Opinion: Why the Best Time to Take the SAT is This May

first_imgEVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyCitizen Service CenterPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes For some students, especially those who will be the first in their families to go to college, the choice is simple. The SAT is the only test. It’s the test students hear about and the test students think they “need to take to go to college.” Some students, however, know that the choice isn’t that simple. The choice is between the ACT and the SAT — a choice not between content but performance. Essentially the choice is made predicated on which test will yield the best score.It’s no secret that the SAT has been losing “favor,” and it’s no surprise that the New SAT resembles the ACT — its only competitor. The SAT has presumably shed its old identity as a test that is trying to trick students and now emerges as a test that is a re-interpretation of the ACT.I have an inkling that many parents will steer their students away from the New SAT simply because they don’t know what to expect. But I argue that now is the best time to take the SAT. For the sake of full disclosure, I teach College Access Plan’s (CAP’s) free after school SAT class at four PUSD high schools. We teach the SAT not because we are in cahoots with College Board; we teach it to meet community need. Many of the students we strive to serve have never heard of the ACT and neither have their parents. Around these parts, you only know of the ACT if you have institutional knowledge passed along to you. This is the West Coast after all.The reason why I argue that now is the best time to take the SAT is because it is new. Now is as fair as the SAT is going to get. Not as many people have seen the test. Not as many people have been able to dissect it, extrapolate from it, or learn from it. Socioeconomic, cultural, and institutional disparities will never be eradicated from testing, and, let’s face it, test prep is one of those things that puts students at an advantage or disadvantage. However, with the limited number of tests out in the ether and with Khan Academy videos available to those with internet and computer access, the field is, as far as I can see, as even as it gets.Also, both the ACT and SAT are graded on a scale adjusted to ensure that different versions of the test are comparable. Now is when there is no comparable version for the New SAT to be measured against. Students will be compared against their testing cohort. The ACT, however, needs no adjustment. It is the same test it has always been, and scores this May will be scaled to previous tests. For the ACT, now is just as good a time as any other time to take the test, just as it has always been. This, of course, greatly advantages students who have the ability to invest the time and resources — sometimes over many years — to prepare for this one test.The reality is that two historically ACT states, Illinois and Michigan, have recently inked contracts with College Board to replace the ACT and take the SAT state-wide. Many in my industry believe that the SAT is going the way of the dodo, but College Board’s aggressive attack on the ACT — and subsequent success — indicates that the death of the SAT may be greatly exaggerated.If I had it my way in the current state of college admissions, all students would have the time, support, and resources to take both tests and determine which score to submit to schools based on whichever test plays to each of their individual strengths. In fact, through its partnerships with both CAP and Princeton Review, PUSD provides students this unique opportunity by offering free classes on the ACT and the SAT. I’m not arguing that one test is better than the other. What I am arguing is that now is not the time to write off the SAT. There is a brief window where it will be advantageous to the student to take the SAT, not because of a change in format or content, but because of change itself. Being forced to adjust usually equalizes things a bit.College Access Plan’s free SAT courses are offered at Muir, Pasadena, Marshall Fundamental, and Blair high schools starting February 22nd. Visit www.collegeaccessplan.org for details.About the AuthorJoanne Do is the Director of Strategic Partnerships and Engagement at College Access Plan, a nonprofit organization that partners with the Pasadena Unified School District and community organizations to provide middle school, high school, and college students with the tools they need to identify and fulfill their best-fit postsecondary dreams. She is an avid reader and a runner who is obsessed with the intricacies of cultural capital. Community News Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Top of the News Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Subscribe Community News HerbeautyStop Eating Read Meat (Before It’s Too Late)HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyCostume That Makes Actresses Beneath Practically UnrecognizableHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty10 Sweet Things Every Guy Wants To Hear From The Woman He LovesHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyNow She’s 19 – Look At Her Transformation! Incredible!HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty9 Tips For Dating As A Single DadHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyThe Real Truth About The Pain Caused By MicrobladingHerbeautyHerbeauty Make a commentcenter_img 2 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday More Cool Stuff First Heatwave Expected Next Week Business News Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  Opinion & Columnists Opinion: Why the Best Time to Take the SAT is This May By JOANNE DO, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Engagement at College Access Plan Published on Tuesday, February 16, 2016 | 11:53 am Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadenalast_img read more

