When the world hit pause, essential workers kept going. Learn what it takes to train for an Essential Healthcare or Skilled Trades Careers.
Written by Jul DeGeus
On Thursday, November 12, from 11:00 a.m. till 2:00 p.m. Centura College invites the community to attend their Essential Career Training Expo. This event will give attendees the opportunity to learn about our career-focused training in fields that have proven to be essential during the COVID-19 pandemic. Expo attendees will have the Centura College standard application fee waived and program guidance will be provided by admissions. Financial aid and career services teams will be onsite to help answer questions during the event.
This year, the U. S. experienced the suspension of “non-essential” career markets to decelerate the circulation of COVID-19. With this deferral, select occupations were declared essential workers, or those who perform services that are essential to continue vital foundation operations in communities, cities, and states. Some of Virginia’s essential businesses have included allied health and trades-focused industries such as health care or medical services, industrial manufacturing and home improvement facilities.
Centura College offers training in the following career fields: Wind Turbine Technician, Construction Electrician, Medical Assisting, Combination Welding, Business Management, Operations Management, Massage Therapy, CDL Class A Truck Driving, Carpentry, Dental Assisting, Medical Billing and Coding, Biomedical Equipment Technology, Allied Health Management and Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC). Not all programs are offered at all locations.
Centura College Essential Career Training Expo will be hosted November 12, from 11:00 a.m. through 2:00 p.m. at all campus locations:
At the Essential Career Training Expo, application fees will be waived for one day only and Financial Aid Officers will be onsite to provide fiscal resources and information. Tours of the campus’ labs and classrooms will be available to those interested. Admissions Representatives will host Career Planning Sessions to provide visitors with insight into industry demand, based off the program of their choosing. Light refreshments and drinks will be offered during the Expo.
Centura College has been part of an organization dedicated to helping men and women develop careers since 1969. By training working adults in health care, 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.
You may have found yourself asking, “what exactly does financial literacy mean?” Understanding the topic of money sounds simple enough, but its complexity depends on our goals. For everyday life, we only need enough to pay our bills and not be overdrawn by payday, but we may be able to do better than that by paying more attention to the ongoing struggle between our wallets and our bank accounts.
The odds of hitting the jackpot are 1 in 302,575,350, according to Mega Millions. Upon discovering this, most of us must find a different path to financial independence. The saying “spend less, save more” is a good start, but there’s so much more that we can do. We’re not going to go into the stock market here, but we’ll cover some easy things you can start doing today, tomorrow or next week.
Why is Financial Literacy Important
A basic understanding of your finances can help you set financial goals, manage your credit and even determine which bank you should be using. Obviously, the sooner you figure out your finances, the better. We can ruin our credit in a matter of months, but it takes years to rebuild.
Credit Scores and Credit Utilization Ratios
You never know how important your credit score is until you’re making a major purchase. Your credit score determines whether or not you qualify for that loan or financing; it also determines the interest rate you’ll be paying.
It’s a good idea to keep your credit use below 30% of your total available credit. That is your credit utilization ratio, and it is calculated by dividing the total amount on all your credit cards by your total available credit. For instance, if you’ve got a $1000 credit card, you’d want to keep your balance below $300. If your credit utilization ratio is above 30%, this can hurt your credit score, as this is the second biggest factor affecting your score next to payment history.
Setting a Budget
It’s also important to keep an eye on your accounts and track your spending because it’s easy to find your account overdrawn if you’re not careful. The best thing to do is create a budget. It doesn’t have to be too complex, but some way for you to see how much money you’ve got coming in and how much money you’ve got going out, and when. With this information, you’ll be able to plan how to use your money more efficiently. Once you see where your money is going, it’ll be easier to fine-tune your spending and set financial goals.
There are a lot of resources online for information and tools you can use. With these financial management tools, you will easily be able to manage your money, manage your debt, and manage your credit.
A good method to follow is the 50/30/20 budget rule. That is 50% for essentials, 30% for personal spending, and 20% for savings and other financial goals.
Financial Literacy for Saving
Be sure to make savings a part of your monthly budget, no matter how small the amount. It’s important to keep your savings out of your checking account. Also, don’t confuse your wants with your needs.
An emergency fund is another good idea, but only dip into it in case of emergency, such as job-loss, medical emergencies, emergency home repairs, vehicle repairs and things of that nature.
It really is never too early to start saving for retirement, so try to get into a 401(k) program as soon as you can. Ask your employer or your bank about getting started, and they will walk you through your options. It’s also recommended that when you get a raise, increase your retirement savings, too.
Other Things to Know
Be aware of interest rates for credit cards, loans, and even savings accounts, as some are better than others.
A good method for tackling debt is to pay off smaller bills first and getting them out of the way. Follow that up by attacking your higher interest credit cards or loans.
It might also be a good idea to adopt a cash-only diet. This curbs spending and makes your money a lot easier to track.
On a final note, it can’t be stressed enough that the more you learn about financial literacy, the closer you will be to reaching your goals.
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.
The school groups of Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura Colleges and Tidewater Tech have reached out to their community and volunteered their time for a number of organizations. The staff at these institutions have chosen to serve their communities by volunteering their time, talent and support to causes that are meaningful to their communities. Here are just a few examples where are campuses have provided inspiration and hope to their community.
Centura Columbia Lends Helping Hands in Support of Flood Victims
On Friday, April 20, 2018, Centura College Columbia partnered with St. Bernard’s Place to assist a homeowner reclaim his residence after the devastating effects of flooding. St. Bernard’s Place is a national nonprofit organization focused on helping citizens of an affected area restore their lives after a natural disaster. Parts of South Carolina were hit hard in 2015 by Hurricane Joaquin, resulting in catastrophic flooding that left scores of citizens displaced. Many people are still rebuilding some two years later.
A team of ten from the Columbia campus, consisting of staff and students, arrived at the location and got an assessment of the resident’s needs. The cohort was broken into groups and assignments were given. Some helped strip paint from baseboards and door trim, others applied fresh paint to other parts of the home, while the remaining manned table saws and sanders to repair water damaged woodwork. The students represented our Building Maintenance and Repair (BMR), Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) and Medical Assisting programs.
In all, the team worked on site from 8:30 am-12 noon and assisted in the ongoing progress toward completing the restoration. The campus has pledged its support in future activities and looks forward to serving the Midlands community at large.
AIM Indianapolis Joins Forces with Local Elementary School to Provide Bikes to Children
The Indianapolis campus of Aviation Institute of Maintenance is on a mission. The goal: to provide bikes to the children of a local elementary school. See AIM Indianapolis’s plans in an excerpt from a letter drafted by its Campus Executive Director, Andy Duncan.
“I can still remember my first “big boy” bike. No more training wheels for this guy. This new bike looked like a motorcycle with big orange fenders, long black seat, silver frame (complete with motor cycle decal), and knobby tires. I can remember the initial ride down the street into the ditch and abrupt stop when I hit the concrete wall at the end of ditch. The memory is firmly planted in my head of this event from over forty years ago. If you are like me you remember your first bike or first “big boy or girl” bike and it brings a smile to your face. For lots of kids they will never know that felling. It is simply beyond the reality of the life they live for their family to afford such a luxury.
We at Aviation Institute of Maintenance want to do something about this. The AIM Indianapolis campus is on a mission to help recreate the feeling I and so many others have of getting a new bike. We have partnered with McClelland Elementary school to help this dream become a reality.
McClelland Elementary school has over 1000 students and due to the socioeconomic condition of a large portion of the students all students qualify for free breakfast and lunch. McClelland is home to a fairly significant homeless population of students as well. We, AIM, found our place to help bring some smiles simply by providing bikes. Now that the partnership has been set we have to get the word out as to what we are doing.
We have reached out to our partners in Aviation, friends & family, and other businesses to help with donating gift cards toward this effort. The students and faculty of AIM have graciously volunteered their time to assemble the bikes as they arrive. McClelland is choosing the criteria for the students that will receive the bikes and on May 25th we will head over to the school bikes in hand for delivery day.
As I write this 28 bikes and helmets have been ordered, 18 assembled, and ten more in route to us. We still have a couple weeks to collect a few more and as of right now several others are promised to us. We are looking forward to seeing the children when they receive their bikes. I know what having a bike meant to me as a child and I know that events like this show the community what Aviation Institute of Maintenance is all about. We train mechanics. We help people have a better future in their new career and we give bikes to kids who need them. That is who we are and that is what we do. I like the sound of that.”
Tidewater Tech Staff and Students Volunteer at Local Church to Serve Lunch to Community
Tidewater Tech staff and students volunteered locally with Norfolk’s Christian Fellowship Church on Tuesday, April 17th from 12-2pm during their lunchtime fellowship. Tidewater Tech volunteers worked together in providing lunch to serve the church, veterans, civilians, and homeless members of our local Norfolk community. Additionally, resources were also provided for those seeking help with housing or financial hardships. Christian Fellowship’s purpose is to provide an intimate environment of learning, fellowship, support, accountability and community outreach. Christian Fellowship educates and gives back to the community through seeking volunteers for, in addition to offering, education advancement, IT, kid’s kingdom, finance team and literacy, regular food service, building and grounds, marketing, office, and administrative support, music and singing, Christian education, transportation resources, nursing, and other special events. This being said, Tidewater tech was delighted to be able to offer lunch and resources, and to overall play role in aiding such a great organization. The experience of serving others, knowing the increasing amount of people facing hunger, left a truly powerful and uplifting impact for participants in seeing the appreciation of those served.
These are just a few shining examples of students and staff at AIM, Centura College, and Tidewater Tech personify the mission of our brands to truly connect communities and careers.
Other instances of our campuses doing their part to help out their communities include:
AIM Atlanta teaming up with Greater Gwinnett Wetlands and the Gwinnett County Department of Water Resources to clean up Bromolow Creek and surrounding wetlands.
AIM Irving collecting food for the North Texas Food Bank.
AIM Houston lending a helping hand and meeting with residents and business owners at annual Hobby Fest.
AIM Las Vegas partnering with Ronald McDonald Charity House and baking cookies for a family staying there.
AIM Mannasass welcoming the Manasass City Boys and Girls Club to their campus for a fun-filled day.
AIM Oakland holding a food drive for those in need in the community.
Centura Chesapeake holding a community yard and craft sale, with proceeding benefiting the Samaritan House.
Centura Norfolk medical assisting students providing wellness checks for members at the KROC center.
Be sure to check our blogs and follow us on Facebook for updates on these and more stories of community outreach.
Written by Drew Schnaath, Jul DeGeus and Esperanza Poquiz
Faculty and staff from The Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura College, and Tidewater Tech met with colleagues and industry specialists to enrich themselves, their campuses, and become better community leaders and more effective educators. On March 14th, leadership and instructors converged in Falls Church, VA to attend the annual Education Conference.
Left to right: Vice President Joel English, Damon Cook, Vice President Mike Busjahn and Nate Wade.
“This year’s theme centered around the intersection of education and community, how our schools work together with their respective communities,” said Dr. Mary Urbanski. “We believe in cultivating our school families, the greater communities surrounding our schools, and our faculty.” These relationships foster collaboration, integrity, and innovation, which benefits students, employers and the communities involved:
Centura Columbia hosted a three part Rock that Interview series of events, leading up to their Career Fair. The sessions educated those who attended on the following subjects: Writing your cover letter, creating your resume, collecting references and building your portfolio.
AIM Atlanta, AIM Chesapeake and AIM Manassas ‘drifted’ from aviation maintenance to automotive, as each campus hosted a Car Show & Open House. Automotive enthusiast learned a thing or two touring the hangars, while Aviation Maintenance Technicians (AMTs) admired the maintenance and upgrades of the vehicles that cruised onto the campus.
In September, members of the Hampton Roads campus branches partook in the organization and volunteering of the Safe House Half Marathon and 5k. 100% of the proceeds of this race went towards building a “safe house”- a haven for orphans that are at risk of being sold into sex slavery.
Centura Norfolk partnered with the City of Norfolk’s Fire-Rescue Department to develop an academic preparation training program for new recruits of the Fire-Rescue Academy. This free of charge program aims to help refresh the basic knowledge a participant will need to be successful in the Fire-Rescue Academy, as well as provides additional tutoring to ensure each recruit has the tools they need to succeed.
Tidewater Tech connected with the community’s strong military presence by holding a car wash and yard sale to benefit the crew members of the USS Eisenhower. Chief Petty Officer selectees from the vessel worked alongside Tidewater Teach staff members to make sure that every car that came for a wash was in ship shape!
For Christmas, AIM Indianapolis decked the halls with charity organizations, Bearded Villains and Bad Apple Offroad, to collect gifts for Toys for Tots. The holiday event gave families the chance to come to the campus and enjoy food, music and fun, while raising donations for a great cause!
Conference attendees heard from several well-known speakers, including Dr. Michael E. Wooten from the Department of Education, Cindy Bridges Milford, Enterprise Digital Specialist at Cengage and Dale Dworak, a 25-year industry veteran in business technology solutions. Campus educators were also able to learn from text book publishers such as Cengage, McGraw Hill Education, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Pearson and F.A. Davis Company. Each speaker offered valuable insight into their experiences in education, business, leadership, management, and even the technology that powers these institutions and ideas.
In addition to the veritable wealth of information, our faculty had the chance to meet and network with colleagues from our other brands and campuses. Jon Cason explained “Our goal is to foster community, both inside and outside our organization. Collaboration is important for our schools as they continue to grow.”
The Columbia campus of Centura College will be holding a career fair for its students, graduates, as well as individuals in the community who are seeking employment.
By Brian Stauss
Centura College will be holding a career fair on Thursday, March 22 at its campus located at 131 Berkshire Drive, Columbia, SC. The fair begins at 10 a.m. and will continue until 2 p.m.
The event will feature a variety of companies from the healthcare industry, as well as companies from other industries. Employers attending will lend guidance regarding the application process for their companies, and may even hold on-site interviews for qualified applicants. Guests are expected to attend the career fair professionally dressed, with copies of their resumes and prepared to network. A list of participating employers can be found at https://www.facebook.com/events/2104866723070307.
“Centura College strives to connect communities and careers, so we are encouraging both our students, and the public to attend,” says Kimberly West, Campus Executive Director at Centura College’s Columbia campus. “We will have many employers on-site, hiring for a variety of entry-level positions.”
Career fair attendees are also invited to take a tour of the campus’s training facilities and to meet with admissions staff to discuss the benefits of career-focused training and the various program options available at Centura College.
This event is free and open to the public. For more information regarding Centura College’s career fair, contact the Columbia campus at (803) 754-7544.
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 skilled 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.
The faculty that forms the Student Services Department plays a key role in helping you through your college journey. Student Services includes different branches of a campus to aid you in addressing specific needs. Below you can find information on the departments that help maintain order on campus:
Career Services – If you are a graduate, or you are about to graduate, Career Services can provide assistance when it comes to searching for jobs. They help with writing resumes and will coach you on proper interview attire and etiquette. They will even performing mock interviews in preparation for the real thing. Career Services arranges opportunities for employers to come to the campus to encourage you to meet with them face to face.
Bursar – The Bursar Department assists with billing, monitoring your account balances and collecting balances due.
Financial Aid – The Financial Aid Department breaks down the specifics on your financial aid options. They will also provide information on grant or scholarship opportunities.
Librarian/Learning Resource Center Assistant – A Librarian, or Learning Resource Center Assistant, provides tools, books and other reference materials that can help you with studying or assignments.
Registrar – The Registrar Department maintains order when it comes to things like: attendance and student records, grades, transfer/transcript information, and class enrollments.
Student Services – A Student Services Coordinator establishes relationships with the community as resources for you. Using their connections, they will help you in finding housing information, transportation and daycare options, as well as, part time jobs options to have while attending school.
Veteran Services– Veterans Services equip veteran students with information on what educational benefits are offered to them. They accommodate veterans to help create a smooth transition from military life to civilian life.
Equipped with the proper knowledge of what each Student Services Department does, you now know which department to turn to for the proper guidance.