Investing in Small Businesses – Sinking Your Money Into Small Business Ideas With Merit

The biggest reason small businesses fail is not for lack of solid business understanding, or market demand, or even mismanagement. The biggest reason they fail fail is undercapitalization. The reason is simple: starting a new business is overwhelming. There are so many things to figure out, usually in a very short period of time. Unexpected and unknown expenses can whittle away any initial investment capital. One important consideration that many new owners fail to calculate into the startup budget is their own burn rate. Very few can expect to see a major influx of clients or customers from day one.

The burn rate of a startup business is simply the amount of cash burned through each day, week, or month, while gaining those all important clients, customers or contracts. Whether or not customers or clients call, the phones must be in service. The office must be maintained at a comfortable temperature even if no one shows up to. Landlords do not care if you expect to double your cash flow next month when your business starts taking off, they want the rent paid now. Your suppliers or vendors are not usually in business to front you, either.

By far, the biggest portion of the burn rate goes to employees and their benefits. You cannot do without the employees you need to get off the ground running. As a business owner, you cannot take over every role and wait to fill the most important positions later. Customers, clients and contractors buy into your people. As a owner, investing in small business means adequate staffing from day one. Your customers and clients will hesitate if your office is staffed only by one overworked employee because she is all you can afford right now. To gain the business, you need to display that you are ready on every angle, employees included.

While investing in small business is considered a gamble, it does not hurt to look around and research a business for investment consideration. The first thing you should do is ensure that the business is simply undercapitalized rather than based on an unsustainable profit model that will keep them in the red for years to come. You may be surprised at how little money it takes to save a properly set up a business from extinction. Many of them close down over an unbelievable sum. If you roll up your sleeves and spread your investment dollars wisely, this investment can pay off in spades.

Tips On Designing Your Multimedia Product Covers

Photographs for multimedia products are a prerequisite to creating stunning and eye popping Audio CD’s, DVD’s and or book covers. As a matter of fact if you remember the old saying that ‘a picture can say a thousand words’ then you will understand that in today’s consumer driven society it’s never been more truer. So if that’s the case isn’t it important that authors, coaches, consultants and information marketers become more knowledgeable about how to use photographs to turn browsers into buyers.

Designing Tips Worth Following

Don’t worry it’s pretty easy to understand and most professionals only need a cursory amount of knowledge, you can leave the vast amount of work and details to their graphic designers. However that doesn’t mean you don’t need to know anything about the process and what has proven to work. As a matter of fact you have a great responsibility because you will be making the final decision as the buyer and the beneficiary of the profits of your effort.

Here are some tips for you to use when choosing a photograph for a product cover;

  1. The title of the product should be the most prominent feature on the cover.
  2. The picture needs to connect the story and the title together it’s the glue.
  3. Consider not using a picture, that’s right choosing colors for a background instead.
  4. If you are going to use a photograph then choose one that shares an emotion; happiness, fear, anger, success.
  5. You should strive to match color themes between this and all other items in your offerings as they strengthen your brand and give your brand a sense of continuity.

For Graphic Designers…
Now the guidance you give your designer is extremely important, so pay close attention to the following. First begin by sharing the above tips with your designer. Secondly DO NOT tell them that whatever they come up with will be fine. In addition ensure that you get at least 3 versions with the right to have at least 3 revisions for the final version.

Finally pay close attention to the back cover; this is also an important area that requires a great deal of detail. It must carry the same theme from the front it’s not an area where you can blend two different styles together for the purpose of hitting multiple emotions or messages. Restrain yourself from trying to say too much on the front and back, instead pick one thought to share and stick with it on both the front and the back.

In closing there will come a time when you will be indecisive and unsure about exactly what will sell. It’s at this point you should settle on simplicity, all your selling is ONE emotion, solution, outcome, experience etc. on the outside of your multimedia product. Just ask yourself what the most important point you are trying to convey with your product.

 

Care For Health Management? Try Healthcare Management

In the current growing human population in this world, the injuries and diseases involved are getting more and more intense and widespread. The number of humans being affected by the same is also increasing. So, according to the rule, Health Care facilities are also in dire need of an increase. For an increasing number of facilities, the world requires an equal amount of managers for managing the facilities. The term Health Care Management comes into effect here. As the term itself implies, the above said course is a management degree for people who want to pursue the path of managing various health related institutions like Hospitals, Clinics etc.

