How Students Can Be Entrepreneurial In Their Job Search | 08/01/2014
Students can no longer sit around and hope that a job opportunity is going to come their way. In order to explore how students were building their career in college, my company worked with InternMatch on a new report called ”College Career Center Study“. We surveyed over 4,000 students from hundreds of colleges nationwide and found that almost 50% of students aren’t using their career centers and 64% turn to online resources instead. While almost all students (94%) think that their career service centers are necessary at colleges, almost half aren’t using their career centers and 61% say they are either never or rarely effective in helping them land a job. The purpose of career centers is to help students prepare for the real world and support their internship and job searches, but they are falling short due to few resources, not leveraging social media and lacking the staff to scale. The average ratio of students to career service professionals is 1,889 to 1 (NACE) and we found that almost a third of students in our study say that centers don’t have enough staff to support students.
In today’s economy, there’s even more pressure on schools, and their career centers, to deliver for students as both parents and students question the return on investment in higher education. Over 50% of recent grads are either unemployed or underemployed (The Atlantic), with an average student loan debt of $29,400 (CNN Money). As a result of students not getting enough support from their career centers, 64% of students are relying more on free or paid online career resources instead.
I spoke to Nathan Parcells, the Founder and CMO of InternMatch to get his insights on how students can be entrepreneurial in their job search. Nathan loves helping students hone their career goals and helping employers learn how to build exceptional (paid) intern programs. Below are some advanced tips and tricks Nathan has provided to help you get ready for the job market and compete for top internships and jobs.
1. Use online courses to develop hard-skills you can talk about in your interview.
Gone are the days when employers expect new grads to stay at the same job for years at a time. With Gen-Y known for not staying at job for more than one or two years, many employers have become reluctant to invest in training programs. Instead they want to hire students who are already comfortable with a variety of professional software.
So how do you get experience before getting in the office? A wealth of new online sites like Udemy, General Assembly and more offer in-depth online courses that students can take for free. These cover how to use tools like Microsoft Excel, Salesforce, Hootsuite and more. Being able to say that you are well versed in such programs in your cover letter and in interviews will give you a big edge over your peers.
2. Work on side projects with friends and classmates.
Employers want to hire students who are passionate about their field. While taking challenging courses at school, or even doing internships, is viewed as a positive, few things demonstrate your passion more than having used your free time to work on side projects outside. This includes activities like starting your own blog and marketing it online. Selling funny t-shirts. Building a mobile app to find the best happy hours on campus. Etc. All of these projects will force you to dive deeper into your professional field, give you experience at working on a team (if it is a collaborative project), and will demonstrate that you are a self-motivated, and experienced individual.
3. Build an Online Profile
You are going to need a fantastic resume to apply to 99% of the jobs you see online. That said, more and more students are building online profiles to complement their resume and for good reason. An online profile you can link directly your blog, portfolio or other relevant online sites that help paint a more complete picture of why you are a strong candidate. In addition, over 80% of employers will Google search you during the application process. If you have a strong online profile, this will rank highly for your name in Google and will help reinforce your professionalism to employers who search for you.
Some good sites that can help you setup an online profile include About.me, InternMatch, Github (for engineers), and more.
4. Always be improving
Preparing for your job search should be viewed as a marathon not a sprint. After you write the first draft of your resume, share it out, request feedback and improve it. While you are job searching you should be taking online classes, talking to more people in your field of interest and implementing all of the new skills and advice you develop into your resume, cover letter and interviews. You should never view your resume or online profile as ‘complete’ it should always be a work in progress that you are constantly adding to and improving.
5. Stay calm and have fun.
The last piece of job search advice we always recommend is to enjoy yourself. Searching for a job or internship is challenging and stressful. But you are going to meet a lot of people along the way who are going to support you and teach you new skills and you are going to learn a lot about yourself. So while the end destination is employment, don’t forget to stop and pat yourself on the back for all the growing and self-improvement you do along the way.
Dan Schawbel is a workplace speaker and the New York Times best-selling author of Promote Yourself. Subscribe to his free monthly newsletter for more career tips.
