January 28, 2021

Peace Corps veteran reflects on time in Thailand

first_imgIn 1961, the senior class of St. Francis Xavier University sat in their gaps and gowns and listened to President John F. Kennedy state he was going to start an organization that would send young volunteers overseas to help other people.  Roger Parent, author of the newly released “The Making of a Peace Corps Volunteer: From Maine to Thailand”, was among the graduates that day, and said he was incredibly struck by President Kennedy’s new proposal. On Thursday, Parent held a book-signing in the Hammes Notre Dame Bookstore to promote his new book.  “I thought to myself, ‘Hey, I want to do that,’” Parent said. “So I wrote President Kennedy a letter right away and I said I want to be a part of this thing that you have started. Well, lo and behold, six months later I was invited to be a part of the Peace Corps in Thailand.”  Parent said he was a part of the first group of Peace Corps volunteers who were sent to Thailand in 1961. The group volunteered until 1963, he said.  Parent said is originally from French-Speaking Lille, Maine where he learned English as a second language.  “They probably thought that [attending college] in a foreign country would be an asset,” Parent said. “But what I don’t think they understood is that I grew up a couple thousand yards from the Canadian boarder.”  While in Thailand, Parent said he taught locals about carpentry and the English language.   “I was teaching Thai people to speak English with a French accent,” he said.  When his services ended in 1963, Parent said he explored options for Peace Corps returnees in the states.  “[The Peace Corps] is what brought me to the University of Notre Dame,” Parent said. “Father Ted Hesburgh had a Return Peace Corps Scholarship and since I was one of the first Peace Corps volunteers to go to the Peace Corps and get out, it had to go to somebody.”  Parent used his scholarship to receive a master of education degree from Notre Dame in 1967. After receiving his degree, Parent said he and his family decided to stay in South Bend, where he served as a city councilman from 1972 to 1979 and served as mayor from 1980 to 1987.  “It turned out South Bend was a great place for me”, said Parent. “I got accepted in the community really early here … I joke that I thought I would live on the east coast or the west coast and ended up living on the west coast of Lake Michigan.” Parent said his experience serving as a Peace Corps volunteer helped him to become a better politician. “In the Peace Corps I had to put myself in someone else’s shoes … when I got elected mayor I had some experience doing that,” Parent said. “As a politician you always have to try to figure out what people are thinking.” Overall, Parent said the Peace Corps taught him much about life and he said he would recommend it to anyone.  “We are never called ‘former Peace Corps Volunteers.’ Once a Peace Corps Volunteer always a Peace Corps Volunteer,” Parent said. Contact Wendy Hatch at whatch@nd.edulast_img read more

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Students urge senators to vote no on Brett Kavanaugh nomination in call-in event

first_imgBefore the United States Senate voted Saturday to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, student activists gathered at Geddes Hall on Friday to call swing-state senators and convince them to vote “no” to Kavanaugh’s nomination.Junior Emilia McManus said the #cancelKavanaugh event was initiated by a group of students with no formal affiliations who simply felt the urge to come together and organize a call-in.“For the most part we stand for Dr. [Christine Blasey] Ford, but at the same time we welcome students who have different viewpoints under the circumstances,” McManus said. “Putting someone in a position of immense power like Brett Kavanaugh is something we have to take very seriously. … It’s important we consider [the facts] and contact our senators to do our civic duty.”McManus said it is unfortunate how strongly the polarization of the country is contributing to the nomination process.“This is an appointment for life,” McManus said. “… The position of the Supreme Court justice is not supposed to be based on political affiliation, it’s supposed to be based on choosing a person who can fairly interpret the Constitution.”McManus said both testimonies were emotional experiences and, at times difficult, to watch. She said she still felt the testimonies were essential to watch in order to be as informed as possible.Junior Elizabeth Boyle — who also helped organize the event — said she was amazed by Ford’s bravery after watching and listening to her testimony.“I remember watching Dr. Ford’s testimony and just getting absolute chills,” Boyle said. “Seeing her put herself and her story out there in order to better the lives of other survivors is absolutely incredible. … The disconnect and the dichotomy between the calming, brave nature of Dr. Ford and the often scattered, angry temperament of Judge Kavanaugh really stuck out.”Senior Olivia De Sonne Ammaccapane said she called over a hundred people on Friday, urging them to call their senators.  “I think its really important that we start believing sexual assault survivors,” she said. “There’s such a tiny percentage of people who go through the trouble of accusing someone already and we need to believe them.”McManus said regardless of a student’s motivations, she wanted people to understand they can take action. The event as not just targeted to those who opposed Kavanaugh’s nomination, she said.“We had a student who stopped by earlier who is in favor of Kavanaugh,” she said. “We had a very productive discussion; he shared his viewpoint, we shared ours, and I think that’s important.”Boyle encouraged students to be engaged in the political climate of the country because students have the ability to make a difference by bringing their unique voices to issues.“We’re at such an interesting point in the U.S. where a lot of the policies coming out of the current administration are so disruptive to human dignity and human rights,” Boyle said. “We should be plugged into immigration debate and the DACA debate — we have to know what’s going on because we have an obligation to act.”McManus said with the opportunities students at Notre Dame possess, they should do their best to stay informed.“I think student activism is tremendously important,” McManus said. “We have the power to vote, we are given an immense amount of freedom and we need to voice our opinions.”Tags: #cancelKavanaugh, Brett Kavanaugh, call-in, senators, student activism, Supreme Courtlast_img read more

