Thursday, June 2, 2016

The Last Lecture - Randy Pausch

Image result for the last lecture

This is, by far, one of the best books I have read. It is inspirational, and it really sums up life lessons and puts many things into perspective. It is worth a read if you are looking for something to put on your summer reading list :)

The online version of the lecture can be found HERE :)

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Back to School Haul

I don't know about yours, but my summer has FLOWN BY! I officially start back on August 12th... AHHHHH!!! Shortest. Summer. Ever. This was inevitable since my district is switching the school year calendar so that everyone (teachers, too!) will be done before Memorial Day this coming school year! It will be AWESOME come next summer ;)

I have been slowly accumulating things for back-to-school... it is a BIG PROCESS because I really try to find good deals and buy everything with discount codes, coupons and accumulated awards at the various stores. Here goes... :)

My Schoolbag (Vera Bradley) -   --- The pattern pictured is Sierra with black trim.

My Planner (Target) & Stickers - 
Planner Blue Sky 8.5" x 11" True Khaki

Planner is by Blue Sky... lots of design options at target for under $10

Stickers are Mambisticks and can be purchased at Michaels, JoAnn's, Hobby Lobby, and Meijer. They are typically found with stickers and scrapbooking. Each pack includes 8 sheets of clear-backed stickers. I have found them for $5.50-$9.00 each. LOVE THEM!!!

Miscellaneous School Decor (United Art & Education-
Far left: Mini Accents
Bottom middle: White Sharpie paint pen
Bottom right: Hall pass; plastic

Desk Calendar (Target):
Back-to-school end-cap

School Supplies:
Notebooks: Target + Mambisticks
Expo Markers: Meijer
Tall Bookmarks for binders: Target (seasonal area)
Post-It Tape: The Container Store
File Tabs: Meijer

That's all for now! :) Happy back-to-school shopping!!! 

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Article - John Urschel Talks About Why More Young Kids Don't Love Math

Ask John Urschel to define himself, and this is the sort of answer you’ll get: “John Urschel, pro football player, mathematician, professional mathlete.”
To put it mildly, Urschel is a rare commodity. He’s 6 feet 3 inches tall, a 308-pound offensive guard for the Baltimore Ravens and a man who once stated matter-of-factly that he loves "hitting people.” But he’s also a 24-year-old with ambitions of obtaining a Ph.D. in mathematics after his football career ends. (Specifically, he hopes to continue his research in numerical partial differential equations and machine learning, if that means anything to you.)
By the look of things, that won’t be impossible. Urschel already holds a master’s degree in mathematics from Penn State, where he earned a 4.0 grade point average. And last December, he and a team of researchers submitted a paper entitled, “A Cascadic Multigrid Algorithm for Computing the Fiedler Vector of Graph Laplacians.” The paper was accepted into Journal of Computational Mathematics earlier this year.
journal of computational mathematics
A portion of Urschel's paper, “A Cascadic Multigrid Algorithm for Computing the Fiedler Vector of Graph Laplacians.”
Urschel understands that he’s a bit of a statistical oddity, but he doesn’t think that his two passions stand in contradiction with one another. "There’s no contradiction when it comes to [my love of] football and math,” he told The Huffington Post in a recent sit-down conversation.
“I think they’re complementary in a sense," he said. "Football really speaks to this competitive side of me, this aggressive side, whereas mathematics speaks to this side of me where I’m really curious and want to know why."

But Urschel knows not everyone shares his passion for math, and he believes he knows why, too: We’re not properly explaining to young children where a love of math can take them.
"One thing that really limits the amount of people that major in math is that growing up, kids don’t know what math majors do,” he said. “They think about a major in mathematics and they imagine just doing calculus for four years. Or just more factorization. And this isn’t what it is at all."
"What I see in math and what I wish a lot of young people would see is how it’s rooted in reality," said Urschel, who spoke with HuffPost as part of his partnership with software developer Persado, a New York-based company. "Mathematics is underlying so many things in our everyday life, and mathematicians are in such great need."
That’s true, particularly in Urschel’s favorite area of mathematical study: applied mathematics, which focuses on the real-world applications of math. That need leads to good money too. Applied mathematics ranked fourthamong college majors by pay in a recent survey published in USA Today and16th when it came to how quickly a major pays itself back, according to a separate survey by PayScale, a salary research firm.
"The way that our world is moving, the way it’s becoming data-driven, the way that it’s becoming more and more modernized -- mathematicians are going to be central to this,” he said. "We’re in a world where we have so much data. It’s abundant, and it’s too abundant. We have all these resources and we don’t know what to do with them.”
That's why, in Urschel's view, "the 21st century is really going to be the century of the mathematician.” But Urschel says math shouldn't only be thought of as a means to a solid job and comfortable life. Fully utilized, knowledge of the subject becomes a way of solving problems both math-related and not.
"Mathematics, yes, teaches you things about triangles. It teaches you how to add numbers. It teaches you factorization,” he said. “But what it is really teaching you the entire way through, is it’s showing you how to look at some problem that you may face every day in your life, [or] a problem that is a little bit different than any problem you’ve ever faced."
"You need to take the tools you have and the things you know and your experiences from facing other problems to find the best way to solve this problem and to think through this problem," he added. "And mathematics, all the way from when you’re a little child, all the way through college, is an exercise in training you for this."
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated Urschel plays for the Seattle Seahawks. He plays for the Baltimore Ravens. Duh.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Mathematics Article - CNBC

Math, science skills add up to more job opportunities: Survey

Good news for all you math and science whizzes out there: You sort of own the job market.
Most of the top 10 best jobs—based on work environment, income, job outlook, stress and other factors—call for backgrounds in those two fields, according to a recent report released by career website

