A jumbo certificate of deposit is a CD that has a larger minimum deposit, which is $100,000, compared to regular CDs. Traditional certificates of deposit typically have a minimum deposit of $2,500. As with traditional certificates of deposit, interest earned is paid at maturity along with return of the principal.
ROCHESTER, N.Y. — For months, News10NBC has been reporting on the teacher shortage being felt across New York State.
Many districts across our region have plenty of openings and there just aren’t enough new teachers in the pipeline to fill them. That’s why exact retirees are surprised to find out that their permanent teaching certificates are becoming inactive.
See more of our coverage:
Diane DiGiacomandrea was a teacher at Victor Primary School for more than two decades. Her favorite part of the job, “actually watching the kids grow and learn and become independent little people who think for themselves and who become comfortable with you and become your family,” she tells News10NBC.
DiGiacomandrea decided to retire at the end of 2020, “when I originally planned on retiring, I planned on going back and doing consulting work, we had an entire plan together on what I would do to go in and continue to support the schools,” she says but the combination of health concerns and COVID delayed those plans. Still, Mrs. D as she’s affectionately referred to by her students didn’t worry, “both of my certifications are permanent certifications,” she says so she figured she could return at any time.
But then she and some other retirees she knows pulled letters out of their mailboxes that caught them by surprise, “we got this notification that all the sudden a permanent certification was now no longer permanent and we were going to be cancelled and there were several of us,” she says.
The letter was from the NYS Department of Education and says DiGiacomandrea should only renew her certification if she’s planning to work at least 90 days at the same school in the same school year, “if you do not plan to participate or practice, if you’re retired for example you can just ignore this notice, “ DiGiacomandrea says, “but then what happens if I want to get back in?”
A spokesman for the NYSED tells News10NBC that permanent teaching certificates are valid for life. The Department does not “cancel” them but NYS Education Law was amended beginning with the 2016-17 school year and now requires teachers who hold permanent certificates and who are practicing in New York State register with NYSED every five years.
If a teacher who holds a permanent certificate is not practicing in New York State due to retirement or any other reason, NYSED directs them to change their registration status to “inactive” in the TEACH system. When a teachers’ registration period expires, they are not required to re-register if they do not plan to practice in an applicable school in the future. If they practice in an applicable school in the future, they should re-register and select the “active” status. There is not a time limit on being in inactive status.
DiGiacomandrea will switch to inactive for now as she continues conversations with school districts about how she and her fellow retirees may be able to continue to support schools and students, “when we talk about purpose, I’m talking about people with multiple degree and years and years and years of service and they are truly experts and then when I watch and see we have so many holes in our schools on a daily basis, it made me start to consider what could we do, how could we help that,” she wonders.
Source: Jandré van der Walt / Unsplash
Co-authored by Zamfira Parincu and Tchiki Davis
Sometimes life throws you a curveball and you find yourself overwhelmed. Maybe you experienced a loss. Perhaps you find yourself pondering the meaning of life. Or maybe the current state of world affairs makes you feel lost. Whenever you find yourself feeling anxious or stressed, you can use grounding techniques to reconnect with yourself and the present moment. This research-based strategy may be helpful for anxiety, panic attacks, flashbacks, or even dissociation.
Grounding techniques work by “grounding” you in the present moment and pulling you away from intrusive thoughts or feelings. This refers not only to having your “feet on the ground” but also your “mind on the ground.” When you turn your attention away from thoughts, memories, or worries, you can refocus on the present moment (Fisher, 1999).
Grounding techniques are useful because they help you distance yourself from an emotional experience. When you experience negative emotions—for example, perhaps you accidentally remember a painful memory—the brain's natural instinct is to start the involuntary physiological change known as the “fight or flight” response. Although this response keeps you safe by preparing you to face, escape from, or fight danger, memories do not present a tangible danger. If you find yourself in moments like these, grounding techniques can help the body calm itself and return to the present moment.
This is one of the most common grounding techniques. It helps by grounding you to the moment and reconnecting you to all five senses by naming:
The next time you feel anxious or that you are overthinking a problem, try the 5-4-3-2-1 technique to become more present in the moment.
Guided meditation is a powerful grounding technique to reduce stress, depression and anxiety, and it can help you get out of your head and reconnect to your body. There are many types of meditation, such as the body scan, moving meditations, or loving-kindness meditation, so it’s important to try to determine which one works best for you. Meditation has been shown to reduce stress, make you calmer, promote happiness (Mineo, 2018), and even reduce symptoms of PTSD in studies with the U.S. military (Seppälä et al., 2014)
Many clinical professionals use breathing exercises to help patients be present in the moment. Focusing on breathing is a great tool for reducing stress and anxiety (Stefanaki et al., 2015). Breathing exercises work because they help you disengage from your mind and not pay attention to distracting thoughts. You can do the simple exercise below before bed, when you wake up in the morning, or before an important meeting:
First, find a comfortable and quiet place to sit or lie down. Breathe in slowly through your nose, and notice how your chest and belly rise as you fill your lungs. Then, breathe out slowly through your mouth. Do this a few times until you start to calm down.
