first_imgABC News(TAMPA, Fla.) — Some fifth-graders in Tampa, Florida got an Easter surprise recently that they won’t soon forget.Last week, before the holiday weekend, Sheehy Elementary School teacher Brent Walker was out shopping for school supplies when he took to Facebook with an idea: He asked whether 20 friends would be interested in donating $10 apiece so that he could buy premade Easter baskets for his 20 students.“Would anyone like to sponsor a student? I don’t know how many of them will get an Easter basket this year, but I know it would make their day!” he said, in part, in the post.Within an hour of his posting, Walker had raised more than $700. He then decided to buy and hand out Easter baskets to all three classes of fifth-graders at his school. The baskets were delivered Thursday.“I was like, ‘Wow!’” student Rai’seania Simmons told ABC affiliate WFTS-TV. “That was surprising.”Rai’seania said her Easter basket had contained art supplies, which she appreciated because she loves to paint.The night before the delivery, Walker posted a video outside of a local Walmart, showing five store carts filled with premade baskets and thanking everyone who’d donated as well as Walmart, which had given him a discount.“I’m probably going to start crying here in just a minute,” he said in the Facebook post. “This is just unbelievable.”Walker said the extra money from the donations would be used by all three fifth-grade teachers for incentives, prizes and parties for the students.“This has been an amazing thing to see,” he told WFTS.Rai’seania said she’d never received an Easter basket from a teacher before Thursday.“He deserves a thank you,” she said of Walker, who teaches math and reading. “He’s really a good teacher. He’s a generous teacher. … [And,] he expects the best from us.”Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

first_imgA spate of campaigns have been launched in opposition to animal cruelty in Oxford, one from an academic within the university and another from a charity attacking the university’s ethical stance.Professor Andrew Linzey, Director of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, has called for the establishment of an international court that would “judge cases of animal cruelty and specifically assess the culpability of governments”.The proposals come in the same week that the Anti-Vivisection Coalition (AVC) launched a campaign to stop public funding to an Oxford University lab that experiments on monkeys. Luke Steele, head of AVC, explained the campaign: “University of Oxford inflicts severe suffering on primates in experiments, sawing open their skulls and implanting electrodes into their brains. This cruelty is subsidised by the very public who oppose its conduction. We call for change to reflect the exodus away from monkey testing taking place in other countries.”Much like Prof. Linzey’s proposal, the AVC hope to persuade the government of their case.Prof. Linzey’s proposal, however, implicitly criticises the relatively narrow scope of the ANC campaign: “Although animal protection is obviously a matter of global concern, animal protectionists have sometimes been slow in recognizing this fact and have contented themselves with working on an issue-by-issue, country-by-country basis. But what this approach neglects is the need for international strategies to tackle what are global problems.” Luke Steele, however, expressed his support for Prof. Linzey’s proposal: “AVC wholly supports the founding of an international court to judge animal cruelty cases. In primate laboratories, such as those at Oxford, traditionalism is prevalent and legislative enforcement would force animal experimenters to abandon outdated testing methods.”A spokesperson for Voice for Ethical Research Oxford (VERO) came out in support of the AVC campaign and similarly chided Oxford’s conservatism: “in the universities, resistance to change is strongest, even though the UK law has been urging and promoting the switch to alternatives since 1986. Oxford University used and killed about 200,000 animals in experiments in 2012 – an astonishing increase of over 25% on the previous year, which it didn’t voluntarily make known. It signed a formal promise a year or two ago to be more ‘open’ about it, but VERO has been keenly awaiting any sign since then that the promise was a serious and honourable one.”Statistics from Oxford University reveal that of the 200,000 animals used in 2012, 98% of research was conducted on rodents and the rest on fish, frogs, ferrets, and primates. In all, 29 primates were held of research. Richard Beck, a third year engineer at Somerville, said; “As long as it isn’t needlessly cruel I don’t see the problem. If the research being done is necessary and well-regulated then why not test on animals?”Noah Viner, a second year linguist at Trinity, said: “A lot of the protestors claims are unfounded and overblown. Whilst we should avoid being needlessly cruel the research being conducted on primates is relatively minor and not as severe as AVC’s claims would have the public believe.”The AVC petition has received almost 3,000 signatures on, but will need a further 7,000 before it can be read in parliament. The AVC campaign has been timed to start exactly ten years after the high-profile 2004 public defeat of the University of Cambridge’s plans to construct a similar primate laboratory.last_img read more