CHOICE Claims Solution To Ending Poverty | 07/23/2014
Dr. James Mayfield has spent much of his life working to end poverty and he thinks he’s got it figured out.
“Go to the people, live among the people, learn from the people, plan with the people, work with the people, start with what the people know, and build on what the people have,” he says.
In 1982, after years as an academic and a consultant, he helped found CHOICE Humanitarian, a nonprofit organization, to work actively to end poverty. CHOICE is working now in Nepal, Mexico, Guatemala, Bolivia and Kenya.
The CHOICE model has three distinct phases:
- Organizing: All projects are village based and begin by having the village identify leaders and key community resources to build upon; this process can take up to one year.
- Mobilizing: The village, over the course of two to three years, develops and completes discrete projects with the help of local government leaders, NGOs and CHOICE resources; the key is what the village learns about completing projects and making change happen.
- Institution Building: After three or four years, the village begins to develop a stronger local economy and greater independence with better connections to the national government and national economy, allowing the village to carry on the work of lifting itself out of poverty.
In February 2015, I will be traveling with CHOICE on an expedition to Nepal to further the work of poverty eradication there. I’m excited to get see the work in action and to actually be a part of the solution to poverty.
On July 23, 2014 at 6:00 Eastern, Dr. Mayfield will join me for a live discussion about ending extreme poverty and the work of CHOICE Humanitarian. Tune in right here then to watch the interview live.
[At the time of the interview, I will insert a video player here. Bookmark this page and come back then to watch the interview live. Replays will be available here thereafter.]
More about Choice Humanitarian:
CHOICE Humanitarian believes in the value and dignity of all human beings. We are a nonprofit organization with more than 30 years experience working to end poverty in Bolivia, Guatemala, Kenya, Mexico, and Nepal. We do this by empowering villagers to determine their own path for self-reliance, by building village leadership and by uniquely leveraging local and international investments.
Working side-by-side, together we end poverty.
- Co-founder, CHOICE Humanitarian
- Professor Emeritus, Public Administration & Middle East Studies, University of Utah
- Consultant to governments in 15 Countries
Google Offers $1 Million Prize For Anyone Who Can Build A Better Power Inverter | 07/23/2014
Google, the internet search behemoth based in Mountain View, CA, is offering to pay a $1 million prize – as part of the Little Box Challenge - to anyone who can design and build a better small-scale power inverter.
Why would Google, the IEEE and a few other companies like Cree and Transphorm pay a $1 million for a better small-scale power inverter? Probably because the value of such a device – i.e., “a kW-scale power inverter with a power density of at least 50 Watts per cubic inch – is the key to unlocking billions of dollars of commercial value stranded in the electric power grid.
Here is what Google says:
We believe that inverters will become increasingly important to our economy and environment as solar PV, batteries, and similar power sources continue their rapid growth. More broadly, similar forms of power electronics are everywhere: in laptops, phones, motors drives, electric vehicles, wind turbines, to give just a few examples. We expect that the innovations inspired by this prize will have wide applicability across these areas, increasing efficiency, driving down costs, and opening up new uses cases that we can’t imagine today. It also doesn’t hurt that many of these improvements could make our data centers run more safely and efficiently.
If anything, this explanation understates the disruptive implications of a breakthrough inverter technology.
Many of the smartest folks in the distributed energy business, like Guy Warner at Pareto Energy, are convinced that inverters will revolutionize access to the electric power grid in much the same way that the modem revolutionized access to the telephone system. The modem allowed any consumer with a computer and a telephone line to access data services, requiring no network alterations by the telephone company. That simple functionality removed a critical barrier to transferring data over the telephone system.
Beginning in the 1960s, the Federal Communications Commission was deluged by complaints from small customer-premise equipment manufacturers claiming that AT&T would not permit end-users to connect their equipment to the Bell System on grounds that doing so would compromise “network integrity.” The term “customer premises equipment” (CPE) means equipment employed on the premises of a person (other than a carrier) to originate, route, or terminate telecommunications.
