What’s New Archives

Removed after 5/14/2015

2012 -2013 Educational Programs

CERI is pleased to announce our first academic year webinar series.  Each month we will present a seminar on a timely topic focused on college recruiting, labor market trends, young adults, and other issues that we are currently conducting research.  The series begins in October.  We have a limit on the number of sites that can be hosted.  Check out our program list, schedule and fee packages… more

Recruiting Trends

Recruiting Trends Webinars — REGISTER TODAY

Oct. 24th 11:00 am EDT  EARLY BIRD RATE $80.00

Nov. 12th noon EST  $125.00

Nov. 20th 4:00 pm EST $125.00

Dec.  16th noon EST LAST CALL — $125

Register at:  https://msu-csm.symplicity.com/events/TRENDS2014

Spring Research Webinar Series

January 13 – The Role of Social Capital in Internships: Impact on Mastery, Success – noon EST

February 10 – The Importance of Cultural Capital in Early Career: Employer Perspective –noon EST

March 10 – Training and Development in First Position – noon EDT

April 14 – The Search for Experienced Hires – noon EDT

May 12 – Understanding the T and Why it is important – noon EDT

Bonus webinar – TBA

Registration will open soon.  Cost $99 for each webinar.

Removed after 9/26/2014

Liberally Educated vs. In-Depth Training: Employers Perceptions of what they Look for in New Talent: CERI RESEARCH BRIEF 2012.4

Internships and Co-ops 2012 Talent Development Outlook: CERI Research Brief 2012.3

A Comparison of Credit and Non-Credit Internships in their Expectations and the Utilization of Campus Resources

Partnerships 2012

Reaction on Campus to the Unpaid Internship Controversy

Removed after 1/16/2013

Intern Bridge’s The Debate Over Unpaid College Internships (full report)

An Analysis of U.S. Learn-and-Earn Programs (full report)

High Stakes Internships

Hopeful News in Recruiting Trends Study Demands a Degree of Caution

October Issue of eSource Magazine

The Debate Over Unpaid College Internships

An Analysis of U.S. Learn-and-Earn Programs

Removed 11/15/2012

Recruiting Trends 2011-2012

Removed on 7/6/2012

CERI Annual Report 2009-2010 & 2010-2011

CERI Annual Report 2009-2010 & 2010-2011

Special Recruiting Trends and Institute Reports 2011

Recruiting Trends Note 1: It’s the Basics, Really!

Recruiting Trends Note 2.1: What Employers Want You to Know About Winning in Your Job Search

Recruiting Trends Note 2.2: What Employers Want You to Know About Winning in Your First Job

Recruiting Trends 2010-2011 Special Report 5-11: Starting Salary Offers

Recruiting Trends Note 3: 10 Skills and Competencies for Science Majors

Recruiting Trends 2010-2011 Special Report 6-11: Associate Degree and Credential Hiring

Recruiting Trends 2010-2011 Special Report 7-11: Professional and Scientific Service Sector College Hiring


“As our markets discover and respond to what consumers most want, our technology has become extremely adept at creating products that correspond to our fantasy ideal of an erotic relationship, in which the beloved object asks for nothing and gives everything, instantly, and makes us feel all powerful, and doesn’t throw terrible scenes when it’s replaced by an even sexier object and is consigned to a drawer. The ultimate goal of technology, the telos of techne, is to replace a natural world that’s indifferent to our wishes—a world of hurricanes and hardships and breakable hearts, a world of resistance—with a world so responsive to our wishes as to be a mere extension of the self — Jonathan Franzen in the New York Times (The WEEK, June 10, 2011)


April: almost the perfect month, if it was not for the IRS.  These events seem especially suited to the month.

