How Colleges Have Given Up on Educating Your Child: A Book Review

I am a mother of two teens. I am a college graduate and a Master Degree drop out from St John’s University, New York. In fact, I was accepted by St John’s and decided not to attend because they required a year of English Language course and also other subjects that I have already taken. I felt it was unnecessary and a waste of time and money.

For the past year, I have been researching on the relevance of college education in this new economy. In my journey of researching, I found out that there are many roads that lead to a child’s success in life and career. In this nation, the vast majority of us are categorized as middle class families. Good old fashioned, hard working Americans looking for ways to help our children advance socially and economically.

However, with the price tag of college education increasing each year, most families are going into certain types of loans just to ‘buy’ an education for their children. But parents, is that the only road to advancement? Do we want to see our children in debt just to get that education and later find out that it does not buy success? Have you wonder why so many young graduates are struggling financially even with a college education?

One of the books that I have recently read is “The Five-Year Party: How Colleges have given up on educating your child and what you can do about it” by Craig Brandon. I do not agree with everything, however, there are many tips and checklists to take away from Mr. Brandon’s book.

Craig Brandon said the purpose of this book is to inform parents about the abuses of higher education that party schools engage in to maximize the number of customers and their incomes at the expense of real education.

He defined party school as a relatively inexpensive four-year residential college/university that rates among the third and fourth tiers (rated by U.S. News and World Report), that admits low grades and low SAT scores.

These are the colleges that most middle income Americans goes to. According to his research:

1. Majority of the students are no better than a high school drop out after graduating. These students are not interested in learning and do not put in effort to learn.

2. Since early 1990s, colleges have been reinventing and transforming into institutions that focus on profits instead of education. Because of this transformation, the administrators want to ensure they retain students by giving exactly what they want, that is, less work more fun.

3. To retain students who are their ‘customers’, they enlarged dining halls into gourmet food courts, campuses with hot tubs, water parks, climbing walls, work out centers and wide screen television sets all over.

4. Dormitories being replaced by luxury condominiums. So instead of spending money on education, they used it for facilities and luxuries.

5. They use grading curve to transform an F score to a magical B. There is no high expectation for quality school work. Flunking is almost eliminated.

6. Focusing on increasing revenue, they squeezed as many students as possible onto campuses for the highest tuition and longest possible amount of years.

7. When parents and their high school age children tour the campus before they make decision, they are given a ‘golden walk’. They give a misrepresentation, misstatement and ‘lies’ to entice them to sign up.

8. 21 cents to a dollar of your college tuition is for instructions and the rest go to administrators’ salaries, construction programs and multi-million-dollar advertising and public relations campaigns.

9. Because of the high tuition fee, two thirds of students need loans to complete their studies and the schools have private loan companies to offer loans to students. Most students do not understand the terms and conditions of the loans until they graduate and are faced with the truth.

10. He outlined the dangers of these campuses because of alcohol, crime, rape, and their obsession with secrecy where parents do not find out the problems until it is too late.

Craig Brandon offered an action plan and a call to action for parents. We need to reinvent higher education with main focus on:

Educating not entertaining.

Go back to basics, the goal is to create “no frills colleges”

Replace unnecessary irrelevant courses with core subjects necessary to maintain our economy, our government and the future of our country

Students need to pass a “value added” exam before granted a degree. Value added means skills and knowledge required to be a leader

Transparency for all college policies and proof that colleges are providing education

My conclusion from this book: talk to our children and find out what are their strengths, goals and passion in life. Without a serious talk,direction and a game plan, we will walk the road to nowhere. Colleges are not the only roads that lead to our children’s success.

For further information on strategies to educate your children, please download our Free Report, which is on the top right hand corner of this page. Please leave us a comment on our Facebook wall.

Start Home Based Business – 3 Steps To A Successful First Year

Many people who start a home based business will not even last to their 1-year mark, and this isn’t because they’ve been outright failures, it is simply because they believe they won’t succeed and ultimately end up quitting. You must know that if you are ready to start a home-based business you cannot expect to make a lot of money immediately, and it may take some time before you get results, but sticking with it regardless of your income or frustrations is the key to success.

