Centura College

Connecting Communities & Careers

Norfolk First Responders Team with Centura College to Train Recruits

Posted by on Jan 10, 2018 in Adult Education, Campus Connections, Career Change, Centura College, Centura Norfolk, Lifestyle, Press Release, Spotlight Feature

Norfolk First Responders Team with Centura College to Train Recruits

The Norfolk campus of Centura College will be teaming with the City of Norfolk’s Fire-Rescue Department to provide preparatory training as recruits begin their Academy program. The program will provide fundamental math, writing, medical terminology, and other key skills to prep new recruits for their Academy training.

By Brian Stauss

The Norfolk Fire-Rescue Department is teaming with Centura College to include essential academic preparatory training in the beginning of the Fire-Rescue Academy program, as an effort to increase the confidence and success rate of recruits within the program.

Fire-Rescue Chief Jeffrey Wise acknowledged that the average Fire-Rescue recruit has usually not been in an academic classroom for several years. Recruits can struggle with recalling basic math, writing skills, and the academic preparedness needed to complete the rigors of the Academy and this has led to some recruits being unsuccessful with the academic portions of the program.  This customized academic preparation program, positioned within the first few weeks of the Academy, is developed to provide fundamental math, writing, communication, medical terminology, and study skills training, to better-equip new recruits for the rigors of the Fire-Rescue Academy.

“We are thrilled to offer these aspiring first responders fundamental academic coaching, both in formal classroom instruction at the beginning of their training program, and through individualized tutoring throughout the Academy,” said Dr. Joel English, Vice President of Operations for Centura College.  “These are the women and men who will keep our community safe for decades to come, and increasing their likelihood to succeed academically is an honor and privilege for our faculty.”

Between Jan. 16-22, 2018, two dozen Norfolk Fire-Rescue recruits will report for classes at Centura College’s Norfolk campus at 7020 North Military Highway for training.  The coursework has been custom-designed between the academic leadership at Centura College and the Norfolk Fire-Rescue team to efficiently prepare recruits with the knowledge they need to succeed.

The program will begin with individualized academic assessments of each recruit, and will consist of four courses per day, taught by Centura College faculty.  The program includes further assessment of each recruits’ progress through the Academy program, and Centura College will offer additional tutoring for students as needed throughout the Academy curriculum.

“We are pleased to offer this pilot program at no charge to Norfolk Fire-Rescue, to the city, or to the students,” said Dr. English.  “We hope to eliminate academic challenges as a barrier to these public servants completing their Academy program, so that they can go on to protect our homes and businesses in Norfolk.”

For more information regarding Centura College’s partnership with the Norfolk Fire-Rescue Department, contact the campus at (757) 853-2121.

About Centura College

Centura College has been part of an organization dedicated to helping men and women develop careers since 1969. By training working adults in healthcare, technology, business, and trades, they connect communities with some of the fastest growing career fields in today’s marketplace. The school offers professional facilities, knowledgeable instructors, day or evening classes, job placement assistance and is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC). To learn more, visit www.CenturaCollege.edu or like them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/centura.edu.

Sensory Friendly Santa Spreads Christmas Cheer to all at Centura College

Posted by on Dec 26, 2017 in Campus Connections, Centura Chesapeake, Centura College, Community Connections, Lifestyle, Spotlight Feature

Ashley West and son, Andrew.

By Jul DeGeus and Esperanza Popquiz

 

The holidays can be a challenging time for anyone. In an effort to help those who might need a little extra assistance, Centura College Chesapeake campus held a sensory friendly meet and greet with the one and only, Santa and Mrs. Claus.

We sat down with Campus Executive Director, Ashley West, to learn how the campus worked together to create a magical winter wonderland, for all those to enjoy:

 

What was the inspiration to hold a sensory-friendly event? 

Ashley West: Anyone who knows me knows that there are three things in life that I get exceptionally excited about: My five year old son Andrew, who is autistic, my job, and CHRISTMAS! Personally knowing that the holiday season can be a real challenge for special needs families, we wanted to offer an event that allowed families of all different types to experience the magic of the holidays.

What steps did you take to prepare for the event? 

