Chinese Navy Training Vessel Arrives at French Polynesia

first_img View post tag: Navy Chinese Navy Training Vessel Arrives at French Polynesia A Chinese Navy training vessel Zhenghe arrived on Thursday at the capital city of French Polynesia for a four-day good-will visit.The visit to the French overseas territories in the southeastern Pacific Ocean is part of Zhenghe’s five-month global voyage, the second of such sails organized by the Chinese Navy in a decade.Zhenghe, named after a famed Chinese maritime explorer about 600 years ago, has a scheduled route of more than 30,000 nautical miles (58,000 km) and is expected to pay port calls to 11 countries and working visits to three countries during its global voyage.Before its arrival at Papeete, Zhenghe has already made a number of stops at Italy, Spain, Canada, Jamaica, Ecuador, and others.[mappress]Naval Today Staff, August 6, 2012 View post tag: Polynesia View post tag: Chinese View post tag: Arrives View post tag: French View post tag: Training View post tag: Naval August 6, 2012 View post tag: News by topic Training & Education Back to overview,Home naval-today Chinese Navy Training Vessel Arrives at French Polynesia View post tag: vessel Share this articlelast_img read more

European election results for Oxford announced

first_imgOxford has bucked the South East trend in the European Parliament elections, with Labour having come first in Oxford’s results, securing 13,015 votes (33%), followed by the Green Party, with 8337 votes (21.24%).However, in the South East (the European Parliament constituency to which Oxfordshire belongs), UKIP have won four of the ten available seats, with the Conservative Party in second place with three. Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the Green Party each took one seat. UKIP leader Nigel Farage is among the candidates elected to the European Parliament for the South East.Across the South East, UKIP secured 32.14% of the vote, seeing their share increase 13.29% from 2009; a win of two additional seats. In second place, the Conservatives won 30.95% of the vote; a decrease of 3.84%, and the loss of one seat. In third, Labour won 14.66%, an increase of 6.41%, but remained with one seat.Despite their overall success in the South East, UKIP came fifth in the Oxford poll, with 4979 votes (12.63%). In Oxford, the Conservative Party came in at third place, having secured 5997 votes (15.21%), closely followed by the Liberal Democrats, with 5332 votes (13.52%).Balliol student and Socialist Party candidate Claudia Hogg-Blake, the only Oxford student to run in the European elections, told Cherwell that she took some consolation in the fact that UKIP were knocked into fifth place in Oxford. Speaking on the success of UKIP on a national scale, Hogg-Blake commented, “I would rather people had voted for a non-racist party”.Remarking on the performance of the Socialist Party in the elections, she added, “It’s good that we managed to increase our vote, but it’s not as good as we would have liked. That said, we didn’t expect to do that well”. In Oxford, the Socialist Party won 221 votes, or 0.56% of the vote.Turnout in the Oxford area was 38.22%, up from 35.5% in the 2009 European elections, and greater than the 36.46% turnout for the South East. Europe-wide, turnout has marginally increased for the first time since elections to the European Parliament began in 1979, at 43.11%, up from 43% in 2009.Speaking after the results were announced for the South East, Nigel Farage claimed that UKIP “have delivered just about the most extraordinary result that has been seen in British politics for 100 years.”Farage continued, “In a way it is surprising it didn’t happen before, because we have had three parties in British politics that have lead us into a common market that has developed into a political union, who’ve twisted and turned with a variety of promises to give us a referendum that they’ve never actually kept. I think the penny’s really dropped, that as members of this union, we can’t run our own country, and crucially we can’t control our own borders”.Nationally, UKIP have increased their vote by nearly 11%, so far securing an additional ten seats, bringing their total to twenty-three. This matches the European trend, as across Europe, anti-immigration and euroskeptic parties seem to have made significant gains. Nevertheless, in Britain the far-right BNP have seen their vote decrease by over 5%, losing all their seats in the European Parliament.In elections to the European Parliament, Oxford is part of the South East constituency, which comprises Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire, Kent, Oxfordshire, Surrey and Sussex. The constituency, which is the largest in the UK, returns ten members to the European Parliament, representing a population of around eight million.last_img read more

