Monday, April 30, 2012

From Palestine to Philadelphia: One professor’s worldwide mission to educate

THE TRAVELING PROFESSOR: A Palestine native, Ahmed Omar
is now the Program Manager of the Peirce Accounting program
How much does education mean to you? For Ahmed Omar, it was important enough to leave his family and travel halfway across the world to earn his degree.

As you might know, Ahmed -- a Peirce grad himself -- joined us in June 2011 as Program Manager and Assistant Professor in our new Accounting degree program. But before he found his way to Peirce, he had to overcome the war and politics in his home country of Palestine that were standing in the way of his dreams of a college education.

Ahmed wrote a post about his journey from Palestine to Philadelphia and how he found his way back to Peirce. Read on to learn about how his experiences in Philadelphia enabled him to achieve his educational dreams.

From the day I arrived in the United States, Peirce College has played a huge part in my journey…

My name is Ahmed Omar, and I am the Accounting Program Manager at Peirce College. I am a new member to the Accounting Program faculty; however, I am not new to Peirce College. I came to the United States of America in the year 2000, from the war-torn country of Palestine. I left behind my mother and my 9 brothers and sisters. My main goal was to complete the education that was cut short by war and politics, and support my family back home. The university I was attending was closed indefinitely because of the violence and bloodshed. It was no longer safe to make the daily commute to work and school, and people were not willing to take the risk of leaving their homes and getting killed in the street.

The cost of not going to college

What is the value of college, really? For many adult learners, earning a degree is not without sacrifice – the cost, the time investment, the challenge of balancing school with family. But the real question is, can you afford not to go?

I recently commented on an article that senior editor Derek Thompson wrote for The Atlantic about how the only thing more expensive than college is not going to college. The benefits of education are indisputable -- job opportunities and increased income to name just a few. But that doesn’t mean the cost isn’t a challenge for many students.

The article lays out some interesting facts and figures about how the cost of education compares to alternatives, such as not going to college or investing your money elsewhere. It also highlights some studies that support the argument that college is indeed worth the investment. This is all important to consider.  However, Derek made one particular point that really resonated with me.

“Does a four-year university make sense for every student? Probably not. Is the modern on-site college education necessarily the ideal means to deliver training after high school? Maybe not. Vocational training and community colleges deserve a place in this discussion. And we happen to be living through a quiet revolution in higher education.”

Friday, April 27, 2012

Life advice for college graduates from The Work Buzz

Graduation is a time of accomplishment, change, and decisions about what comes next in your personal and professional life.

Debra Auerbach, a writer for and its job blog, The Work Buzz, tapped me for my advice to college graduates for her article about what students should be thinking about post-graduation.

The article highlights some great advice from professionals across a variety of industries with different backgrounds. They all have one thing in common -- the benefit of hindsight. Looking back, it’s easy to think of all the things you should or could have done to set yourself up for the career and future you’re striving for. So I encourage all of you graduating seniors (and everyone else!) to give it a read and learn from the experiences of others to make your transition from college to the real world a smooth one.

COULDA, WOULDA, SHOULDA: What college grads should think
about as they prepare for the future

And above all -- congratulations and best of luck in the future!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Paralegal honor society inducts new members

Congratulations to the newest members of Lambda Epsilon Chi (LEX), Peirce’s chapter of the National Paralegal Honor Society sponsored by the American Association for Paralegal Education (AAfPE).

20 new members were inducted at a ceremony held on Friday, April 20. These paralegal students join the inductees from last year’s inaugural induction ceremony.

Newest members of the Peirce College chapter of LEX, the National Paralegal Honor Society

Pictured left to right, front row: Mary T. Husband, Tara Lee Wallace, Kelly Ann Schrader, Babette Pace, DeShayla Avant, Dorothy Y. Gatewood, Robin L. Roush, Lisa Lynne Zagler, and Ann Marie Jennifer Daly. Back row: Laura M. Schroeder, Karen E. Wheeler, Abigail Venezia, Alexander W. Sullivan, Andrea Providence, Diana N. Soukhaphonh, Marissa Williams, Patricia J. Weightman, Lauren Marie Cockley, and Sheila Marie Skinner-Martens.