  • April 1: Global Astronomy Month begins.  According to FastCompany, stargazing is getting harder due to all the lights left on in homes and buildings around the world.  95% of people in the U.S. reside in areas with double the level of outdoor light — equivalent to 66 million metric tons of carbon dioxide.  Where does FC come up with these numbers?  Probably just like Congress — just kidding.
  • April 1: 25th WonderCon in SF.  The best way to start the month is with the comfort of friends dressed as super heroes embracing even our phone aps.  Better than watching the horror fest that is happening on the other coast.
  • April 4.  Google Global Science Fair:  Teenagers (not the CEO of Google) get their day in Google’s online smarts search.  You can see all the creative ideas from these kids on their website.
  • April 7:  World Health Day: Main topic is our body’s resistance to drugs designed to combat virsuses and other health threats — superbugs lurk who have no respect for chemicals.
  • April 8: Money and Power Summit for Women in DC (where else?) will examine issues pertinant to women. Obviously they are not making much headway on the salary front, given the  CEO pay levels recently reported.
  • April 10:  150th Birthday — no not of the Civil War — but of MIT.  Maybe these brains can keep us out of another war — though their alumni did contribute to the financial disaster.  One of their most famous athletes is Larry Kahn, the 1975 tiddlywinks world champion.
  • April 10: National Volunteer Week.
  • April 19: Where Are You conference in Santa Clara (Where 2.0) attempts to spread the use of geo aps on phones, etc.  Join the geo-craze!
  • April 27: Marketing to Digital Moms Conference.  As FC advises, “Don’t piss Moms off!” Their digital acumen can stop advertising campaigns in their tracks.  This Toronto event will look at the best and worst in advertising to moms.
  • April 30:  CERI takes a short excursion (month of May) to Boise State University as a visiting scholar.  Sure we can provoke something out in the Treasure Valley.

March 1:  Zap it! Yes, it’s National Frozen Food Month. According to FastCompany  23% of home dinners come to the table via the microwave. With lots of choices (some even healthy), the industry  revenues are $56 billion, up $13 billion from five years ago.

March 1: Great to know that Steve Jobs made a surprise appearance at Apples’ electronic show for the second generation iPad, the big news is in Germany with the CeBIT Electronics Fair–the world’s largest IT fair–where cloud computing will be the rage.

March 3: While in Europe, visit Paris for the Paris Cookbook Fair.

March 8: International Women’s Day. The recent report by the Obama administration that documents that women still trail men in salary should not detract from celebrating the accomplishments of women from all over the world. Even Republicans can celebrated Jeannette Rankin the first woman in the House (from Montana) in 1916.

March 13-15: The ides of March are never kind at least to Caesar. But it starts the seasonal clock, two years and counting.

March 21: Closing the gap between technology in the abstract and what it can really do, is hard but not for the minds gathered at Stanford for a conference on artificial intelligence for business agility.

March 24: Engineers Without Borders is approaching its 10th birthday. Get a job with this year’s conference in Louisville, KY where topics will cover low-cost housing design, water systems, and soil improvement. These men and women do great things.

March 29: WikiLeaks has every government on pins and needles until they grind the site into dust, but until then D.C. is the spot for the Government Security Expo. Protecting us from cyberspace crime and terrorism is a huge challenge and experts will be here to show off the latest security apps.

March 31: Major league baseball opens and they are already fighting in the Cubs lockerroom.

December 4: The coolest sporting event, sort of, is the American Kennel Club National Championship in California.  Unfortunately my dog of 57 varieties is ineligible – good thing too.  According to FastCompany Americans spend $330 million annually on competitive dog shows with $100,000 just in advertising.

December 7: TED is holding its first conference on women’s issues as a complement to the main conference.  Sounds good to me – and I will be in DC at the right time.

December 8: Drop in Minneapolis for the LifeScience Alley Conference and Expo to learn all about surgery (the cosmetic kind).  According to information in FastCompany here is a comparison of costs for elective surgery on the medical tourism (growing at 35% per year in US):

Surgery Location Cost on Tour Cost in U.S.
Lip Augmentation China $500 $1,736
Cheek Implant Spain $1,942 $2,550
Breast Augmentation Costa Rica $3,800 $10,000
Liposuction Columbia $2,500 $9,000
Face Lift South Africa $4,620 $15,000
Rhinoplasty Malaysia $1,293 $8,000
Dental Implant Hungary $900 $2,800
Chin Augmentation South Korea $1,980 $2,058
Brazilian Butt Lift Brazil $6,000 $11,500

December 9: Contained Memory Conference in New Zealand will find academics and artists discussion how to treat Alzheimer’s with art to regain cognitive skills.  Too bad there is not a special session for politicians.

December 13: Post Office Day (I just made this up) is the busiest day at the USPS where over 830 million pieces of mail will be handled.  Everyone should chip in a little extra as the USPS ran a $6 billion deficit in 2010.  And a rate increase was denied.  So we will be paying more to mail nothing at some point in the future.