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Annaleigh Ashford Cast in CBS Comedy Pilot Super Clyde

first_imgAfter making sugary love dreams in You Can’t Take It With You, Annaleigh Ashford is heading back to the small screen. The Tony nominee and Broadway.com Audience Choice Award winner has been cast in the CBS pilot Super Clyde, according to Deadline.The single-camera comedy stars Charlie McDermott as Clyde, a fast-food worker with dreams of becoming a super hero. Ashford takes on the role of Britney, the girlfriend of Clyde’s older brother.Ashford most recently appeared on Broadway in the revival of You Can’t Take It With You. She received a Tony nomination in 2013 for her performance as Lauren in Kinky Boots. Her additional Great White Way credits include Hair, Legally Blonde and Wicked. On screen, Ashford has appeared in Masters of Sex, Sex and the City, Top Five and Smash.Among the other Great White Way favorites attached to pilots this season are Andy Mientus in CBS’s LFE, Laura Benanti in CBS’ Supergirl, Skylar Astin in an untitled basketball-themed pilot from ABC, Condola Rashad in the Showtime pilot Billions, Anika Noni Rose in For Justice from CBS and On the Twentieth Century’s Peter Gallagher in the Weezer-based pilot Detour by Fox. View Commentslast_img read more

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Korea sets 42% renewable energy target by 2034

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Korea Herald:Renewable energy will take up nearly 42 percent of South Korea’s power generation capacity by 2034, according to a blueprint for the national energy mix unveiled Tuesday.The final draft of the Ninth Basic Plan for Electricity Supply and Demand for the years 2020-2034, drawn up and released by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, reaffirms President Moon Jae-in’s commitment to move away from nuclear power and toward renewables.While the country’s electricity generation capacity is projected to surge to 185.3 gigawatts by 2034, from 120.5 gigawatts this year, renewables will account for 41.9 percent followed by liquefied natural gas at 31.8 percent and coal at 15.6 percent. Nuclear power is projected to provide 10.4 percent.That represents a major change in the energy mix, which currently depends on coal. Last year, coal, LNG and nuclear power were the mainstay of electricity generation in Korea, contributing 40.4 percent, 25.9 percent and 25.6 percent, respectively. Renewables made up just 6.5 percent of total electricity production.In detail, the plan envisions the shutdown of 30 coal-fired power plants by 2034, which will have reached their operational lifetime limit of 30 years by then. To ensure a stable electricity supply, 24 of the facilities will be turned into liquefied natural gas power plants.To compensate for the smaller numbers of coal-fired plants and nuclear plants, the government will roll out renewable energy generation facilities with a combined capacity of 77.8 gigawatts by 2034, almost quadruple the current 20.1 gigawatts. Though the government’s midterm goal was to increase Korea’s capacity for solar and wind power to 29.9 gigawatts by 2025, the target has been adjusted to 42.7 gigawatts, as President Moon Jae-in’s Green New Deal initiative is expected to add an additional 12.8 gigawatts.[Kim Byung-wook]More: Korea to quadruple renewable power by 2034, downsize nuclear, coal Korea sets 42% renewable energy target by 2034last_img read more