first_imgmoe. and Twiddle formerly had plans to perform at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado, this weekend along with Pigeons Playing Ping Pong. Unfortunately, following Rob Derhak’s diagnosis of oropharyngeal cancer and the subsequent indefinite hiatus that moe. has undergone while their bassist seeks treatment, the Red Rocks show was canceled. While the circumstances for the show’s cancellation are somber, moe. and Twiddle (through Twiddle’s nonprofit, White Light Foundation) have teamed up to make sure that some good comes from their planned joint Fans Create Fundraiser For Bassist Rob DerhakAs part of the marketing efforts for the Red Rocks performance, a flag with the details of the show was flown at two music festivals and above the Red Rocks parking lot. In order to raise money for the charity, the members of moe. and Twiddle have signed the flag and plan to auction it off. The proceeds will go to the charity of moe.’s choice, and the band has chosen the nonprofit MusiCares—an organization associated with The Recording Academy that provides safety nets for musicians and others in the music industry during their time of need. MusiCares is not only a non-profit near and dear to both bands’ hearts, but also a worthy, necessary organization with a mission is particularly relevant in light of Derhak’s ongoing medical expenses. You can check out the auction for yourself here. Please consider bidding on this piece of history and in turn supporting the musicians who so regularly fill our lives with joy during the times they need it most. The auction began on August 10th and will continue to run until August 30th.Check out and bid on moe. and Twiddle’s auction for the signed Red Rocks flag that will benefit the musical nonprofit, MusiCares here!Get well soon, Rob!last_img read more

first_imgDUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The U.S. military says it has again flown a B-52 bomber over the Middle East “to deter potential aggression” amid tensions with Iran. The B-52 flew nonstop from Louisiana’s Barksdale Air Force Base into the region on Wednesday. Flight-tracking data showed the plane went over both the Persian Gulf and Saudi Arabia. The U.S. military’s Central Command later published images of the bomber flying alongside Royal Saudi Air Force F-15s. It did not mention Iran in its statement but the Central Command said the flight was meant to “showcase the U.S. commitment to regional security.”last_img read more

first_imgErin Fennessy Bond Hall, originally serving as the University’s library, recently underwent renovations, including the addition of a new learning research lab and First Year Advising space.Project specialist Matt Motolko, who facilitated the design and bid process of Bond Hall through completion, said workers kept the existing layout of the building and made renovations based on each department’s specific needs.“For some, there were walls added to create individual offices and meeting spaces, which included minor mechanical upgrades,” Motolko said in an email. “While for others, the areas were almost move-in ready, just some minor cosmetic upgrades.”In addition to the departments who have already moved in, Motolko said they are in the preliminary stages of planning a teaching and learning research lab on the ground floor, as well as a new space for First Year Advising on the third floor, among other initatives.“In the near future, we will have multiple registrar controlled classrooms, including language learning classrooms, throughout the building,” Motolko said in the email. “The building will also be outfitted with shared conference rooms [and] meeting spaces on each floor for any department to use.”Demetra Schoenig, director of academic enhancement for the Graduate School, said she was in favor of the department’s transition to Bond Hall.“Bond Hall is an extraordinary building,” Schoenig said. “… Its location is lovely — adjacent to the lakes, the Log Chapel and other buildings that Fr. [Edward] Sorin and his colleagues built in the University’s early years.”As the graduate school was previously housed in the Main Building, Schoenig said the new space and amenities Bond Hall has to offer will help their department flourish.“The Graduate School’s ethos is that your research matters, and key to that ethos is that you matter,” Schoenig said. “As a hub for graduate students, postdoctoral scholars, undergraduates and faculty alike, Bond Hall’s meeting rooms, auditorium and classrooms will enable us to foster a sense of intellectual community that is at the heart of this ethos.”Paloma Garcia-Lopez, associate director of the Institute for Latino Studies (ILS), said her department was the first University unit to move into Bond Hall last spring. With the new space, ILS has room for a scholar’s lounge for students open Monday through Thursday.Garcia-Lopez said they particularly appreciate their new location with respect to other buildings on campus.“We feel really blessed because we’re close to the Basilica and the Grotto and the lake, and it’s a really nice place to be,” Garcia-Lopez said. “Everybody seems to walk by the Dome, so we’re getting a lot more connection to the student body, which we really like, and then the other departments that have moved in have just made the building more lively.”Tags: Bond Hall, graduate school, Institute for Latino Studies Following the School of Architecture’s transition to Walsh Family Hall in the spring, Bond Hall now serves as a part of the University’s Campus Student Learning District, along with the Coleman-Morse Center.Bond Hall is currently home to the Institute for Latino Studies, the Flatley Center for Undergraduate Scholarly Engagement, the Graduate School, the Office for Postdoctoral Scholars, the Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures and a new initiative for first-year science and engineering students.Originally built in 1917, Bond Hall served as the University’s library until the School of Architecture transitioned into the building in 1964.last_img read more

first_imgUGA’s Block and Bridle club is gearing up for the 38th annual Great Southland Stampede Rodeo, which will roll into Athens, Ga. this weekend, April 19-21.The annual event is the only student-run Professional Rodeo Cowboys’ Association rodeo in the nation. Cowboys and cowgirls from all over the country will be in town to show off their skills and battle for top rodeo ranking. Almost 100 student volunteers from UGA’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences have worked for months to put on the show. Since 1974, the event has introduced thousands of UGA students and Northeast Georgians to the world of steer wrestling, barrel racing and bull riding. The rodeo kicks off Thursday, April 19 with “Tough Enough to Be a Dawg” student night. On this night, students will be able to purchase tickets for $10 with a valid UGA identification card at the door. Saturday night will be “Tough Enough to Serve” night, recognizing the service of America’s military men and women. The rodeo will be held at the UGA Livestock Instructional Arena, located at 2600 South Milledge Avenue. It includes rodeo competitions such as bull riding, calf roping and barrel racing. UGA alum and professional rodeo announcer Roger Mooney will provide commentary.Gates open at 6 p.m. The rodeo starts at 8 p.m. Tickets will be $15 for adults and $12 for children under 12. Children 3 and under are free every night.Attendees can preorder discounted tickets, $10 for children and $12 for adults, through Thursday by calling (706) 542-9374.Seating is limited. Doors will be closed to general admission once attendance has reached maximum capacity. The event will take place rain or shine, as the arena is a covered venue.For more information, call (706) 542-9374, visit or visit the rodeo’s Facebook page by searching 2012 Great Southland Stampede Rodeo on more information, call (706) 542-9374, visit or visit the rodeo’s Facebook page by searching 2012 Great Southland Stampede Rodeo on Friday is “Tough Enough to Wear Pink” night. For every person who comes to the arena on Friday wearing pink, $1 will be donated to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. last_img read more

first_imgI have done myself a disservice.  A number of years ago, I got my hands on a copy of Yellow Tag Mondays, the debut release from The Farewell Drifters.  The bluegrassy feel and tight harmonies on “Love We Left Behind,” the record’s opening track, hooked me from the get go, and I spent a lot of time with the disc over the following weeks.Now, flash forward a few years and cue the disservice.As often happens, The Farewell Drifters spun off my radar.  Somehow, I managed to miss their second record, 2011’s Echo Boom, entirely.  So, when I got word of the pending release of Tomorrow Forever, the band’s first album with Compass Records, my memory was jogged.  I tracked the new record down and was stunned by The Farewell Drifters’ sonic evolution.  The acoustic underpinning that originally drew me to the band years ago was still at the music’s core, but added to that was an indie folk rock vibe more reminiscent of The Lumineers or Fleet Foxes.This new sound works.So, do yourself a favor.  Learn from my mistake and let the disservice end with me; don’t let this band slip your attention and grab a copy of Tomorrow Forever.I recently caught up with Joshua Britt as the band was headed up to Maine.  Josh, who plays mandolin for the band, must be a stand up guy.  I tossed him a question that would have really allowed him to take a good natured jab at his brother, Clayton, who also plays in the band; he demurred and, instead, chatted up travels through Japan, skiing, and the joys of home.  