Monday, April 16, 2012

What NOT to do in your first 3 months on the job

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: How to start off on the right foot
in your new job
You perfected your resume, nailed the interview, and got the job. Congratulations! Now, don’t mess up.

I recently spoke with writer Ritika Trikha about what NOT to do during the first few months in your job. She shares nine helpful tips to keep in the back of your mind as you embark on a new career to ensure you make a great impression and hit the ground running.

This isn’t meant to scare you! Your new position is likely well-deserved, and you should be proud of the achievement. But while you might be breathing a sigh of relief because the interview process is over, remember that your new employers are still getting to know you. That period of making a good first impression is just getting started.

Jump over to Ritika’s article to see what I had to say about making sure you don’t step on any toes as you’re learning the ropes. There’s great advice from employers, recruiters, and other HR experts who’ve seen it all.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Peirce College’s mobile app makes the short list for Philadelphia’s Emerging Technologies for the Enterprise Project of the Year Award

WINNING INNOVATION: Bill Ahern poses with
Peirce's mobile app award nomination
Kudos to the entire IT team for being recognized for its Peirce mobile app! Peirce’s app was nominated for the Project of the Year Award at the 7th annual Emerging Technologies for the Enterprise Conference in Philadelphia.

The award recognizes the “coolest, most innovative enterprise software” developed in the Philadelphia region and celebrates the ability of software development to help an organization thrive and grow. Bill Ahern, our Peirce College Programmer, and I presented Peirce’s app to the judges and a packed house of applicants earlier this week, and were awarded first runner up.

Our app offers fast, mobile access to features such as student course lists, faculty and staff directories, campus overviews and directions, and the Peirce College blog. It was selected as a finalist out of a large field of applicants and was the only technology coming out of a non-programming or software company.

I’m proud of what our team from Pine Street accomplished, in partnership with Barbella Digital, keeping pace with the pack of larger organizations with significant development resources. The winner of this year’s ETE Project of the Year Award has offices across the U.S., and substantially larger resources.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Come to a free LinkedIn workshop to accelerate your career

this free LinkedIn workshop
Are you using LinkedIn effectively for career success? If you’re like most people, you’re probably not. So here’s your chance to learn how to use it to its fullest potential. Come to Peirce College’s free workshop, How LinkedIn Can Help You Get a Job Faster, to learn why and how you can leverage LinkedIn to improve your career and job search process.

At Peirce College, we believe in providing lifelong learning opportunities to all Philadelphians. It’s never too late to change your life, and we want to offer the support and resources you need in order to develop the new skills to do just that! Join renowned LinkedIn expert Robb Pardee as he reveals the strategies for establishing a powerful online presence using LinkedIn, the world's largest professional network. The free workshop is open to the entire community but seating is limited, so read on to find out how to reserve your spot today!

LinkedIn is the most important social network for establishing a professional online presence. It’s a platform to represent yourself in the best light to prospective employers who are trying to get a handle on who you are as a job candidate. When used well, it is a powerful networking tool for fostering career growth.

In this fun, fast-paced session, you will learn how to:
  • Create your own personal brand to represent yourself professionally
  • Build a dynamic profile to illustrate your strengths and credentials
  • Expand your professional network and increase your visibility
  • Increase your reach for job opportunities
  • Communicate effectively with your network

Plus lots of tips, tricks, and do's and don'ts for using social media!

Robb Pardee is a nationally recognized expert on LinkedIn and social networking for business, and the founder and president of Strategic Leadership Coaching, a career and leadership development firm in Warminster, Pa. He has over 13 years of experience as a counselor, trainer, and coach. His passion is helping people to reach their potential by overcoming internal and external obstacles.

