Google to HBCU for the win!

THIS is how you change the game… go straight to the source. #STEM #HBCU #ComputerScience #BlackSoftwareEngineer <== šŸ™‹šŸ½šŸ™‹šŸ½šŸ™‹šŸ½

Read more about Google and Howard’s partnershipĀ here. Here’s to hoping this business-to-hbcu trend continues and my Alma Mater is next in line…. šŸ¤”

 

Yara Shahidi

Yara Shahidi plays Zoey on ABC’s Black-ish. She’s only 16 years old and already brands herself as a budding humanitarian andĀ activist (her words). I recently ran across Yara’sĀ work onĀ Tracee Ellis Ross’s Instagram page. TraceeĀ wrote, šŸ™ŒšŸ¾šŸ™ŒšŸ¾šŸ™ŒšŸ¾I don’t remember being this ‘woke’ or this clear when I was her age, but intelligent, conscious young women like my TV daughter @YaraShahidi give me so much hope for the future!Ā After reading Tracee’s statement, I was intrigued so I watched the short video of Yara on Tracee’s Instagram page before finding and listening to herĀ full speechĀ on YouTube.

2-minute video snippet.Ā Here are two of my favorite quotes from Yara’s speech atĀ the 2016 Conference on Volunteering and Service (blog post):

  • Children are the anomaly if they succeed, the expectation if they fail.

  • I’m cool plus I’m black which is cool so I win twice āœŒšŸ½ļø

Click the image below for more pics of Yara at the BET Awards.

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Meat Quality & Health

This is a super random post about meat andĀ health – charge it to me almost recovering from a sinus infection/cold… things still aren’t quite working the way they should.

7_0I am super picky about where I buy meats: chicken, fish, beef, pork, etc. While some people think Whole Foods is a rip-off, I absolutely do not want to buy my meat from any other place. Trust me, I’ve tried being more “cost conscience” by shopping at “normal” grocery stores like Kroger, Publix, Target and Wal-Mart. In the end, I always regret my decision which manifests at the exact momentĀ I’m ready to cook –Ā too much fat or a bad cut of meat always disguised by cleverĀ packaging. I do not like fat on my meat, any meat! And frozen meats/meals? Forget it! If I’m cooking, 95% of the time there will be no processed foods, especially meat!

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified processed meat as a carcinogen, something that causes cancer.

Processed meat includes hot dogs (never), ham (only from the Honey Baked store at Thanksgiving & Christmas), bacon (sometimes), sausage (very very rarely, it’s never been my preference), and some deli meats (never). It refers to meat that has been treated in some way to preserve or flavor it. Processes include salting, curing, fermenting, and smoking. Red meat includes beef (filets only! clean cuts with trimmed/no fat), pork (probably too much, love pulled pork!), lamb (gag), and goat (double gag). (American Cancer Society). You can also check this BBC news article for more information on this. It’s a proven fact.

foodBeing sick always makes you re-evaluate your health. Let’s be honest: being sickĀ sucks and all you think about is how you’re going to change your life (style) once you get well so you don’t get sick again.Ā It’s an inconvenience and often can be painful. When you’re sick you have plenty of time to explore this concept in your mind and on the Internet. #guilty Out of sickenssĀ comes the realization that we need to take better care of ourselves and it starts with food which can be medicine or poison. While I was sick I actually bought a book, It Starts with Food. Yes, this actually happened!Ā There’s also aĀ superĀ amazing podcast by The Minimalists,Ā Health (link)Ā thatĀ I listen to it frequently. Yes, I know you can’t control all variables; but, we have to start somewhere! And sometimes over and over again.

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When I purchase meats at Whole Foods I can see exactly what I am buying. I see the cut and I know the quality. Sure, it costs a bit more (Whole Foods is often known as Whole Paycheck); but, every time I make a purchase I have zero regrets and I get to enjoy and quality healthy meal. You know what they say about health: pay now or pay later!Ā I’d rather not take that risk. Here is Whole Food’s policy on meat quality standards:

  • Animals must not receive antibiotics, ever.
  • No animal by-products are allowed in feed, including feather meal or rendered fat.
  • Animals raised for meat must not receive added hormones. (Federal regulations prohibit the use of hormones when raising pigs, poultry, bison, goats, or rabbits.
  • For ruminants, time in a feedlot cannot be more than one-third of the animalā€™s life.
  • No crates, cages or tethers are permitted.Ā  This includes, but is not limited to:
    • Gestation crates and farrowing stalls for sows
    • Individual hutches or tethers for veal calves
  • Cattle, pigs, chickens and turkeys sold in our fresh meat counter must be certified to theĀ Global Animal Partnership 5-StepĀ® Animal Welfare Rating.

New Education Bill

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(Surprisingly) Congress passed a new education bill last week. Forget “No Child Left Behind” rolled to in 2001Ā and embrace “Every Student Succeeds Act“. So what are the changes?

  • Testing will continue, but STATES – not the U.S. government – will now decide how to use the results in evaluating teachers and schools.Ā The new law encourages states to limit the time students spend on testing, and it will diminish the high stakes for underperforming schools.(Associated Press)
  • Computer Science has been included in the definition of well-rounded education subjects. Its inclusion, for example, will allow computer science educators the same level of access to professional development opportunities as teachers in other subject areas such as science and math. (Wall Street Journal)

(see also The Case for Computer Science)

These are the two main points I saw as I scanned multiple news outlets’ headlines – there may be more. You can read the full detailsĀ here (it’s only 1,068 pages). #HappyReading

The World in 2016

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(blogging while sick) Each year The Economist produces its “The World” series, a publication designed to focus on themes, trends and influential people/events forĀ the upcoming year. If you never really spend time thinking about international policies, this is a good opportunity to get some perspective for the new year (before it arrives).

You ca buy the magazine in most stores, read it on the web or download for the first time The World in 2016 app (iOS, Android). The app is FREE. I’ve also included a short vide below from The Economist’s YouTube channel. So go ahead, grab a copy and head to a coffee shop. Sit down for an hour and #HappyReading. I will be doing just that (as soon as I get well).