Monday, December 31, 2012

Keep your New Year’s job resolutions with the help of Career Development Services

If part of your New Year's resolution is to advance in your career or to start a new one, let our Career Development Services team support you. We've put together four new workshops for Session 3 that will tackle resume, interview, and graduate school questions. Read on for the details.

Online Resumania. Update and perfect your resume with the help of our career counselors, all without leaving your home! All you have to do is create an account on Peirce's free online job board, Peircelink, any time between Jan. 14 and Jan. 18, and submit your resume for customized online review and critique. A member of our team will give you detailed feedback and advice for how to improve it within five business days from your submission.

Graduate School Navigation: How to Apply. If you're considering graduate education, either with us through our Organizational Leadership & Management graduate degree, or at another institution, you should attend this workshop. You'll get all the basics about the graduate school application process, including how to research graduate programs, put together a complete application package, and access resources that can help you in the process.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

What you should be doing with your student loan refund

DON'T BREAK THE BANK: You're responsible for paying
your entire student loan back to your lender, including
any money you receive from your loan refund.
One of the most popular posts on our blog is about student loan refunds. It seems that many students have questions about what student loan refunds are and what they should do with a refund if they receive it. We want to address some of these questions and share additional information to help you better understand what to do, and equally important, what not to do, with your student loan refund.

If you missed our previous post, a student loan refund is the money left after you've paid for your tuition, fees, and sometimes, your books if you received a book voucher.

Once you've registered and paid for your classes with your financial aid money, including loans, you might have a credit balance. This is money that's in excess of what you needed to pay. If you do have a credit balance, you might be eligible for a refund from your loan dollars. If you have student loans, whether you receive a loan refund or not, you need to repay your loans as this is money you are borrowing.

In order to receive your refund, you must attend and actively participate in your courses -- something most colleges check with attendance policies. This ensures students who receive their loan refunds are using it for educational purposes, including transportation, housing, and daycare. Your refund is not intended for entertainment or anything not related to your education.

There are three options for what you can do with your loan refund. You can:
  • Pay it back to your lender. This is our #1 recommendation. It will limit the interest you have to pay on the refund, saving you money and hassle down the road.
  • Keep the money on your debit card for school-related expenses.
  • Use the money for school-related expenses. 
No matter which option you choose, you're still responsible for paying your entire student loan back to your lender, including any money you receive from your loan refund. What's more, the longer you take to pay the money back to your lender, the more interest you'll accrue.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Supporting elementary school children in need this holiday season

GIVING BACK: We're proud to support a fellow institution
named after Thomas May Peirce. This mural is painted
in the elementary school's hallway. 
We've been covering our Season of Giving here on the blog, and have one more event we want to share with you. Yesterday, we donated over 100 uniform pieces to Thomas May Peirce Elementary School, including shirts, pants, sweatshirts, socks, and underwear.

For the past three years, the Peirce College community has come together to raise money for elementary students in need at Thomas May Peirce Elementary School. This year, members of the Institutional Advancement team Jessica Quilter, Rosemary Connors, and Carol Walton presented the uniform pieces to members of the school's fifth grade class.

Several students who have been identified as in need will receive items from our donations, and the rest will be stored in the nurse's office as spares. These spare clothes are often needed - the school's guidance counselor mentioned that they had recently used up all the spares that were given last year, so there weren't any spares in the school.

After Jessica, Rosemary, and Carol presented the uniforms, two students gave speeches on behalf of the school, thanking the Peirce community for the donation. Our team was also able to enjoy some of the students' Christmas concert, which was going on at the same time.

Thanks to everyone who made this special day possible. We're proud to have made the holiday season a little bit brighter for some children in Philadelphia.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Happy holidays from all of us at Peirce College

The holiday season is the perfect time to reflect on our blessings and express our gratitude for all the success and happiness in our lives. Every member of our college community deserves special recognition for all the hard work they do, and I'd like to take this time to say thank you.

To our students, thank you for choosing Peirce College and inspiring us to fulfill our mission of transforming lives. We are privileged to serve you.

To alumni, thank you for continuing to be part of the Peirce family. We are honored to have you represent the College in your community, workplace, and the world.

To faculty, staff, and board members, thank you for your leadership and commitment to Peirce College. Your dedication empowers the College to make a significant positive impact on the people and communities it serves.