Grounding techniques are strategies that can reconnect you with the present and may help you overcome anxious feelings, unwanted thoughts or memories, flashbacks, distressing emotions, or dissociation. You can try as many techniques as you want: The more you try, the higher the chance you’ll find at least one that works for you.
Adapted from an article published by The Berkeley Well-Being Institute.
Lifting heavy items should be done carefully in order to prevent injury.
In fact, 38.5% of work-related musculoskeletal issues are related to back injury, with improper lifting being one of the main causes.
Therefore, it’s important to learn proper lifting techniques to keep yourself safe at work and at home.
This article discusses proper lifting techniques and common lifting problems, and provides useful tips.
The best lifting technique is to squat down and use the strength of your legs — instead of your back — to lift the object off of the ground.
That said, you should only lift items that you’re comfortable lifting. If you’re unsure, it’s best to ask another person for help or use other machinery (e.g., a lift).
If you’ve decided that it’s safe to lift the item by yourself, you’ll want to follow the proper lifting technique guidelines outlined by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
Before moving something heavy, it’s important to think and plan first.
First, look at the item that you’re about to lift and ask yourself these questions:
Taking note of your environment, the item you plan to lift, and other considerations can help you decide if this item is a one- or two-person job or requires other assistance, such as machinery.
Just like you’d warm up before a workout, you should also warm up and stretch your muscles before lifting.
Ideally, spend a few minutes doing some dynamic stretching (e.g., lunges, lower back rotations, arm circles) to prepare your muscles and get your blood flowing.
To lift safely, you first want to make sure that you’re in the right positioning.
You’ll also want to make sure that you bend your knees, squat down to grab the item, and use the strength of your legs to do most of the lifting. This can help to lower back and other muscular injury.
Here are the steps to safely lift a heavy item:
If needed, slowly take small steps to walk to the spot you plan to put the item. If it’s far, you should consider placing the item on a cart or other form of transportation.
If you need to change directions, lead with your hips and ensure your shoulders stay aligned with your hips. Continue to keep the load as close to your body as possible.
Setting an item down is the same movement as lifting but in reverse:
If the item will be placed above the ground (e.g., on a counter or table), walk up to the surface and place it gently on top. If it’s slightly lower than hip level, be sure to still bend your knees and lower your body to place the item down safely.
While no one intends to hurt themselves, it’s quite common to injure yourself while lifting heavy objects. The most common lifting problems include:
By lifting properly and avoiding these common lifting problems, you can help lower your risk of injury.
To prevent injury, consider these helpful tips:
To ensure your safety, always practice safe lifting techniques.
The best lifting techniques involve using your legs to lift heavy objects instead of your back, since your legs are some of your strongest muscles while your back is more susceptible to injury.
You’ll also want to make sure that you’re planning ahead, only lifting objects you feel comfortable lifting by yourself, and being just as mindful when you place the item down as when you lift it.
And remember, you should always ask for assistance if you have any concerns. It’s better to be safe than to risk injuring yourself.
There are many hotel credit cards out there that allow you to earn points, which you can in turn use for free hotel stays. However, some hotel credit cards offer free night certificates instead, which can be used to cover a free night stay at a hotel.
Free night certificates may seem straightforward, so it's easy to be tempted by credit cards that offer them.
However, cardholders might overlook how difficult it can be to use these free night awards. They expire. They’re mired in limitations, as some properties are entirely ineligible, and other bookings are also ineligible for certain nights. And they’re often subject to blackout dates.
Before you decide to pursue a hotel card with this perk, regardless of whether it’s offered in a sign-up bonus or as a standing benefit, here’s what you need to know — and, perhaps, what to do instead.
Here’s how the flexibility of these free night certificates compares to each program’s points.
Certificate expiration date
Only valid on Standard rooms during Standard award nights.
24 months if no activity.
12 months after issuance.
24 months if no activity.
12 months after issuance.
Standard room only at a Category 1-4 hotel during off-peak and standard award pricing nights.
24 months if no activity.
12 months after issuance.
Valid only on nights costing 40,000 points or less.
12 months if no activity.
Here are the unintentional downsides you may face if you add credit cards with free hotel nights to your wallet.