In ancient times, the Healthcare sector was small and not efficient at all due to lack of technology and manpower. Hence, not much research was done in the same field. But as the advancements in technology grew, so did the sector. Today, a well established hospital is an institution in its own and requires a great skill as well as manpower to manage. The amount of people coming to hospitals everyday is increasing, which is sufficient proof for the requirement. Hence, the demand for skilled managers is always apt.

The above said program can be pursued by physicians as well as normal persons, but experience in Healthcare is an added advantage for physicians and hence for the same reason, the industry absorption rate is more for people who have prior experience in the field. A management degree in Healthcare and get a person a well paid job in a Healthcare facility and also guarantee proper functioning for the institution concerned.

The main curriculum for the degree often includes Organizational Behavior, Corporate Strategy, Public Health Perspectives, and Physician Leadership to name a few. Also included are the detailed studies in branch of Finance and Systems Integration. Different schools have different curricula but on the whole are based on the above aspects only. The degree offers extensive insight into day to day management plans as well as long term effects and planning of the proper functioning of the institutional system. Additional features include the building of leadership and motivational skills which often are very essential in managing Human Resources that is, the employees. Successful managers are not only managers, but good marketing tools as well. So, widespread knowledge in this field is also imparted during the program which is required in the future for successful management.

Thus, the overview suggests that the Degree program is for those aspirants who want to see themselves in prominent positions during their tenure and want to be in managerial roles for an exciting job. Potential candidates for such a program include Medical directors of managed care plans, Clinical executives of hospitals and Clinical leaders from organizations such as physician-hospital organizations. Outcome of this program involves Leadership skills that enhance effective collaboration and Proficiency of business vocabulary and skills applicable to any type of healthcare organization. Thus, if above information interests you, go and start ahead, this management program is just for you.

Online Culinary Arts Degree – Continuing Education Option For Chefs

Culinary field is among the most competitive career fields with very rewarding income potential and challenging tasks to present the most exotic style and techniques of cooking. In order to stay inline in this quickly changing and high-demand industry with the latest and greatest styles and techniques of food preparation and presentation, many culinary professionals often continued their education in various ways to accomplish hinges not only on creative skills but also on the working experience and knowledge that are required to adapt to a dynamic environment.

If you are a chef with an associate degree or certification in cooking and you are thinking of advance your career to next level in your profession, a bachelor or graduate degree will definitely put you at an advantage edge to grab the greatest opportunities that rise along your career path. But you may not want to quit your current job just to go back to a culinary school to pursue the degree in culinary arts. Then, online culinary arts degree enable you to have one stone to kill 2 birds – allow you to continue your current job as chef while study online to complete a culinary arts degree program.

Chefs have various continuing education options. Besides the culinary arts degrees, you can also choose programs such as hospitality management, food science or cooking-related continuing education programs that may include:

  • Food Styling & Media
  • Dietetics
  • Food Research
  • Food Sales & Marketing

Although, you can choose to go to traditional culinary arts or cooking school and select the culinary arts degree program that fit your needs, but you may find it hard to arrange your schedule if you want to continue your chef’s job while attending the culinary or cooking classes. Luckily, many colleges and universities understand the concerns of working adults who are interested to continue their education without willingness to give up their paycheck, and they have designed their continuing education programs geared towards working individuals by making these culinary arts degree programs available in online setting.

The online culinary arts degree programs are able to fit one’s convenience because most of these programs enable the greatest flexibility for students to logon to the classes from anywhere and at anytime they like. Chef’s who are busy with their job or do not have fixed working schedule can easily plan their study at their own pace. Many online culinary schools do have online classes with video teaching materials that enable the online students to effectively learn the arts of cooking and food presentation through video streaming and pre-recorded videos.

Summary

Continuing education options through online culinary arts degree programs enabled chefs to enhance their creative skills, enrich their working experience and in depth their knowledge that is required to adapt to a dynamic environment while continuing stay focus on their existing career.

Selling Your Home – 5 Things You Should Know About Real Estate Brokers

Selling your home in a recession

When selling your home in a recession, it is more important than ever to make sure your money is being well spent. A real estate agent gets as much as 6% commission from the sale price of your house. If you want to sell your house quickly in a recession and avoid as much cost as possible, read the following and remember there are other options if you want to sell your house quickly.

It is always possible to market and sell your own home. Real estate agents do very little marketing of your home when you consider how much you pay for their service. The marketing plans which many real estate agents show you when you are selling your home are merely there to make you think you are being offered a service above and beyond what you could get anywhere else. The strategies outlined in the marketing plans are exactly what you would get anyway and from any other agent who sells houses in your area.