Barking students star in Morrisons video

first_imgBakery students at Barking College have played a starring role in an educational video commissioned by Morrisons.The supermarket recently sent a film crew to the college to capture what it takes to train the bakers of the future.The aim of the video is to inspire and inform young people about the quality of the training and the development opportunities available for a career in grocery retailing. Barking College has trained all of Morrisons’ bakery apprentices from across the south east for the past four years. The course takes nine months to complete, with students able to achieve an NVQ qualification in Bakery Skills, which has been especially designed for the supermarket chain by City & Guilds,Bakery tutor Raymond Morum commented: “We’re only one of four colleges working with Morrisons, and to be featured in their film is a great privilege. As an experienced baker, it’s wonderful to have the chance to pass on my knowledge to students, and to know that the traditional skills of a baker are still valued.”last_img read more

Gang Of Thieves Combine Music & Volunteer In Their “Work Together Tour”

first_imgOn their Work Together Tour this spring, Gang of Thieves played 60+ shows over the course of four months and made a goal to volunteer their time to various community service projects across the country. As any touring musician will tell you, it takes great motivation and dedication to perform live concerts. With a vigorous tour schedule, it takes immense physical and mental effort to travel from city to city, and perform your best to any size crowd, despite how many hours of sleep you were able to catch in between.So for a band to incorporate community service into their tour schedule, it is quite the victory. Live For Live Music applauds the Gang of Thieves for reaching their goals, and are happy to share their experience through the words of Michael Reit (lead vox / violin) and Tobin Salas (bass). Read below for a recap of their Work Together Tour:Being from Vermont, we are extremely lucky to live in a state that is so supportive of its local community and economy. The idea for our “Work Together” tour was definitely influenced by what we see around us in our daily life. Our goal as a band, especially when we are touring, has always been to spread a positive message through rock and roll, so this tour was really a natural evolution for us. Early on in the planning stages for the tour, we had a lot of positive feedback about what we were trying to do, and ended up pairing with Darn Tough Socks, Cabot Cheese, and Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel as sponsors. All of those companies are dedicated to having locally made products and supporting their local communities, which is exactly what we wanted to encourage along the tour.As we hit the road, our goal was to volunteer in as many communities as possible, from food shelves to animal shelters. When we started adding these extracurricular activities to our usual tour schedule, we expected it to be a little strenuous, since we were giving up whatever extra sleep and downtime we had between all our shows to volunteer. That being said, right off the bat we discovered that contributing to communities gave us an incredible sense of fulfillment and accomplishment, which helped balance out the lack of sleep or down time. The truth is that there are a lot of people who don’t have the opportunity or lifestyle we are lucky to have, people who need help and support. To us, getting a couple more hours of sleep or down time doesn’t compare to being able to fundamentally contribute to helping some of those people. For example, we played a late night set in Roanoke, Virginia then hit the road that night for a place to stay in Charlottesville where we were scheduled for an early morning start at the local Habitat for Humanity. Despite the lack of sleep, we had a blast helping build homes for people who needed them. We worked all day putting in trim, sideboarding, and other late stage jobs at a site with rows of houses waiting to be finished. The people there were positive and super dedicated to the community, and appreciated our help so much. We ended up playing an acoustic version of “Work Together” for them at lunch, and made some great friends there. A few of the workers onsite even came to our show that evening in Charlottesville! It felt so good to contribute to the local community, but seeing those same people come support us in turn that evening was even more amazing. It gave us a sense of the power that working together can have.We definitely encourage fellow bands to find time in their tour schedule to help out in the communities they travel through. Not only is it incredibly fulfilling to help out where it is needed most, but you never know who you might meet. Maybe someone will offer to put you up for the night, or you might make some unexpected fans who will keep supporting you and your music for years to come. For more information about where we went and how we put all this volunteer work together, check out the “Work Together” page on our website. More bands should be like Gang of Thieves. Bravo!last_img read more

