Cambridge have raised their A-level entry requirements for science courses, now requiring A*A*A rather than A*AA. These changes will apply for 2015 entry onwards, effecting all science courses other than Psychological and Behavioral Sciences.Upon the introduction of the A* in 2008, Cambridge responded by immediately raising entry requirements for some subjects to include an A*, whilst Oxford lagged behind by a year. This raises the possibility that Oxford may again follow suit.The reasoning behind the change was that a high percentage, 92%, of students who met their offer were exceeding the A*AA minimum. An increase in applications from foreign students was another motive for raising the grade requirements.According to a Cambridge spokesperson, a candidate with 2 or more A*s at A-level would be better prepared to take on a challenging Cambridge course. They said, “The revised offer gives applicants a clearer indication of the level of attainment realistically required to compete for a place, and to thrive on science courses.”Cambridge student Laura Bampton, Robinson College, welcomes the change and agrees with the University about people with higher grades being better prepared, commenting, “I wouldn’t have thought twice about applying, even if the offer was higher and I doubt many people would, because nobody applies unless they’re pretty confident they’re in multiple A* territory.”One Oxford engineer noted that A-level exams in scientific subjects tend to be fairly similar in content from year to year, observing that, “in science subjects the paper on the day shouldn’t affect your result enough for it to make a difference.” He did, however, emphasise the importance of the interview in admissions decisions, adding, “Interviews are a far better marker of a candidate’s ability than A-levels, personal statements and tests.”However, the potential implications that the decision will have on access and the public’s perception of Cambridge have alarmed one student, who said, “The general reaction is one of concern at how this will affect applications from students who have the potential to be at Cambridge but are from non-traditional Cambridge backgrounds and are therefore very uncertain about applying and their likelihood of getting in.” On the other hand, in an article for the Cambidge student newspaper Varsity, Alice Udale-Smith, commented, “Whilst it may therefore seem callous to deny students without those grades the option to study here, it is infinitely preferable to awarding them a place only to watch them fail and leave without a degree at all.”The responses among Oxford students have been mixed. One second year biochemist told Cherwell, “I wouldn’t be surprised if a change to bring subjects on par with Cambridge does occur, especially if the percentage of A* achieved during A-levels increases. It should be remembered though that the majority of Cambridge’s sciences operate under the umbrella of natural sciences, whereas Oxford’s single science system means that each department is more or less responsible for it entrance requirements; such flexibility is not available in the Cambridge system.”Medic George Gillett reacted negatively to the changes from an access point of view, saying, “Higher standard offers mount an incredible challenge and disincentive to students at low-performing schools. It is a shame that Cambridge have given even greater emphasis to an indicator which is heavily influenced by teaching quality, rather than focusing more on markers of core ability, such as admissions tests.”St Anne’s computer scientist Andy Wright disagreed, commenting, “I feel that previous changes to the education system such as tuition fee rises are more unappealing than a grade rise. If a student strongly wants to apply to Cambridge they should not be put off by a grade boundary. I didn’t get A*A*A, but due to the lower grade boundaries, I could afford to do less work, indeed having a job at home to pay for university cost me revision time. With a higher boundary I would have been more focused on my work, potentially better preparing myself for the intense Oxford terms I have had.”AJ Gilbert, a mathematician, suggested that the problem could lie with the A-level system itself. He said, “My concern would be the access issue but I doubt this is something that can be dealt with just by tweaking entrance requirements. To the extent that this is an issue, maybe it says more about A-levels than admissions.”