Furthermore, the advertisements for your home is the worm on the end of the fishing hook for the brokers prospective clients. In other words, when a potential buyer calls about your house, the broker is only interested in selling them a house, they are not necessarily interested in selling your home in a recession let alone selling your house quickly. As much as they would have you believe, real estate brokers do not have any special interest in selling your house in particular.

When you are selling your home, it even doesn’t really matter who you choose to entrust the selling of your house too. Why? Because all real estate brokers show buyers around houses which meet their criteria, there is no real skill involved. If your house doesn’t match the requirements of the potential buyer then there is not a lot the real estate agent can do to change this.

Though traditional brokers would prefer you didn’t know it, the service offered by discount brokers is the same as that offered by the traditional brokers themselves. They will tell you that the reason discount brokers charge less for their services is due to the lesser service they provide.

This is not true and most discount brokers offer cheaper services because they want to provide a fair service to clients. This is, of course, also in the hope that they will generate more custom. When selling your home, the prices they offer are about half what you would pay a traditional broker.

Licensed brokers have access to the multiple listing service (MLS). The MLS is a database is used to list details of seller’s houses which enable real estate agents to share the details with other estate agents who may have potential buyers. If you are selling your home, you must make sure your home is listed on this service.

Internet Filter For Kids – Essential In Today’s World

The world has become a very dangerous place to be in, especially for children. The internet, immensely useful as it undoubtedly is, is also a source of danger to kids today because it opens them to a whole lot of experiences. Ironically, the very reason that the internet is useful also causes a lot of concern for parents. There is a lot of content which is completely unsuitable for kids to access because of the images of sex or violence it might contain. Children can also become victims to predators who love the internet for the anonymity it offers. Internet filters for kids exist for this very reason.

It is no longer practical to ban kids completely from using the internet. After all, they use it for recreation and entertainment in addition to education. It can safely be said that they spend a great deal of their time on the internet. The smartest thing to do is use technology to restrict their access to various websites that you consider objectionable.

Most responsible parents take the effort to teach children internet safety so that they can make the right decisions when they are online. However, wise parents know that kids are very susceptible to peer pressure and they are also naturally very curious. This can lead to all sorts of lapses of judgment that can have lasting consequences. It definitely makes a great deal of sense for parents to invest in an internet filter for kids computers so that they can be protected from the negative effects of the internet to the best extent possible.

Parents should be able to determine which sites they wish to block their children’s access to. The best internet safety filters are flexible, permitting parents to add or remove restrictions depending on what they feel is appropriate. They need to be able to make changes in the restrictions as and when the kids grow up and also in order to account for changing trends in internet use. Filters that do not afford sufficient flexibility will not be of much use.

Child internet filters also need to be easy to install and to use. They are meant to be used by people who are not security experts and who don’t always have the time to learn new techniques when it comes to using computers. The best internet filter for kids permits parents to stay a step ahead of their kids in this particular area. Parents need a lot of help from the experts because their children are usually far more comfortable than their parents when it comes to using computers. Another issue that should be considered is whether the filter can be installed on more than one computer in the same house.

Another thing to be taken into account is the effectiveness of the security solution being used. If it does not restrict access to all objectionable sites then it is certainly the wrong product. Some filters will not work if the website is in another language, and this can lead to kids viewing objectionable sites. There also exist many proxy servers that get around the monitoring process. The best internet filter for kids computers have the ability to handle these problems and are effective against the most persistent online predators.

Like most parents you might not want to restrict your kid’s internet usage in a very obvious manner. It is therefore necessary for you to invest in the proper internet filter for kids computers. You will then have the confidence to let your children go online without you having to look over their shoulders every time they do so.

How to Obtain an Accredited Information Technology Education

Information technology has infiltrated even the smallest of businesses, organizations, and schools. The skills needed to maintain, develop, and manage today’s technologically based computer software can be obtained by learning how to obtain an accredited information technology education. Students that are interested in this field need to seek out information and complete accredited college programs.

The technological resources associated with a business need to be constantly maintained. This includes creating accessibility, developing security, maintaining operation, and updating technology. Students can learn to perform these main functions inside higher educational training opportunities. Several areas of training are available and students can choose programs that best suit their career goal needs. An accredited education can be obtained when students complete a few necessary steps.