The Heavy Pets Welcome DJ Logic, MonoNeon, Eric Krasno, TTB Horns For Boca Late-Night [Audio/Video]

first_imgOver the weekend, Boca Raton’s The Funky Biscuit played host to Sunday night’s Festival After Party with The Heavy Pets. With so many musicians in town, many of them made it to the venue for a guest-filled night of music, featuring turntablist DJ Logic, bassist MonoNeon (formerly of Prince’s band), Lettuce/Soulive guitarist Eric Krasno, South Florida’s very own blues guitar slinger Albert Castiglia, as well as TTB saxophonist Kebbi Williams and trumpeter Ephraim Owens.Blending older and newer material and well-placed covers, The Heavy Pets played three sets total, with a second set all-star jam. Thanks to CHeeSeHeaDPRoDuCTioNS, you can relive the glory with some videos and audio.The Heavy Pets w/ DJ Logic & MonoNeon cover Bob James’ haunting “Nautilus” (1974), which was said to have been produced so that the tones were reminiscent of the sounds of a submerging submarine.The Heavy Pets w/ DJ Logic, MonoNeon, Albert Castiglia, Kebbi Williams & Ephraim Owens perform the classic “Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin)” by Sly & The Family Stone (1969).The Heavy Pets w/ Eric Krasno, DJ Logic, MonoNeon, Albert Castiglia, Kebbi Williams & Ephraim Owens play The Isley Brothers’ quiet storm-funk “Between The Sheets” (1983) and The Pets’ original jam “Dewpoint”.Jason Matthews of Electric Kif leant The Heavy Pets a hand on keyboards during this epic, 3rd set “So Thank You Music” to close the evening.Full Show Audio:Upcoming shows for The Heavy Pets include appearances at Fractal Beach Music Festival at Historic Virginia Key Beach Park in Miami on February 4th, opening for Umphrey’s McGee at Whigfest Music & Arts Festival in Tampa on Feb. 18th, and their “Strawberry Mansion” album release party at Culture Room in Fort Lauderdale on Feb. 23rd.[photo: Jay Skolnick @ J Skolnick Photography]last_img read more

The Himalayas’ amazing biodiversity

first_imgKamal Bawa’s journey to understand and protect the biodiversity of the towering Himalayas began half a century ago, when he was young and traveling into the fabled mountain range’s eastern foothills.Though desolate snow and ice lay above, his train climbed through lush valleys, rich with tree species and a dazzling array of orchids, and past high meadows marked by pale, 6-foot-tall formations that only on closer inspection turned out to be plants. They were Rheum nobile, a type of rhubarb whose translucent leaves create greenhouse-like warm pockets that attract insects for pollination.Bawa’s journey continues today. A distinguished professor of biology at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, Bawa has teamed up with photographer Sandesh Kadur to create an account of biodiversity in the Himalayas, including the region through which Bawa traveled so long ago. The result is a book, “Himalayas: Mountains of Life,” released in April.Bawa and Kadur, who is a National Geographic emerging explorer, talked about the journey that led to the book on Tuesday during a lecture at Harvard’s Sackler Museum. The event was introduced by Heather Henriksen, director of Harvard’s Office for Sustainability, and hosted by William Clark, Harvey Brooks Professor of International Science, Public Policy, and Human Development, and director of the Harvard Kennedy School’s Sustainability Science Program.The years since his first visit have proven Bawa’s instincts about the region’s richness to be true. It is now known as one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, which are areas of extreme species diversity endangered by pressures from humanity. The region holds, for example, 500 species of orchids, more than 100 species of primulas and rhododendrons, as well as rhinos, elephants, tigers, and red pandas. Between 1998 and 2008 alone, 350 new species were described there.Bawa and Kadur spent a great deal of time in the 1,000-mile-long region, interacting with the rich diversity of its human residents as well its plant and animal species. Kadur recounted the long journeys to reach some locations, as well as the patience needed to snap the wildlife images to illustrate the project. In one instance he spent seven days in a blind waiting for tigers to appear at a rhino carcass. He was rewarded for his patience on the seventh day when not one but three tigers appeared and began eating, demonstrating scavenging behavior never before documented.“Getting to many of these places was a task in itself,” Kadur said.Bawa and Kadur hope to draw broader attention to the region, as they did with a prior book on another Indian mountain range, the Sahyadris, also known as the Western Ghats, along the Arabian Sea. That book, Bawa said, attracted attention from political leaders and policymakers and allowed the authors to describe the conservation challenges there.The Himalayan region is under pressure from the millions of indigenous people who live there, whose agricultural practices are fragmenting forests and who sometimes hunt rare animals (30 rhinos were killed in a single day in September). The area is also under pressure from modern development.India alone is planning 400 dams on its side of the Himalayas, Bawa said, while China is planning 400 on the other side. Though hydropower provides clean energy, it also prompts road building into wild areas, changes the nature of rivers, and affects both the region’s hydrology and the species dependent on their free flow.Climate change appears to be another threat. Between 1982 and 2006, average temperatures in the region have increased twice as fast as global temperatures, while rainfall has increased by an average of 163 millimeters (nearly 6½ inches) and become more variable. The growing season, meanwhile, has advanced by about five days, Bawa said.“The richness of life in the Himalayas, as in many other places, is under assault,” Bawa said.The event was co-sponsored by several Harvard organizations, including the Office for Sustainability, the Sustainability Science Program, the Harvard University Center for the Environment, the Asia Center, the South Asia Institute, and the Office for the Arts.last_img read more