If you think you have what it takes to stick with your business then you should be successful, if you don’t think you have what it takes, then you probably aren’t cut-out for this type of business. With this all said, here are three important steps to focus on in your first year in order to set yourself up for success:

Step #1 – Work on building your customer list
In all businesses, the bigger the list of people to advertise to the more money you will ultimately make. You should focus on building a large list of customers in your first year, as this will enable you to advertise to more people on a regular basis and will go a long way in increasing your income from the first year forward.

Step #2 – Build a name for your business
It is important to brand yourself and get your business name out there for others to see. Be sure that your name is synonymous with quality and customer satisfaction, and you will have people searching for you instead of you having to work so hard for their business.

Step #3 – Master the basics
You have to learn to master all of the basics that makeup your online business. Things like advertising, product creation, and email marketing are all essentials that you must master in order to build and grow your business. Dedicate time to learning the basics and ensure you do them perfectly, as this will give you a solid platform on which your business will run.

An Insider’s Look at Home Based Business Income Opportunities

Do Home Based Business Income Opportunities really exist? I mean, you hear about the latest and greatest “opportunity” that’s going to revolutionize the world and your life, but are they for real? And if a true legitimate Home Based Business Income Opportunity does exist, is anyone really successful with them?
These questions come up all the time! If this is you, I can tell you you’re not alone. My simple answer is yes. In fact, the Home Based Business industry comprises roughly 20 million people. Now, just like anything in life, there are those who are successful and there are those who are not. The same can be said for the companies that exist within this industry.So What’s The Difference Between Success and Failure?Training, support, leadership and most important…a proven repeatable system. Does your opportunity offer you any of the above? Or, is your opportunity like most. You know, get them in, get them on a monthly auto ship and immediately take advantage of the emotional momentum and have your new recruit talk to all of their friends and family!You know, because your broke best friend who has a hard time balancing their check book is a perfect prospect for your new BUSINESS PARTNER!?! I don’t think so. Home Based Business Income Opportunities do exist and you can be VERY successful.What you need is to be taught Marketing, Advertising and to set up a sales system to help sift and sort for you while you do things like grow your business and train your recruits. If you are spending all of your time spinning your wheels trying to convince the guy at the grocery store to go into business with you, you are going to have a short run and a bad experience.If you set up your Home Based Business Income Opportunity correctly, you can do exactly what I’m doing right now…sitting in Starbucks running my business. By the way, it’s 11:00 a.m. on Monday…what does your Monday morning look like?Plug In To a Proven System With a Real Leader…and your chances of success are FAR greater. It also helps to be in an industry with a product that EVERYONE needs and EVERYONE can benefit from. How many new lotions, potions, pills and magic fruits are on the market right now? Seriously, think about it. You need to have something that will make a difference for people not only now, but for years to come.So what are you going to do? Are you going to keep doing what you’re doing? Are you going to keep getting ready to get ready? Or, are you going to take advantage of a REAL Home Based Business Income Opportunity and build a REAL business with REAL leadership?I hope today is the day you decide you deserve more. More from yourself, more from life and more from your Home Based Business Income Opportunity. Your opportunity exist, it’s just waiting for you to take action and decide you’re ready. I hope today is that day and now is the time!

Time Management Skills For Home Based Business Owners

Too often I see home based business owners wasting time on meaningless tasks that waste time and money. Most business owners do not have a set schedule on the activities they need to be doing to make the most of their time. Majority of your time should be spent prospecting and generating leads. The top earners in every company spend 70% of their time prospecting and you should too.Your home based business should be taken seriously and not just a hobby, unless you want to get paid like a hobbyist. Nailing down a time for activity’s should be your priority for time management. Use excel or software similar to make yourself out a schedule, even if you work full time you still need a schedule. No matter how you generate your home based business leads you want to designate a time for lead generation activities. This should be done during the day and at a time that most people are active. You also want to designate a time to call back your prospects. I suggest calling them from 7Pm until 10PM that way you catch them at a good time and not during dinner. Doing other insignificant tasks like sending out emails,personal development and non lead generating activity’s should be done after you’ve made all your calls or early in the morning.Even if you do not have a lot of time to generate leads for your home based business you can still do it. On your way to work or during lunch you can put out sizzle cards at your stops. You can place classified ads in the local paper or post a online classified for your home based business opportunity. Not having enough time to generate leads is not a valid excuse with all of the options you have to generate leads with the advances in technology. You can even use part of your lunch break to call back prospects and set up appointments if you cannot do it at another time. We all have 24 hours in the day and using your time wisely is very important if you want to have a successful home business. Remember majority of your time must be generating leads for your home based business. If you stay consistent at lead generation and using your time effectively you will see great results!