December 17: I remember seeing Tron in 1982 so I just might have to see Tron: Legacy.  Wonder if Jeff Bridges will look as good as he did in ’82 – maybe he went to the LifeScience Expo.

December 31: I need to send an office memo out on No Interruptions Day – just leave me alone.  Why? According to FastCompany you are interrupted by coworkers, emails, or phone calls every 11 minutes.  The real problem is trying to get re-focused to continue your work.

November 1 My students do not understand the newness of email; it is so passé to them.  For those of you who feel compelled to refine your emails, go to the Email Marketing Conference in London.  According to FastCompany, on average we spend 51 seconds skimming an email and only 90 seconds to unsubscribe.  No wonder I am accused of not responding to your emails as I cannot process anything in 51 seconds; thus I unsubscribe.

November 2 Streaming Video is in – yes there are a few CERI examples out there – but you should attend the Streaming Media West 2010 to see what your interactive TV will be able to do.

November 5 Megamind opens. Maybe Will Ferrell will look better in 3-D.

November 5 Don’t like the movie options this weekend? Celebrate the 75th anniversary of Monopoly.  I now know where investment bankers learned their skills.  The longest Monopoly game in history lasted 70 days (FastCompany) – my D&D beat that by months.

November 7 National Quality Education Conference will be in Chicago (No this is not an oxymoron).  Big discussion will be doing away with expensive textbooks in favor of eco-friendly material (sort of what the Texas School Board did, inventing their own curriculum).  Let’s just encourage and keep our best teachers in poor schools so that all of our children have a chance to succeed.

November 7 Daylight savings ends – we saved lots of something making it a week plus later – well maybe not — adding $8.6 million to our electric bills (love that air-conditionig).

November 11 Veterans Day.  According to FastComapny one in four of every veteran of the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts has post-traumatic symptoms.  We didn’t even have that term when I was in the Vietnam conflict.  Regardless, all vets need to be recognized every day.

November 11 G-20 summit.  Here are some folks that really should have post-traumatic symptoms; but the financial debacle seems to have left no one in the banking sector traumatic – they keep on earning the big bucks that can cover the medical bills that vets cannot pay for.  Seoul is a wonderful town though.

November 15 National Philanthropy Day: another day named after Bill Gates.  Giving dropped by 3.6% last year; the bankers can make up the difference.

November 15 Global Gaming Conference in Las Vegas, where else.  With casinos on nearly every exit of the interstates, the one sector that has showed employment gains year after year should stand up and take a bow.

Novemeber 16 National Sourcing Summit in London will talk about shoes (nearly all of which are made in China and are moving to Bangladesh).  For every dollar the U.S. outsources, $1.14 is returned to the U.S.  It’s just in a different person’s pocket (FastCompany).

November 19 Recruiting Trends 2010-2011 will be released in Chicago.  See you there!

November 29 Back to London for the Future of Air Conference which recognizes 100 years of commercial flying.  The flight has been bumpy and less enjoyable than ever.  Now that I can check my own bag, the only thing left is to fly the plane. Space travel looks better all the time.

  • Synthia: The unofficial name of Mycoplasma mycides JCVI-syn1.0, the first living cell containing a computer-generated synthetic genome. The cell is a modified goat pathogen, and the new DNA it contains is “watermarked” with an encoded URL, famous quotes, and the name of its creator, J. Craig Venter.  (Wired, 9, 2010)
  • Flash crash: A sudden swing in stock prices caused by electronic trading errors.

October is one of the good months – weather and leaves change in East Lansing, plus the apples are ripe.  This year we will add one to the family on the 8th when my daughter gives birth to Ella Marie.  Data collection for Trends ends which means work in November. Here are some other things:

October 4 is feeling cool day, at least at the International Conference on Design and Emotion in Chicago where design researchers and practitioners will use their cross-disciplinary “meditation on designing in a time of diminished resources” (FastCompany’s exact words). Maybe some meditation and Tibetan chanting in front of the career fair today will result in more jobs being offered to graduates.

October 5 is beyond cool when the world’s economic elite meet in NYC for the World Economic Forum.  According to projections reported by FastCompany, world growth is expected to top out at 3.5% this year with advanced companies growing at a mind boggling 2.0%.  Not much to celebrate, but then again nothing gets these folks down.