AW: We began preparations and meetings in early October. Our committee was made up of volunteers. Anyone who was a part of it, was doing so on their own personal time. I truly appreciate the effort and dedication these wonderful people put in to make this a relaxed environment for special needs families. Countless hours went into decorating the wonderland, which included: three decked out Christmas trees, dozens and dozens of presents, inflatable characters and wrapping paper that covered every inch of the walls! We also spent a lot of time researching what kinds of activities and spaces would be most enjoyable to children on the autism spectrum and with other special needs. This resulted in us creating a quiet room; a room with low lighting, minimal sounds and a space to lay down or read a book. If any member of the family wanted to take a break from the hustle and bustle of our Santa’s Workshop, we made sure that they had that opportunity. In addition, each member of the committee attended a training session conducted by an autism support professional.  We wanted to be sure that everyone was comfortable and prepared to best support these children and their families. From this training, we developed holiday activities, like sensory boxes (tubs with things like tinsel, slime and macaroni for the kids to feel textures) and cotton ball-snowman crafts. Obviously, we had to include Santa’s favorite cuisine, so there was plenty of milk and cookies for everyone to enjoy!

How did your staff react when learning about how to interact with children at the event?

AW: It was such a cool thing to watch the staff learn about some of the intricacies of working with special needs families. Many of them had not had any previous experience with the families, yet they all asked the exact questions that needed to be asked. I think lots of people try to promote awareness, but I’ve always said that awareness isn’t enough; what we’re really working toward is acceptance. The training we brought in helped the staff of Centura College Chesapeake campus to understand and accommodate the needs of every family that walked through our door. This made such a huge impact for our guests, moving us one step closer to our goal of acceptance.

Why is it important for Centura College to hold events like this for the community? 

AW: We’re not just a tagline of “Connecting Communities and Careers.” We mean it!  We want to serve all members of the community. As an autism mom, I can tell you that there’s a huge need for quality services and events for people who may need some additional considerations. We wanted to help be a part of the solution, so we’re also exploring program offerings to help train in a career supporting families with special needs. While special needs families are near and dear to my heart, I know that everyone has a specific cause that they cheer for. In 2018, we are hoping to highlight and showcase events that bring awareness, acceptance and actions of the causes we hold dear in our heart.

If you want to find out how you can help spread awareness and acceptance, or want to learn more about Centura College, Chesapeake campus, call 757.549.2121 or visit centuracollege.edu.

Self-Care for Massage Therapists

Posted by on Jul 18, 2017 in Adult Education, Career Change, Centura Chesapeake, Centura College, Health, Lifestyle, Massage Therapy, Spotlight Feature, Tips & Tricks

Self-Care for Massage Therapists

By Shawnte’ Peterson, Massage Therapist Coordinator at Centura College’s Chesapeake Campus

Edited by Jul DeGeus & Esperanza Poquiz

A massage therapist’s work often involves lifting clients’ body parts, repetitive postures and forceful pressure that could lead to injury or ailments. To help prevent damage, massage therapists should remember to care for their body, as it is the main tool of their trade. Here at Centura College, we encourage our students and staff to care for themselves and listen to the advice we give clientele. This self-care means nurturing your body by fueling it with nutrients to keep it energized and carefully listening to our body when it establishes its limits.

The American Massage Therapy Association describes self-care as, “an indication that you recognize the importance of balance in your life. Placing a priority on self-care helps you center yourself and reduce stress.”  Practicing self-care can extend the longevity of a massage therapist’s career. By learning techniques to keep hands and wrists healthy, a massage therapist benefits by working smarter and not harder through body awareness. Massage therapist can find tips, such as the ones listed below, useful in everyday life and at work as a means to avoid burning-out and injury:

Centura College Chesapeake Campus’ Massage Therapy students practicing yoga.

Stretching– A massage therapist should know better than anyone that “warming up” before putting your body through intense activity helps prevent strains. Massage therapists can develop the best stretch routine by consulting with their doctor.

Massages– Whether it’s a self-massage or a massage from a coworker, massage therapists should get them often, especially since therapist have a great understanding of massage benefits including stress relief, pain management and improving sleep cycles.

Proper Diet and Nutrition- Regardless of profession, everyone should have a diet tailored to the improvement or balance of their health. By visiting a dietitian or doctor, massage therapist can create a meal plan full of the nutrients they need.