Planning For Home Based Business Success

Today’s society wants us to believe that we need to be doing something 24/7 365 or we will fail. Can you say burnout! This is probably the number 1 reason a lot of people are turning to home based businesses. Without having an online business myself, I would not be able to get my kids to their sports events on time (and they are only in 1 sport at a time), get my grass cut or anything else around the house done for that matter, workout to try to stay healthy and oh yeah…sleep! Having a full time job away from home would be impossible at this point.Having a home based business or online business allows me to get everything done that I need to without having that “burned out” feeling. However, even working from home requires some sort of schedule. You still need to plan your day, week and even your month. Without a plan or schedule, you will be running around like a chicken without its head! There are just to many things to get done and without structure, you will fail.My advice and the advice of many others is to plan out your day first. Set a time that you will work on your home based business and stick to that, but do not make that time more than 8 hours. If you try to work 15 hours a day you will burnout quickly and your home based business will fail. Remember, you are working from home to have more free time…not less. Also, make time for your family and for yourself. This will help you get rid of the stress that comes with starting a home based business.Next, plan your week. Allow yourself a day or two off. Personally, I do not work much on weekends. I like to have that day away from the computer screen. I also like to work out so I set time aside to do that. Again, keeps the stress level down. You should allow 1 hour a day, 3 days a week to exercise. You will be amazed at how much better you will feel!You can even plan farther ahead, say the month or even the year. Set your goals of what you would like to accomplish with your home based business in 3 months, 6 months and by the end of your first year. A very important point…make your goals achievable! This will help keep you motivated to succeed.Most importantly, don’t forget to plan that vacation! We all need to get away. Taking some time off from “life” to relax and rejuvenate yourself can work wonders. Burnout is one of the top reasons people fail with anything including home based businesses. Try to do everything in moderation. If you can achieve this, you will find yourself as a wealthy person.

Ideas For A Home Based Business – The Fear Factor – Part 1 of 4

If you are like most people, you have a 9-to-5 job working for some company with a lot of stress and pressure to complete your projects. Perhaps you’ve found that even though you complete your work to everyone’s satisfaction, you still don’t get the raise or promotion you deserve. Maybe you’ve been getting more work dumped on you since others were let go due to the economy and find yourself drowning in work. Are you working overtime or have to continue working once you get home? Are you beginning to feel like your life is owned by, and revolves around your job? Are you afraid of losing your job? If so, you are not alone. This is why so many individuals are researching ideas for a home based business. Unfortunately, that is as far as most people get. Lets look at some reasons why.The advantages of having your own home based business seem compelling – you’re the boss and can’t be fired by anyone else. You can set the hours you want to work that better fit your lifestyle. More time with your family. You control the growth of the business. The list goes on and on. Why then, do most people give up on their ideas for a home based business before even trying? It is because of fear.Fear is a good thing. It kept us alive back in the days when the struggle to survive involved decisions that were truly life or death. But these days in our modern society our fears are mostly tought to us from the media and our upbringing. We tend to imagine the worst before taking the first step, and therefore not taking any steps at all. When it comes to starting a home based business, we fear it will fail for one reason or another, or someone close to us will criticize the idea, or that we will be scammed somehow. These are valid fears, but should these fearsome thoughts always stop us cold in our tracks?I’m not saying don’t have fears. Instead, allow the fear to be there, just don’t let it stop you from taking the next step. If you are reading this, you have already taken the first step of researching ideas for a home based business. That’s great! You are probably finding a lot of different ideas on the web. Many of the ideas include selling a product or offering a service out of your home such as tutoring or selling art. Other ideas utilize the internet where all the work is done online. As you look through the lists of ideas, ask yourself which ones feel like they would be something you would enjoy. You should note those down on some paper so you can compare and contrast the ideas as you continue your research. A word of caution, if you are looking for an idea that jumps out at you as the absolute, hands down, this is it business, you most likely will not find it. Why? Because every home based business has its pros and cons and our minds will typically race through the cons until fear is felt, thus tempering our excitement for the idea. Don’t fight the fear, let it be there, just write the idea down if it’s one you think you could enjoy.Another common reaction to be aware of when looking at ideas for a home based business is when you see an idea that you don’t understand or are not familiar with, and therefore deciding it isn’t for you. If you see home business ideas and you do not understand what they involve, write it down and research it. You may find something that is a perfect fit for you, now that you understand what it’s all about. As someone interested in art, I found I had no idea what ACEO meant when looking at the art on sites like I assumed it was some type of acrylic paint and thus ignored the category entirely. I was completely wrong. I’ll leave it to you to look up ACEO if you don’t know what it means.