October 6 is workplace happiness day, especially if work is making you sick.  “As companies do more with less (soon to be less with even less), stress and mental-health issues are on the rise, affecting 25% of workers and costing employers $80 billion a year”  (And I thought I was the only one who lived on my own planet).  In Ottawa you can learn how to survive 14-hour days at the Building Healthier Workplaces conference.  The bottom line at this conference: “Go home, have a life, be a whole person.”  That is what young adults have been trying to tell Boomers for the past 10 years.

October 12 is all in the mind at the World Congress of Neurotechnology in Rome where you can catch up on brain transplants and other intricate work on the brain.  FastCompany reports that 5 million US boomers will suffer Alzheimer’s costly health care system $172 billion a year  (not including the loss of productivity from 10.9 million caregivers)– and you would think this was an incentive enough for health care.  This is the first conference to attempt to bring all disciplines dealing with the brain together to create  “potent new weapons for the brain.”  I guess the new strike force bomber does not count.

October 12 is also Old Farmer Day (sounds like a boomer rally) where working family farmers will celebrate the fact that the wealthiest 10% of American farmers received 74% of farmer subsidies of a budgeted $6.7 billion which actually became $15.4 million.  To make sure we cannot track this information any longer, the USDA discontinued the database – because it was too expensive.  I am sure the big recipients won’t mind.  I wonder how much the egg farmer in Iowa got last year for his healthy eggs.

October 13 is good news for archaeologists as it is National Fossil Day where you can visit 228 national parks to look at fossils in the ground.  Don’t get too excited that you purloin the bones – leave them for next year’s Fossil Day.

October 13 is also the 150th anniversary of the first U.S. aerial photograph of Boston from a hot air balloon. My students think Google was the first to come up with aerial photographs.

October 14 is blog away day at the BlogWorld & New Media Expo in Las Vegas (Las Vegas does still exist despite the economy), where twitters will try to outdo last year’s mass tweets (over 700,000) to raise money for cancer research.

October 18 celebrates biological diversity at 10th annual conference in Nagoya, Japan.  I wonder if whales are on the list to celebrate?

October 28 marks the opening of Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi, a millionaire’s play ground or sand box.  It has taken forever to open but heck where else can you drive F430 GT Spiders, even if they are miniatures?

October 30 is a day my wife will love as it marks the 100th anniversary of the cathode-ray tube, the basic component of our TV. Well not exactly, because flat screen TVs don’t have cathode-ray tubes – but it was a great ride.

Frequently Asked Question

I am often asked about the indicators that I follow to frame my understanding of the economy and especially the labor market.  I thought I would share a few of them with you. To get an overall sense of the economy’s performance these indexes really help:

1.  Economic Outlook Index: Prepared by USA TODAY/IHS Global Insight , combines eleven economic and financial indicators to predict future growth or decline in GDP.  Right the index shows the economy growing at 1.3% through the end of the year.

2. Consumer Confidence Index: Prepared by the Conference Board measures the degree of optimism among consumers about the economy and their personal finances.

3.  Consumer Sentiment Index: Prepared by the University of Michigan which is similar to the CCI but has been used since the 1940s and is indexed to 1964.

4. Manufacturing Index: Prepared by the Institute for Supply Management follows how the manufacturing sector is doing in terms of production.  Currently Index indicates a very modest growth in the sector.

5. Small Business Confidence Index: By the Small Business Research Board measures confidence among small business owners.

When it comes to actual employment the indicators lag so far behind that it is hard to figure out what is going on, but try these:

6.  Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Table B-1: Which provides year over year employment numbers by economic sector, plus last three months of job growth or decline.

7. Manpower: Produces quarterly reports on the number of temporary hires that includes types of position and regional information.  Often their activity becomes a precursor to full-time hiring.

There are many others to consider as well, but these always grab my attention.  The problem with all indicators at the present is that they are built around the business cycle but what has occurred is a restructuring of the economy from production to network which possibly alters how the indicators interact, especially with labor markets.

