Tuesday, November 27, 2007

So I am now in the market for a new cell phone. About 2 weeks ago I woke up and the buttons on my Motorola Razr just stopped working. No, I didn't make the usual college mistake of dropping it into a beer or the toilet. I simply plugged it into the charger overnight, woke up, and the buttons were unresponsive.

Now that I am searching for the perfect phone to spend the next 2 years with, I have been tuning into the catchy TV commercials and playing with friend's devices. After spending the entire day looking at phones in Anderson and dealing with not so pleasant customer service representatives, I left the store empty handed. I am now searching online for new phones and customer reviews and have found the perfect phone. The AT&T Tilt smartphone features a slide-out full QWERTY keyboard and a tilting screen. The Windows Mobile 6 smart phone also offers the full gamut of wireless options, including 3G and GPS, push e-mail, a 3-megapixel camera, and support for AT&TMusic and Video.

All of these functions are great....for a business man. I think that there should be a phone with a touch screen and keyboard that is simply a cellphone, rather than a fully loaded PDA with a HUGE price tag to go with it. So the search continues....

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Employers Study Applicants' Personalities

This article describes the importance of recognizing personality and attitude in applicants rather than just noting their work experience. Many company's are spending more time interviewing in order to better read applicant traits. Other strategic interview policies include scare tactics, such as Lindblad's DVD, drug tests, and physical examinations. I think that it is great that employers are using these strategies in order to narrow down prospective employees because it is very important for employers to specific in terms of who they hire. The company knows better than the applicant if the applicant's personality will be appropriate for the job. It is imperative that a future employee has the social tact and right attitude in order to collaborate with the current employees. Overall, I think it is great that employers are paying more attention to personality and hope that this helps my future job placement in the sense that wherever I am placed my personality and professional attitudes will mold with existing team members.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Dual Coding

The dual coding theory explains the importance of using visuals in addition to words as a way to effectively communicate. This theory is commonly used in advertising in the world today. When reading US weekly, I came across a few advertisements. An Absolut advertisement displayed a highway with heavy moving traffic in the direction of New Orleans. In large font across the middle of the page it read: "In an Absolut world". In small font on the bottom right of the page the following sentence is displayed: "One spirit brings back together. Absolut New Orleans."

I think that this advertisement is somewhat confusing at first glance. Because of the very small font that is almost hidden at the bottom of the advertisement, it looks as if it is promoting drinking and driving. For this reason, dual coding has the ability to add confusion to advertisements. However, when read very closely the advertisement is actually conveying that the Absolut spirit of this alcohol has the power to bring a city back together.

In my honest opinion, I think that this advertisement is a little far fetched. On that note, it does not really convince me to purchase this alcohol the next time I'm at the liquor store. Overall dual coding can be extremely effective and definitely catches the readers attention. However, it must be carefully displayed in order to be persuasive to shoppers.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Group Work Reflection

For the most part, working in a group for this project was a success! We clearly outlined our objectives and the schedule of meetings at the first meeting. This provided the present team members with a great idea as to what was ahead of us. At the second meeting we outlined the homepage as a group. This allowed collective group input and discussion in terms of deciding which links were most important to include directly on the homepage. The group traveled to Anderson to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore for our third meeting to meet with Shelby for her final input. Immediately after this meeting, we divided up the proposal workload among team members.

I think that everything was communicated thoroughly. Group meeting times were e-mailed and confirmed by each group member. Despite these confirmations, we still had reoccurring team meeting absences by one group member. To avoid this miscommunication in the future, I will also make an effort to not only e-mail but send out a reminder phone call.

The most successful thing that our group has displayed was evenly distributing the workload keeping in mind each individuals educational background. For instance, Katie Bickers has had experience working with websites, therefore she was responsible for the Appendix section and homepage design.