Body Detoxes– Preforming a body detox  can boost a healthy mindset. Massage therapists that detox can experience sharpened thoughts, improved breathing and a surge in energy.

Exercising– To preform optimally, massage therapists should exercise regularly. Exercising strengthens therapists’ body, from the hands to the core.

Yoga and Meditation- With similar positive body strengthening effects to exercising and stretching, yoga also includes the revitalizing element of meditation to put the mind in a positive state. Starting the day with a positive energy will allow for therapists to transmit this energy to the people they interact with.

Because massage therapist’s jobs are labor intensive, they need to move to keep their muscles and joints healthy. Keeping this in mind, massage therapist will have a long positive career, which will ensuring the happiness of their clientele and themselves.

Helpful Training to Strengthen Your Next Interview

Posted by on Jul 5, 2017 in Career Change, Career Services, Centura Chesapeake, Centura College, Centura Columbia, Centura Newport News, Centura Norfolk, Centura Richmond, Centura Virginia Beach, Lifestyle, Tips & Tricks

Helpful Training to Strengthen Your Next Interview

By Esperanza Poquiz

Some of us find interviews a little nerve-racking while others may be cool, calm and collected. Preparing for the interview process can ease stress. Whether you are a pro or amateur, keep these tips in the forefront of your mind when going to your next interview.

First Impressions

We’ve all heard that making a great first impression is important. A survey showed that 66 out of 2,000 hiring managers knew in 90 seconds if they would hire the job candidate. Ensure that your appearance gives the hiring manager a great first impression by:

  • Smiling
  • Having a firm handshake and great posture
  • Wearing more neutral colors like: black, gray, navy blue and white
  • Communicating with proper vocabulary and grammar

Confidence

Having confidence in yourself definitely shows in an interview. Emitting confidence lets the hiring manager see that you know what you want and you take initiative. Radiate confidence through:

  • Voice projection; don’t mumble
  • Eye contact
  • Body language: don’t fidget, play with your hair, touch your face or cross your hands over your chest
  • Hand gestures, but keep them to a minimum
  • Enthusiasm; Let your personality shine and show warmth

Know Who You Applied For

Before going in your interview be sure to do the following:

  • Research the company and get general information
  • Have a specific position in mind and learn the requirements of the position you seek
  • Come prepared with questions based on the company
  • Know the company’s mission statement and what is important to them

Final Suggestions

  • Have a generic answer about why you lost or left your last job
  • Don’t put down previous positions, employers or peers
  • Don’t focus on pay, schedule or benefits in the initial interview
  • Ask relevant questions

Be sure to keep these suggestions in mind for you next interview. You can also ask family and friends for help through mock interviews. Good luck!

History Refresh: The 4th of July

Posted by on Jul 4, 2017 in Centura College, Community Connections, Lifestyle, Spotlight Feature

Source: Library of Congress.

What Happened on the 4th of July

Americans observe the 4th of July to commemorate the birth of our nation. With fireworks, cookouts, and garments consisting of red, white and blue, it’s a day that we all come together as a nation and celebrate with pride. In 1776, it was the day that the final draft of the Declaration of Independence was adopted and America’s 13 colonies officially declared their independence from Great Britain. With Thomas Jefferson as the main author, the Declaration of Independence’s contributors included: John Adams, Ben Franklin, Robert R. Livingston, and Roger Sherman. It was later signed by all members of Congress on August 2, 1776.

How it All Began

By 1774, the first settled colonies grew tired of Britain’s tight control and high taxes. They felt that they were being unjustly taxed and didn’t have any representation in the British parliament. They expressed their unrest by staging rebellions, such as the Boston Tea Party in December of 1773. The colonies formed the First Continental Congress on September 5, 1774, in order to come up with solutions that would convince Great Britain to recognize their rights. They were unsuccessful and Britain’s King George III continued to tax the settlers. This led to great discontent and eventually, the Revolutionary War.