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Mexican Navy, Leading the Way in Information Exchange

first_imgBy Geraldine Cook, Diálogo November 12, 2018 Admiral Luis Gerardo Alcalá Ferráez, chief of the Mexican Navy General Staff, believes that experience gained in recent years demonstrates the importance of international cooperation and coordinated work, in addition to the trust among partner nations to counter transnational criminal organizations. Adm. Alcalá participated in the XVIII Inter-American Naval Conference (IANC) in Cartagena, Colombia, July 23-26, 2018. Adm. Alcalá spoke with Diálogo about his participation at IANC, international cooperation, and the Mexican Navy’s most notable technological projects, among other topics. Diálogo: How important is Mexico’s participation at IANC? Admiral Luis Gerardo Alcalá Ferráez, chief of the Mexican Navy General Staff: IANC is one of the most important forums to exchange opinions and experiences in the maritime field with the commanders of all the navies of the Americas. To be part of this forum matters to Mexico, mainly because maritime hemispheric interests are common, but also to take part in the important decisions made at this event. As part of the North American bloc with diverse cooperation mechanisms for security and as a Latin American nation, Mexico becomes an important north-south bridge to facilitate agreements between IANC participants. Diálogo: The conference’s main topic was the responsibility of the region’s navies to counter narcotrafficking and related crimes. Why is it important for naval forces to get together to counter these challenges? Adm. Alcalá: The main role of the armed forces is to defend sovereignty and the national territory. When it comes to narcotrafficking, which transports great amounts of drugs and carries out illegal activities at sea, experience shows that we can only reduce and interdict maritime areas to prevent narcotraffickers from viewing the sea as an attractive option to smuggle their cargo through international cooperation. A common understanding of issues helps identify opportunities to improve future coordination. Diálogo: How does the Navy operate jointly with other national forces to counter these challenges? Adm. Alcalá: Mexico is privileged to coordinate with authorities of the three government branches to guarantee the rule of law at sea and national coastal areas. We have many cooperation agreements, but information exchange is the area where we advanced the most. We created networks and built trust among countries to exchange operable information that allows the navies to, for example, follow and capture a suspicious vessel navigating anywhere in the hemisphere by making that information operational. We also conduct training exchanges and personnel instruction to obtain and provide other nations and partner nation forces with the best practices we earned through experience. Diálogo: What’s the Mexican Navy’s contribution to naval forces of the region in the fight against narcotrafficking? Adm. Alcalá: A strong willingness to work and cooperate. We provide information and training, but what’s really worth mentioning is the strong willingness and conviction that coordinated action is our only means to find a more effective and efficient response to disrupt or minimize illicit activities of any kind at sea. Narcotrafficking is rampant, and only a naval presence can prevent it it, as well as piracy and excessive pollution, among other issues. A coordinated navy presence with information exchanges and interoperability will make it possible to dissuade people who want to use the sea for illegal purposes. Diálogo: In the last six years, the Mexican Navy developed more than 50 technological projects. What are your institution’s most relevant advances? Adm. Alcalá: The command and control system and the system of technical data linkage are important to me. We have some other specific projects, such as a fire control system to reduce our dependency on other countries, and an air-surveillance radar. Diálogo: What projects enable the Mexican Navy to contribute to the fight against narcotrafficking cartels? Adm. Alcalá: The command and control and air surveillance systems integrated to the monitoring system allow us to not only operate but also create an operational panorama, so all the units in the area of operations also have access to information. For example, generating a common image from knowing the targets other units detect allows units to have situational awareness, while decision makers on the ground receive the information to conduct operations with more precision, because it’s perfectly clear to us what unit should be sent, where, and when. Diálogo: Cooperation between the naval forces of Mexico and Guatemala is carried out through the Border Area Board of Military Commanders of both countries. How does it work? Adm. Alcalá: Surveillance is a shared responsibility, and we want to ensure that those who cross the border do so for legal purposes. That’s how the idea of the board of commanders came out. There is a high-level annual meeting to evaluate the border situation and consolidate operational strategies at the conceptual level. The border commanders meeting is held at least three times a year in one of the two countries, and military commanders of the region with some observers from general staffs take part in planning the time and place for parallel operations, which are carried out in a coordinated way. Diálogo: What kind of joint and combined operations does the Mexican Navy carry out with the United States to counter the activities of transnational criminal organizations? Adm. Alcalá: U.S. cooperation is very important. The United States helps with resources and equipment to increase capabilities, and with deep respect for our sovereignty and laws. With the Mérida Initiative, a plan was set out for both nations to share responsibility. The list of particular aspects is long; there are operations of maritime interdiction, information exchange, technological support, training, and a deep respect for sovereignty—U.S. personnel does not participate in our operations; they do it outside the jurisdiction area with their units beyond 200 nautical miles, which enables us to expand the coverage area. Diálogo: What kind of initiatives does the Mexican Navy promote to strengthen the inclusion of women and equality? Adm. Alcalá: At the Navy, we are convinced that women should participate under equal conditions. It’s not a slogan. Some time ago, it was said but not done; women participated in parades with weapons they could not use. Today, policies are established and enforced, by which women are recognized as equal. We have policies to avoid sexual harassment and gender discrimination. Our only demand is that they demonstrate their abilities. Our training schools are open to women; we have the first crews in our line and patrol ships, all graduates of the Military Naval School. There are women pilots, women in the marines, in operations against narcotrafficking, and in traditional corps such as medics and nurses, where they’ve been for a long time and excelled.last_img read more