Overall, I really enjoyed working with my team members. We felt very comfortable around each other which allowed us to complete our work more effectively. In the future, the only thing I would change is to also call group members to confirm meeting times so that the entire group is always present at meetings.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Mock Interview Reflection

Overall, I would say that my interview went pretty well. Considering I see myself as a pretty confident person, I was surprised with my anticipatory anxiety.
After arriving 15 minutes early to Strode, I remembered that I had left my cover letter and resume behind at the library. I would consider this an important lesson learned. It is imperative to remember all of your materials and arrive early so that if anything unexpected occurs you have ample time to deal with the situation and still appear prepared and composed.

When I walked into the office I knew to immediately shake the hand of the interviewer before sitting down. I then experienced an awkward exchange of my resume and cover letter for unknown reasons. I think that Ms. Rogers thought I was going for a second hand shake. During the interview, I sat upright and made eye contact. I thought that the questions were relatively easy to answer and used my past educational and work experience to answer the majority of them. Problems that I faced were incorrect word choices. For example, I said anesthesia as a drug has always “surprised” me instead of “amazed” me. I tried to fix it by adding correct word choices after that word slipped out. I think it was just the nerves talking, but in order to avoid this I will be sure to rehearse answers out loud to commonly expected questions.

Furthermore, it is important to use the correct terminology when asking questions. Although, Ms. Rogers did compliment my final question to the interviewer her response let me know that I should be used different terminology. For instance, I asked “ Does your hospital offer any programs for Registered Nurses to sign a contract and continue their education and have the hospital pay for it?” Her response, “Yes, we do offer tuition reimbursement programs and I will be happy to send you information about that” let me know that is should have used the words tuition reimbursement instead of my lengthy description I chose in my question. Overall, I found the mock interview experience to be very informative and educational for my future career endeavors.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Nursing as a "profession"

Because my interview was postponed I will be writing about how nursing can gain “professional” status rather than writing a reflection for my interview. Four ways to achieve the professional status in nursing include, eliminating associate degree level programs, increasing power in nursing, joining organizations, and demonstrating the characteristics of a professional. In my nursing class, my professor said that in order for any career to be considered professional status it can only be achieved with the completion of a baccalaureate degree. Therefore, one way nursing can improve its professional status is to eliminate associate degree level nursing programs. In terms of Bono’s six hat theory baccalaureate degree nurses are prepared with all 6 aspects of critical thinking including how to make clinical decisions and professional judgment. Associate degree level nurses are not prepared, however, to deal reasonably and reflectively in situations without a definitive solution. Two years of schooling does not provide sufficient time to possibly learn all aspects of critical thinking effectively. For instance, these programs do not address the green or red hat in that students cannot make creative decisions based on sticky situations or make decisions based on emotions. Overall, the associate degree programs are ‘cookie cutter’ and do not offer the same decisions making skills as baccalaureate programs. Step two in attaining professional status requires increasing power by becoming a unified group of professionals through participating together in political activities while demonstrating accountability and professionalism is step two in achieving professional status. This power can by obtained easier by joining various nursing organizations. Specifically, the American Nurses Association (ANA) is a great network for nurses to join in order to make a difference. It is an extremely influential organization that is there to both help the nurses and the community. Furthermore, the characteristics of a professional must be demonstrated in order to be taken seriously. Some of these traits include high levels of responsibility, knowledge, autonomy, and organization. These characteristics must be exemplified in order to achieve the respect.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Class Presentation

Although I missed the first two days of our class presentations I was fortunate enough to watch a few students present on Monday. Everyone that I saw did a great job! It was really interesting to see the topic choice each person chose because it gave me a glimpse of some of my classmates personalities and interests. Specifically, I thought Sal did a great job on his presentation on bricklaying. I thought his power point was very informative and the pictures he chose were great! I especially liked his slide on his previous workthat he has done in the area because it added a lot of credibility to his speech. I also think very highly of him in regards to his continuing education when he already has mastered a trade that he could be so successful in. It really demonstrates ambitious qualities which are very important to have in the world today. Great job Sal!