In 1975, the Federal Communications Commission codified the principle of consumer usage of non-telephone company manufactured equipment with the public switched telephone network as Part 68 of its rules. Part 68 addresses connection of terminal equipment to the public telephone network, permits consumers to connect equipment from any source to the public network if such equipment fits within the technical parameters outlined in Part 68. The Commission’s equipment registration and certification procedures were well-designed and allowed innovative manufacturers to build and deploy a wide variety of voice and data equipment for use with the public network without seeking prior permission from either the Commission the monopoly telephone companies.
By allowing devices to interconnect with the telephone network, Part 68 and the Commission’s deregulation of CPE more generally set in motion many of the forces that would facilitate the rapid deployment of the modem. Without Part 68, users of the public switched network would not have been able to connect their computers and modems to the network, and it is likely that the Internet would have been unable to develop.
In 1962, the first commercial modem was manufactured by AT&T and had a speed of 300 bits per second. By 1991, modem speeds had increased to 14.4 kilobits per second. Three years later, they doubled to 28.8 kilobits per second. In 1996, the 56K modem was invented by Dr. Brent Townshend in 1996.
The “inverter” is perhaps the closest analog to the modem in the electric power industry. To extend the analogy, today’s state-of-the-art inverter technologies can transfer only a few hundred bits of data per second. It is not surprising that interconnection to the electric power grid has long been and still it today a key constraint on distributed generation, especially for those systems designed that operate when the electric grid is down.
It will likely take a lot more than Google’s Little Box Challenge to bridge that capability gap, but it is certainly a step in the right direction.
Cambodian Civil Rights Leader Freed - Did Network Effect Help Her Cause? | 07/23/2014
Mu Sochua’s arrest by Cambodian authorities on charges of insurrection was hardly the biggest international news headline in a week of war, death and destruction on front pages and throughout news feeds. Indeed, after the elected opposition Member of Parliament and five others were taken into custody after a clash in Phnom Penh’s Freedom Park over the rights and wages of Cambodian garment workers, coverage was understandably scant against the horrific backdrop of Gaza and Ukraine.
But in addition to her political backers in Cambodia and their ongoing struggle with the hardline government there, Mu Sochua had an ace in the hole outside the country: a relatively small but very vibrant network of supporters in the community of those who support the development of female political leadership globally. And that network swung into action after her arrest on July 15. A determined group created the #FreeMuSochua tag on Twitter. The network used Facebook to share updates on her case. And a Change.org petition gathered more than 2,700 names.
Small scale stuff, but it rocketed around the world, and here in the U.S. The Global Fund for Women and Vital Voices each called for her release, as did former U.S. Ambassador for Global Women’s Issues, Melanne Verveer.
Today, the Cambodian government released Mu Sochua and her pro-democracy colleagues on bail.
CNRP lawmaker-elect Mu Sochua after her release from Prey Sar prison #cambodia pic.twitter.com/BCkU6UinDC
— Griff Tapper (@GriffTapper) July 22, 2014
“I believe social media has to make a difference in a moment such as this one,” said filmmaker and human rights advocate Abigail Disney, who was among the prominent activists advocating for Mu Sochua’s release.
“It is difficult to trace or measure its effect, of course, but there is no doubt that the more of us who yell and the louder we do so, the less viable it gets for a dictator to imprison a dissident,” she said. “This is the thrill and promise of our new globalized world. Very little can remain opaque, and very few leaders, dictator or not, enjoy being vilified by global public opinion. It’s not a panacea, but it sure is one important arrow in the quiver of and activist in constant danger and fear for her life.”
That inability to public acts hidden, to quietly jail prominent opponents in countries with any digital connection to the rest of the world is a strong counter-argument to those who completely dismiss social media “slacktivism” as empty and without result. Clearly, Mu Sochua (who I met a few years ago at a feminist development conference) understands the power of the network – which she reached out to via a blog post from prison.
“There is no peace without justice,” she wrote. “There is no human rights without freedoms of speech and of assembly.”
There is another factor here as well, one that I’ve written about before. The power of the global movement to empower women has grown via the networked world. It has leveled the playing field, and provided a platform for a faster track to equality. It is a network that shares powerful voices freely and respectfully, even amidst political disagreement.