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Current trends in tourism to pay attention to

first_imgThe evolution of intermediary platforms, investment in foreign markets with a real need and in a new wave of construction of hotels and accommodation units and the offer of a comprehensive arrangement are the characteristics of the tourism sector of the future.Richard Clarke, senior analyst at Bernstein Asset Management in London, for Booking.com he proposed four current trends in tourism, to which the world should pay more attention.The first of the Fantastic Four refers to travel brokerage platforms such as Online Travel Agents (OTA) or an airline Ryanair. Intermediary platforms are part of the world of the future, so it should come as no surprise that they have been the most attractive location for investment in recent years. Still, Clarke warns that the aforementioned platforms will have to grow out of the role of a purely travel intermediary. For example, hotel chains such as the Hilton and Marriott, indigenous hotel industry and travel agencies such as Tui i Thomas Cook with the offer of tourist arrangements in the last six to nine months they have done excellently. If they want to survive in the near future, intermediary platforms must build unique content. Clarke at this point proposes an exclusive brokerage by which the given platform would be the only broker of the hotel outside its domestic market.The next trend will concern one exceptional economic opportunity. Namely, it is about investments in the development of tourism within the country, which is predicted to attract approximately 2025 billion dollars of investments by 400. Consequently, and by fairly simple logic, China has imposed itself as the most generous investment location. Also, an incredibly mobile and wealthy middle class has formed in China, a market whose needs open up numerous opportunities in the hospitality sector. At the same time, there is a shortage of hotels and similar accommodation units in the Asian market, while the popularity of Western brands such as Marriott, Hilton, Accor i IHG growing. The four listed hotel giants currently account for 12% of the total offer of accommodation units, while with the implementation of the planned expansion, this percentage will increase to 64%.The third trend is closely related to the previous one, ie to the wave of opening new hotels in the period of the post-financial crisis. Clarke points out that in the United States, the rate of opening new accommodation in 2008 and 2009 was only 2%, while by 2012 it had fallen enormously to 0.5%. Globally, the low rate of opening new hotels has led to increased demand for existing ones and ensured their safe passage through the crisis, ignoring even falling prices. This is now a thing of the past, Clarke concluded, because with the improvement of the financial picture, new players are entering the market competition – the most obvious phenomenon outside Europe, but it is important to point out that the number of emerging hotels on the continent is twice as high as last year.Finally, Clarke discusses travel arrangements, that is, are they remnants of some ancient past or are they rising again from the fire? He cites examples of Accor expressing interest in the airline Air France. Hotel giant Marriott is continuously investing in travel organizations, and some online travel agencies already have diversified content on offer. Simply everyone wants to be a part of the tourist story and for them to be the place where travelers start their adventure. A great example of such a business is Tui which owns its own airline, hotels, cruisers, transfer services and the like which makes its arrangement comprehensive and the journey much easier as everything needed for its implementation is in one place.Tui’s strong market position is a kind of inspiration to other travel agencies and travel organizations, as well as an indicator of the path the market has taken. This is fully in line with the spirit of the times, Clarke explains, because in a period of enduring anxiety and chronic lack of time, arrangements covering all aspects of travel infuse clients with a security to which they gladly return.last_img read more

