In the wake of the weekend, Independence University is suddenly closing, causing panic and confusion for its student body and the federal government. Still, as of Wednesday morning, the University’s website hasn’t been updated to publicly broadcast the closing. Independence University’s website’s owner, The Center for Excellence in Higher Education, has not been updated either. The Center for Excellence in Higher Education owns three other colleges that are also in the process of closing. Now, the university looks to push its students to new colleges, raising suspicion about the reason for the closure.
Independence University is chiefly focusing on relocating its student body to Miami International University of Art & Design or Georgia’s South University. Students additionally have the option of stopping their schooling and requesting a return of their federal student loans. However, upon looking into the transfer plans, the Education Department said that Independence University’s “students are being pressured to transfer,” and that the arrangement is “unusual.” Students are worried about credit transfer, falling behind in classes, and the impact of relocation.
One Independence University student – who had been working to get her Bachelor of Science in the college’s Web Design and Development program, Dianne Eveler, expressed frustration about the scandal:
“The most I can say about these tragic findings is this. Finding only a few days before you are expected to graduate was disheartening. Also, the terrifying item was to see the hard work you put into place disappear in a moment with no warning, no idea this was happening.
For the most part, the College lacks empathy because many of the faculty were given very little notice or lost their job that day. We have no support in who to contact, or in my case, am I getting my degree.
The truth be told, I went into my Student Portal before I lost access and saw my credits of 180 go to zero, and a new graduation date appear. I’m so scared I lost my degree. I was working so hard to get a perfect 4.0 to have that work lost. I have learned a valuable lesson, do more research in a college, and never ever do an online learning program again.”
Furthermore, this isn’t the first time that Independence University has been federally scrutinized. The Federal Student Aid chief operation officer, Richard Cordray, commented that the university chose to shut down to avoid the findings of the earlier examination. In 2020, the Center for Excellence in Higher Education has been discovered to be in connection to fraud by the Colorado Government. Independence University had then been placed on a monitoring list and had government restrictions placed on the college’s receival of taxpayer money. Due to the impending pressure on students to transfer, federal employees warranted that a more in-depth investigating is required regarding the university’s reason for shutting down.
The accreditor for Independence University reports that it’s approval of the college had ended in April, as the school failed to maintain acceptable graduation and employment rates among students. This end of accreditation also resulted in the loss of federal money to the University.
In a statement to USA Today, Cordray explained, “We have already emailed students to help them understand they do not have to be rushed into accepting a transfer to another school of CEHE’s choosing.” In spite of the college’s sudden closure, the Federal Student Aid chief operation officer cautions students to not make any hasty decisions. Under President Biden’s administration, the Education Department is “more willing to exercise its regulatory oversight” reports USA Today.
As uprooted students scrabble to find answers, they’ve had to resort to asking their fellow peers, college administration, and the U.S. Department of Education. Heather Reibsamen, who had been working to get her Bachelor of Science in the college’s Graphic Design program, explained how the tragic situation unfolded for her:
“The last week has been a whirlwind of emotions. Since the announcement that the school was closing, students have scrambled to figure out what their options were. We were sent a form with a few choices: transfer to a “teach-out” school or lose everything we have worked for, to put it bluntly. Initially, I thought everything would work out since I only had a few credits left until I graduate. However, I was met with disappointment and more unknowns. The “approved” teach-out school is Miami International University of Art & Design. I attended the meetings I was told to attend and was unfortunately met with the news that this school does not teach in my state. I was told I needed to find my own college to transfer to and would potentially have to pay out of pocket due to my student loans being tied up with Independence University. Many students were faced with this. Many students are not able to graduate on time because of this.
No one was prepared. No one was warned. We scrambled to get our last assignments in hoping they would count towards the credits we had been working on. There are students that were supposed to graduate last Sunday, however, they have been met with uncertainty. No one knows if the credits we have worked so hard to complete will transfer over. There are employees that have been employed through IU for years that were let go at just a moment’s notice.