3 Critical Factors To Look For In A Home Base Business Opportunity

Seeing that the world economy appears to be struggling to get back to normal, every one, including those who have lost their jobs or even those who may have lost their entire life savings, are all looking to find some way to develop some other means of creating an income. Consequently there is a massive rush as everyone continues to look for the right home base business opportunity.But on a very serious note of caution, does the uninitiated masses really know what to look for in choosing the right home base business opportunity? For those who are truly serious and would sincerely desire to change their financial position from desperation to great aspiration, you must be very vigilant in understanding that like many other industries, you just cannot let your sponsor or mentor in any home base business opportunity realize how desperate you might really be, to develop an extra or a primary income.Where as there are a variety of important factors which must be in place before you choose this new opportunity, here is a list of the main factors which will always determine your success and the longevity of your home base business career.What You Need To Look For In A Home Base Business Opportunity.1: You must fine a home base business opportunity which is being offered by the right company.As you continue your relentlessly search for your opportunity, you will ultimately find lots of company offering a host of product selections, but it is critical that you find an ethical company which has not been in the industry for decades.Some people will say such a company will be much more stable, and that might be quite true, but also to your disadvantage is the fact that this can very likely be a company which has made so many blunders over the years that every Tom, Dick and Henrietta have failed at, and may all have pretty bad memories about that company. And I am sure you know how bad news gets around faster than good news. The point here is that you will have a very difficult time finding people to seriously look at your home base business opportunity.You really want to find a company which has not been around for that many years.2: You must find a home base business opportunity being offered with quality products which are not “Me Too” products.If you have taken a good look at the diversity of products which are being offered by most companies you will agree most of them are “Me Too” products. What I mean is that these products are all doing exactly the same things.When you look in the area of supplements, you will find every company offering a slight diversity of the same product. When you look at home care products, you certainly will see exactly the some process. What if you can find a completely new evolution of healing products which are all formulated to synergistically work with the complete natural healing process of the body as one unit, as opposed to the sad situation of trying to heal every cell, organ, and system of the body?What if you can find a company which is ethical enough to explain to the masses that once the body is in a state of homeostasis, the body will always do the natural job it is created to do which is to constant heal itself every second of the day. Could something like this cause you to join an army of the new self care evolution?3: The final critical factor you must be aware off is that you get started with a company or a leader who really understands the dynamics of how to build a long term exploding residual income by using a simple system of duplication which every one can easily replicate. A system which is not just for the internet guru, but for everyone who really desires to enhance their financial position.As a veteran in this home base business industry, I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly, and I know that to become successful in any home base business opportunity, you must do your due diligence and find the right company with in demand products which are unique, effective and well priced.

Commercial Property Managers – Why They Have No Time and Work So Hard

If you are reading this, you are likely to be a commercial property manager or you know one; either way the question has hit the spot and you understand what I am saying.

It is a fact, many if not all commercial property managers have very little time to spare in their average working day. They are the hardest working of most commercial real estate people because they have to control and produce the property performance for the landlord; it’s the central part of their job. That takes time, effort and commitment.

Property management is not like selling or leasing a property where you can move across a number of projects and keep all of them moving in some form or another. In property management you have to stick with some very complex issues that can take days if not weeks to resolve. You can manage some really difficult properties with real challenges.

Add to this fact the tasks that each property presents every day with tenants, landlords, maintenance, and leasing, you have some real work to do. It is unrelenting and consistent. It does not go away. That is why you have no time to spare.

Given all of this observation, it should now be said that good commercial and retail property managers are some of the most qualified professionals in the industry. They generally know far more about property performance, tenant mix, and lease optimisation than sales and leasing people. They know how to make a property work.