Mu Sochua’s story is a striking one. After 18 years in exile (she was sent away by here parents as a teenager in the violent 1970s), Mu returned to Cambodia in 1989 and served as adviser on women’s affairs to the prime minister, was elected to the national assembly and was minister of women’s and a veterans’ affairs from 1998 to 2004, a position she relinquished to join the Sam Rainsy Party, the leading opposition party in Cambodia.
In 2002 she mobilized 12,000 women candidates to run for commune elections, with over 900 women winning and still actively promoting the women’s agenda at the grass-roots level. In that same year she helped create and pass the Prevention of Domestic Violence Bill, which imposes severe penalties on marital rape and abuse of minors. Her work in Cambodia also includes campaigns with men to end domestic violence and the spread of HIV/AIDS; working for the rights of female entrepreneurs; working for labor laws that provide fair wages and safe working conditions for female workers; and working for the development of communities for squatters with schools, health centers, sanitation, and employment.
This work put her in opposition to the government, which has taken action against her – and she remains a powerful symbol, not just in Cambodia.
“I’ve seen the power of a woman like Mu Sochua when she speaks to women from other countries,” said Disney. “She is a voice for courage and unrelenting commitment, and her voice acts to strengthen other women who find themselves in the terrifying position of having to fight their own governments for human rights and dignity.”
Within a week, Mu Sochua was arrested by the regime she opposes, charged with insurrection, and eventually released after an outcry of prominent and empowered voices. To me, it’s another moment in the ascent of loosely organized and decentralized feminist networks that are changing the landscape of social culture.
Taiwan Depends On New Apple Models, Tablet Decline Shows | 07/23/2014
In November Apple came out with its thin, light tablet the iPad Air, and a new iPad model is due in late 2014, tech media say. That leaves a year with nothing new from the Silicon Valley consumer tech icon. Some might turn their attention to Lenovo or Samsung, but not if you’re the Taiwan high-tech contracting industry. Taiwan makes 70 percent of its tablets for Apple, and the lack of an early-2014 tablet model sent shipments falling from the trees, a consultant says.
Second-quarter tablet volume in Taiwan, a world high-tech hub, hit a two-year low after declining 40% to about 22.8 million units in the first three months of 2014, data from Taiwan government-backed research firm Market Intelligence and Consulting Institute show. The value of Taiwan’s tablet shipments fell 46.6% quarter on quarter to $4.7 billion, the research institute says. It cites the “absence of new Apple products” in a July 18 report.
Two companies, billionaire Terry Gou’s Hon Hai Precision Industry and Taipei-based contract assembler Pegatron Corp. make the bulk of Apple products sourced to Taiwan. Hon Hai relies on Apple for half its contract orders, says Jamie Wang, principal research analyst with the Gartner market research firm in Taipei. “For Foxconn, it’s a bit slow, flat to a slight drop,” Wang says. When the next iPad comes out, she says, Hon Hai shipments will rise.
Apple is wedged deep into Taiwan’s contract tablet work because it makes high-end, highly anticipated devices, which generate well-paid orders. Tablets under other brands started out cheaper and are only falling in price, leading developers to China where assembly costs less. Consumers are struggling to tell one brand from another for lack of new features, squeezing the tablet industry across non-Apple brands and the countries that assemble them. “There’s been no change in product models,” says Eric Chiou, an industry analyst with market research firm WitsView in Taipei. “The other thing is that they’re getting cheaper and cheaper.”
One chief Apple rival Lenovo makes 90% of its tablets in its home market China. Samsung relies increasingly on Vietnam for production. Non-Apple developers will spend the next year trying to grow sales with ultrabook-like tablets and large-screen models to grow sales, predicts Joen Yang, a senior industry Market Intelligence and Consulting Institute analyst. About 250 million tablets will ship this year, up a relatively weak 6.3% over 2013, she adds. “Tablet brands are expected to launch more niche products in their attempt to generate more attention and sales,” Yang says.
How Many Distributors Get Rich From Herbalife? | 07/23/2014
Herbalife LTD (NYSE:HLF) has attracted a great deal of interest on Wall Street recently on the long and the short side of the market.
Today, Bill Ackman made his case anew against the company’s business model, while Herbalife released the findings from research and analysis conducted by Walter H. A. Vandaele, Ph.D. of Navigant Economics, LLC regarding the company’s U.S. business operations.
The Vandaele report concluded that “Herbalife’s U.S. business operations are consistent with the socially beneficial MLM model and inconsistent with the socially harmful pyramid scheme model.”
Back in March, Herbalife became the target of a Civil Investigative Demand (CID) from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). According to a statement issued by the company at that time:
“Herbalife welcomes the inquiry, given the tremendous amount of misinformation in the marketplace, and will cooperate fully with the FTC. We are confident that Herbalife is in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. Herbalife is a financially strong and successful company, having created meaningful value for shareholders, significant opportunities for distributors and positively impacted the lives and health of its consumers for over 34 years. ”
Investors on the short side of the market welcomed Ackman’s new case against Herbalife, while investors on the long side of the market welcomed the Vandaele report. And in the end, investors on the long side of the market seem to have the upper hand with Herbalife’s stock rising sharply.
At stake is Herbalife’s business model—a multilevel marketing organization whereby individual customer-distributors enlist other customer-distributors to work for them, in a pyramid style organization.
One of the things that some critics find fault with in this model is that while a very few “distributors” make it to the top of the pyramid and reap off a huge pay-off, the vast majority loses money.
How many made it to the first group in Herbalife? An estimated 2% of those individuals eligible for performance (our underlining) payments with one or more Members in their downline earned at least $50,000—according to the Vandaele report.
Is this figure higher or lower than an average business venture?
We cannot say.
What we can say is that only those who are highly committed to this business model and stay around make it to the top. “Of the three highest level Members, 64% were only in this position 10 years or less and 26% were Members for 5 years or less,” according to the same report.
THE BOTTOM LINE: The problem with a multi-level marketing network is its very nature — and whether those who join it understand that nature. It’s the difference between participating in the network as a customer; and participating as an entrepreneur, developing a business that directly or indirectly markets the network’s products.
Read more: How To Become Rich By Making Others Rich
Survey: Book Buyers Leaving Amazon Because of Hachette Dispute | 07/23/2014
Some book buyers may be leaving Amazon for Barnes & Noble, independent bookstores and the likes of Costco because the large e-tailer’s dispute with publisher Hachette, according to new survey data.
From industry publication Publishers Lunch:
In a recent survey of almost 5,300 buyers (completed July 19), Peter Hildick-Smith of the Codex Group reports finding high awareness of the dispute. Just over 39 percent of respondents indicated that they were aware of the standoff.
Among those book buyers aware of the dispute who have an opinion on that disagreement, 19 percent said they were buying fewer books from Amazon, while 4.4 percent said they were buying more books from the etailer.
That means that roughly 7.5% of book buyers say they’re buying fewer books from Amazon because of its standoff with Hachette while about 1.4% of book buyers are actually buying more books from Amazon because of it, according to the data.
The Codex group also found out where those book buyers were going. About half the shifted buying went to Barnes & Noble, independent bookshops, barnesandnoble.com (the online store for Barnes & Noble), used bookshops and Costco, in that order.
In early June, brand consulting firm YouGov determined through a survey of consumers that Amazon had not yet suffered any damage to its brand reputation among consumers due to the dispute. The survey happened before the impact of Stephen Colbert’s long segment slamming the retailer could be measured, however.
Amazon has not yet returned request for comment.
Mission Statements That Aren't Bogus: A Corporate Culture Secret | 07/23/2014
A company’s culture can begin with words—with a guiding or core or mission statement—but only if there’s actually an idea behind those words. A corporate culture’s guiding or core statement is an important place to start in culture building, but it should represent a decision, something you (not just your consultants) actually stand for, expressed in the clearest and fewest words you can manage.
Avoid something like this verbose mission statement I found in the closet of a defunct company, tossed no doubt within days of the brainstorming session that created it:
We will be the supreme total quality, customer-oriented supplier to our industry of all our industry-related products while facilitating extraordinary growth and sustainable profitability at cutting-edge standards.
Try something more like this, the Motto of the culture-rich Ritz-Carton:
We are ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen.
Or this, the central philosophy of their archrival Four Seasons Hotels And Resorts:
In all our interactions with our guests, customers, business associates, and colleagues, we seek to deal with others as we would have them deal with us.
Where should such a core cultural statement come from? The two examples I’ve given come from strong leaders, but at disparate points in their careers and in the history of their organizations. In the first example, this statement formed the personal philosophy from the time he was very young of the man who would become Ritz-Carlton’s founding Chief Operating Officer. He was therefore able to bake it into the very beginning of the Ritz-Carlton’s organizational history. (It was, in fact, the topic sentence of an essay he wrote at age fourteen.)
The best time to start? Now.
This kind of deep history leading to an inspirational company launch is ideal but not necessary. If your company fails to have such a storied birth, don’t worry. While the example from the Ritz came from a fourteen-year-old future leader who wouldn’t have his own company to captain for decades, the Four Seasons example came from a set of principles that weren’t defined at Four Seasons until many years into the organization’s existence, yet these words formed a dramatic turning point for the company that has continued to this day.
You should take heart in this belated transformation. If your company started as a scrappy venture and cut corners in the culture department at first (the now illustrious Four Seasons was initially a rather seat-of-the-pants operation called Four Seasons Motor Lodge, if you can imagine that!), there’s no better time to start consciously building a culture than now.
Beyond your core statement
Beyond your core statement (your central organizing idea, such as Four Seasons’ ‘‘In all our interactions . . . we seek to deal with others as we would have them deal with us’’), you’ll need a bit more development and clarification to make these words more than a slogan. Do this by defining key principles in the areas that are most relevant to your business, to the people who work for it and with it, and to whom it caters.
Again, brevity leads to memorability. Zappos started this process with twenty-nine core values, ultimately ending up with ten. Four Seasons, appropriately, has four, which include a brief paragraph in each of the following areas:
1. Who we are
2. How we behave
3. What we believe
4. How we succeed
The Ritz-Carlton augments its ‘‘Motto’’ (‘‘We are ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen’’) with a three-sentence ‘‘Credo’’ and a three-sentence ‘‘Employee Promise’’ covering the principles of how to treat guests and coworkers. In each case, these lists of values
Spelling out how you’ll treat customers, vendors, and employees
Express clearly for the record how you intend to treat people in your business dealings. That way, everything you do can be benchmarked against the standard you set, and your culture, as a consequence, can be molded and strengthened. Lay out in your core values how you want customers, employees, and vendors to be treated. Say it clearly: If your opinion is that employees and vendors should be treated as you would like to be treated, write that down. If there are specific ways you want customers to feel when interacting with your company—for example, if you want to give them a memorable, enjoyable, and safe experience where even their unexpressed desires are realized—write that down.
One way to think through the areas you want to cover, and why:
1. An employee focus dramatically affects customers. Only appropriately treated, motivated, empowered, growing employees will consistently give a great experience to customers.
2. A vendor focus also affects customers. Only appropriately treated vendors, acting as true partners, can come through for your customers in times of need.
3. Finally, an obsessive customer focus, realized through your employees and vendors, becomes the icing on the cake. Articulate all these, and then get ready to live them. It’s the best way to start building sustainable customer service results that will, in turn, sustain your company.
Micah Solomon is a customer culture consultant, customer-centricity speaker, and bestselling customer service author.
Honoring Dan Markel: Life's Lessons | 07/23/2014
On Friday, something so horrific happened that it is hard to believe: Florida State law professor and brilliant criminal law theorist Dan Markel was murdered. As posts across the Internet make clear, Dan Markel was beloved, admired, and cherished in and outside the legal community. His loss is profound and hard to capture in words. For me and for so many others, Dan is (and I use the present tense deliberately) a powerful force. His words, deeds, and friendship taught me life lessons worth honoring, sharing, and saying out loud. His children, when they come of age, will not be able to learn them from Dan, but they will learn them from all of us.
Lesson #1: Cherish those around you and tell them how you feel about them. Dan was not shy about telling his friends (of whom he had so many it is impossible to count) that he loved them. His friendship was a constant. Whether you last saw him a week or a year or three years earlier, he made you feel like it was yesterday. His hug was like a prayer of thanks. Dan treated his friends like his family. We were his sisters, brothers, and cousins, and he made that lovingly clear.
