What Is Net Price?

Your net price is a college’s sticker price for tuition and fees minus the grants, scholarships, and education tax benefits you receive. The net price you pay for a particular college is specific to you because it’s based on your personal circumstances and the college’s financial aid policies.

Colleges you thought were out of your reach may turn out to be affordable.

What Is a College Net Price Calculator?

A college net price calculator is a free online tool that gives you a personalized estimate of net price.

Check out net price calculators for hundreds of colleges.

Why Are Net Price Calculators Important?

By providing personalized estimates, net price calculators offer a more informed way of deciding which colleges you can afford. Knowing your net price:

  • Gives you the best idea of what you’ll pay for a particular college
  • Makes comparing colleges easier
  • Widens your choice of colleges so you can focus on fit instead of price

How Do Net Price Calculators Work?

A college’s net price calculator asks you questions about your family’s finances and may also ask you questions about your GPA, test scores, activities, and other things that may qualify you for financial aid. It uses your answers to figure out how much money in grants and scholarships the college is likely to award you. It then subtracts that number from the full cost of attendance to estimate how much the college might really cost you.

Many net price calculators also provide information about other kinds of financial aid you might be offered. These include loans and work-study jobs.

Tips

As you use net price calculators:

  • Answer each question as accurately as possible. The more accurate your numbers, the more accurate the result.
  • Remember that these are estimates. The actual price you pay may be higher or lower than the college’s net price calculator estimate.
How to Use Meditation for Teen Stress and Anxiety

How to Use Meditation for Teen Stress and Anxiety

It’s no secret that the coronavirus pandemic has been difficult for many people, but teens are one group dealing with their own set of struggles during this time.

Teens can sometimes be impulsive and angst-ridden even during the best of times. Behavioral health therapist Jane Ehrman, MEd, explains why teenagers can be this way and offers ideas about how meditation can help your teen deal with stress and anxiety during this uncertain time.

Q: Why is meditation good specifically for teens with angst/anxiety?

A: The amygdala (in the brain) is part of our survival mechanism. It’s always looking out for what is going to hurt us. If you’re dealing with anxiety or past trauma, the amygdala can be more reactive to stress.

During the teen years, the frontal lobe of the brain — which helps make good decisions — isn’t always communicating well with the amygdala, which responds immediately and instinctively to triggers. At this age, the pathway in the brain between the amygdala and frontal lobe isn’t as strong. But Ehrman says, through meditation, the brain will rewire.

“With 15 minutes of daily meditation for at least three weeks, the brain becomes more responsive and less reactive — which can be especially helpful to teens prone to anxiety or erratic behavior,” she says.

Q: Are there other benefits to meditation?

A: Yes. The practice of mindfulness exercises such as meditation will improve focus and concentration so teens can focus on homework and perform better on exams. Meditation can also help with self-esteem and memory, reduce high blood pressure and heart rate, and help balance the immune system.

Q: How do you start a meditation program?

A: It can be daunting to know how to help your teen begin a meditation program. Start with a simple two to five minutes of meditation. Here are some steps to follow:

  • Have your teen close their eyes or softly gaze at their lap or straight ahead and pay attention to their breathing.
  • The goal is to pull your teen out of their own head where the worrisome thoughts are and drop into her body. Have your teen simply pay attention to each breath as it comes and goes.
  • Ask your teen to notice how their body is feeling and breathe through it. Let your teen know that if they are anxious, it’s just a feeling and it will pass.
  • Encourage your teen to separate themselves from their emotions. Tell your child to pay attention to their chest and abdomen, how they contract and expand. Ask them to pay attention to how their breath feels on their nostrils, breathing in and out.
  • Ask your teen to breathe without judgment and without trying to change the rhythm of their breath.

Q: Is the goal of meditation to ‘stop thinking?’

A: No. Your mind is always thinking.

It’s like when you’re riding a bike past all kinds of things. You don’t stop and look at everything that goes by. You bring your focus back to staying on the path or trail. The same is true for meditation. Some thoughts will catch your attention while you’re meditating and others won’t. When something does, acknowledge it, and then redirect the focus back to your breathing.