‘We encourage employees to take personal responsibility for their health ‘ eat lean, exercise regularly, practice safe work habits ‘ and we try to offer fun, creative programs to support their efforts,’ says Jeff Somple, president of Mack’s Northern Operations.‘At the end of the day, we are all health care consumers. So it is in everyone’s best interest to make healthy lifestyle choices that will lead to more productive lives and lower health care costs.’ About Mack MoldingMack Molding is a leading custom plastics molder and supplier of contract manufacturing services. Mack specializes in plastics design, prototyping, molding, sheet metal fabrication, machining, and medical device manufacturing. Founded in 1920, Mack is a privately owned business that operates 10 facilities throughout the world. Don Kendall is president and CEO. For more information, go towww.mack.com(link is external). Mack Group,Governor Peter Shumlin presented Mack Molding with a Gold award for workplace wellness last week at the state’s annual conference hosted by The Vermont Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness & Sports. Health Services Manager Kathy Hall, RN, received the award on behalf of the company. Mack was recognized for recent lifestyle initiatives that were inspired by the company’s overarching wellness theme ‘ take personal responsibility for your health. The award-winning programs included the:· Mack Community Garden — planted and harvested by employees, the 15 gardens were also supported by a local nursery with planting tips and discounted seedlings, and Mack with cedar beds, gardening tools, and easy water access. To further enhance the area, Mack added a volleyball court, a driving range for golfers, picnic tables and barbecue grills;· Eat Right, Stay Fit ‘ geared to help participants make enduring lifestyle changes, the 12-week program encouraged healthy eating habits that resulted in a combined weight loss of over 400 pounds among 50 employees;· Promoting Health & Wellness ‘ designed to address employee health care issues, work-related or not, the company’s Health & Wellness program includes an on-site physician with weekly office hours. Certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine, Dr. Brian Timura is an occupational medicine specialist and primary care physician. Committed to promoting healthy behavior and disease prevention, Mack has long been an advocate for workplace wellness. The headquarters facility includes a fitness center for employees and families that includes squash and racquetball courts, strength and cardio equipment, and on-site aerobic and yoga classes. Mack also employs a full-time health services professional who develops and implements ongoing wellness initiatives. In fact, the company has been recognized by the state twice before for its wellness programs. # # # # # ARLINGTON, Vt. (April 5, 2011) ‘
13SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr A Sound Credit Union employee who allegedly discriminated against a black Muslim woman that ignited a social media firestorm is no longer with the Tacoma, Wash-based cooperative.The $1.4 billion Sound CU posted its announcement on Facebook Monday night, but it did not say whether the employee resigned or was fired.On May 5, Jamela Mohamed recorded a discrimination incident at the credit union’s Kent branch, which drew hundreds of thousands of comments from outraged Facebook users. Many of them demanded that the employee involved be fired immediately, in part, because of the way she angrily confronted Mohamed, threatened to call police and followed her out to the credit union’s parking lot.Mohamed said she was discriminated against because she was asked to remove her headpiece, but her video showed at least two men in the branch who were wearing baseball caps. It’s unknown whether they removed their hats when they were served by tellers or were asked by tellers to comply with the credit union’s policy of not wearing hoods, hats or sunglasses for “safety reasons.” continue reading »
Police say the investigation is still underway and it is unknown if there are more suspects. ONEONTA, N.Y. (WBNG) — The New York State Police Department arrested one person as part of an investigation into multiple vehicular larcenies on Sept 14. They were released on appearance tickets but were found on surveillance cameras taking from vehicles on East Street on Sept. 15. Details regarding if they were arrested again were not released. Troopers responded to a report of a theft in progress on South Side Drive in Oneonta around 1:30 a.m. The arrested individual was found to be in possession of coins that were taken from vehicles. In a news release, police said one homeless person has been charged with petit larceny, criminal possession of stolen property in the 5th degree and criminal trespass in the 3rd degree.
