4 ways to help a college student find a career | Natasha Frost

Your college-age son or daughter, statistically speaking, is likely clueless about the vast range of careers on offer in the world.

Oh sure, they know what you and the spouse do, we hope, and maybe have in mind a half-dozen occupations they’ve either come into contact with or admired from afar. A survey of 600,000 teens by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development found them narrowly focused on a tiny handful of occupations, from the plausible (teacher, doctor, engineer) to significantly more unlikely (designer, actor, professional musician).

If your kid is approaching college age, or already enrolled, you may have wished your heavy lifting — helping with the algebra homework, critiquing the essays — was over. But now, if you value your current or future status as a happy empty-nester (that couch; all that’s in your refrigerator; honestly, your liquor cabinet), your job is to help acquaint your adult child with the working world in all its complex glory.

Yes, it’s quite possible that your offspring isn’t taking your suggestions quite like they did a few years ago, and it might seem more comfortable to let them work all this out on their own. Unless they’re already dialed in to a high-demand, higher-income vocational track — nursing, premed, engineering, computer science — don’t. The country is awash in underemployed liberal arts grads, and you want to help your kid avoid a similar fate.

This list will get you and them started finding a satisfying career.

Get a job now. No matter how demanding the field of study your child is in, they should be working part-time during college. To learn to show up on time. Do what’s asked. Work with others no matter how annoying they are. It matters less what job they do at this point and, in fact, having a crummy job is a great motivator to seek a good one in the future.

Discover occupations. It’s fine to say, “Dear, ask your Uncle Al about his work as a CPA.” But it’s best to be more systematic. Bloomberg, the world’s largest business news organization, and its fabulous weekly magazine, Bloomberg Businessweek, feature countless companies you and your child have probably never heard of, and those firms have jobs you’ve likely never imagined. Make it a monthly conversation (you can save up a few articles on interesting employers) to discuss what each of you has read.

Businessweek costs $99 a year, so $198 for the two of you. It’s old-fashioned to subscribe to a print publication, but having the thing land in your or your offspring’s mailbox weekly will prod you to have a look. Sound expensive? Think of the $100,000 to $200,000 you’re likely shelling out for college.

The yearly Bloomberg 50 list (Google it) profiles fast-growing employers whose business is often part of a large economic trend. Learn about legal cannabis, direct to consumer retail, the booming world of batteries and more.

And about that liberal arts major. It’s OK — even tech companies hire

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Teacher’s decades-old find turns out to be the island’s first-ever dinosaur discovery

You never know what you might find while walking along the beach.



a person holding an animal: Mike Simms, who led the research team, holds the theropod tibia on the left and the Scelidosaurus femur on the right.


© From University of Portsmouth
Mike Simms, who led the research team, holds the theropod tibia on the left and the Scelidosaurus femur on the right.

People often come across coins, shells and trash, but a teacher in Northern Ireland made a discovery that will go down in history.

In the 1980s, the late Roger Byrne, a schoolteacher and fossil collector, found several unidentified fossils on the east coast of County Antrim. He held onto them for several years before donating them to the Ulster Museum in Belfast.

Mystery swirled around what the fossils could be until a team of researchers with the University of Portsmouth and Queen’s University Belfast confirmed they are fossilized dinosaur bones.

The 200-million-year-old fossils are the “first dinosaur remains reported from anywhere in Ireland,” according to the article by the research team, published this month in the Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association.

“This is a hugely significant discovery,” Mike Simms, a paleontologist at National Museums NI who led the team of researchers, said in a news release Tuesday. “The great rarity of such fossils here is because most of Ireland’s rocks are the wrong age for dinosaurs, either too old or too young, making it nearly impossible to confirm dinosaurs existed on these shores.”

The researchers wrote in their article that folklore attributes the apparent absence of dinosaur remains from Ireland to the activities of St. Patrick, who is credited with having driven the snakes out of Ireland. But the lack of fossilized dinosaur bones is simply due to geology, they said. The rocks around the country are either the wrong age or type.

“Finding an Irish dinosaur might seem a hopeless task but, nonetheless, several potential candidates have been identified and are described for the first time here,” the article says.

Researcher Robert Smyth and Professor David Martill of the University of Portsmouth analyzed the bone fragments with high-resolution 3D digital models of the fossils, produced by Dr. Patrick Collins of Queens University Belfast.

Originally researchers believed the bones were from the same animal but then determined they were from two different dinosaurs.

“Analyzing the shape and internal structure of the bones, we realized that they belonged to two very different animals,” said Smyth in the news release.