Training begins by researching what available degree programs can be completed. Students may have a high interest in information technology but specialization areas could make their career goals even more accessible. Students can enter training programs in areas that include:

  • Computer Information Science
  • Computer Information Systems
  • Information Security
  • Information Systems

Each of these areas falls under the category of information technology. Educational programs in information technology train students to understand the procedures performed to troubleshoot problem areas and evaluate the technological needs of a business. Computer information science programs give students the skills needed to correctly maintain computer networks and their databases. Computer information science focuses on the ability to develop networks and maintain a smoothly running environment for computer applications. Information security centers on teaching students to operate systems and perform any needed procedures to fix security breaches. Inside information systems training students are exposed to the skills needed to work with databases, network systems, and applications in order to keep them properly working.

Once students understand their available training options they can enter the second step, which is completing programs. This is the most important step because careers cannot be entered without a degree. Most areas offer several degree training opportunities. Schools offer programs from the associate’s to doctorate’s degree level. Career options will be directly affected by which degree level students decide to complete. Undergraduate programs offer students an overview of the industry with students starting to obtain advanced training at the end of bachelor’s degree programs. Training at the graduate degree level gives students a wider skill set. Courses that are taken inside information technology degree programs may include:

*Introduction to Information Technology

The history and the fast paced growth of the industry are studied. Students learn what industries use information technology and what tasks are conducted inside today’s professional workplace.

*Networking

Local area and wide area networks are examined to give students the knowledge of their capacity and limitations. Operating systems are explored and computer networking courses prepare students to obtain professional certification.

Working through the process of first exploring possibilities and then completing an accredited program that is approved by an agency like the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges ( http://www.accsc.org/ ), will prepare students for careers. Join the professional workplace inside the continually growing industry of information technology by completing an accredited educational program.

DISCLAIMER: Above is a GENERIC OUTLINE and may or may not depict precise methods, courses and/or focuses related to ANY ONE specific school(s) that may or may not be advertised at PETAP.org.

Copyright 2010 – All rights reserved by PETAP.org.

Prepare For a Career in Sales

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You’re attracted to the idea of a career in sales. Perhaps you have friends or relatives who are enjoying, and being successful in, a sales career. Perhaps you’ve heard of the fortunes that can be made in a sales job. Or maybe it’s just that you’re fed up with your own job, and you’re considering sales as one of a number of possible career options.

Whichever is the case, here are a number of issues to think about, and a few things you can do to prepare for your first interview for a sales position.

Why do you want to be in sales?

Develop a clear idea of why you want to get into sales before you start. Partly for your own benefit, and partly because you’re certain to be asked this question by an interviewer, and you’d better have a reasonable answer.

If you know anyone in sales, ask them why they like the job.

Hint! Sales interviewers value answers like ‘I want to earn a lot of money’ and ‘I’d like a job where I’d be paid what I’m worth’. They don’t like answers like ‘I like to meet people’ or ‘I like driving’. (It’s good that you do like these things if you’re going into sales, but they shouldn’t be your main motivation for doing so).

It’s quite a good idea to think about your long-term life plan, and actually write it down. What do you want to achieve in the short, medium and long term? Try to be specific and realistic. Avoid listing goals like ‘I want to be happy’ (everyone wants this!). Do you want to acquire material possessions (house, car, holiday home, yachts etc)? Do you want to rise to positions of power and responsibility? Do you want to do work that is complex and intellectually demanding? In a survey of 100 schoolchildren conducted some 25 years ago, each was asked their life goals. Only three had these ambitions written down. After twenty five years, the group was surveyed again. 97% of the accumulated wealth of the group was owned by the 3% that had written down their goals.

Interviewers will be most impressed if you have a clear and realistic idea of what you want to get out of life.

What do/did your parents do?

Children tend to regard their parents as rôle models. Sales interviewers will be more interested in you if you have parents who are/were involved in sales, management or some form of entrepreneurial activity. Obviously there’s not much you can do if your parents were librarians (which is not to denigrate librarians in any way! It’s just not a very salesy occupation, that’s all). However, if you are breaking away from the family tradition of institutional employment, try to find a rôle model either from within your extended family, or from your personal upbringing (family friends etc) or as a last resort, the world at large. If all else fails, read a book about Richard Branson!

You’ll have to demonstrate that you clearly understand that within sales and business as a whole, you’ll have to stand on your own two feet, and that the world doesn’t owe you a living.

What do your brothers/sisters do?