  • September 10: Sixteen Tons and deeper in debt – that Tennessee Ernie Ford song  doesn’t seem to ring true on Fashion’s Night Out in NYC and 16 other cities around the world.  To increase sales NYC brought out the stars to serve drinks and whatever last year.  The result, according to Fast Company, was a 3.4% increase in retail traffic in Barney’s and 50% throughout Manhattan.  So this year, even bigger events are planned.  Since only those with incomes over $250,000 have any money to spend, I guess this day is just meant for those living in the rarified air of high rises in NYC or who can globetrot to the other cities over this now ten day event.
  • September 10: I might not make it to my 50th wedding anniversary (35 and counting), but OPEC did.  Five countries started a cartel (now twelve) where every time a toilet flushes in the US we panic about an oil crisis.  The cartel plans to publish an anniversary children’s book, but as Fast Company asserts “We’re guessing BP-drenched dolphins didn’t make the cut.” Did you know that oil accounts for only 4.5% of GDP in Saudi Arabia – what accounts for the rest?
  • September 12: Caesar and Cleo Day – okay it’s Karaokefest in Pomona, California where thousands will turn out to sing their favorite songs.  A favorite is “I Got You Babe” by Caesar and Cleo – oops Sonny and Cher – but that was their original name.  Better hurry up – the annual sales of karaoke machines has fallen 80% (Fast Company) – can only find them in Japanese bars . It is easier to visit YouTube.
  • September 12: World Energy Congress in Montreal (where you can listen to Celine Dion) will study trends in alternative energy.  According to Fast Company, China leads in growth of renewable energy sources by investing $34.6 billion dollars over the past five years with the US next at $18.6 billion. The next four (Spain, Brazil, Germany, and Canada) don’t even total the first two.
  • September 13:  The Living Dead – no it is International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago – and trust me (yes, you evil bankers, politicians, and some venture folks) manufacturing is not dead – it simply doesn’t use a lot of labor any more but it produces cool things – like the F-35 Lighting II Joint Strike fighter jet – a state-of-the-art plane to end all planes – still probably can’t find Bin Laden but it will keep a lot of senators in office.
  • September 16: Artists on the loose – or saving community at 01SJ Biennial. In San Jose artists will create their own worlds to promote civic engagement and the arts.  Not bad since most of them live on their own planets already.  Certainly all that creative energy will lead to some synergism – please anything but more talking heads on TV.
  • September 18: 200th Anniversary of Oktoberfest.  Just don’t let the undergrads have another reason to party.  According to Fast Company, Oktoberfest in Munich brings in 6 million visitors, 955 million euros, and 104 acres of beer tents – kind of resembles a football weekend around here.
  • September 20: National Health Care Reform Conference in LA. I thought we did this already but it seems the doctors, insurance agents and other big players that manage our health are trying to find out how to make a killing out of the ambiguous Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. They actually used the word affordable.
  • September 22:  Those who spend—spend. Yes it is the Monaco Yacht Show  (where Fashion Night probably ends).  Yacht sales are up over the last two years – what recession!  These environmentally friendly – oops – gas guzzling behemoths are just the ticket to trigger economic expansion.  How many will fit on Lake Michigan?
  • September 26: The Big Week – Big Ten football starts with Michigan State and Wisconsin meeting in East Lansing on October 1.  But Madison holds big surprises with the World Dairy Expo where dairy leaders are trying to clamp down on fake milk products that do not derive their sustenance from the cow (try soy, hemp, coconut, and almond milk). Fast Company did say hemp  — still have not figured that out.
  • August 1  50 Years of African Independence. August marks the month in 1960 that a group of African nations escaped colonialism — Benin, Niger, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic . According to FastCompany, independence has come with a price as these countries GDPs are among the lowest in the world. On the positive side, these countries have minerals and foreign investment is coming in. Just have to handle all the corruption and warring factions.
  • August 6. Best day of the year for twins, especially if they are gathered at Twinsburg, Ohio for the 34th festival honoring multiple births.  Figures provided by FC reveal that the rate of multiple births has doubled since 1970 thanks to advances in fertility treatment.  Besides the cutest twins contest, genetic scientists will be there recruiting for genetics studies.  Sending academic researchers to festivals around the country sounds like a promising way to increase research budgets.
  • August 9. Mom’s best day yet (and you thought it was Mother’s Day) as we mark the 100th anniversary of the electric powered washing machine.  Whirlpool’s retro machines almost look like the original.  Just press a button.
  • August 10. Despite the fact that we have quickly forgotten the rise in energy prices and are now buying mammoth pick-up trucks at a prodigious rate (compared to 2008), the coal industry is still working on new technology.  Journey to the heart of coal country, Pittsburg, for a look at the newest technologies promising to reduce carbon footprint.  FC has coined a new phrase “diet coke”  — they have not lost their touch.
  • August 14  Youth Olympics. Still visualizing the beautiful city of Vancouver during the winter games, catch the youth Olympiad for all those too young to participate in the real thing – except they do.  Singapore will be nice and cool for the athletes.