To give you some idea of what I am saying here, the role of a commercial or retail manager would typically involve many things including:

Lease management
Lease optimisation
Vacancy management
Fit out approvals and controls
Refurbishment and renovations
Lease negotiations
Tenant mix strategy and analysis
Maintenance management and planning
Building income and expenditure budgets
Risk management
Due Diligence practices and systems
Energy management
Retail trade analysis and customer sales strategy
Landlord reporting and communications
So this list goes on. You can see why a property manager is really the central part of the property performance equation. A landlord needs a good property manager to help them with a complex property.

It is interesting to note that the inexperienced landlords of this world will consider outsourcing property management requirements to the cheapest real estate agency or property manager. Considering that these landlords are putting their income and expenditure in the hands of potentially one inexperienced person or group, and that person may have little real knowledge or relevance to the future of the property, the risk of damage to the property performance is very real.

So the message here is for all experienced and qualified property managers to ask for a reasonable and relevant fee for the services offered. Stay firm on your fees; those landlords seeking and taking discounts from other agents will soon realise the error of their ways and will likely come back to you when the property is financially derailed and the vacancies are rising.

When you are asked to fix a problem in a previously poorly managed property, charge a solid and fair fee for the issues involved. You are the professional and your services are worth good money. Professional commercial and retail property management is not an experiment for the feint hearted.

A Question on Foreclosure Squatters and Real Estate Law That No One is Addressing

If someone owns a piece of property and allows unabated trespassing across the property for long periods of time, and then arbitrarily starts enforcing their property rights, real estate law tells them they may not have the rights to do this, even if they own the property. Currently, we have a new type of trespassing that is absolutely out of control – Foreclosure Squatting.

This is where someone, could even be a homeless person moves into an empty property and just starts living there. After the subprime lending debacle the number of foreclosed homes has risen by nearly 3500%. With all these home vacated, it is prime pickings for someone moving in. Worse, many of the banks that own these properties have let them go, and have not even been out to see if anyone has moved in illegally.

Even if they do inspect the property, getting a squatter to leave is not as easy as it seems. Now many enforcement agencies will not even serve foreclosure demands to remove people from a property. Worse, the note holders who’ve bought the mortgages and own the homes may not even be in the United States.

If a foreclosed empty home becomes a de facto residence for the homeless, a habitat for wildlife, an alternative parking lot for the neighborhood, a short-cut to the next block or community center for the locals, then once it’s sold these groups could indeed sue to maintain their new rights. Especially after many years of unabated activity in the empty homes. Think on this.

How To Succeed At Online Product Creation The Easy Way

Product creation could be a frightening subject for a lot of Internet marketers to face. Some folks who get in the game with the intention of making a full time income are completely ignorant as to how an online business operates. One of the most profitable ways to create online cash is by creating a product that others are happy to pay for.

Product creation is legitimate method of generating money through internet marketing but many entrepreneurs get it wrong. They start by imitating their Internet marketing gurus by creating information products on Internet marketing in hopes of getting rich the way their heroes did. The problem is that they usually don’t know what they are doing and enter a highly competitive niche with very little marketing experience or connections.

Here are a few tips for effective product creation that may help you get on the right track:
Start by finding a profitable niche with low to moderate competition. If you conduct some rudimentary market research and keyword research, you’ll find many opportunities in areas that will surprise you. Amazon and eBay are two great places to brainstorm for product ideas.

Developing Your Product does not have to be a difficult project. You can find experts in the right field for your niche and pay them to write the material while an artist designs the packaging and website or blog. You can outsource the entire product creation part of the project after you conduct the research and testing to ensure profitability.

Sales and marketing strategies should be created while developing the product and learning about the market. Some experienced marketers use pay per click to drive traffic to their offer page; some folks outsource the entire marketing campaign to affiliates through ClickBank or other affiliate programs.

Product creation does not need to be hard, particularly when the merchandise is electronic. E-books, videos, audio and multi-media products sell very well. They are distributed immediately to customers electronically. Once you have a good feel for a niche market, try to service your customers with associated products and upgrades. If you want to earn money online through product creation, you must understand supply and demand. The majority of new online marketers fail miserably because they go after highly competitive markets or forget to research their chosen niche properly. You have to create your products according to the needs, wants and desires of the prospective customers.