“It turns out that, when it comes to [accusing people of] blasphemy, the coronavirus does not stop our society. Instead, we are getting more sensitive about things considered blasphemy,” YLBHI chairwoman Asfinawati told The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.South Sulawesi accounted for 6 of the 38 reports, followed by East Java and North Maluku with 5 report each, West Java and North Sumatra with 4 each and South Kalimantan, Riau Islands and Jakarta with 2. Eight other provinces recorded 1 report each.The reports were filed with or processed by the police, the Interfaith Communication Forum (FKUB), the Pakem team (which monitors religious beliefs) or the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI).One case linked to the coronavirus outbreak pertains to a district head in South Sulawesi reported for blasphemy after dispersing a Friday prayer gathering, while another pertains to the donation of meals with a dog logo on the packaging in North Jakarta. A report conducted by the Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI) has revealed that accusations of blasphemy are still rampant amid the COVID-19 pandemic.According to the report, at least 38 cases of alleged blasphemy were reported to police or other institutions across 16 provinces in the first five months of 2020. Nineteen of the cases were filed before the first COVID-19 cases were announced on March 2, and the rest were filed afterward. Read also: No breakthrough in efforts to resolve blasphemy casesOther cases include alleged mass conversion of children, a claim to being a prophet for Muslims, a misinterpretation of religious teachings, an insult of a certain religious figure or symbol, and vandalism of a religious text.Most of the alleged blasphemy involved the use of social media. Some of the allegations were levelled at people in their early 20s, late teens or even at people as young as 14 years of age, according to data compiled by the YLBHI.However, the NGO noted that there seemed to be a more “progressive” handling of blasphemy cases by law enforcement officials, in which they carried out proper clarification and physiological assessments, facilitated mediation and dismissed reports in several instances.“There appears to be an improvement toward better law enforcement by both the police and judges, although not very [prominent],” the report states.Nevertheless, the YLBHI condemned the unclear definition of blasphemy in relevant laws, which had resulted in 28 of the 38 cases processed based on the ground that they had caused public disorder and unrest.“The argument that there is disturbance of public order is merely from a sociological and not juridical perspective. This is a classic argument since the 2005 blasphemy case targeting the Eden [community],” it argued.Read also: Man claiming to be final prophet gets reported for blasphemyThe unclear definition of blasphemy had led to lack of consideration of an alleged perpetrator’s intentions, the research suggested. It also expanded the use of absurd and contradictory articles.The number of cases has increased as people can easily report supposed blasphemy under not only Article 156a of the Criminal Code and the 1965 Blasphemy Law, but also the 2013 Mass Organization (Ormas) Law and the Electronic Information and Transactions (ITE) Law.A case in point is that of Michael Samuel Ratulangi, who was accused of blasphemy for a Facebook post in February. He was arrested under Article 45A of the ITE Law, with police saying, “the case contained expressions of hatred that led to blasphemy”.In other cases, Article 27 of the ITE Law regarding criminal acts of defamation were used to level charges at people accused of insulting religion through social media.Asfinawati said the group demanded that the government remove unclear and variably interpretable articles in the laws that did not meet principles of legality and could interfere with the freedom of speech, religious beliefs and other rights of expression.Topics :
National Review Online 10 May 2012This spring the journal Economic Inquiry published a study by Joseph Sabia and Daniel Reese which found very solid evidence that pro-life parental involvement laws reduce the suicide rate for teen females. This peer-reviewed study is both methodologically rigorous and well done. Analyzing state-level suicide data from 1987 to 2003 and holding constant both state-level trends and a range of economic and demographic factors, it finds that parental involvement laws reduce the suicide rate for teen females anywhere from 11 to 21 percent. The authors argue that this is because parental involvement laws reduce the incidence of stressful life events. These include unprotected sexual intercourse, STDs, pregnancies, and abortions.The authors utilize an impressive range of statistical tests to document their findings. For instance, the regression results indicate that parental involvement laws have only a marginal impact on the suicide rate of older females who would not be directly affected by the law. Also, parental involvement laws have little impact on the suicide rate for teen males. However, this is consistent with the hypothesis that unprotected sex imposes a greater psychological burden on female adolescents than on their male counterparts. Finally, parental involvement laws have less of an effect on teen female suicide rates — if adjacent states are not enforcing parental involvement laws.Overall, this study contributes to a growing body of peer-reviewed research which documents the positive public-health impact of pro-life parental-involvement laws. There exist at least 16 peer-reviewed studies which find that parental involvement laws result in statistically significant reductions in the in-state abortion rate for minors. Obviously