Before revealing our special word for the month, we need to take a moment to honor zoologists (not because they are very difficult to find employment after graduation) for the words they are introducing into your medicine cabinet:

Huachansu: Dried venom from the skin of toads that is being used to treat various forms of cancer.

Aggrastat: Bile from the African saw-scaled viper is being reversed engineered by Merck for a blood clotting agent.

Byetta: Diabetics can thank the Gila monster for the drug used to release insulin which is extracted from the Gila’s poisonous saliva.

Word of the month:

  • word-of-finger – skip over word-of-mouth as marketing through Twitter and Facebook which require keystrokes is now in vogue among marketers (easier to track than word-of-mouth).
  • June 4 National Donut Day. Don’t see as many around the office as you used to but according to FastCompany Americans eat 10 million donuts a year – yes that is 35 per person.  Since I don’t eat donuts, someone is eating 70 a year.  Donuts became really popular during the Depression when the Salvation Army sold them to raise money for the poor.  Maybe that’s why I saw the neighborhood kids adding doughnuts to their Kool aid stands – helping pay the mortgage!
  • June 5 National Trails Day. Go for a hike!
  • June 6 International Bridge Conference. With our crumbling highway infrastructure it is good that the folks responsible are meeting in Pittsburg.  According to FC 26% of the country’s 600,905 bridges are structurally unsound with more falling in this category every day.  Blame the recession and stingy banks for the back order on getting your bridge fixed.  I found a way to campus that does not require a bridge crossing – the only bridge toward campus is closed for repairs.
  • June 9 Aquaculture 2010. The Network for Aquaculture Centers in Asia report that 50% of the fish we eat comes from fish farms (inland and ocean) and China produces about 2/3 of the farmed fish.  If you can make it past the army join fish farmers in Bangkok to learn more about local sustainable agriculture coming to your backyard.
  • June 9 NAWBO Women’s Business Conference. Let’s salute all the women who now run 40% of all businesses in the U.S.  Just think: in the 60s and 70s women could not even qualify for a business loan unless a male relative co-signed the loan.  In D.C. we can celebrate all the jobs being created by women entrepreneurs (FC).
  • June 10 Country Music Association Festival. Nashville has recovered somewhat from the flood of the eon and is ready to host the CMAF – whatever that means since nearly all artists cross-over now.  Unlike newspapers that continue to shrink, radio listening is up thanks to your Country/Western artist.  We actually listen to nearly 10 hours of CW a week (see FC).
  • June 11 World Cup. Need I say more – the best sporting event in the world (next to lacrosse).  Watch it on any of the 376 channels in 214 countries with 715 million watching the final.  Eat your heart out NBA.
  • June 14 World Blood Donor Day. FC reports that fewer than 10 million people donate blood in a year.  Guess what – freezing and thawing blood is very unscientific and large quantities of blood are wasted (thawed and not used) in operating theaters.
  • June 18 Toy Story 3. To Infinity and Beyond!  See Wired magazine for an incredible story on how they do it at Pixar.
  • June 20 Father’s Day. Not that I am angling for anything from my kids, but I  just wanted to thank my home town, Spokane WA, for initiating Father’s Day a hundred years ago when a little girl asked that her father (divorced) be recognized for all he did for her.  It wasn’t until Nixon and the greeting card folks got together that it was finally officially designated the day for Fathers. Thanks.
  • June 21 Green Chemistry Conference. Talk about an area that is politically charged with the White House on down in love with this sector – only wish they would tell us what is in all those little green bottles.
  • June 27 International Bowl Expo. Sarah Palin’s next big political speech will be at this expo in Las Vegas.  Remember the book Bowling Alone – well 70 million tried bowling last year (not counting the Wii where I do most of my bowling).
  • June 28 National Conference on Volunteering and Service. According to figures in FC, 30% of us now volunteer, totaling $162 billion worth of hours annually (hope that is based on wages at least above minimum wage).  Which group is growing the fastest – unemployed men. Visit NYC, volunteer and enjoy the museums.
  • June 28 World Cities Summit 2010. Come to Singapore and learn all about urbanization from water to transportation.  More Americans are moving back to the cities (see the new Richard Florida materials floating around – whites to cities while other ethnic groups settle in the suburbs.)

Did you know? Wired Magazine is full of cool information.  What do you know about teleprompters?  Well, they were created by soap stars (circa 1949) who needed to learn lines fast and couldn’t remember them.  Now they are exclusively used by politicians – not that we have moved up the food chain very much.

  • April 3 to 5  Madness Ends. A month of madness ends in Indianapolis where MSU takes its traditional spot in the Final Four.  Who would have thought one month ago?  B-ball success takes a lot of pressure off the football team in the fall.
  • April  5  Is Email Better? Today marks the 150th birthday of the Pony Express which left St. Louis in what was thought of as great venture.  But it only lasted 18 months after losing $200,000 ($4.7 million today).  Peanuts when compared to the airlines.  Who leaves a smaller footprint?
  • April 8  Finding a Job? Today is the birthday of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) which the Republicans hated then and still hate today.  But according to Fast Company, the Roosevelt administration spent $165 billion (adjusted for inflation) over 7 years and got a great return on the investment – 8 million jobs, thousands of roads, parks and public facilities.  The Texans may not want government in their backyard, but take away the San Antonio Riverwalk  and they might enact the second coming of the Alamo; same with LaGuardia Airport (then again the two hour delay last time I was there was not pleasant.)
  • April 10  School’s Out. Spring break for k-12 schools often finds their school boards at the annual National School Boards Association Conference (I went occasionally when on the Board in my hometown).  No Child Left Behind will be the focal point – from tweakers (just a change here and there) to radical reform (quit teaching to the test – our kids are brain dead).   School evaluation is still a very hot topic.
  • April 10  Content Galore. If you don’t want to debate school content, check out what is going on in media content.  Try the National Association of Broadcasters Show where the focus will be on “Broadercasting” which is a word that describes “how more people are creating more content and reaching more viewers” (Fast Company).
  • April 14  Don’t Ask, Don’t Look. One third of young professionals have tattoos according to Fast Company (compared to 14% of general population).  You can check out the latest designs and tricks to avoid conflict in the workplace at the National Tattoo Convention in Seattle.
  • April 14  Haiti Rocks! Haiti did rock but advancements in geographic information systems enabled scientist to act quickly to assess damages, according to Fast Company.  This year’s meeting in D.C. will highlight the integrated systems and image capabilities to solve worldwide problems.
  • April 17  Once Again! If you are not tired of the health care debate, then join folks in New Haven CT for the Global Health and Innovation Conference where attention will focus on social entrepreneurship in sustaining global health.
  • April 19 Amtrak on Steroids. Yes, a high speed train system for the US what a concept.  For High-Speed rail World (conference in D.C.) the options are limitless.  Of course our trains will go slightly faster than cars.  The fast track system between Cleveland and Cincinnati is expected to top out at 110 miles per hour at a $400 million dollar price tag; the European trains go twice as fast; and don’t ask about China.  In fact, during my recent trip to China domesticate flights were being eliminated between cities on the fast track line because the train was faster and cheaper.  Something we can only dream about in the U.S.
  • April 22  Earth Day. Forty years ago – it was great being 23.  And we marched to save the earth.  I suppose we have made great improvements – but I sit next to too many nay-sayers (long airplane flights) who will believe it when they see it – at that time it will be too late for the rest of us.
  • April 2010 Yes Sir, Ten Years of www. I certainly can’t live without it.  At this gathering in Raleigh North Carolina, the hubris will fly about the wonderful worldwide web.  And they are right; but check out Wall Street II (released April 23) and you will see that greed has gotten better and never seems to die.  We can only await the next financial crisis.


  • From the Copenhagen Institute of Future Studies  who articulated the era of open-source, Wiki-style information gathering and sharing as “anarconomy” – a cooperative, communal mind-set that has turned competitive-model economics on its head  (As highlighted in The Futurist, March 2010).