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Changing of the Seasons

first_img red fall leaves photo courtesy of Eric Albitz, ericalbitzphotography.com Photo courtesy of Eric Albitz, ericalbitzphotography.comArguably one of the most beautiful times of year, fall is finally upon us. The leaves have begun to adorn their autumn colors, the sun sinks away earlier and earlier each night, and suddenly, the morning air is accompanied with a sweater appropriate chill.What a great time of year to go out and explore, to go to bed early, and to find different ways to stay warm. There is no better feeling to me then staying warm amongst crisp autumn temperatures. It seems impossible during those hot summer memories to cool down, to let your temperature drop, you couldn’t escape the heat. But the fall is different. Add more layers, eat a hearty meal, or get that blood pumping; there is a multitude of ways to stay warm during the fall.Something just feels right about the way long-sleeves fit in October. Walking out to the vibrant orange and yellow atmosphere, feeling the cold not at your skin, but stopped short by added layers. It’s almost like your outsmarting the system, like your fighting a small battle against Mother Nature and coming out victorious. Throw on the forgotten cold-weather cap and you are conqueror of this universe. The reason your room seems so cold in the morning is because you have stayed warm under the covers all night. Fall is here and you are ready.Besides adorning feathered clothing, a different inclination of humans can also be attributed to the dropping temperatures, a natural instinct engraved into our genes; the penchant for body heat. Never in the summer is hanging out in cramped conditions a necessarily joyous event. But come the long nights and cold temperatures of the fall, gatherings of people can be found packed into the kitchen, the family room, and all together in an effort to keep the cold away with a collective warmth.It can be strange at first, stepping outside and not immediately drowning in sweat, the new colors are nearly blinding with their brilliance, and the world you once knew has shed its skin to reveal a new kind of beauty. Unarguably one of the best times of year to go out and explore; fall is the season to stay nice and warm.-BDL fall colorscenter_img fall on the mountain photo courtesy of Eric Albitz, ericalbitzphotography.comlast_img read more

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Bloods Member Killed Man Over Photo, Feds Say

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A reputed member of the Bloods street gang was indicted for allegedly killing a man outside of a Deer Park strip club last year following a dispute over a photo, federal authorities said.Lawrence “L Boogs” Lewis was charged Tuesday at Central Islip federal court with the July 29 murder of John Birt, firearms offenses, and narcotics possession and distribution.“The simple act of taking a photo ended in a man losing his life, all because a gang member was allegedly offended and decided to retaliate,” said William F. Sweeney Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge of the FBI’s New York office. “It’s hard to fathom how the suspect in this case weighed exposing his illegal drug trade, and his illegal weapons because he wanted to prove how tough he is to his rivals.”Authorities alleged that the 36-year-old Calverton man shot the victim while Birt and several friends were posing for a photo at the Illusions Gentlemen’s Club in Deer Park when they were approached by an associate of Lewis, who was also a member of the Bloods. The associate attempted to display a Bloods gang hand signal in the photo, a dispute ensued and Lewis pulled out a handgun and fatally shot Birt, according to investigators.The FBI Long Island Gang Task Force arrested Lewis Monday. The probe of the murder found that the suspect allegedly distributed large quantities of cocaine base and heroin in Suffolk County between January 2016 and March 2018, prosecutors said.His arrest came on the same day that federal authorities announced the roundup of a dozen members of the Hempstead-based Mac Baller Brims set of the Bloods on charged of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute crack cocaine and heroin.Lewis faces up to life in prison, if convicted before Judge Joanna Seybert.last_img read more

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Faced with the challenge of digital disruption, we must question everything

first_img 12SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Greg Crandell Greg Crandell provides strategy, market planning, business development, and management consulting to financial technology firms and their clients – Credit Unions and Banks. For more years than he wishes to admit, … Web: queryconsultinggroup.com Details News Flash!  Digital disruption is rapidly changing the financial services marketplace, and you need to ACT NOW if you wish to remain relevant.The above really isn’t “new” news.  Since the advent of the Internet we’ve all been moving toward a digital landscape that requires we think again about the ways in which we deliver service and our abilities to compete and to survive.  No day passes in our industry without multitudes of people writing about and talking about the direction credit unions must head if they wish to thrive.I’ve been thinking hard about the ability to thrive in this digital age of business.  And I’m especially interested in how the vast majority of credit unions, those under $1 billion assets, can thrive.  I can’t help but wonder how relevant is the advice given to our industry regarding what it takes to thrive in a world focused on data and digital technology when it’s not clear how many of our credit unions can survive in this business environment, given their limited resources.Is it wrong for credit unions under $1 billion in assets to expect to survive?  Is the asset number even larger, $3-$5 billion? Can credit unions “well under” $1 billion or more in assets find a sustainable path forward?  Should they even try?For some, these questions are insulting to ask.  But they must be asked and answered by each and every credit union,  especially by those credit union leaders who read all the words and hear all the talk and go back to their offices and ask themselves “how can we do this, given how little we have to invest and how little risk we can accept?”Where We StandDigital disruption continues to rapidly change our world. The pace of change is not going to slow.  And everyone appears to agree that credit unions, if they wish to succeed, must not only provide superior experiences for everyone but also decide and act with more speed and agility. The challenges presented by most everyone I read or listen to are focused on “strategy, engagement, technology, experience and culture.”  All of these are topics worthy of research, debate, and action. They are the areas in which credit unions must engage fully if they are to find successful paths forward.  And some of them will. But what do you do if your credit union does not have the resources (money and people) to invest in all the work that must be done to succeed in this digital age?  Do you quit? Or do you find another way?Why $1 Billion, or $3-5 Billion?I’ve been involved in financial services and fintech for more than 3 decades and remember well that the answer to the question of “how big do you have to be to succeed going forward?” was always “twice the size we are today.”  That answer always earned a chuckle, but always sounded “about right.” After all, who wouldn’t be better off with more resources?But that answer no longer rings true to me.  Today, twice $100 million in assets won’t get the job done. We have entered a world where technology demands constant care and feeding.  Change is the new black; and there’s no going back. The costs paid to remain technically relevant (and data savvy) are too large and too constant for credit unions of insufficient size and resource to tackle alone.   And, more often than not, researchers find that financial institutions of all stripes need $3 -5 billion or more in assets to fund the necessary efforts to stay relevant. We may not like it. But it is likely true.Digital transformation demands we ask again, can we succeed on our own?Thoughtful, experienced leaders talk about digital transformation as if it were something new.  It’s not. Digital transformation is quite simply the name given to the latest business environment changes that demand strategic response. Technology has brought us a changed environment that we must respond to, as we responded to legal and regulatory changes that upended how we did business in the past.  What is different from past changes, is the size and scope of the impact. And this time, that impact might demand a radical response for those who can’t meet the change on their own. This reality is why we need to talk about strategy in the digital age, and not talk only about digital transformation. We have to think about our organization’s ability to respond to the challenges confronting us before we talk about the broadly-framed responses offered by others, and how those responses might work for us.Collaboration and Consolidation of Resources Might be Your Only Path ForwardTechnology has taken us to a place where surviving may be harder than ever, and we need to confront this fact directly.  Our largest credit unions may well have the resources to compete on their own. But the rest of us may need to reach out to other credit unions to gain the scale of operations (and money, and people) needed to move forward and to thrive. Our industry has done great things together.  We formed Corporate Credit Unions and CUSOs to gain scale in payments, investments, technology and more.  We came together to research challenges and find opportunities. And we talk together, a lot. But outside of the small group of our largest credit unions, we will likely find that the rest of us must now focus our efforts on consolidating our resources to meet the data and technology-driven challenges now upon us.  Either that, or we start talking about how long we can survive, rather than how we can thrive.And This Path May Only Be Followed by Small and Mid-size Credit UnionsNow, the big question: if our billion-dollar credit unions have the resources to act on their own, collaboration and consolidation by other credit unions may have to take a very different form from what we’ve asked of each other in the past.  For in the past, we hoped both large and small credit unions could work together to reach economies of scale using aggregated capital and resources largely provided by the larger credit unions. But now, the vast majority of credit unions, those well under the $1 billion and up category, may be the only ones that must come together to find the answers and scale of operations to survive, and then to thrive. Can we learn from the largest credit unions?  Yes. Should we rely upon them? Maybe not.Faced with These Challenges, We Must Be Willing to Question EverythingThe above is a “big thing.”  It’s seemingly more painful to consider than is the topic of digital transformation, because it asks us to question both our past behavior and our future course.  And it asks us to consider a model of cooperation we have largely avoided to date; but we cannot pick and choose when confronted with existential circumstances. We have to find a way forward and all paths (and questions) have to be considered.  And we need to realize this and discuss it. Here’s to embracing the notion of “questioning everything”, including our ability to work together and our reasons for being.last_img read more

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Give better notice for Stockade-athon

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionThe Stockade-athon that was held on Nov. 12 was, by all accounts, well-received and an overwhelming success.However, I encountered confusion on the part of one individual charged with securing the course to ensure the safety of the participants. Upon attempting to leave my street at 8:25 a.m., I was told that Central Parkway, and indeed all roads that comprised the course, were to be closed at 8:30 a.m.This, despite the flyers distributed in advance of the event clearly stating progressive road closings, with Central Parkway scheduled to be closed at 8:55 a.m. I was allowed to pass and was on time for my Sunday morning job, but I shouldn’t have had, for the second successive year, to talk my way off of my street.I would suggest that the race organizers address this issue well in advance of next year’s Stockade-athon. Surely there have to be drivers other than me who would be grateful for clarification and better notice to all involved with the event.BOB CHASESchenectady More from The Daily Gazette:Schenectady police reform sessions pivot to onlineEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsSchenectady, Saratoga casinos say reopening has gone well; revenue down 30%EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homeslast_img read more

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Chevron profit, production up in 4Q 2018

first_imgChevron has reported an increase in earnings for the fourth quarter 2018, posting a net income of $3.7 billion, up from $3.1 billion billion in the fourth quarter 2017.Chevron logo; Image by: Tony Webster; Source: Flickr – under the CC BY-SA 2.0 license (The image has been cropped)The difference in earnings would have been even bigger in comparison, as 4Q 2017 result included $2.02 billion in tax benefits related to U.S. tax reform.Full-year 2018 earnings were $14.8 billion, compared with $9.2 billion in 2017. Included in 2018 were impairments and other charges of $1.59 billion and a gain on an asset sale of $350 million.Chevron’s worldwide net oil-equivalent production was 3.08 million barrels per day in the fourth quarter of 2018, compared with 2.74 million barrels per day from a year ago.  Net oil-equivalent production for the full year 2018 was 2.93 million barrels per day, compared with 2.73 million barrels per day from the prior year.Chevron’s capital and exploratory expenditures in 2018 were $20.1 billion, compared with $18.8 billion in 2017. Expenditures for upstream represented 88 percent of the companywide total in 2018.Michael K. Wirth, Chevron’s chairman of the board and chief executive officer said: “We reached significant milestones with upstream major capital projects in 2018, including the start-up of Wheatstone Train Two, our fifth operated LNG train in Australia. We also continued the ramp-up of the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico, started production from the Big Foot Project in the Gulf of Mexico, and continued to progress our Future Growth Project at the company’s 50 percent-owned affiliate, Tengizchevroil, in Kazakhstan.”“Our net oil-equivalent production grew more than 7 percent in 2018 to a record 2.93 million barrels per day. We expect that 2019 production will continue to grow by 4 to 7 percent, excluding the impact of asset sales,” Wirth said.The company added approximately 1.46 billion barrels of net oil-equivalent proved reserves in 2018. These additions, which are subject to final reviews, equate to approximately 136 percent of net oil-equivalent production for the year. The largest additions were from the Permian Basin in the United States and the LNG projects in Australia, Chevron said.last_img read more

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Greensburg man arrested for DUI

first_imgGREENSBURG, Ind. — A Greensburg man was arrested on a Charge of Operating a Vehicle while Intoxicated after a traffic accident in Greensburg.Police say, Frank Sauer, 59 struck another vehicle at 101 North Lincoln Street.Witnesses told police that Sauer turned into a parking lot, drove over a sidewalk, and curb, and struck a car.The driver of the struck vehicle was able to identify Sauer as the driver to police.When police arrived, they observed Sauer staggering in the parking lot.Police say officers asked multiple times for his license, registration, and proof of insurance.According to police, Sauer failed each field sobriety test.He consented to a portable breathalyzer test, which police say read .15%, almost twice the legal limit.Sauer was then arrested and transported to the Decatur County Jail where another breath test was performed with a reading of .125%.last_img read more

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