I immediately began the search for a school that was accredited and not-for-profit. I reached out to Southern New Hampshire University to see what options I would have if I transferred to their school. I was greeted with understanding and encouragement. Many colleges are learning about the dilemma with Independence University and are seeing the wrongdoings towards the students and staff. SNHU has been every bit of encouraging and supportive during this transition. I consider myself one of the lucky ones so far. I found a school that is regionally accredited and is geared towards the success of the students. I am hopeful for a smooth transition.
Independence University has left the students and staff in complete confusion, and we are all struggling to make sense of it all. We have hope that everything will work out and fear of what still may come.”
Finally, on Wednesday, the college’s closure was announced to students via email. This delayed response highlights how a University can operate in complete disarray, with its students completely unaware of the behind-the-scenes scandal.
Looking for rockin’ back to school duds? Rockstar Originalis expanding womenswear pieces to include sizing from X-Small to 3X-Large! The plus size collection includes track sets, casual wear and activewear which is accented with the brand’s logo, and iconic embellishments thus remaining true to the brands ethos. The plus size pieces range from $39.00 to $89.00, won’t break the bank and are perfect for the end of Summer and beginning of the school year. Arrive for the first day of class feeling confident in trendy styles like the Gigi Short Set (which can be viewed below.)
ZAGG Gear4 Protective Gaming Console Cases
ZAGG Gear4 today announced a 360-degree protection bundle for the Nintendo Switch and Switch Lite gaming consoles. The Kita Grip 360 and Kita Grip 360 Lite cases, which are made with 52% renewable plant-based material, will be bundled with a ZAGG InvisibleShield screen protector for the ultimate gaming protection package. Gamers also get a smooth screen protector that preserves touchscreen sensitivity and guards the display against scratch damage, like from docking the console.
The slim, flexible Kita Grip case has been tested to protect the Switch from drops up to 10 feet/3 meters. The case is compatible with the Switch Classic docking system and allows access to the rear kickstand on the Switch Classic. It even includes an antimicrobial agent that inhibits the growth of odor-causing bacteria.
Skechers and digital creator and entrepreneurAvani Gregg (50M+ followers) just dropped Avani x Skechers, a new creative campaign for the sought-after Skechers Uno where Avani styles her number one fashion sneaker like no other. Avani curated the social content for the campaign, which reflects her personal style and love for bright colors. Available in brights including hot pink, blue, and red, making the perfect statement shoe to make any look pop, and classic colorways like white, black, sand, and olive, that go with any outfit.
The versatile trend-right Uno can be paired with a summer dress while also completing any athleisure look. The Skechers Uno has you covered for all-day wear thanks to its Air-Cooled Memory Foam® insole, while the hidden Wedge Fit design adds the perfect slight lift. Look and feel good this summer and fall as you get ready to head back to school! The Avani x Skechers styles featured in the campaign are available on Skecher’s website and retail for $80.
Fabletics’ July Collection
School is out for the Summer, but its never too soon to think about your back to school outfits. As we kick off the new month, Fabletics is sharing their July Collection. Fabletics is launching their first ever Hiking Capsule, which includes cargo shorts, onesies, skirts, jackets (and more!) These lifestyle pieces are versatile enough for every school day and extracurricular activity.
New styles are introduced in this collection and grounded in the brand’s beloved Motion365® fabric. It’s silky-smooth support, superior stretch and breathability make it a top pick when dressing for these hotter temps. Meet the Brianna Onesie– our first jumpsuit in this fabric- built with breathable mesh vents and secure pockets. And speaking of pockets- our Trinity ‘triple pocket’ design is back, better than ever and available in both leggings and shorts! For more complete Back to School outfits, our ‘Must Have’ July sets can be found here!
Mophie 3-in-1 stand for MagSafe Charger
Mophie today announced a new 3-in-1 stand for MagSafe Charger. Available exclusively in Apple stores, and on Apple and Zagg’s websites, the 3-in-1 stand for MagSafe Charger offers dedicated wireless charging spots for iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods/AirPods Pro. Just drop each device in its designated space and charging begins on contact. Install the Apple MagSafe Charger (not included), and you can easily charge all of your everyday accessories in one central location. The 3-in-1 stand for MagSafe Charger is priced at $89.95.