ND mourns Walton’s death

first_imgDr. Gail Walton, director of music at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, will be remembered as a dedicated musician, teacher and Catholic who touched the lives of many members of the Notre Dame community.Walton, an organist and director of two Notre Dame choirs, died last week after a long illness. She was 55.“This was not a job. This was a passion and her life,” Fr. Peter Rocca, rector of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, said. “Her impact was tremendous. She touched the lives of so many students.”Senior Jordan Schank said when he first auditioned for the Liturgical Choir, he was an intimidated freshman with no choir experience. “I know Gail could see my shaking knees. I don’t think I have ever felt so intimidated by a woman in high heels before,” he said. “She took note of my nervousness and she did her best to calm me down.”With Walton’s help and encouragement, Schank said he was able to learn the challenging music and improve his singing dramatically.“I can with full faith say that Gail taught me everything I know about singing,” Schank said. “She took a young, inexperienced freshman with terrible Midwestern vowels and formed me into the confident singer I am today.”Bishop Daniel Jenky of Peoria, Ill., was the homilist at Walton’s funeral and spoke to a standing room-only congregation at the Basilica Tuesday morning about Walton’s impact on the Notre Dame community.“Year after year, season after season, the walls of this place have echoed with the glory and sensitivity of Gail’s music,” he said. “At Notre Dame moments of joy and sorrow, Gail made great music that lifted our spirits.“Today, the Basilica is filled with only a few of an army of her many friends who loved her.”Walton directed the Liturgical Choir and the Basilica Schola, which she also founded. She assisted with music at a number of University liturgical events, such as opening mass, Junior Parents Weekend mass and Commencement mass, Rocca said.Walton also touched the lived of countless couples as they prepared for marriage and worked with families planning funerals for loved ones, Rocca said.“The Notre Dame community will miss her dedication, her zeal, her knowledge of the liturgy and music, her expertise,” Rocca said. “And ultimately her gracious presence and her wonderful smile.”Although Walton dedicated her life to music, it wasn’t for her own benefit, but meant to help others, Vice President of the Liturgical Choir Christie Marden said.“More than anything, Gail valued sacred music and what it can bring to the liturgy. Even though she spent decades making beautiful music, her ministry was never about herself,” Marden said. “She was always reminding the choir … that our job is to help the congregation to pray.”Schank also said Walton’s focus was on helping others strengthen their faith.“Gail always stressed that our work in the Basilica was always a ministry and never a performance,” he said. “The choir climbs the stairs to the loft each Sunday morning to help others pray, to enter more deeply into the magnificent mystery of the Eucharist.”Jenky said in his homily Walton’s impact on her students extended beyond her knowledge of music.“She taught those choir members not only music, but how to live and how to love,” he said.Both Schank and Marden said Walton made an impact on their lives beyond music.“The Notre Dame community has lost a fine woman, mentor, friend and musician. Her warm smile and kind heart will be sorely missed,” Schank said.Marden added: “I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to get to know such a beautiful woman. She will be missed.”Jenky encouraged those at the funeral to model Walton’s dedication to her faith and music during this period of grief. “When all our human explanations seem inadequate to describe all that we experience, we worship to the Lord,” he said. “Where our words fail, we sing to the Lord … In terrible grief and sorrow, it is music that clearly expresses what we cannot say.”last_img read more