May you and yours experience the joy of the season throughout the coming year. We look forward to serving you in 2013.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Examining the return on investment of a college degree

The economic recession and tough job market have caused some people to ask if a college degree is still worth the investment. But researchers have found support that shows a college degree is still worthwhile, citing that people with a college degree earn more over their lifetime, are less likely to be unemployed, and have more job prospects right now.

However, students should still take steps to maximize their return on investment in a college education, including choosing the right school for them, understanding the financial implications of attending college, and considering the long-term relevancy of their degree. Fox Business reporter Emily Driscoll tapped me for my thoughts on financial considerations to make before attending college, and I was happy to share some advice for her readers.

You can read Emily's article in full for a list to consider, ensuring you get the best return on investment for your college degree. Thanks for including my advice in your article, Emily!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Holiday season final reminders!

HAPPY HOLIDAYS: Final reminders for winter break
With winter break approaching, I wanted to remind everyone that the Peirce College campus will be closed from Monday, Dec. 24 through Tuesday, Jan. 1. There will be no on-campus classes scheduled during this time, but all scheduled Session 2 Interim online classes will continue as normal.

Make sure to continue to log on and complete your classwork if you have registered for a Session 2 Interim online class. The Peirce campus will re-open on Wednesday, Jan. 2, with regular hours.

Also, for your convenience and to help you get ready for Session 3, The Advising Center, Admissions Department, GPS, Office of Financial Aid, Registrar's Office, Business Office, and Walker Center for Academic Excellence will remain open on Dec. 27 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Dec. 28 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. If you have any questions, please contact these offices directly.

Students who need technical assistance accessing their online courses between Dec. 24 and Jan. 1 should contact the Peirce Help Desk by emailing, calling 877.670.9189, or by using Live Chat through the tech support link on the online course website. Faculty members teaching online courses during this time will be available through their normal means of communication.

If you have another immediate need while we are closed, please call 888.467.3472 ext. 9284. A member of our team will be available to assist you.

Have a wonderful holiday and a happy new year! We look forward to seeing you in 2013!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Why it’s important to follow your passion when choosing your degree program

The average, full-time employee aged 15 and older works a little over eight hours per day, five days a week, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This time accounts for one-third of each day. If you spend one-third of your day working and another third sleeping, doesn't it make sense to enjoy the time you spend in the workplace?

It might seem like an easy question to answer, but we find that many students choose their college degree programs based solely on the salary or benefits of the job they hope to obtain after they graduate. And while it's important to take compensation into account when deciding what career path to take, making a career choice based on salary or benefits alone won't necessarily make you happiest long-term. You should also consider a profession you're passionate about.

Career success requires a strong work ethic, diligence, and commitment -- qualities that are difficult to give if you don't have a passion for what you do. By choosing a path that you're passionate about, you'll be excited to go to work each day and stay dedicated to your daily duties. This can help you shine in the eyes of your supervisors and coworkers, strengthening your value to the organization.

So how do you achieve the balance between choosing a career path you're passionate about and one that will pay the bills? Here are some steps to consider if you haven't yet chosen a career path, and some steps if you have chosen one.

If you haven't yet chosen your degree program:

Friday, December 14, 2012

The 5 P’s of professional networking

NETWORKING TIPS: Recapping our Mocktails event and 5
tips for professional networking
Thanks to everyone who helped make our Mocktails event last week a successful one. Thirty-four Peirce students and alumni were in attendance, along with representatives from eight area employers, including Comcast and the City of Philadelphia.

Students, alumni, and employers worked the room and had many opportunities to get to know each other and hone their networking skills. Two students stood out from the rest, and were gifted the most "Superior Networking Golden Tickets." They were Warren Banks, a Business Administration major, and Suevette Williams, a Paralegal Studies major. Each student was awarded a $25 American Express gift card. To see how the rest of the event went, flip through the photo album below.

Students and alumni who attended the event told us it made them feel more prepared for their next networking opportunity, and the advice given to them was very helpful. If you missed the Mocktails event, here are a few tips attendees learned that evening that can help you build your own networking skillset.
  1. Prepare for each networking event. Preparation is key before every professional networking opportunity. Many event organizers will publish a list of people and companies that are slated to attend prior to the occasion -- research each attending company as you would if you were going on a job interview. This way, you can have common ground to talk about during each conversation. It's also important to have business cards made if you don't have any. Sites like VistaPrint often offer free business cards, and customers only have to pay for shipping. Every business card should include your name, email address, and phone number. Social media handles are also great to include, as long as they portray a professional image.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Our Season of Giving is a success, thanks to the Peirce community

We recently blogged about two initiatives we put together to help those in our community -- our American Red Cross blood drive and the Youth Action Toy Drive. Now that both have wrapped up, we're proud to announce that both events were successful, thanks to those in the Peirce community.