“One is very dense and robust, typical of an armored plant-eater. The other is slender, with thin bone walls and characteristics found only in fast-moving two-legged predatory dinosaurs called theropods.”

Both fossils were pieces of the animal’s leg bones, according to the researchers. One was part of a femur of a four-legged plant-eater called Scelidosaurus. The other was part of the tibia belonging to a two-legged meat-eater similar to Sarcosaurus.

The beach where the fossils were found is covered in rounded fragments of basalt and white limestone, according the journal article. It noted that fossils in that area are usually sparse and heavily abraded.

“The two dinosaur fossils that Roger Byrne found

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Teacher’s decades-old find on a Northern Ireland beach turns out to be the island’s first-ever dinosaur discovery

People often come across coins, shells and trash, but a teacher in Northern Ireland made a discovery that will go down in history.

In the 1980s, the late Roger Byrne, a schoolteacher and fossil collector, found several unidentified fossils on the east coast of County Antrim. He held onto them for several years before donating them to the Ulster Museum in Belfast.

Mystery swirled around what the fossils could be until a team of researchers with the University of Portsmouth and Queen’s University Belfast confirmed they are fossilized dinosaur bones.

The 200-million-year-old fossils are the “first dinosaur remains reported from anywhere in Ireland,” according to the article by the research team, published this month in the Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association.

“This is a hugely significant discovery,” Mike Simms, a paleontologist at National Museums NI who led the team of researchers, said in a news release Tuesday. “The great rarity of such fossils here is because most of Ireland’s rocks are the wrong age for dinosaurs, either too old or too young, making it nearly impossible to confirm dinosaurs existed on these shores.”

The researchers wrote in their article that folklore attributes the apparent absence of dinosaur remains from Ireland to the activities of St. Patrick, who is credited with having driven the snakes out of Ireland. But the lack of fossilized dinosaur bones is simply due to geology, they said. The rocks around the country are either the wrong age or type.

“Finding an Irish dinosaur might seem a hopeless task but, nonetheless, several potential candidates have been identified and are described for the first time here,” the article says.

Researcher Robert Smyth and Professor David Martill of the University of Portsmouth analyzed the bone fragments with high-resolution 3D digital models of the fossils, produced by Dr. Patrick Collins of Queens University Belfast.

Originally researchers believed the bones were from the same animal but then determined they were from two different dinosaurs.

“Analyzing the shape and internal structure of the bones, we realized that they belonged to two very different animals,” said Smyth in the news release.

“One is very dense and robust, typical of an armored plant-eater. The other is slender, with thin bone walls and characteristics found only in fast-moving two-legged predatory dinosaurs called theropods.”

Both fossils were pieces of the animal’s leg bones, according to the researchers. One was part of a femur of a four-legged plant-eater called Scelidosaurus. The other was part of the tibia belonging to a two-legged meat-eater similar to Sarcosaurus.

The beach where the fossils were found is covered in rounded fragments of basalt and white limestone, according the journal article. It noted that fossils in that area are usually sparse and heavily abraded.

New dinosaur species related to Tyrannosaurus rex discovered by scientists in England

“The two dinosaur fossils that Roger Byrne found were perhaps swept out to sea, alive or dead, sinking to the Jurassic seabed where they were buried and fossilized,” said Simms.

This discovery helps shine light onto the life of dinosaurs that roamed millions of years ago.

“Scelidosaurus

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Rapid At-Home Tests Could Curb Virus Spread, Harvard and University of Colorado Researchers Find | News

Frequent administration of rapid-turnaround tests could substantially reduce COVID-19 infectiousness and curb the virus’s spread, researchers at Harvard School of Public Health and the University of Colorado at Boulder found in a new study.

While the gold-standard tests, which detect the virus using polymerase chain reaction, accurately identify infected patients, they are not highly effective for population-wide testing due to lengthy return times, according to James A. Hay, a postdoctoral researcher at the School of Public Health and one of the study’s authors.

“One of the problems with testing has been that we’ve been kind of restricting ourselves to these very sensitive PCR tests that are really not designed for mass deployment,” Hay said.

Those administering the tests should prioritize accessibility, frequency, and turnaround time over “test sensitivity” — meaning the proportion of infected individuals who test positive — according to the study, which was published November 20 in the peer-reviewed journal Science Advances.

Though the rapid COVID-19 tests have less sensitivity than the gold-standard PCR tests, they bring other benefits: Some return results in 15 minutes, while PCR tests can take several days.