HR Answers: Happier members

first_img 22SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Duke University Federal Credit Union deploys kiosks to measure service standards.When $123 million/15,000-member Duke University Federal Credit Union, Durham, N.C., was seeking to create a more consistent member experience, it chose HappyOrNot’s  innovative customer satisfy action kiosks. With the kiosks already in use by credit unions throughout the U.S., Duke University FCU took the use of the smiley face devices to a new level by deploying them at every member interaction station within the credit union.From the moment members walk into the lobby, until the time they leave, they are presented with the opportunity to express their satisfaction level. The fun-to-use kiosks are strategically placed at the greeter station, each of the loan officers’ desks, the teller windows, and even (soon) the drive-up stations.The results have been extremely rewarding for the credit union. “The HappyOrNot kiosks have resulted in a more consistent customer experience,” says Duke University FCU CEO Daniel Berry, CCE, a CUES member. “The presence of the kiosks and the immediate feedback they provide is always in the mind of our staff, encouraging them to be more careful to do their absolute best to serve every person who comes in the door.” continue reading »last_img read more

Launching an internal branding campaign

first_img 37SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Branding is a complex initiative that involves two primary components – external branding and internal branding. External branding is the more well-known element and generally involves a company’s external image, reputation, logos and the like. Internal branding is often the overlooked side of branding but is essentially the most important. It involves a company’s culture and core values. It influences how employees perceive the organization, how they treat their customers or members and how they treat each other. Internal branding is the guts of the organization, and without it, the external brand will eventually fail.Internal branding serves many purposes. When done correctly, an internal brand campaign increases employee morale and helps them feel like they have a stake in the organization’s success. When that happens, employees are committed and will change their behaviors to align with the brand and its values. A successful internal branding campaign transitions your staff from employees to brand ambassadors. They don’t just work for your financial institution anymore. They live the brand and model what it represents.Launching an Internal brand campaign should always happen in conjunction with your external brand launch, but that’s not the only time an internal brand campaign benefits your organization. Sometimes the external brand is strong, but employee morale is declining.An internal brand campaign helps employees renew their commitment to your financial institution and its brand. This is especially true if you never did internal branding when you launched your external brand. An internal brand campaign is also effective when a new CEO takes the reigns. Toyota launched an internal brand campaign recently as part of its efforts to consolidate its four North American locations onto one large campus in Texas. The purpose of the campaign was to unify the company. continue reading »last_img read more

5 truths you can’t change about learning in the workplace

first_imgLet’s be honest – a lot of organizations (most, in fact) play lip service to the concept of learning and development.  We say it’s important, but our spend per employee is a fraction of what’s reported by the Bersins of the world, our managers can’t generally make time to pull people off the floor/out of the field for L&D activities and worst of all – our employee base is a segmented freak show when it comes to ability and willingness to learn.That’s why I come forward with these 5 truths you can’t change about learning in the workplace.  I was going to do 10 of these, but it was too much for the man (NatX reference intended).  So these 5 will have to do:Employees will tell you they want training, but most aren’t interested in learning.  Translation – training is an event that can be attended – it’s social and even fun at times and there’s generally not a lot of accountability related to your attendance.  Learning, however – well, that’s more about the individual and what gets applied.  To say employees love training but hate learning is fair and balanced, but in a different way than a one-on-one coaching session with Roger Aires at FOX News. continue reading » 7SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more