Lesson #2: Engage with the world of ideas and leave no hard criticism unexpressed. As WaPo’s Orin Kerr and my CoOp co-blogger Dave Hoffman captured so well, Dan read everything with a fierce, searching critical eye. Dan read drafts of my articles and gave me his unstinting, sometimes harsh, but always constructive criticism. He wanted ideas to become their very best. He taught me that criticism is a compliment. A harsh critique meant the ideas were worth discussing and developing. And even if the ideas were crazy to him (and many of mine surely were), he generously helped give them their best and most developed light.
Lesson #3: Lift up those around you, especially those who could really use the boost. I met Dan when he came to Maryland law school to give a talk in September 2006. I was in my first year on the tenure track. I had never blogged and had not yet met the folks in my field personally. Dan asked me (and many others) to guest blog. He introduced me to my now closest friends and mentors. He made it his business to trumpet my work and connect me with others. Countless other people have told me the same story about how much they appreciated that in Dan. He put himself out there for junior law professors. And he did it for his students. When one of his students had a note in my field, he asked me to read it and give the student feedback. He would nudge and press and champion his students. Perhaps I knew someone who might be helpful in the work world for one of his RAs or mentees? He wanted to help and reached out to everyone who might lend a hand.
Lesson #4: Building communities is a life’s work. Whether it was in the blogosphere, in the criminal law field, or the Jewish community, Dan made it his mission to bring people together. From what so many have said and from what my colleagues David Gray and Amanda Pustilnik have told me, Dan brought together criminal law scholars and made a community out of them. He did the same with the blogosphere. He brought together various legal blogs, including Concurring Opinions where I also write, every year at AALS and other conferences.
Lesson #5: Give faith a shot, and if it is not for you, that is okay too. Dan was devoted to his Jewish faith and synagogue. His enthusiasm for Shabbat was infectious. He always invited you to join in the fun. If it was not your cup of tea, no worries. He respected your life choices and beliefs.
These lessons are worth honoring. They are among Dan Markel’s legacy. Dan, you are sorely missed. Baruch dayan emet.
Koch Brothers Back 'Creepy Carenival' Where Clowns Deter Millenials From Obamacare | 07/23/2014
Creepy Uncle Sam is back. This time, he’s bringing you to a “Creepy Carenival” – an anti-Obamacare spectacle backed by the billionaire Koch brothers, during which smirking clowns choose patients’ surgeries by throwing knives at a revolving wheel, insurance premiums explode and a “Dropped Coverage” game dunks millenials into a “High-Risk Pool.”
The carnival, featuring carnies, jugglers and a “Creepy Hospital,” hits the National Mall on Wednesday and will tour the nation this fall. Generation Opportunity, the Koch-funded organization putting on the show, hopes it will sway 20-somethings against signing up for health insurance through the government’s exchanges, rendering the system ineffective.
Media stunt? Yes. The group claim that it is promising “to expose Obamacare for the freak show that it really is.”
“It’s no secret that Obamacare hasn’t lived up to the hype: All across the country premiums have spiked, millions have lost their insurance and their doctors, and, what’s worse, we’re continually being sold a bundle of lies about how great Obamacare has been for our generation!” the invitation on Eventbrite reads.
Here’s a preview of the spectacle, via a video released by the group on Tuesday.
“It’s a seemingly exciting event where all the games are rigged against young people with a little bit of creepiness,” Evan Feinberg, the president of Generation Opportunity, explained to Buzzfeed. “The ultimate goal is to educate and mobilize young Americans to kick the Obamacare disaster out of their towns.” Feinberg did not return immediate request from FORBES for comment.
Creepy Uncle Sam first made his video debut last year when the group unveiled an ad in which he gave a college-age woman a gynecological exam, warning millenials to not “let the government play doctor.”
The billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, worth a combined $82.4 billion based on FORBES’ estimated value of private conglomerate Koch Industries, have made headlines during recent election cycles for pouring millions of dollars into political campaigns and attack ads through conservative organizations. Ardent libertarians, they’ve reportedly committed to pumping about $15 million into this fall’s midterm elections, with an overall goal of giving about $300 million.