Volunteers who donated to our American Red Cross blood drive, held on Nov. 26, donated 14 collective units of blood. This can be used to save up to 45 lives. And our Youth Action Toy Drive collected 93 toys this year. These toys will go to benefit children in five local area shelters, and hopefully brighten up their holiday season.
TOY DRIVE: Peirce College collected 93 toys to help children in 5 area shelters
Again, thank you to everyone who participated in these events. We'll be updating you on other initiatives the College is doing to help others this holiday season, so keep checking back. From all of us at Peirce, happy holidays!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

4 organizational traits adult learners need to succeed when looking for a job

Looking for a job can be a job all on its own. Keeping track of open and submitted opportunities, application materials, and employer contact information requires a strong organizational system and a keen eye for detail to help you stay on task. If you're trying to do this while balancing your current job, earning your degree, and family commitments, being organized is even more crucial.

To help you succeed in the job search process, we wanted to flesh out some traits you should master to stay organized and proactive when looking for a new position. Use these suggestions to rev up your job search, stay on track, and ensure you get the interview you've been hoping for.

Be organized and strategic. To ensure a successful and organized job search, you need to approach it as if you were assigned a project at work. The tools you use are as important as the approaches you use.

For those who are not technologically savvy, I recommend getting a journal or binder to keep track of what you're doing. Print out all the job opportunities, submitted cover letters, resumes, and materials. I recommend binders with tabs so that you can separate each job opportunity and include all the information you have for each position. You want to keep track of all the materials that you submitted to each employer so you remember how you sold and positioned yourself.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

How not to be a Grinch employer during the holiday season

YOU'RE A MEAN ONE: Advice on how not to be a
Grinch-like employer during the holidays
Are you a Grinch of a boss? If you're not being transparent about bonuses, the holiday party, or reviews with your employees this holiday season, you just might be. And committing a few of these common holiday season mistakes might make the residents of your company's 'Whoville' grumble, leading to decreased employee engagement and satisfaction far beyond the New Year's holiday.

To avoid this, employers should take special note of some holiday season blunders and look for ways to keep them from getting out of hand. Forbes writer Meghan Casserly tapped me for insights into how to spot and troubleshoot these workplace errors. Read her article, "Holiday 2012: Five Signs You're Working For The Grinch" to get my advice. Thanks for including me in your story, Meghan!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Congratulations to our 2012 Delta Mu Delta inductees!

HONORED: Here are just a few of the 51 students who were
inducted into Peirce's Kappa Nu chapter of
Delta Mu Delta. Congratulations to all!
Congratulations to the 51 students who were recently inducted into Peirce’s Kappa Nu chapter of Delta Mu Delta, the International Honor Society in Business Administration. Delta Mu Delta is nationally recognized for identifying academic excellence across the country, and this year’s inductees are no exception. Each fall, students who meet eligibility requirements (Business Administration or Accounting majors with a minimum 3.3 GPA and 60 college-level credits) are invited to join.

Our on-campus ceremony took place on Friday, Nov. 30 and our virtual program took place on Saturday, Dec. 1. Check out the pictures we shot at the on-campus event below.

We want to give a special thank you to Mike Schirmer, Ajeenah Nuriddin-Little, Uva Coles, Michael Bentil, Sheila Perkins, Camille Pierre, Natalie Price, Randy Coverdale, and Maureen DiLeggi for all their hard work putting the event together. We also want to thank our Delta Mu Delta Kappa Nu chapter officers, Dessaree Johnson-Young (President), Cathy Arnold (Vice President), and Michelle A. Brown (Secretary), who did an outstanding job facilitating the induction ceremonies. And it was great to see the familiar faces of past chapter officers Atiya Goldsmith and Felicia Roton in the crowd -- thank you for coming!

Our Delta Mu Delta Kappa Nu chapter looks forward to a successful 2012-13 year with our new inductees. Keep your eyes on the blog to learn more about the chapter's activities in the upcoming months!