“That loss of sensitivity is offset by the fact that they’re very cheap to produce, they’re very easy to use, and they’re the sort of thing you can give to people to use in their homes,” Hay said.

“The key is that by testing people very frequently, you’re much more likely to catch people when they’re infectious,” Hay added.

The lower sensitivity of the rapid, at-home tests compared to standard PCR tests means patients must have higher viral loads for the test to detect the virus. But in most cases, patients do not become contagious until after the brief early period of infection, when people tend to have lower viral loads that are undetectable by the at-home tests, according to Hay.

Hay said the tests should be viewed as a transmission-limiting tool aiding public health response, rather than purely as a medical diagnostic like the standard PCR tests. In a School of Public Health press release, epidemiology professor Michael J. Mina, a senior co-author and Hay’s postdoctoral advisor, called the tests “contagiousness tests.”

“These rapid tests are contagiousness tests,” Mina said in the release. “They are extremely effective in detecting COVID-19 when people are contagious.”

Even with frequent testing via rapid COVID-19 tests, social distancing measures will remain critical, Hay said.

“Rapid testing is more a way to say, well, we can detect more positive people and earlier in their infection, and it’s for those people who test positive that they must take extra precautions to not infect other people,” Hay said. “Those are the people that we would encourage to self isolate, but it doesn’t mean that if you get a negative result that’s a free passport to do whatever you want.”

“At the population level, if we are targeting who has to self isolate much more intelligently, then we don’t need to resort to the kind of population-wide lockdowns, because we know that the

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Scientists find water microdroplets can transform into hydrogen peroxide when condensing on cold surfaces

Scientists find water microdroplets can transform into hydrogen peroxide when condensing on cold surfaces
Photo shows water microdroplet condensate formed on the surface of a glass container containing cold water (left) and an image of water microdroplets formed on a polished silicon surface (right). Credit: Jae Kyoo Lee and Hyun Soo Han

In its bulk liquid form, whether in a bathtub or an ocean, water is a relatively benign substance with little chemical activity. But down at the scale of tiny droplets, water can turn surprisingly reactive, Stanford researchers have discovered.


In microdroplets of water, just millionths of a meter wide, a portion of the H2O molecules present can convert into a close chemical cousin, hydrogen peroxide, H2O2, a harsh chemical commonly used as a disinfectant and hair bleaching agent.

Stanford scientists first reported this unexpected behavior in forcibly sprayed microdroplets of water last year. Now in a new study, the research team has shown the same Jekyll-and-Hyde transformation happens when microdroplets simply condense from the air onto cold surfaces. The new results suggest that water’s hydrogen peroxide transformation is a general phenomenon, occurring in fogs, mists, raindrops and wherever else microdroplets form naturally.

The surprising discovery could lead to greener methods for disinfecting surfaces or promoting chemical reactions. “We’ve shown that the process of forming hydrogen peroxide in water droplets is a widespread and surprising phenomenon that’s been happening right under our noses,” said study senior author Richard Zare, the Marguerite Blake Wilbur Professor in Natural Science and a professor of chemistry in the Stanford School of Humanities and Sciences.

The researchers also speculate that this newly recognized chemical ability of water could have played a key role in jumpstarting the chemistry for life on Earth billions of years ago, as well as produced our planet’s first atmospheric oxygen before life emerged. “This spontaneous production of hydrogen peroxide may be a missing part of the story of how the building blocks of life were formed on early,” Zare said.

The co-lead authors of the new study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, are Stanford staff scientists Jae Kyoo Lee and Hyun Soo Han.

Along with Zare and other Stanford colleagues, Lee and Han made the initial discovery of hydrogen peroxide production in water microdroplets last year. Some outside researchers who went over the study’s results were skeptical, Zare said, that such a potentially common phenomenon could have gone undiscovered for so long. Debate also ensued over just how the hydrogen peroxide would ever actually form.

“The argument was that people have been studying water aerosols for years, and of course water is ubiquitous and has been intensively studied since the dawn of modern science, so if this hydrogen peroxide formation in microdroplets were real, surely someone would have seen it already,” said Zare. “That led us to want to explore the phenomenon further, to see in what other circumstances it might occur, as well as learn more about the fundamental chemistry going on.”

A sped-up video shows hydrogen peroxide forming amidst condensed water
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Do You Have a Conflict of Interest? This Robotic Assistant May Find It First

“Peer reviewers cannot pick up every mistake in scientific papers, so I think we need to look for different solutions that can help us in increasing the quality and robustness of scientific studies,” she said. “A.I. could definitely play a role in that.”

Renee Hoch, manager of the publication ethics team at the Public Library of Science, or PLOS, which like Frontiers is an open-access publisher, said her organization also used software tools to detect potential conflicts of interest between authors and editors, but not reviewers. Instead, referees are asked to self-report problems, and action is taken on a case-by-case basis.

Dr. Hoch, however, said that an A.I. tool like AIRA that highlights a reviewer’s potential conflicts would be useful in relieving some of the burden associated with manually conducting these checks.

Springer Nature, the world’s second-biggest scholarly publisher, is also developing A.I. tools and services to inform peer review, said Henning Schoenenberger, the company’s director of product data and metadata management.

Despite the rise of A.I. tools like statcheck and AIRA, Dr. Nuijten emphasized the importance of the human role, and said she worried about what would happen if technology led to the rejection of a paper “out of hand without really checking what’s going on.”

Jonathan D. Wren, a bioinformatician at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, echoed that sentiment, adding that just because two researchers had previously been co-authors on a paper didn’t necessarily mean they couldn’t judge each other’s work objectively. The question, he said, is this: “What kind of benefits would they have for not giving an objective peer review today — would they stand to gain in any sort of way?”

That’s harder to answer using an algorithm.

“There’s no real solution,” said Kaleem Siddiqi, a computer scientist at McGill University in Montreal and the field chief editor of a Frontiers journal on computer science. Conflicts of interest can be subjective and often difficult to unveil. Researchers who have often crossed paths can be most suitable to judge each other’s work, especially in smaller fields.

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South Korean scientists find way to extract carbon emissions from exhaust gas

Nov. 23 (UPI) — South Korean researchers say they have developed technology that can draw out carbon dioxide from industrial emissions and convert the climate-warming gas into calcium carbonate, which then can be adapted for different uses.

Koh Dong-yeun and his team at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, KAIST, said they have developed a device to convert carbon dioxide into solid materials, which can be used to make cement and other materials, Aju Daily and Yonhap reported Monday.

The statement from KAIST comes two months after Koh and his team published their findings to the online site of ACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering, a peer-reviewed journal.

“The technology helps power plants, steel mills and cement makers, which emit a lot of greenhouse gas, to increase their competitiveness by reducing emission and recycling resources,” Koh said, according to Aju Daily.

The scientists said an ultrapermeable membrane is the foundation of a “hollow fiber module” at the core of the technology, which can be used on factory chimneys.

“We show that a hollow fiber module based on an ultrapermeable membrane synthesized with the polymers of intrinsic microporosity [PIM-1] has the potential to directly utilize [carbon dioxide] from the flue [exhaust] gas stack via a continuous solid carbonation reaction,” the South Korean team said.

Only carbon dioxide can cross the module’s membrane. Once on the other side, carbon dioxide reacts with alkali metal ions to form calcium carbonates, the scientists said, according to Yonhap.

The team at KAIST also said the hollow fiber module is 20 times smaller than conventional devices, according to Aju Daily.

Carbon dioxide in emissions is a major contributor to greenhouse gases. This weekend, the Arctic Circle was an average 12 degrees Fahrenheit above normal, according to the University of Maine’s Climate Reanalyzer, CBS News reported Monday.

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This 12-Year-Old Is (Probably) The Youngest Person To Ever Find A Comet

What had you achieved by the age of 12? Maybe you’d beaten your favourite video game, made a particularly good Lego tower, or mastered the art of falling off a skateboard.

As for Rafał Biros? Well, two weeks ago on Friday, November 13 he discovered a comet – making him probably the youngest discoverer of a comet in history.

“I’m still shocked this actually happened,” he tells me, via email. “It’s amazing to have achieved something like that.”

Rafał, from Świdnica in Poland, is one of many amateur astronomers that trawl through images from spacecraft or missions to help make scientific discoveries – known as citizen scientists.

In this instance he was part of a NASA-funded project called the Sungrazer Project that began in 2000, which uses images from NASA and the European Space Agency’s Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft to look for comets.

SOHO, which orbits between Earth and the Sun, was launched in 1995. By blocking out the light of the Sun with an onboard coronagraph (like holding your hand up to the Sun), it is able to study the Sun’s outer atmosphere, known as its corona.

However, this instrument also turned out to be very useful for finding comets. As these clumps of ice and rock from the distant Solar System approach the Sun they are heated, sometimes producing bright and visible tails as their ices melt.