It’s relatively easy to keep hotel points active since any earning or redeeming activity will extend their expiration date. However, free night awards at Hilton, Hyatt, IHG and Marriott all expire 12 months after issuance. Period. Nothing will extend their expiration date.
There have been reports of customer service representatives making exceptions, but this is not the norm, and you shouldn’t expect it.
Hilton’s COVID-19 policy is still in effect, so if you still have a free night certificate issued from May 1, 2020 through Dec. 31, 2020, your certificate is valid for 24 months. Any certificates issued in 2021 will expire on Dec. 31, 2022. Once those certificates are gone, Hilton’s free night award expirations will revert back to 12 months from the date of issuance.
When you book award nights with travel rewards, the cost of the room in points is exactly what you’ll pay when redeeming. So, if a room costs 30,000 points, you will pay that exact amount.
However, when you use a free night award, you won’t get any points back if you use the award for a hotel night that costs less in points.
Let’s use Marriott as an example. Depending on which Marriott credit card you have, you might either have a free night certificate worth 35,000 points or 50,000 points. If you use a 50,000-point certificate for an award night that costs 40,000 points, you won’t get 10,000 points refunded back to you.
This can make it feel like you’re not getting your money’s worth.
Rita King, a traveler who lives in Warrensburg, Missouri, found herself in a similar situation with her IHG anniversary night certificate.
“Some of the problem is that I want a great redemption, so I don't think to use the certificates when we’re staying a night at, for instance, the airport — even though I realize saving the money or points is better than missing out on using the perk,” she says.
Hilton and Hyatt free night awards can only be used on standard rooms, which are more basic than deluxe or premium offerings. What’s more, certain brands don’t allow you to use a free night award during a popular time (i.e., the holiday period or another peak travel season). Lastly, different hotel brands offer varying "award types," which can further limit your free certificate redemption options.
Let’s take a closer look at Hyatt award stays. Only standard rooms can be booked, and only during off-peak and standard award pricing nights. Say you want to stay at the Andaz San Diego (a Category 4 hotel) in July 2023. Hyatt Category 4 hotels are priced at 12,000, 15,000 and 18,000 points for Off-peak, Standard and Peak nights, respectively.
Since the free night certificate can only be used on standard rooms for off-peak and standard award pricing, you can only use it when the hotel is priced at 12,000 or 15,000 points per night.
So, if you have two Hyatt free night awards and want to stay at the Andaz San Diego for three nights starting on July 13, 2023, you could only use your free night award on the first night. The other nights would have to be paid for with points or cash.
“The other problem with free night certificates is finding a hotel that’s both under the 40,000-point price mark and available on the dates that we need,” says King.
You might also run into a situation in which the hotel will simply not allow you to use the free night award, which is exactly what happened to Florida-based Angela Sparks. She accumulated several Marriott free night awards but wasn't able to use them during the COVID-19 pandemic. Although Marriott extended the certificates, by the time the new expiration date rolled around, Sparks and her husband still didn't feel comfortable traveling.
When they were finally ready to take the trip, the hotels they chose wouldn't accept the free night awards.
“Though the certificates were good for 50,000 and 60,000 points each, and the nightly rate at the hotel was 50,000 points, the property flat-out wouldn’t accept the free night certificates, wanting us to use points instead,” Sparks says.
Hilton credit card holders who earn free night certificates can use them at any eligible property as long as a standard — not premium — award is available. These credit card offers generally grant one free night award per year unless you meet high spending requirements to earn additional certificates.
Hilton brands range from basic to luxury, so when applying for Hilton-branded credit cards, you might be quick to daydream about aspirational redemptions at properties like the Conrad Bora Bora Nui or the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi.
A nightly rate at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi can cost over $2,000 a night, or 150,000 points per night. Hilton’s free night award will cover that, as long as a standard award is available.
Although using your free night certificate at this hotel can be a great way to splurge, what are you going to do after one night — head home? The Maldives are in the Indian Ocean, so it's not exactly an ideal choice for a short weekend getaway from the U.S. Plus, drinks and food at such luxury properties are going to be expensive, so while a nightly rate is covered, you’ll still need to spend money.
Although this is just one example, consider how realistic it will be for you to use the certificate at a high-end hotel (if that’s your goal) — not to mention what other costs you’ll incur to enjoy this “free perk.”
Hotel points generally don’t have any limitations beyond possible expiration. If you have the points, you can use them to pay for a room. Free night certificates, meanwhile, always have an expiration date and are subject to many limitations.