Thursday, April 26 2012
Two sessions: 3 – 5 p.m. and 6 – 8 p.m.

Peirce College
1420 Pine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102

Space is limited and available to registered attendees only, so register NOW to reserve your spot at Please indicate which time session you would like to attend when registering, and be aware that registration closes on April 25!

Questions? Contact Amanda Frey at 888.467.3472, ext. 9476 for more information. We hope to see you there!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Will you be the next Peirce Idol? Sign up today to audition to sing at Commencement 2012!

It’s that time again … time to find our next Peirce Idol! For the third year, we’re going straight to our student body to find the singer who will perform the national anthem at Peirce Commencement 2012.

Do you think you have what it takes to become Peirce Idol 2012? Here’s your chance -- audition times are now being scheduled!

On Wednesday, April 25 and Thursday, April 26, Peirce College will audition students to sing the national anthem at Commencement on Monday, June 11.

If you’d like to share your talent with this year’s graduating students and their families, email us with your name and phone number. A member of the Peirce Idol search team will contact you to schedule an audition date and time.

OH SAY CAN YOU SING? Peirce Idol winner Morraye Berrios

sings at Peirce Commencement 2011
Auditions are held on campus before a panel of judges composed of Peirce faculty and staff. Please note that tryouts will be video recorded so that your peers can watch, listen, and vote to choose their Peirce Idol of Commencement 2012. More details about where to watch the audition video and the voting process will be coming soon here on the blog, so stay tuned!

Start warming up your vocal chords and make sure to sign up by April 20 to reserve your chance to compete!

Our Peirce Idol competition has turned up great talent over the past few years. If you’re thinking of auditioning, you can catch the 2010 and 2011 auditions here on our blog in case you missed them.

The winner of Peirce Idol 2010 was Raymond DeShields, a married father of three pursuing his degree in Business Administration from Peirce. Our Commencement 2011 vocalist was Morraye Berrios, also a Business Administration student. They both gave us memorable performances, and it is always a special experience to have one of our own step up to sing the national anthem!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Peirce welcomes new members to board of trustees

Joseph T. Steuer
Mark Edwards
Welcome to the newest additions to the Peirce College Board of Trustees, Mark Edwards and Joseph T. Steuer.

Mark is president and CEO of the Philadelphia Workforce Development Corporation (PWDC), the fiscal agent for the city for federal and state employment and training funds. Joseph is Chief Financial Officer of The Philadelphia Zoo.

Mark and Joseph bring non-profit experience to the Board. Both are active members of their communities and the Philadelphia region, personally and professionally. Read on for the full news release introducing our two new trustees.

Mark Edwards and Joseph T. Steuer Elected Trustees of Peirce College
CEO of Philadelphia Workforce Development Corporation and the CFO of the Philadelphia Zoo Bring Non-Profit Experience to Peirce Board

PHILADELPHIA -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Peirce College, Philadelphia’s leading private, non-profit, four-year accredited institution for working adult learners, announced the election of Mark Edwards and Joseph T. Steuer to its Board of Trustees.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Take charge of your future and register today

SEIZE THE DAY: Register now to enroll for
the next academic year

Spring is in the air and you know what that means! Registration for the next academic year -- Fall 2012, Spring 2013, and Summer 2013 -- opens on April 9, via the student portal. As an added incentive for registering, students who register between April 9 and April 30 will be entered into a drawing to win a $500 book voucher!

Wondering if you can do it? Not sure if you can balance school with all your other responsibilities? You’re not alone. We asked the people who can best answer this question -- our students -- to see what they had to say about it.

John Matthews, an adult learner in our Business degree program working towards his bachelor’s degree, had no intentions of going to college when he finished high school. Today, he’s on his way to being the first member of his immediate family to graduate from college.

After working for a few years, John realized that a degree would make all the difference in his career, particularly his goal of obtaining a management role. He chose Peirce for its reputation as a great place for working adults, and the flexibility offered through the option of online courses. We asked him about his journey, and he had this to say: