Tag Archives: Missouri Western State University

Why Can’t I Find a Job? Why do I want to do Freelance Writing?

I have been unemployed for seven months now and I can’t seem to find a job. Now, before you tell me to just go get a job I do have a little something I would like you to take a look at.

That is how I feel almost every day. Sure, I could go work at Best Buy, Walmart, or some fast food joint, but that’s not what I went to college for. Apparently, I just went to college to be 30 grand in debt because that expensive ass piece of paper sure as hell isn’t finding me any work.

I’ll put up a little bit of my resume for you to take a look at. I have a Bachelor’s in Technical Communications and a part of that goes like this:

I can proofread and edit documents, create how-to manuals, user guides, SOPs, online help, design specifications, project plans, usability studies, white papers, and training materials and videos (video/audio editing); I wrote several front page stories for the Griffon News. I have experience with both the Adobe Suite and Microsoft Office programs along with a few other random programs; I have the ability to learn new computer software programs at a quick pace.

That’s just a small part of my college experience. I also have a Minor in Biology. That part of the resume goes a bit like this:

I can execute and complete assignments through validated procedures within Quality Compliance guidelines; I have used microscopes and performed bio-analytical methods, such as, immunological, in vivo, microbiological, molecular biological, or virological tests. I have been published in an article written by the Center for Disease Control when I helped them collect field data concerning the Heartland Virus; I have used GPS/GIS data location technology in the tracking of ticks, bats, and the endangered Western Prairie Ridge Orchid.

Now, to me, that sounds pretty damn bad ass! I mean, why in (insert person/deity here in plural form) name would someone not want to hire a guy with this kind of experience? If I were me, at some fancy company in a CEO position, looking at my resume I would be like, “Damn, we need this guy here.”

It’s about to get deeper; I have even more college experience. I have an Associate’s Degree in Theatre Arts. I even put experience I gained from there on my resume and it reads as follows:

Supervise the cast and crew to make sure they had everything they needed to do their acting jobs. I was responsible for the lighting and all other technical details of the staged play; I trained new students the skills needed to be a Stage Manager. I also wrote two plays that were successfully produced and put on stage.

With all this experience, why am I not finding a job? It’s not like I’m not trying. I have turned in hundreds of resumes. Here are a few of the places I have applied or types of careers I have applied for:

  • Altec (Many times)
  • NPG Multimedia (Many times)
  • Accounts Pay Admin
  • Border
  • Copy Editor
  • DuPont
  • Environmental/Public Works and Transportation
  • Executive Leadership Solutions
  • Family Guidence
  • FEMA
  • Academic Teacher
  • All Medical
  • American Angus
  • American Water
  • Hillyard
  • Boehringer Ingelheim (Many many times)
  • Cameron Mutual Insurance
  • CPA Firm
  • Degree Auditor for Missouri Western
  • Edward Jones
  • EMW Industrial
  • University of Missouri Extension
  • Foley
  • GPS Impact
  • Grain
  • Healthcare Services Group
  • Herzog
  • Johnson Controls
  • Kelly Lab Tech
  • Allied Arts Council
  • Mitchell Park
  • Mosaic (Many many times)
  • St. Joe News Press (Many times)
  • Nabisco
  • Nestle
  • Transwest
  • UGL Unicco
  • United Suppliers
  • J House
  • KQTV
  • Silgan
  • Test Administrator for the Department of the Army
  • WellCare

That’s not even half of the things I have applied for. I honestly didn’t intend on the list to be that long, but once I got started it was hard to stop. You can guarantee I’m going to tag all those places in this post.

After all of the frustration in months of trying to find work and getting rejection letter after rejection letter I finally decided I will just work for myself and be my own boss. How though? What should I do?

At first, I thought, “Hey, I could do YouTube videos!” People get paid doing YouTube videos. People even make a living off of it. Plus, I’m pretty good at making videos. I know I have run this one in the dirt by showing it off over and over, but it’s really the only one I have left after I got out of college. So, check out my expertise:

The only problem with this idea is that I don’t have a camera or access to the Adobe suite to edit my videos. I thought about doing some type of website crowdfunding thing, but then it happened. The entire universe came crashing down on YouTube. A lot of advertisers started pulling their ads and stopped paying YouTube because the advertisers didn’t want their ads playing on controversial videos.

There has been a big reaction on this. Some of my favorite YouTubers have actually slowed down or stopped making videos because there isn’t much money in it now. Some YouTubers have even tried to change things up to attract more advertisers. Like this one for example:

YouTube may not be the best answer right now. My next idea was to do the Freelance Writer bit. I feel as though I am getting very close to landing my first paying Freelance gig, but I’m not quite there yet.

As of today, this is unfortunately the last day I have access to a computer and internet for a long while. I don’t have a computer at the house and I live so far out in the country it’s going to cost me $400 to $500 just to get anyone to hook up the internet at my house. *HINT*HINT*WINK*WINK*SEND*ME*MONEY*WINK*HINT*

 

 

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Heartland Virus

In no way should this post be taken as scientific fact. This post in no way reflects the views of the faculty and staff located at neither Missouri Western State University (MWSU) nor the Center for Disease Control (CDC).

Ticks are little creepy crawlers that some may or may not be familiar with. Those familiar with ticks may be afraid of them or they may not be. Regardless of what is felt about ticks, they have been a hot topic the last few years among the scientific community.

A new virus has been found that seems to be transmitted by these creatures. The virus in question here is called the Heartland Virus. This virus received the name it did because of where it was discovered. Dr. Scott Folk at Heartland Hospital in St. Joseph Missouri played a large part in helping to name the new virus.

There is not a lot that can be said of this virus at this time because there is not a lot of evidence or proof to back a significant amount of research. With that said, there is no need for people to start panicking and locking themselves in their house while keeping their pets outside.

What is known is that this virus has affected two men in Northwest Missouri. It has been determined that the virus was passed to these men through a tick. Ticks play host to a variety of potentially harmful pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, protozoa, and helminths (worm parasites).

It is assumed that the Heartland Virus will not be passed by a bite from a tick alone.  The tick would have to remain attached for several days before the tick’s blood and saliva would transfer pathogens to a host. Even then, effects are assumed to not be felt immediately.

Symptoms appear to be flu-like symptoms including headache, fatigue, fever, diarrhea, thrombocytopenia and leukopenia. The two men who were hospitalized were released after approximately 10 days.

In hopes of finding answers for this new virus, the CDC received help from faculty and students at MWSU. Over the course of two summers so far, MWSU faculty and students have assisted the CDC in collecting ticks to aid in research.

While there has been one scientific research paper produced in a journal, there are still questions that remain. To raise awareness on where ticks are located, there was a short study done by Dr. David Ashley and fellow students at MWSU.

Tick collection was conducted on July 8, 2013 on private property near Amazonia, Missouri. Four different microhabitats were chosen to compare.  These included:

  • An area near a pond
  • A fence line of a wooded lot at the top of a hill
  • A forested area on a hill crest
  • A forested area on the slope of a hill

Within each location, two separate collection transects (areas) were sampled. The two transects were “off trail” and “on trail,” with a total of eight separate established areas. Three traps were placed in each section for a total of 24 traps. Three flagging areas were conducted at each site adding up to a total of 24 flag collections.

The traps consisted of plastic food containers with dry ice contained within. There were holes inserted into these plastic containers to allow dry ice vapors to escape as it melted. Dry ice lets off carbon dioxide (CO2), which is what attracts ticks. The plastic food containers were placed on small white sheets of cloth making the collection of the ticks much easier.

Ticks feed by going “questing.” This consists of the ticks sitting on leaves reaching out with their legs waiting to see a host pass by that emits CO2.

In addition, while the traps were attracting specimens, separate samples were collected by flagging, a method where a sheet of cloth is attached to a wooden rod which is passed over foliage. Ticks for some reason cling right onto these sheets of cloth.

It was assumed that there would be more ticks located at the area by the pond. With all of the animals that would go to this water source to quench their thirst this should have been the prime place in collecting hundreds if not thousands of ticks.

It turns out that there really was no significant difference in where ticks were located. In short, ticks are everywhere. When a person goes out into the woods or even a park area, it is a very wise idea to check over all areas of skin for ticks.

When removing a tick, it is better to pull one off with a pair of tweezers or forceps rather than fingers. Using fingers may end up squeezing contaminated blood into a host.

Doris Kearns Goodwin entertains Missouri Western State University

Doris Kearns Goodwin

Missouri Western State University held the 20th Annual R. Dan Boulware Convocation on Critical Issues on October 22, 2013. This is an event MWSU holds every year to invite major influential people of that time to speak to the public on issues that are of concern to both the speaker and hopefully the audience. A few of the last speakers to attend are people such as Colin Powell, Steve Forbes, Newt Gingrich, and Robert F. Kennedy Jr

The guest of honor this time around was Doris Kearns Goodwin. Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author is considered to be one of the most famed presidential historians of our time.

goodwin book on lincoln

Goodwin’s Book Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, has been used in part as inspiration to help Steven Spielberg create his latest movie “Lincoln.”

The Looney Complex at MWSU seated a full house as people listened to the stories Goodwin told of past presidents. One such story she told at MWSU was also on an episode of “The Colbert Report.” The clip can be played from that episode right here.

steven colbert

“That very same story is told in the movie,” Goodwin said speaking of the “Lincoln” movie. Laughter was not an uncommonly heard thing during her time speaking at MWSU, as she seems to be fairly talented at telling stories of histories past presidents. This may be one reason why Spielberg had her on the set during the filming of his movie, for both accurate and entertaining stories.

Unfortunately, the sound quality at this event was not all that spectacular making it difficult to understand a lot of what was said. This is a sad case for such a prominent person. The bits and pieces that were able to be heard clearly did get a positive response, but at the same time there was much more that was not understood because of the sound being echoed and bounced back and forth between the walls.

For the most part, aside from the sound quality, the experience seemed to be enjoyed by most. The only thing that could have made this event more popular and entertaining for MWSU is if they would have been able to get Spielberg, Goodwin, and Tony Kushner, the screenplay writer, to discuss the process it took to make the movie.

spielberg_goodwin_kushner_bio

If these three were to get together again it may have just turned out a lot like a previous interview they had done, but it still would have been entertaining nonetheless. In case there is curiosity as to what was said while the three were together a video has been provided.

Fortunately for Goodwin, she was able to finish out her speech. At last year’s Convocation when T. Boone Pickens jr. spoke about energy consumption the power ironically went out towards the end of his speech.

It will be interesting to see where life takes Goodwin in the future after such national recognition. There is an ongoing countdown on her webpage Doris Kearns Goodwin counting down to her newest work in progress “The Bully Pulpit.”

Right now the countdown is at 12 days, 6 hours, and 25 minutes. Only time will tell if this published piece be as successful.

With the way Goodwin turned boring history lessons to life through humor during this Convocation at MWSU and the new movie “Lincoln”  it would be no suprise if the next book is a success.