If your siblings work in sales or business management in some shape or form, they’ll be able to give you a lot of help. Ask them what it’s like, and whether they think you have the aptitude to succeed in this demanding way of life. No one knows you as well as your close family, so value their opinion and advice.

Do you have any relations in sales?

Similarly, uncles, aunts, grandparents etc can all provide you with a wealth of information. Ask them the questions that you are likely to be asked in interview:

What do you think a sales job involves?

How do you find new customers?

How do you cope with rejection?

What character traits do you need to be successful in sales?

Do you have any friends in sales?

If any of your school or college fellows are involved in sales, talk to them! Ask them the same questions as above. Ask them how they prepared to enter sales, what interviews they went to, what questions they were asked and what answers they gave. If they have risen to a position where they themselves are interviewing trainee sales people, also ask what answers they like to hear when they ask these questions.

Have you ever shadowed a sales rep?

If you know anyone who is involved in sales, ask them if you can ‘shadow’ them for a day or two. They won’t be offended! In fact, they’ll appreciate your help in carrying their bags, and it will be nice to have someone to talk to during their travels. (Contrary to popular opinion, the life of a sales representative can be quite a lonely one). Offer to buy them lunch by way of thanks! While you’re out and about, ask them all the questions we’ve discussed.

If you don’t know anyone who is involved in sales, try to find one! Do you know anyone who is involved in buying, or who runs a business? They’ll almost certainly be visited by representatives from various firms. Perhaps they could ask them for a favour.

What vacation/weekend jobs have you done?

Sales interviewers will be looking for evidence of some/any form of commercial activity. It could be shop work, bar work. Even selling Big Issue! If you have never done any form of commercial work in your life, but you’re keen to start, well..there’s no time like the present. There is any number of shop jobs available in almost every area. Similarly bar jobs. These all get you used to the idea of customer relations, and the sales process. You could consider getting a commission-only job selling home improvements (double glazing etc). These jobs are relatively easy to come by, offer very good training in may cases, act as an excellent grounding for a sales career, and can in some instances earn you a lot of money (can be a very rewarding career in their own right!). Alternatively, most local newspapers need telephone canvassers to drum up advertising revenue and/or sales, and the work can be done part-time or in the evenings, so won’t interfere with your current work, and/or will allow you to hunt for jobs and attend interviews.

What sporting activities/achievements have you accomplished?

Sales is a high-energy, proactive (make-things-happen), goal-oriented form of work. Sales interviewers look for evidence in your past, that you are the sort of person who competes vigorously, and has ‘the winning instinct’. Be prepared to show that you have competed at any level, in any activity. To have won the Surrey tiddlywinks championship shows great dedication to a task, and focus on winning out. To have represented Britain at the Olympics would be better…! Whatever you’ve done that goes beyond the norm, tell the interviewer about it! Don’t be afraid to ‘sell yourself’.

What positions of responsibility have you held?

Interviewers hold in high regard candidates who have evidence of making things happen, or taking responsibility. Be prepared to mention any activity that demonstrates this. ‘I led a group of scouts across Siberia..’ ‘I organized the local church drama group Christmas pantomime..’

Have you traveled widely/’worked your way’ round the world?

As hinted at above, success in sales and business is all about surviving. By definition, if you survive, you’ve succeeded! If you can demonstrate that you have taken yourself out of your ‘comfort zone’ (Mum & Dad’s home!) and survived in the big bad world, for however short a time, then so much the better. Don’t take the photographs to the interview though!

Prepare a ‘brag file’ to show people at interviews.

This is a compilation about all your successes in life, including all your exam certificates, and any evidence of your success in life, in any field whatsoever. It could include letters of commendation, or thanks from grateful customers or other people, or cuttings from newspapers showing how you saved a dog from drowning, for example.

As a principle, you should maintain this throughout your working life, and add to it constantly. Whenever you do well, or obtain someone’s approval, ask them to put something in writing, so you can include it in your file.

What books have you read about sales?

Are you really interested in sales as a career? If so, you will almost certainly have read at least one book on the subject! OK, you’ve been busy. Well, start now! The local library has shelves full of useful books on the subject, so it won’t even cost you anything!

Finding Student Loans With No Credit History Required

College education is important in establishing a career that will pay well. Successful businesses look for sound educational credentials when selecting new employees. Though college education does not tell everything about a person’s work ethics, it is one of the things looked at by human resources personnel.