Q: How much meditation does a teen need to reap benefits?

A: They can start small with four to five minutes of meditation, with the goal of advancing to 15 minutes, once a day, four to five times a week. If they can accomplish this, it eventually begins rewiring their brain — often in about three weeks.

Q: Can teens use their phones for meditation?

A: Yes. If your teen is uncomfortable attempting to meditate with you, this can be especially handy! There are many apps available on your smartphone or tablet, such as Calm or Headspace, that your teen can sample for free. The Cleveland Clinic also has a free app called Mindful Moments.

Your teenager may react with skepticism at first when you suggest meditation. But, with all the uncertainty in the world right now, teens can definitely benefit from taking time to quiet the noise and meditate. It’s a handy practice that can help them through all kinds of confusing and stressful situations in life.

How to help your student transition to high school

How to help your student transition to high school

by Michael Lee Zwiers

At this time of year, it can sometimes be hard to tell who’s more excited about returning to school, youth, or their parents.

But the excitement for kids about new friends, teachers, and ventures can be overshadowed by anxiety and stress, particularly if they’re moving into high school.

The sheer size of a high school building can be overwhelming to the uninitiated. The potential loss of social status among a larger group of peers and the increased number of teachers — each having different styles and expectations – can be intimidating for newcomers. Add to this the hormonal changes that accompany puberty and drive physical, emotional, and cognitive growth, and the demands on young people can be overwhelming.

In high school, teachers tend to stay in one place while the students rotate through their classrooms. This can be difficult for students who are used to having a homeroom teacher for the majority of their subjects.

Some high schools have instituted homerooms for core subjects such as language arts and social studies. These allow students to connect daily to at least one key adult who knows them and ostensibly has their best interests in mind. Regrettably, this practice is rare past Grade 8.

Fortunately, parents and their children can take some steps to make the transition easier. As an educator and a psychologist from the Werklund School of Education at the University of Calgary, I offer you a few simple strategies:

1. Get to know the school space

Familiarity helps to reduce anxiety. If possible, youth should try to tour the school halls in advance to get to know where specific rooms are located. Of course, it helps if they can have a school map to help them navigate. It’s always important to learn where key spaces are such as the administrative offices, washrooms, cafeteria, and water fountains.

2. Make the leap with a few friends

The adolescent years are significant in the transition from relying on parents to learning to trust and rely on peers. During this time, peer socialization becomes critically important, and being part of a peer collective can make the transition smoother while helping to ease stress. Confidence in social interactions with peers contributes to positive self-evaluation and successful school transitions.

Youth can identify friends from their previous school who plan to attend the same high school. If they live close together, they can travel together to school or plan to meet up before school, at lunch breaks and during times when they might not have scheduled classes. Among other things, this will give them the opportunity to share and compare experiences — essentially normalizing what they are going through while brainstorming solutions to challenges they might be facing.

3. Identify clubs and interest groups

These hobby-based groups tend to be smaller than regular classes and have supportive teacher sponsors with an interest in the subject area. This can be an easy way to connect with others who have similar interests while building a support network at school.

Since the high school years are ones of exploration, novelty seeking and even risk-taking, such groups offer an opportunity to explore interests in a safe environment.

4. Help with planning and organization

In high school, there’s an increased expectation for students to take responsibility for planning and organizing materials for themselves, as well as getting to class on time, handing in homework and assignments and coming prepared for quizzes and exams. This also includes managing class materials, unique clothing for sports and clubs, musical instruments and other school equipment. Most schools offer a personal planner booklet that can help students to overcome some of these challenges. However, most will require support to be able to use and maintain them properly.

It’s true that adolescence is a time of cognitive growth and consolidation. This comes from the myelination of nerves (insulation for faster signals) and the pruning of neural networks (specialization for efficient brain function) that improve thinking capacities. However, the adolescent brain keeps developing well into the early 20s. Higher order thinking, planning and foresight can take time to develop.