Finding these comets, however, can be time-intensive. “We have two different cameras, and each takes about 100 to 120 images per day,” says Karl Battams from the Naval Research Lab in Washington, D.C., the manager of the Sungrazer Comets project. “So we usually take an image roughly every six minutes in each camera.”

This equates to thousands of images per week that would need to be looked through in search of comets. So to do so, NASA enlists the help of volunteers like Rafał. “It’s effectively 100 percent citizen scientists,” says Battams.

Looking through images from the satellite in the morning, which anyone can do on SOHO’s website, Rafał spotted what appeared to be a moving blob in a sequence of images – thanks in part to home learning because of COVID-19 restrictions.

“Due to online learning I get to spend more time at home engaging in the Sungrazer Project more actively,” he says.

Later in the day, he took another look. “After [school] lessons, I noticed that three more photos were added in which three positions of my comet were shown,” he says. And after submitting his images to be checked, just half an hour later he had official confirmation that what he’d seen was indeed a comet.

The comet was likely very small, notes Battams, maybe five to ten meters across. “It also no longer exists,” he notes. “It would have been vaporized

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10 Tips To Find Balance And Thrive In Your Career During The Holidays

As the prolonged pandemic continues to batter the American economy, it has produced a high level of stress and burnout. MindEdge Learning and the HR Certification Institute (HRCI) conducted a national survey of 757 HR Professionals between September 15 and October 2, 2020. Three quarters of the respondents (75%) reported an increase in their employees’ burnout due to stress from Covid-19, and 53% reported that their companies have introduced new benefits to help employees deal with stress or plan to do so in the near future.

In another study, Skynova surveyed over 1,150 employed Americans, including 400 managers and found that nearly 1 in 3 employees don’t feel encouraged to take work breaks while working from home with nearly 1 in 4 employees stating they can never take a break. Nearly 1 in 6 managers surveyed don’t encourage their team to take breaks while working from home. Overall, respondents who skip lunch are over two times more likely to say they’re stressed out and twice as likely to report feeling burned out

Balancing work and home life have become more complex due to Covid-19, especially where school-age children are involved. If pandemic life has made it necessary for you to stress yourself out to get everything done, you could be one of millions who considers this strategy to be an essential survival tool in a culture that expects you to do it all and do it well. On the one hand, there is pressure to do more at work, take on extra responsibilities or even adjust to unfamiliar roles due to company pivots or cutbacks. On the flip side, family pressures and responsibilities and your own self-care don’t automatically disappear. Balancing work and personal life can be tricky but certainly not impossible. Knowing where to start is key, and for all of us it begins with self-care.

What Is Self-Care?

If you’re in the habit of putting your needs at the bottom of the list to meet work or personal demands, you can’t be the best version of you. Self-care prepares you to give more to others. When you put yourself first, there’s more of you to go around. I sat down with environmental activist Erin Brockovich and asked her how she mitigates stress and burnout with all she continues to accomplish. As a single mom with no job in 1993, she used her pit-bull determination to help residents of Hinkley, California win a massive arbitration against the Pacific Gas and Electric Company. Her efforts were extolled in the biographical film, Erin Brockovich, in which actress Julia Roberts won an Oscar dramatizing Brockovich’s true story. The regimen Brockovich uses to recharge her own busy life is a great example of self-care:

“The busyness of life can take our spirit from us, but it can be renewed. When I’m quiet, I remember to breathe and be mindful. I

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LinkedIn’s new ‘career explorer’ tool helps find best job to transition into

If you’re in an industry hit hard by the pandemic, you may be considering making a career change.

However, it can be hard to know where to begin and you may not feel like you’re qualified.

LinkedIn has a new tool called “career explorer” that could help you figure out the best career to transition into.

You put in the job that you have or had most recently and it shows you in demand jobs that are a strong match for those same skills.

“When it comes to retail positions, soft skills, there’s a lot of soft skills that are acquired being in retail and we know from hiring managers that soft skills are highly in demand right now, especially in a COVID world,” said Blair Heitmann, a LinkedIn career expert. “Those are skills like communication, thought leadership, management and we know that those are just as important to those hard skills.”

You want to make sure you’re listing those skills. LinkedIn found people who have five or more skills on their profile are discovered by recruiters 27 times more.

“You could have been on a team of servers that was a part of the restaurant that was the fastest growing restaurant in the area,” said Heitmann. “That demonstrates the quality of the service, so you want to make sure that you really word about the impact that you had on the role.”

If you were a food server, the career experts at LinkedIn say you have three quarters of the skills you need to be a customer service specialist, which is one of the most in demand jobs. The similar skills include customer service and time management.

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