It’s all good stuff, and  – having one myself – I appreciate a good brother.BRO – You guys have been at this for nearly a decade.  What do you know now about making records that you didn’t know back when you laid down Yellow Tag Mondays?JB – On that record, we were just poor kids paying a Nashville studio rate, so we had to work fast and memorize everything so we could nail it in the studio.  That record comes across as less risky for that reason.  I have learned that the studio is the best place in the world to experiment and create arrangements.  With this record, we lived in the studio for a month, just experimenting with sounds for these tunes.  We approach the studio now as a creative environment where the sounds and arrangements are more open to discovery and risk taking.  We also found a producer we all respect and who helped us navigate which fights are worth fighting.BRO – Got a favorite wintertime activity?JB – We have taken up skiing whenever we get a chance.  I enjoy the feeling of being right on the edge of losing control, both musically and physically.  Our bass player was training to be a pro snowboarder at one point in his life.  So far, we have done Mt. Hood in Oregon and Massanutten in Virginia.BRO – Favorite band of the moment?JB – I am in love with this band called Isaiah from Tel Aviv.  I spend a lot of time combing through Youtube for good music and that’s where I found these guys.  There is not much info about them online, but I think this is the writer/bouzouki player’s first project in English.  It blew my socks off when I heard that because the writing is beautiful.  I talk to him sometimes on Facebook about bouzouki and octave mandolin tunings.  Check him out at – You guys are on the road a lot.  Got a city you can’t wait to visit again?JB – Yawata, Japan, has been the closest we have come to paradise, in my opinion.  It’s a mountain town in Northern Japan that took a four hour bullet train ride from Japan to reach.  We played a show there and then stayed for a week.  All the locals share a garden in the middle of the town and it has beautiful hot spring baths.  At one point, I was walking down the road without a coat and an eighty year old man tried to give me his.  We climbed the 2,466 stone steps of Mt. Haguro to the huge temple on top.  I want to go back.BRO – What’s the best thing about getting home and off the road?JB – Being home is a great feeling.  After all these years, the road still feels more like an adventure than a home.  Whether we are getting back to families and friends or just plain old normalcy, it feels good.  When I think of home, I think of the people that love me and the ability to just be a loner who writes songs.  There is nothing in the world as good as pulling into home after a month on the road and finding the people you love waiting for you.The Farewell Drifters have shows coming up in Nashville (tonight), Decatur, GA (February 13th), Athens, GA (February 14th), and Birmingham, AL (February 15th) this week.  For information on tickets to those shows or when the band will be with you, along with how to get your own copy of Tomorrow Forever, surf over to read more

first_img 33SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Sundeep Kapur Sundeep has been assisting financial institutions with their omni-channel strategies – a more effective branch, a better online experience, & great consumer engagement. He is the author of an online … Web: Details My cab ride took Uber, the latte at Starbucks came off my phone, but I didn’t have digital money for dinner. My share of payment for dinner at a restaurant in San Francisco was $34.15. Everyone used “digital money” to pay Jason who paid the bill. I ended up paying $40 – two crisp $20 bills!I recently had an opportunity to present at a financial services conference on the impact of mobile payments & what financial institutions should be doing to define their mobile wallet strategy. The rest of my article focuses on key points for you to consider and if you would like to participate in the “homework” I gave my students just send me a note on LinkedIn.Homework? Review the presentation, complete the assigned exercises, participate in an upcoming webinar, and then write out your mobile wallet plan. I call it, “Give me your mobile wallet!”What’s in Your Wallet?The need is real. What was a simple transaction between a buyer & a seller and then supported by financial institutions has now evolved into a complex ecosystem.Buyer, seller, financial institution, acquirer, processor, technology, payment network, cloud… A $1.2 trillion industry that has taken 40 years to build, but I promise it will be totally redefined in the next five years!Our physical wallet has identification, insurance cards, payment cards – debit, credit, prepaid, cash, & pictures. Almost everything (yes, there are pilots in Europe, Asia, & South America for digital id’s) can be put on your