Instead of applying for hotel credit cards that offer free night certificates, opt for those that offer a welcome offer of hotel points, which are way more flexible. Plus, there are several ways to earn extra hotel points after getting the sign-up bonus, so it will be much easier to put your points to use for free night stays.
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2022, including those best for:
With a focus on healthy living, a Hispanic family a few kilometers from the U.S. capital keeps a traditional way of farming alive. The owners of Glory Fields in Maryland use techniques from the past to implement a sustainable living initiative they say is paying off so far. VOA News' Cristina Caicedo Smit has the story.
A new survey commissioned by Coursera, the online learning platform and a pioneer of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCS), reveals that large majorities of employers and students view short-term, industry certificates as a worthwhile addition to a college degree and a valuable credential in the hiring and job-seeking process.
This strong interest in so-called micro-credentials comes at a time when a number of major companies - including Accenture, IBM, Google, Bank of America and others - are no longer requiring college degrees for many entry-level jobs, removing a “paper ceiling” as they try to build a more diverse workforce and address the talent gaps that continue to plague a number of industries.
Industry certificates are appealing to both student and employers because they help students acquire practical skills that are expected in many beginning positions, increasing their prospects for landing and succeeding at a good job, which remains the number one motive students and their families provide for attending college.
Coursera conducted the new study in collaboration with the market research firm Dynata, which surveyed 3,600 students and employers across eight countries - Australia, India, France, Germany, Mexico, Turkey, the UK, and the United States - about “the motivations, needs, and challenges” of degree-seeking students and employers hiring them.
Among the key survey findings for students, summarized in a Coursera blog by Scott Shireman, the company’s Global Head for Campus:
Among U.S. employers:
In May of this year, Coursera added six new professional certificates and a new Career Academy to its growing catalogue of online learning products and educational programs. The new certificates, developed in collaboration with Google, IBM, Meta, and Intuit among others, are concentrated in the areas of information technology, web development, and software engineering and are aimed at preparing learners, even those who have no college degree or relevant work experience, for new careers in those fields.
According to Coursera, a number of universities, such as Boise State University, Hawaii Pacific University, University of North Texas, and the Oklahoma State Regents of Higher Education are combining micro-credentials with traditional academic degrees to equip students with the practical skills they need to succeed in new jobs.
Pairing the two types of credentials is a triple-threat: it offers advantages to students, institutions and employers. By adding professional certificates to their academic offerings, higher education institutions can fill in gaps in their existing curricula, meet students’ demand for skill-based learning, and Strengthen their competitive standing - and potentially their enrollments - in the process.
Employers endorse the certificate+degree combo as well because it increases their confidence that new graduates who’ve earned both enter the workforce better prepared with the skills necessary to perform their jobs well.
Learning to cook as an adult can be harder than it seems. That’s especially true if you are neurodivergent like me.
I run a cooking course called Panda Cub Diner, where I teach students how to make my family’s cuisine: 川菜 (chuāncài or Sichuan food). But for most of my 20s, I struggled to feed myself on a consistent basis. After a long workday, even the thought of ordering out was exhausting. The thought of having to choose a recipe and go grocery shopping and meal prep and actually cook the meal was paralyzing.
It’s not that I didn’t know how to cook. Growing up in a Sichuanese household, I cooked with my family every day — and loved it! But despite that, I kept spending money on takeout or defaulting to cold cereal for dinner. I felt frustrated and ashamed: Why couldn’t I just start cooking?
I found my answer at age 25, when I was finally diagnosed with ADHD.
ADHD, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, is a “neuro-developmental disorder that can cause difficulty with regulation of attention, executive function and working memory," according to Kaleidoscope Society. My ADHD fell under that “inattentive” subtype, which manifested in a limited attention span, forgetfulness, distractibility, daydreaming and difficulty following directions. This, combined with the general executive (dys)function ADHDers struggle with, was a perfect recipe for … not cooking.
After starting treatment for ADHD in my mid-20s, I began a yearslong journey of learning to cook. In this article, I share my top five ADHD-friendly cooking techniques that have made cooking not only possible, but joyful!
And while these tips will certainly benefit people who are neurodivergent like me, they’re also universal — anyone who struggles to cook can use them.
All through my 20s, this is what dinner time looked like for me:
And before I knew it, hours had passed, I’m still starving and everything is now closed. Cold cereal for dinner it is, then! Wait, there’s no more milk?!
If the above sounds familiar, I feel you! The issue here is two-fold: First, we’re hungry and we need to feed ourselves; second, our brains are seeking activities that maintain our interest. But trying to tackle an executive-function-heavy activity like cooking while on an empty stomach is a recipe for disaster.
So, my first tip is to first create your Minimal Prep Meal Plan to get you through your low-EF (executive function) days.