5. Organize a study schedule

Family support and parental engagement are linked to academic success. It’s important to start building study habits early, even if there is no assigned homework to do. Students should plan for 30 to 60 minutes of study, homework, and project work per night. It is often best to schedule a regular time, such as just before or after the family dinner.

Whatever the schedule, it’s also important to take breaks after school. And try to plan time carefully so that such work does not drag on and become demotivating.

6. Monitor stress

Even after settling into the new environment, getting to know teachers and their expectations and collecting a group of friends, the level of stress in high school can still be intense. Schools can be competitive environments. Exams (particularly high-stakes final exams) can be stressful to the point of debilitation. And social demands can be overwhelming.

Challenges like these can be exacerbated if students have unique needs such as physical or sensory impairments, learning disabilities, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or a mental health condition such as anxiety or depression. In cases where such challenges are known in advance, it is important to connect to the receiving school’s specialized supports, which often come in the form of guidance and counseling services and accessibility services.

Kids should also be monitored to ensure they’re coping with the demands being placed on them. Their ability to cope can change day to day and month to month, and parents should be ready to offer support when it’s needed. In some cases, stress can become overwhelming or persistent to the point of immobilization. If they aren’t experiencing reduced anxiety within a month, they likely need help.

If so, specialized professional support may be needed to identify the underlying problem and intervene appropriately. School counselors can be a good place to start, while family doctors can often point the way toward a good child psychologist or counseling specialist.

With the right kind of planning and support, the transition to high school can be a life-changing and empowering one that can set your youth on the path toward an amazing future. Start now to plan for success.

TOP 10 TIPS FOR WRITING A COLLEGE ESSAY

TOP 10 TIPS FOR WRITING A COLLEGE ESSAY

Published by NACAC

1: Start early. More time = less stress. You’ll have plenty of time to give the essay your best effort.

2: Be yourself. One of the biggest mistakes students make is writing what they think others want to hear, rather than about an issue, event, or person they care about. An essay like that is not just boring to write. It’s boring to read. What interests you? What do you love to talk about? Write about that. Think of your essay as a creative way to help college officials get to know you as a person.

3: Be honest. College admission officers have read hundreds, even thousands of essays. They are masters at discovering any form of plagiarism. Don’t risk your college career by buying an essay off the internet or getting someone else to write your essay.

4: Stay focused. Read the essay question carefully. Jot down a few ideas, then choose the one that looks like the most fun to write about. Stick to that main theme throughout the essay. Essays can help you make your case to admission officials, but don’t go overboard. There will be opportunities elsewhere in the application to list all your achievements.

5: Put your best foot forward. Applying online may feel like you’re sending an email, but you’re not. Incorrect capitalization or abbreviations like B4 or “thanx” are not appropriate for a formal document. Make sure your essay represents the best of you.

6: Write and rewrite. Don’t try to knock out a masterpiece on your first try. For your first draft, write anything that comes to mind about your topic. Let it “rest” for a few hours or a few days. When you come back to the draft, look for ways to make it more focused and better written. Are there details that don’t really relate to the topic? Cut them. Do you need another example? Put it in.

7: Get a second opinion. When you’ve rewritten the essay to your satisfaction, find someone who can give you advice on how to make it even better. Choose a person you respect and who knows something about writing. Ask them to tell you what they like best about your essay, and what you can do to improve it.

8: Keep an open mind. Criticism can be tough to hear, but try to listen with an open mind. You don’t have to make every change suggested. After all, it’s your essay and no one else’s. But you should seriously consider each suggestion.

9: Proofread, proofread, proofread. Little errors creep in throughout the writing and editing process. Before you submit your essay, make sure to proofread. Try reading your essay aloud or having someone else read it to you. Another strategy is to read the essay backward, from the last sentence to the first. Errors your eye may have previously skipped over will jump out at you.

10: Don’t expect too much from an essay. The application essay is important. But admission officers look at the whole package — your academics, extracurricular activities, standardized tests, and other factors. Make your essay as well-written as you can, but don’t put so much pressure on yourself that the rest of the application fades in importance.

Need essay coaching and editing? Contact us at info@weilcollegeadvising.com