some minors circumvent these laws by obtaining abortions in states without such laws. However, every study that tracks both in-state and out-of-state abortions finds that the in-state decline significantly exceeds the out-of-state increase.Additionally, a 2003 study in the Journal of Health Economics by Phillip Levine found that parental-involvement laws reduce the pregnancy rate of 15- to 17-year-olds by 4 to 9 percent. A 2008 study in the Journal of Law Economics and Organization by Jonathan Klick and Thomas Stratmann shows that parental involvement laws reduce gonorrhea rates anywhere from 12 to 20 percent for females under 20. Pro-choice opponents of parental-involvement laws frequently argue that they will lead to a higher incidence of child abuse. However, there is no comparable body of peer-reviewed evidence demonstrating the negative public-health impact of these laws.http://nationalreview.com/corner/299637/pro-life-parental-involvement-laws-reduce-teen-suicide-rates-michael-j-new
Plainfield, In. — Duke Energy today announced two executive appointments for the state president of Indiana and chief procurement officer, effective Nov. 16, 2018.Stan Pinegar – currently vice president of Indiana government affairs, will become Duke Energy’s state president in Indiana, succeeding Melody Birmingham-Byrd who will become Duke Energy’s senior vice president and chief procurement officer.As state president, Pinegar will manage state and local regulatory and government relations, and community affairs. Pinegar, 54, will work with the corporate and regulatory strategy teams to advance the company’s rate and regulatory initiatives. He will also be responsible for the financial performance of the company’s Indianaoperations.Pinegar joined Duke Energy in July 2012 after eight years in leadership roles, including president and chief executive officer of the Indiana Energy Association. In his current role, he is responsible for leading the company’s Indiana legislative affairs team and coordinating regulatory affairs with the executive branch of Indianagovernment.Prior to his appointment with Duke Energy, Pinegar spent more than 20 years leading various trade associations, representing members before the Indiana General Assembly and Indiana regulatory agencies. He is a member of the Indiana State Bar Association and its Taxation, Utility and Environmental Law Sections. He also serves on the board of directors of the Indiana Legal Foundation and the Indiana Manufacturers Association.“Stan’s extensive regulatory and legislative experience has prepared him well for this important role,” said Doug Esamann, executive vice president, energy solutions and president, Midwest and Florida regions. “He has extensive knowledge of Indiana operations, relationships with our stakeholders and a strong understanding of customer expectations. In his new role, he will continue to advocate for policies and practices to meet the energy needs of our customers that are environmentally sound and cost effective.”Pinegar’s successor will be named later.Melody Birmingham-Byrd – currently president of Duke Energy Indiana, will become senior vice president and chief procurement officer. In her new position, Byrd, 47, will be responsible for Duke Energy’s sourcing and supply chain functions for both the company’s regulated and commercial operations.Byrd succeeds Swati Daji who became Duke Energy’s senior vice president of Customer Solutions on Nov. 1, 2018.“Melody has provided solid leadership in Indiana for the last three years,” said Esamann. “She has placed a strong emphasis on serving our customers better and engaging with customers through various forums to understand more clearly what they would like to see from their electric energy supplier. She has created a strong foundation in Indiana and I expect a seamless transition with this change thanks to her efforts.”Byrd has 24 years of leadership and managerial experience in the electric and automotive manufacturing industries. She has served in roles within distribution, transmission and fossil generation. Prior to the merger between Duke Energy and Progress Energy in July 2012, Byrd served as vice president of the Southern Region for Progress Energy Carolinas.Prior to becoming Indiana’s state president in June 2015, Byrd served as senior vice president of Midwest delivery operations, overseeing the company’s electric distribution system in Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. This included construction, maintenance, operations, engineering, and resource and project management.
You can listen to live commentary of Ajax v Manchester United in the Europa League final on Wednesday, May 24 from 7pm, live on talkSPORT.Clarence Seedorf, a Champions League winner with Ajax, joined the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast ahead of the big game to share his thoughts.The Dutch legend claimed the exciting young Eredivisie side will provide United with plenty of problems, but says he expects Jose Mourinho to have his team expertly prepared for the challenge they will be up against in Stockholm.“Ajax have been a surprise this season,” said Seedorf. “They have shown more than one face in this Europa League. It is a talented group, unpredictable, and the coach has also shown to be capable and to adapt and change strategies.“When you have such a young team with players who are not on the world map yet, it is always harder to prepare for. But Mourinho is a maestro in making analysis of the opponents and coming out with a good strategy.”Seedorf also told talkSPORT he would ‘LOVE’ to work in England. Listen to the interview in full above.You can listen to live commentary of Ajax v Manchester United in the Europa League final on Wednesday, May 24 from 7pm, live on talkSPORT.