Having this meal plan — and a stocked pantry and fridge — to fall back on frees you to actually look forward to cooking something more creative.
For years, I had an impressive collection of gorgeous cookbooks …gathering dust on my kitchen shelf. Every new year, I’d do this:
But the truth is, I didn’t even go to the grocery store.
Because even the thought of doing all of the above drained me of my initial motivation. I’d put off digging into that cookbook to a later date … except that date never came.
So my second tip is to first find (and write down) your “why” for wanting to learn to cook, and then tie it to a specific date. Update your calendar!
(A blank template is available on the @pandacubstories Instagram.)
At its core, food is a shared sense of belonging. When we tie the act of cooking to creating joyful experiences with someone we love, our desire to cook increases. And setting a specific calendar date keeps us accountable.
Of course, there’s the question of what to make and how to tackle things as a beginner, but we’ll explore that further in technique No. 5.
Before we actually dive into cooking, though, let’s address the things that get in the way.
We often avoid cooking not because we hate the activity itself. Rather, it’s because the tasks surrounding the simple act of cooking can drain our motivation. Who wants to cook with a dull knife and a sink full of dirty dishes?
In contrast, a tidy kitchen is an inviting space, beckoning us to create delicious meals.
The problem is most of us find tidying really boring. So we put it off until chaos reigns.
So, my third tip is to “trick” our brains into thinking tidying is interesting — and timely. And I use two tools to make this happen: A monthly “Tidy Party" and a daily “15x15x15 Kitchen System.”
Here's how to plan your own Tidy Party: Set a date on your calendar and block off at least two hours. If you live with roommates or family, choose a date where everyone can contribute (everyone uses the kitchen after all!). Having more than just you onboard also makes use of a technique called “body doubling,” a productivity aid that helps people with ADHD and other forms of neurodivergence stay focused and motivated while working. If you live alone like me, sites like Focusmate are great places to book free body doubling sessions with like-minded people. You can even put on a fun soundtrack or favorite podcast and jam out as you clean.
But it's not enough just to clean your kitchen once — you've got to maintain it. To accomplish this, I use a 15x15x15 Kitchen System, which has transformed the way I clean my kitchen.
One of the biggest tidying challenges we face is letting things get to an overwhelming point where we don’t even know where to start. That’s where this 15x15x15 system comes in handy. The foundation of this system is giving yourself permission to not have a perfectly tidy kitchen. This may feel counterintuitive, but the key is to feel comfortable doing short bursts of tidying, without expecting yourself to get everything done in a single session.
To create your 15x15x15-minute system, turn to “habit stacking," which means pairing our new habit (15 minutes of kitchen tidying) with current habits we’ve already established. Here’s an example:
My fourth technique combines everything we’ve learned so far … and gives us three date nights (or family activities), to boot.
Friday: Grocery shop for Sunday’s meal and pick up a treat for dessert. Order your favorite takeout and have a movie night in.
Saturday: It’s time for a house-wide tidy party! Vote on your favorite tunes and get cleaning as a group. When your kitchen’s sparkling, leave it alone. Go out for a dinner date.
Sunday: Our cooking date! Ask your partner (or housemate) to pick up flowers and wine for the table. Enjoy cooking your meal and provide yourselves permission to take as long as you need. Savor your meal by cozy candlelight.
Now the only thing left is to pick what to make, which leads us to our last tip.
ADHD-ers often find themselves in somewhat of a culinary Catch-22. On one hand, basic recipes can feel boring; on the other, more complex recipes can feel overwhelming.
My fifth and final technique is all about working with our brains to make the basics interesting. And as a comic artist who loves Sichuan food, I found the perfect combination in illustrated recipe cards.
My first self-imposed limitation was choosing a single cuisine. I naturally went with Sichuanese, which is my absolute favorite (plus I had access to an entire archive of family recipes).
My second limitation was to choose recipes simple enough to fit onto a one-page card.
I often struggled with following recipes because my eyes would skip over paragraphs, leading me to miss important steps, or the recipes were so long that by the time I scrolled down to the steps, I’d forgotten how much of each ingredient I was supposed to use.
I began drawing these recipe cards for my own use, and they’ve now evolved into a series of visually interesting and easy-to-follow guides to simple Sichuanese cooking:
Now, whenever the desire to cook strikes, I simply choose one (or more) of these recipe cards and get started!
Of course, drawing your own recipe cards isn’t the only way to make the basics interesting. You can also limit your tools (for instance, what can you make with just an Instant Pot?) or limit your ingredients (what can you make with potatoes?).
Lean into your limitations and watch your creativity flourish! Happy cooking!
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