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USC men’s basketball: Trojans’ comeback thwarted by high-powered Oregon offense

first_imgA late comeback attempt from USC was shut down by No. 5 Oregon Saturday night, as the Ducks topped the Trojans by a score of 81-70 at the Galen Center.With 2:40 remaining in regulation, junior guard Elijah Stewart knocked down a 3-point shot that pulled the Trojans within three points of the Ducks.Oregon responded by closing the game out on a 10-2 run over the final two minutes of regulation to clinch its 14th consecutive victory against USC. The Trojans have dropped their last seven games against the Ducks in Los Angeles, and they haven’t beat Oregon at home since the 2009 season. The Trojans finished the game by missing their last four shot attempts in the contest; USC made no field goals over the final 2:40 of regulation.“That was a tough game. We played hard, but not well enough to win,” head coach Andy Enfield said. “Our guards were off tonight in their decision making and shooting. To beat a top-five team in the country, you have to play better.”Poor shooting from the field was a struggle for USC all night Saturday. The Trojans finished the game shooting 22-for-59 (37.3 percent).USC’s shooting woes may have been most evident from beyond the 3-point line. In the first half, USC shot 2-of-15 (13.3 percent) from beyond the arc. Overall, the Trojans shot 6-for-27 (22.2 percent) from distance.“When you’re 6-for-27 from three and a lot were wide open and you miss three dunks, it’s hard to beat a team like this,” Enfield said.A layup from sophomore forward Bennie Boatwright gave USC its largest lead of the night against Oregon, as the Trojans led 49-46 with just over 13 minutes remaining.“Tonight shows our growth. It shows we can play with anybody,” said freshman guard De’Anthony Melton, who finished with nine points and two steals Saturday. “We need to learn how to close out games.”As was the case for many USC shooters Saturday night, Boatwright had his share of struggles from the field. Boatwright finished the game shooting 3-of-15 (20 percent), but he did hit all eight of his free throws to finish with 15 points against Oregon.Leading the way for the Trojans was sophomore forward Chimezie Metu, who recorded a team-high 16 points Saturday. Metu finished 6-of-8 from the field while reeling in four rebounds and dishing three assists.“We have to protect the ball. We had too many turnovers,” said Stewart, who totaled 15 points on 5-of-10 shooting.USC committed a total of 16 turnovers against the Ducks after averaging 11.1 turnovers per game entering Saturday. Oregon capitalized on Trojan mistakes, as the Ducks outscored USC in points off turnovers, 23-12.Oregon junior forward Dillon Brooks finished with a game-high 21 points on 8-of-14 shooting. Brooks was 3-of-5 shooting from deep against the Trojans.Brooks finished as the game’s leading scorer despite fouling out with 3:28 remaining in regulation.Oregon sophomore guard Tyler Dorsey scored 19 points (6-of-13 shooting) and recorded five rebounds. Ducks junior forward Jordan Bell finished with a game-high 14 rebounds; he recorded a double-double as he also scored 12 points Saturday.Overall, Oregon edged USC on the glass by a margin of 39-34.With the loss, the Trojans were unable to avenge their 84-61 loss to the Ducks earlier this season on Dec. 30. USC has never upset an opponent ranked in the top five nationally at the Galen Center.Saturday’s loss also put an end to the Trojan’s five-game winning streak in Pac-12 play.USC will look to rebound in conference play as it travels to Pauley Pavilion on Saturday to take on No. 10 UCLA. The Trojans will be looking for a big upset of a top 10-ranked opponent and its fifth consecutive victory over the Bruins.last_img read more

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