Todor Tsvetkov | Vetta | Getty Images
"We see every year that STEM [science, technology, engineering and math] jobs are rising on the list for a variety of reasons," said Tony Lee, publisher and editor for CareerCast. "Their hiring outlook, salary, better work environment brought on by competition for employees … all walk hand-in-hand to make these jobs more appealing than any others."
CareerCast annually examines the 200 most populated U.S. jobs and then ranks them based on a variety of metrics. Lee said that while there are three health care–related jobs in CareerCast's 2105 Jobs Rated Report, they used to dominate the top of the list. Now STEM jobs have taken over.
"The jobs that are rising into the top 10 are jobs that didn't even exist a few years ago," Lee said.
Also, most of the top 10 jobs in the report are on pace to grow by at least 20 percent between 2012 and 2022.
Topping CareerCast's list is actuary.
Basically, actuaries analyze statistics to determine the financial consequences of current and future risk. They often work for insurance and financial companies, along with an array of other businesses.
An actuary also is a specialized job with specific education and training requirements. Actuaries must hold a bachelor's degree—typically with a math or business bent—and pass a series of exams to become certified professionals.
"The exam process is rigorous and relies on the individual to self-study," said Brad Paulis, a partner at CCRC Actuaries. Because of those things, he said, actuaries generally enjoy good job security because there aren't easily replaced.
And, he added, most actuaries truly enjoy mathematics and problem-solving.
"Often our problem-solving extends beyond math into other areas, but the process is why we entered the profession," Paulis said.
The U.S. Department of Labor's latest data show that an actuary's median salary tops $93,000.
Audiologist ranked second on the list, making it one of three health care–related jobs in the report's top 10. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook, an audiologistdiagnoses and treats patients' hearing and balance problems using advanced technology and procedures.

Your Wealth:
Weekly advice on managing your money

Sign up to get Your Wealth each weekday
To learn more about how we use your information, please read our Privacy Policy.
Becoming an audiologist requires earning a doctorate degree, along with getting licensed in the state in which you work.
The employment outlook for audiologists is good, because the field is expected to grow at a 34 percent clip over the decade ending in 2022. Their median salary is about $70,000.
Third on the list is mathematician. These professionals do, well, math.
They work in a variety of private industries and government agencies, using advanced mathematics to develop and understand mathematical principals, analyze data and solve real-world problems. Their median pay is more than $101,000.

Numbers and nature

Ranking fourth is another math-related profession: statistician.
Statisticians use statistical methods to collect and analyze data and help solve problems in all sorts of industries. Typically, a statistician needs to have a master's degree or higher. Their median income is about $76,000.
In the fifth spot is biomedical engineer. Often armed with a degree in biomedical engineering, these professionals analyze and design solutions to solve problems in biology and medicine. The goal is to improve the quality and effectiveness of patient care.
Biomed engineers typically earn $87,000 annually.
In sixth place is data scientist, which Lee said has never been included in the report until now.
The job is growing in popularity because, with businesses having tons of data at their disposal, someone needs to have the skills to break down raw numbers into easily digested information. Data scientists' median annual salary is $124,000.
Rounding out the top 10 are dental hygienist (No. 7), software engineer (No. 8), occupational therapist (No. 9) and computer systems analyst (No. 10).

10 Best Jobs of 2015

Median Salary
5Biomedical Engineer$89,165
6Data Scientist$124,149
7Dental Hygienist$71,102
8Software Engineer$93,113
9Occupational Therapist$77,114
10Computer Systems Analyst$81,150
The other positive aspect for job seekers interested in these fields is the effect that competition has on hiring packages.
For instance, new research shows that job seekers increasingly want more say in when and where they do their job.
"What we're seeing is lots of people out there wanting flexible work arrangements," said Tara Sinclair, chief economist for global job search engine Indeed and head of its Hiring Lab research arm, which just released a report called "The Talent Driven Economy," which looks at the emerging interests of job seekers.
She said that during the last recession, when the job market was tight, employers pulled back on providing flex hours or allowing telecommuting.
"I think we're going to see a dramatic shift back to remote work and jobs that explicitly allow work from home," Sinclair said.
Part of that is a tightening job market. The report points out that during the worst of the recession in 2009, there were 2 million job openings, or one opening for every 6.2 unemployed job seekers.
As of four or so months ago, there were 5 million job openings, or one job for every 1.7 unemployed job seeker.
Additionally, although the STEM and health-care jobs comprise the top 10 best jobs on the CareerCast list, there continues to be more jobs available than there are qualified people to fill them.
"We've talked so much about the persistent mismatch between not enough tech talent to fill the tech-job opportunities. But now there's growth in the amount of people seeking tech jobs, so that's encouraging."-Tara Sinclair, chief economist at Indeed
According to the Indeed report, 14.2 percent of job postings are for health-care practitioners and technicians, but less than 7 percent of job seekers are looking for those jobs.
Another disparity exists for jobs in the computer and mathematical fields: 8.4 percent of postings are for them, but just 5.5 percent of job seekers are exploring them.
Nevertheless, there has been an increase in searches for tech-related positions, which is viewed as a positive.
"There is a dominance of tech-related job searches coming from job seekers," Sinclair said. "We've talked so much about the persistent mismatch between not enough tech talent to fill the tech-job opportunities. But now there's growth in the amount of people seeking tech jobs, so that's encouraging."
Sinclair added, however, that the opportunities still are outstripping the available talent. "Almost every company needs new hires to have significant tech skills," she said. "So the growth is reassuring, but we have a long way to go."
—By Sarah O'Brien, special to