If you are applying to a college and have poor credit or even no credit history at all finding financial assistance may be a problem. A person with no money has a big problem when it comes to getting a college education. People with bad credit have even bigger problems. Besides the typical student loans that consider a credit history, there are student loans no credit history required. These loan programs do not look at the existing credit of the people applying for the loan. Therefore, those prospective college students without a good credit history can apply for and receive the necessary funding for their education.

Examples of student loans have little or no credit history required are Perkins Loans, Stafford Loans and some alternative non-credit based loans like Loans for Disadvantaged Students, Nursing Student Loan Program and Primary Care Loan Program.

These non-credit based loans are available for those students who are pursuing a degree in the field of health sciences. Loans for Disadvantaged Students provide financial assistance to those who are financially disadvantaged students. Nursing Student Loan Program are low-interest loans which are available for nursing students. This kind of loan offers a grace period of 9 months. Primary Care Loan Program concentrates on students who are focused on the field of primary care. In addition some of these programs have deferred or grace periods when make loan payments..

Perkins student loans are guaranteed by the government of the United States. It was named after a former member of the U.S House of Representatives from Kentucky that is Carl Perkins. .These loans have a fixed rate of 5%. The program also offers a payment deferment period of up to 9 months. The Perkins loan gives undergraduate students up to $4,000 per year but not exceeding $20,000 total loan. It is also available for graduate students and may provide up to $6,000 per year but not exceeding the lifetime loan of $40,000.

Another example of a no credit history student loan is the Stafford loan program which is also guaranteed by the government. Stafford features low interest loans but it also has some additional repayment restrictions that other programs do not.

Although student loans no credit history required are available, a student or a borrower must be responsible enough to pay whatever is lent to them with interest. Repayment usually is required shortly after graduation. Your degree should assist you in finding a career that will allow you to easily make your student loan payments and pay off the student loan.

The End of Home Schooling

OK. So what am I talking about? By end, I could mean finished or over due to home schooling being outlawed or made illegal. But I’m not talking about this use of the word. Some home educators might think I mean the end of home schooling, and now the beginning of home education. They think it would be best to eliminate the terms “school or schooling” from our vocabulary altogether when it comes to describing what takes place in our homes. Their position often represents an us (school is where you send your children away, and we don’t do that) versus them (those who don’t understand the difference between school and education, but they would if they would just attend the right seminars, the ones we in the “us” camp attend) kind of thinking. I’m not talking about that either.

I am talking about end, and by using this word, I mean the purpose, or expected result of engaging in this form of schooling, (oops, or education…).

In other words, what are we doing this for?

While most of us are busy doing it, doing it, doing it, for nine months of the year, there are two times when the Why am I doing this? question especially surfaces: at the end of the school year around the time of graduation and just prior to the start of the new school year. So, here we are at one of those times. With just a week or two left before beginning the new school year, I want to encourage you to think about why you are home schooling again this year. As a way of stimulating some thought about this, I want to reflect a little on our most recent NCCA graduation ceremony.

Each year when we hold our ceremony, we invite a guest to speak to our graduating class. This year’s speaker, a home school father and pastor, began his talk by contrasting two people. Then he posed a question to the graduates.

Here’s a paraphrase of the two people he contrasted:

On a weekly basis, he sees a man who comes to an outreach ministry for support and help. The visit always begins a little awkwardly– the man smells and looks like he just arrived from a campsite. Actually that’s pretty close to the truth; hours before he was dozing in a sleeping bag. He and his wife are homeless. He suffers the aftereffects of drug addiction both physically and mentally. In fact, he may still be abusing, still caught in the cycle of starting and stopping and starting and stopping. They talk awhile and afterwards pray together. His need for God is great, and he knows it.

In contrast is a girl around seventeen or eighteen. She comes from a stable and loving family that enjoys a comfortable standard of living. Her parents have invested deeply into her life. She’s benefited by being home schooled and attending a private Christian school the last two years. She is a good student, respectful, and well-liked. She’ll be attending college next year.

After a few moments, our speaker posed the following question to the graduates: “Who do you identify with?” The range of expressions on the graduates’ faces seemed to suggest they thought his question was too weird to respond to or that he was just joking.

He wasn’t joking; he was going somewhere with it.

I’ll give you the crux of the question in my next article as well as tie it in with the larger question about the end of home schooling.

Thanks for reading!

Curt Bumcrot, MRE

Does your elementary-age child resist opening his grammar book? If so, you don’t have to look far for the reason: it’s long, boring, and looks all too familiar to last year’s grammar book. For all he knows, it is last year’s book with a different cover!