March, 2010

  • March 1 National Pig Day. A special thanks to all my friends at ISU for their continued support with all our activities.  Just might get to Des Moines for the Blue Ribbon Bacon Festival.
  • March 6 MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference. The nerds have taken over sports ever since the MIT baseball boys reshaped how teams scouted and fill rosters for talent.  According to Fast Company Magazine Mitchel Lichtman will release his UZR – the ultimate zone rating – which measures how well a fielder saves runs at his position.  What about free throws, Spartans need a lot of help here?
  • March 7 82nd Academy Awards. The longest self-congratulatory period by any industry, group, or alien presence finally comes to an end (except for music – they have two to three every month of the year).  Since every film produced this year is nominated the evening should be really suspenseful.
  • March 9 Game Developers Conference. In San Francisco you can see the future of film – no actors – just lots of avatars.  But Fast Company offers a peek at an entire new dimension – the Social and Online Game Summit which will be conducted through Facebook and iPhone.  Did you know that 82% of all 2 to 17 year olds in the US play casual social and online games?  My grand kids are simply 1s and 0s.
  • March 9 Anniversary of the Yugo. You can impress your students with this fact.  25 years ago the Yugo arrived in the US.  Made the Edsel  sweet!
  • March 10. Ten years ago the NASDAQ peak at just over 5,000 — since then one bubble after another has popped.  In ten years we will be writing about another one.
  • March 17 100th Anniversary of the National Museum of Natural History. New exhibit on human origins will open.  If you are beltway cynic like me, you can tour on line (in 3D no less).
  • March 19 What’s Next Boomer Business Summit in Chicago. Boomers expect to fork over lots of their cash to caregiving – collect your bounty – see what is the future for boomer targeted tech.
  • March 20 IEEE Virtual reality Conference. Second Life is about take over the meeting space.  My avatar is better than your avatar.
  • March 29 Mom and Pop Business Owners Day. Cheer the folks that really create NEW jobs for the US.  Say good-bye before they all disappear as banks strangle hold on credit continues.

Enhance Your Vocabulary

ETHONOMICS: (1) Ethical economics. (2) Business that is good both for the world and the bottom line.   FAST Magazine provides a few examples:

  • Boulder, Colorado: First “smart-grid city” where the first net-zero neighborhoods are appearing. These neighborhoods are completely powered by solar energy and heated by geothermal energy.
  • Vinalhaven, Maine: The residents of Fox Island reside in the largest community on the East Coast to have their electricity produced by three wind turbines which can supply the entire island.
  • Helsinki, Finland: In an old bomb shelter Academica has built their data center that captures the heat from computer servers and is used to heat neighboring homes, reducing the company’s energy use and power costs.

February, 2010

Lots of cool things are happening this month! Here are some events that might interest you as culled from resources that we peruse each month. Feel free to send us your own cool events!

  • National Grapefruit Month.  Grapefruit lovers may not see much of their fruit as the prolonged cold weather in Florida has reduced the supply – so costs are going up.  Get your Ruby Red while you can.
  • National Condom Month.  Students might snicker at this one but the Center for Disease Control estimates that U.S. spends over $20 billion annually on sexually transmitted infections.  FAST Company  points out that this figure does not include sick days; where each case of syphilis costs $112 PER DAY IN PRODUCTIVITY.  Remember our latex friend is 95% effective in cutting STIs and exposure to HIV.
  • February 6: Teens in Tech Conference, San Francisco.  17-yr old Daniel Brusilovsky is the CEO of Teens in Tech Networks (young media producers) and marketing manager for Qik, a mobile video startup.  He is hosting this conference so his generation can provide leadership and innovation in social media
  • February 8: 50th Anniversary of Hollywood Walk of Fame.  For $25,000 you can purchase a star – or course you have to be a star  to start with.  But as a tourist you can visit all 2,400  stars; or nominate your favorite who does not have one – remember you have to have $25,000.
  • February 10: FAA Commercial Space Transportation Conference in Arlington Virginia will present another option to cash strapped NASA by offering weekend away in outer space for just $4.4 milluion for three nights.
  • February 14: It’s not Valentine’s day; it is the fifth anniversary of the registration of www.youtube.com.  The rest is history.
  • February 15: Outsourcing World Summit in Orlando will examine various issues around sourcing; highlights include northern companies moving south where wages are comparable to India.
  • February 28: 75th Anniversary of nylon.  DuPont created nylon in 1935 and nylon has become the most versatile and profitable material ever invented (see FAST Company).