Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Fire Island residents trudged through six inches of water flooding Ocean Beach at high tide on Friday while preparing for the impact of Hurricane Joaquin’s expected passing east of Long Island starting this weekend.While many secured their homes and businesses, a few reveled despite the National Weather Service’s coastal flooding and high surf advisories for LI—forecasts that spark extra worries on FI, where the beaches remain particularly vulnerable since Sandy three years ago.“You have people preparing as they should be,” said John Randazzo, owner of Castaways Bar & Grill, who trucked $3,000 worth of food from his five Ocean Beach eateries to freezers on LI in case the power goes out. “Then you got people who just want to have a few beers.”LI breathed a sigh of relief when forecasters predicted it’ll be spared a direct hit, but officials remain concerned about the four barrier islands protecting LI from the Atlantic Ocean—especially FI, the largest, which remains breached and partly dune-less since the 2012 superstorm.“I’m not worried,” Ashley Ingenito, 25, an waitress at The Albatross, said while planning hurricane parties and surfing in the above-average waves. Next to her at the bar, the owner, Ocean Beach Mayor James Mallott, fixed a broken light after leading a half dozen TV reporters around the village that’s FI’s unofficial capital.“The ocean gives and the ocean takes away,” Mallott said while showing the press gaggle where the waves reached the foot of the makeshift dune made of sand berms, trap bags and geotubes. “We’re still waiting for sand to be replenished on the beach, which is… crucial to our survival here on Fire Island.”The mayor was flanked by Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, who said the partly completed $207-million Fire Island Inlet to Moriches Inlet (FIMI) project is expected to resume in the coming weeks. The east end of FI was rebuilt earlier this year, the second phase is slated this fall to rebuild the beach on the west end of the island and the residential middle won’t begin until litigation ends. The Suffolk public works department is currently negotiating with about 20 oceanfront FI property owners in the 17 communities that face buyouts and potential condemnation to make way for the new Sandy-aid-funded replacement dune.“We have to expedite the FIMI project…to restore this dune line to make sure the barrier beach is being protected,” Bellone told reporters while waves crashed behind him during a news conference at Robert Moses State Park. “This place is not only a national treasure, it is vital to the protection of the south shore.”The county executive noted that he doesn’t plan to order an evacuation of FI and a spokeswoman for PSEG Long Island said that there are no plans to preemptively cut power to there, as it has done in hurricanes past. But Bay Shore-based Fire Island Ferries, the biggest of three companies that serve the public to the mostly car-free island, suspended service starting Sunday while the other two in Sayville and Patchogue are taking it day by day. All eyes will remain on the south shore until the storm passes.
Years ago, long before I began working in professional development for credit union leaders, I was a middle school language arts teacher. The school district in which I taught was struggling with the “summertime slip,” that inevitable backward step that many students make when they are out school for the two or three months of summer break.My district’s solution was to shift to a year-round schedule in which the long summer break is replaced by a series of three shorter breaks throughout the year. The results were less than stellar. Instead of helping students remain motivated to learn through their breaks, we assumed that three shorter sessions of academic inactivity would lead to better results. It didn’t. We traded a single case of “summer slip” for three periods of academic atrophy.The three shorter breaks model didn’t account for the challenges of self-directed and distance learning that are very much a part of any break from school. Learning is inherently social. That’s why we like to share ideas with others in the classroom, discuss our favorite books and teach others how to pursue the hobbies we love. When we divorce learners from each other and teachers, motivation goes down the drain. We even see the effect with adult learners in online programs led by some of the top educational institutions in the world, like Harvard and MIT. The EdX courses of those top universities—which are one-way, non-interactive offerings—had only a 3.13% completion rate by all participants in 2017-2018.A parallel challenge to learning is now taking place in the credit union industry.“Social distancing”—or not being in close physical proximity to anyone other than those you live with—is currently being practiced in many areas to help delay the spread of coronavirus. This means that many organizations are wisely postponing traditional in-person learning events until it’s safer to travel and be in a classroom. But now, perhaps more than any time since the Great Recession, targeted professional development is essential to respond to the rapidly shifting business environment. That means your staff and board will be required to continue their professional development on their own.Fortunately, there are things we can do to stay engaged as we learn virtually during shelter-in-place.Switch things up. When we are learning on our own, we can take a lesson from the way teachers structure their school days. On any given day, students experience a range of activities—reading and writing workshops, science and math labs, model building, and small and large group discussion. The variety hamstrings boredom and keeps the students engaged and learning. Apply these principles in your own self-directed learning. Combine short articles and longer pieces of literature, videos and podcasts, case studies, and structured online learning on the topics you need to know.Share and ask questions of others. Often, the biggest detriment to self-directed and online learning is the lack of interaction with other learners and instructors. This is exacerbated by current social distancing requirements. Humans learn best when we share ideas, ask questions and brainstorm together, but it requires some creative problem-solving when our teams and learning partners are all working from home. Not surprisingly, my team at CUES uses Zoom calls for more structured discussions and problem-solving, but we are relying more on Microsoft Teams to ask quick questions and share ideas and resources. It’s common to receive a chat message during the day that says something like, “Hey, I just read this article about having an entrepreneurial mindset. How can we apply the principles to our team?” Find what works for you, whether it’s Microsoft Teams, an online forum, email or text. Maybe you just want to pick up the phone. Just share your learning.Seek opportunities to interact with subject matter experts. A key benefit of learning in the classroom is the opportunity to ask questions and interact with the teacher. When we engage in self-study, we can’t always answer our challenging questions by performing another Google search or reading another book, but to our detriment, we are often reluctant to pick up the phone, send an email or ask a co-worker for help. It’s time to change that mindset. Actively seek out experts—co-workers, friends, or LinkedIn and social media contacts—who can answer questions and add more color to your learning. Don’t be afraid to contact someone outside of your immediate circle or at a vendor. People enjoy sharing and are often honored to be recognized for their expertise. Ask a question. It will enhance your learning.Apply what you’ve learned. Knowledge for knowledge’s sake won’t position your organization for success. Use your new-found knowledge to improve your processes, enhance your communication, implement a new business model or develop better plans. Applying new information on even a small scale helps us retain what we’ve learned and transfer that knowledge to new contexts, meaning we are better able to apply it to solve other problems.All of us hope that social distancing is effective and that the pandemic is over as soon as possible. I encourage you to keep learning through self-directed and digital offerings during the crisis, so you’ll be primed and ready to return to the full blend of options later on. As one example of what’s available, our School of Business Lending has been transformed for virtual delivery at the beginning of June. I certainly do look forward to seeing you at a future in-person learning event. 5SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Christopher Stevenson Christopher Stevenson, CAE, CIE, is SVP/Chief Learning Officer for CUES, where he leads the development and delivery of educational offerings and products and services to help meet the professional … Web: https://www.cues.org Details