The Revolutionary War

By 1775, Tensions between some of the colonists and Great Britain reached their boiling point. Rebellions and restlessness grew rampant and movement towards a revolution was rapidly gaining speed. Colonists wanted to take action and started by rallying troops and collecting supplies. When it was made clear that King George III had no intentions of making compromises, the support for the revolution increased. On April 19, 1775, the Revolutionary War began in the towns of Lexington and Concord Massachusetts. British soldiers and Minutemen, the colonists’ militia, exchanged gunfire in what is known as the “shot heard around the world”. George Washington was elected Commander of the American patriotic forces by the Second Continental Congress on May 10, 1775.

Even though the Revolutionary War continued on until 1783, America was eventually able to gain its independence from Great Britain. It would not have been possible if the Declaration of Independence was not finalized and adopted on our Independence Day, July 4, 1776. By declaring themselves as an independent nation through the Declaration, the 13 colonies were able to form an alliance with France, which ultimately led to Great Britain’s surrender to America in Yorktown, Virginia in 1781. Later in 1783, a final peace treaty was signed in Paris, putting a final end to the Revolutionary War.

National Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Month: Benefits of Eating Healthy

Posted by on Jun 13, 2017 in Centura College, Health, Lifestyle

By Esperanza Poquiz Edited by Jul DeGeus

Eating healthy is something that we all know is important. After all, ‘you are what you eat’. Normally, eating healthy is motivated by the drive to get fit or to make sure our physical physique doesn’t alter. But did you know that living a healthy lifestyle can also help you stay in shape mentally? June is National Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Month and today we will share a few of the benefits that come with eating healthy:

Antioxidants

Fresh fruits and vegetables are known to contain a high dose of antioxidants. Antioxidants help keep the body’s heart, immune system and eyes healthy, all the while helping the brain with memory and mood disorders. Fresh fruits and vegetables that are rich with antioxidants include:

Blueberries

They also contain anthocyanins and compounds that fight against diabetes. Source: Pixabay.

 

Apples

Apples are also high fiber. Source: Pixabay.

 

Spices and herbs, like cinnamon and oregano

Source: Pixabay.

Olive Oil

Rich in monounsaturated fats, or fats that protect the body from heart disease. Source: Pixabay.

 

Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamins are essential in keeping your mind and body functioning. Vitamin E is known to protect the body from toxins and help reduce cognitive decline in diseases, such as Alzheimer’s. Vitamin A plays an important role in bone growth, cell division and growth and building a healthy immune system. Iron and phytonutrients help your cells function and communicate which is essential in making red blood cells. Here are foods that are high in vitamins and minerals:

Almonds

Almonds are a great source of vitamin E. Source: Pixabay.

 

Dark Leafy Greens, like kale and spinach

Greens are packed with iron and phytonutrients. Source: Pixabay.

 

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes are high Vitamin A and fiber, which helps you feel full for a longer period of time. Source: Getty Images.

 

Omega 3 Fatty Acids

Omega 3 fatty acids play an important role in maintaining the body’s cognitive function, by helping with depression, ADHD, and dementia. They help prevent heart disease and can help with rheumatoid arthritis. Omega 3 fatty also essential in the early stages of baby development. Some foods include:

Walnuts

Source: Pixabay.

Avocados

Source: Pixabay.

Salmon

Source: Pixabay.

Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil also helps with your metabolism and weight loss. Source: Getty Images.

 

Caffeine

Often overlooked, caffeine is a healthy substance for the body and mind, when taken in moderation. It stimulates the brain, keeping you more focused and alert. Caffeine consumption can help boost your metabolism, assisting in the prevention of weight gain. It also reduces chronic inflammation and can help ward off Alzheimer’s disease. Get your caffeine kick through these treats:

Coffee

Source: Pixabay.

Dark Chocolate

Source: Pixabay.

Green Tea

Source: Pixabay.

Now that you are equipped with some benefits of eating healthy, the next time you go to reach for the chips, think again. Instead, try grabbing an apple or a handful of blueberries and walnuts. Planning meals like salmon cooked in coconut oil or spinach avocado salad dressed in olive oil will ensure you get the nutrients your body needs. Choose healthier foods to keep your body and mind functioning at its best.

 

Source:

“19 Best Brain Superfoods”. Retrieved May 29th, 2017 from, http://www.livestrong.com/blog/19-best-brain-superfoods/

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