mobile phone.What is it going to take to be ready and what is this impact going to lead to?What is redefining the Way We Pay?There are three types of payments we need to consider – payments between consumers & merchants, between consumers, & between businesses.Let us look at the five big trends affecting the way we will pay:I – Technology InnovationPayment networks are much faster due to modern technology, better point-to-point devices, and effective risk scoring algorithmsIt takes seconds to move money vs. the days it took (& still does for some)The real time availability to process transactional data allows merchants to personalize offers, resulting in an increase in salesPayment encryption & security techniques are helping reduce payment fraud and lossesBitcoin is pushing the limits of technology – anonymous, fast, & efficientII – Regulation & ComplianceConsumer protections and insurance help insulate consumers from fraudulent charges and identity theftPayment interchange fees are moving lower (part technology, part time to transact, part legislation)Anti-money laundering rules are still being defined with the goal of helping protect against illegal funds transfer and fraudCryptocurrencies like Bitcoin allow for de-centralized transfer of assets without a central clearing authorityIII – Demographic ConsiderationsMillennials adopt mobile payments faster, but they also rely on cashBaby Boomers tend to use more credit cards and electronic paymentsYoung adults are the most under-banked age groupHigher income individuals prefer credit and electronic paymentsLower income individuals prefer cash and are also beginning to adopt mobileIV – International Implications50% of the world’s population is still unbankedBusinesses and consumers prefer electronics as a medium of transactionMany emerging (including Europe) prefer debit over creditV – Shared LearningThere are a lot of micro and macro pilots in different parts of the word that are driving alliances between brands (even competitors), technology partnerships, enhanced regulation due to learning, and personalization to ease adoption.Innovators, Disruptors, & RegulatorsWe have a lot of players in the mix – the disruptors are using lower cost and the ease of adoption to grow their influence (even though some of them are loosing money). The innovators are influencing adoption by offering value added services, including personalization & related advertising revenue.Of course, the regulators are frantically trying to define what is right and this is a question I pose to financial institutions – what are you doing to define your requirements to the regulators?An Opportunity AwaitsWith 50% of the world’s population still unbanked and the ease of entry due to technology (for non legacy players) a lot of change is expected. Don’t you think that the owner of the wallet that maintains direct contact with the consumer will rule how and where the money moves?Some more questions for you – have you defined your mobile payment strategy? Should you have a wallet? Have you considered an open wallet?The way we pay is being redefined, are you in?last_img read more

first_img continue reading » The U.S. House will consider its Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) Appropriations Act for 2017 (H.R. 5485) this week, among a number of other bills. The bill, passed 30-17 by the House Appropriations Committee earlier this month, contains a number of CUNA-supported regulatory relief provisions.The bill contains language that would change the leadership structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to a five-person board, require the CFPB to study the use of arbitration before issuing any new regulations and would stop the CFPB from proceeding with its short-term, small-dollar loan proposal.Consideration of H.R. 5485 is likely to begin Wednesday, and streaming will be available on will also be monitoring several hearings this week, including:Tuesday, 10 a.m. (ET): Senate Banking Committee will conduct its semiannual monetary policy report with Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen; 8SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Suffolk County police said two brothers were fatally shot in Mastic Beach Friday afternoon.Blake Chambers, 28, and his 22-year-old brother, Codi, were shot in their home at 12:25 p.m., police said.The victims were taken to Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center in East Patchogue, where they were pronounced dead.The William Floyd School District said in a statement on its website that all schools in the district activated lockout protocols at the time.The district also said it was informed by Suffolk police that a suspect was in custody. A police spokeswoman could not confirm if a suspect had been apprehended.Homicide Squad detectives are continuing the investigation and ask anyone with information on this shooting is asked to call them at 631-852-6392 or call anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.last_img read more