The Magsafe Charger features 15W Fast Wireless Charging, allowing users to wirelessly charge the iPhone 12 at the fastest speed possible. With the Integrated Apple Watch Magnetic Charger, your Apple Watch will be positioned at the ideal angle to take advantage of Nightstand Mode. The charger additionally has an AirPods Charging Spot that ensures charging begins on contact, every time. This charging spot allows for the perfect viewing angle in both Portrait or Landscape mode. For more information, visit HERE.
Rolls-Royce Escapism Luggage Collection
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has added Black Badge editions to its Escapism Luggage Collection. The new luggage is designed to complement the darker, edgier personas of the marque’s Black Badge motor cars, which cater to patrons with a bold, confident, and uncompromising attitude to life. The five new pieces – 48hr Weekender, 24hr Weekender (see below image), Holdall, Tote Bag and Organizer Pouch – are handcrafted from the finest leather and soft canvas, together with a new material inspired by the unique technical-weave fabric first used in the interior of Cullinan Black Badge. Patrons can choose from colorways which include bold, eye-catching hues from the Black Badge color palette or more understated tones. Each item is finished with intricate contrast piping detail – a first for Rolls-Royce luggage, which clients can personalize if they wish – and a metal plaque bearing the Black Badge ‘Infinity’ lemniscate icon.
The Black Badge Escapism luggage collection can be ordered as a five-piece set or as individual items from Rolls-Royce dealers. These luggage pieces can also make for luxurious school bags, and are sure to impress on picture day. Prices for the five-piece set start from 22,075 GBP, excluding local taxes.
Raptic’s Portable Power Station – TITAN 225
Raptic’s Titan 225is the perfect power source for every student’s back to school needs. This portable, rechargeable power station is designed to provide long-lasting charge for all your devices. Students can study outside on campus grounds or do homework in their backyards, thanks to the mighty Titan 225. Additionally, this battery is compact enough to be effortless carried around in one’s backpack from class to class. 360 Magazine used our Titan 225 to charge our GoTrax Emerge Electric Bike.
Users can recharge their phone up to 20 times, laptop up to 5 times, and tablet up to 6 times. The battery also includes 3 USB hubs, 1 USBC, a lighter plug, and an AC plug. No matter how long homework takes you, Raptic’s technology solutions ensure that you can get the job done without losing power. For more info, please visit HERE.
GRIPBELL Free-Weight Pairs
Revolutionary free-weight company GRIPBELL is proud to announce it is now selling its weights as sets of pairs. These weight sets are perfect for PE classes at home during hybrid learning schedules, pre-season and sports training, and working out. Students looking to enhance their home gym and fitness regimen will find this targeted and affordable option the best way of providing an excellent, full body, at-home workout. Especially for college students in small dorm rooms, this compact exercise equipment is able to easily be stored and used for a variety of physical activities.
With its innovative design, GRIPBELL is the superior handheld free weight system. Hundreds of exercises are possible with nearly unlimited range of grip positions, making it the most versatile free-weight system on the market. As the weight is equally distributed throughout the device and there are no sharp edges, GRIPBELL is both ergonomic and family friendly, and allows users to perform all the movements of both dumbbells and kettlebells combined. For more information, please visit their website.
Skechers ×Kansaïyamamoto Collection
A celebration of high fashion and avant-garde imagery arrives at Skechers, The Comfort Technology Company™, in an exciting new footwear collaboration inspired by the late iconic Japanese designer Kansai Yamamoto. Each Max Cushioning Premier pair in the limited-edition collection provides exceptional comfort and support through lightweight, responsive ULTRA GO® cushioning platforms and Air-Cooled Goga Mat breathable insoles with high-rebound cushioning. The well-cushioned pairs are a tribute to Kansai’s affection for joyful fashion.
The limited edition Skechers x Kansaïyamamoto collection of four fashion sneakers for men and women embrace Kansai’s unique aesthetic and energetic style. Launching on the one-year anniversary of his passing, the collaboration provides an opportunity for fans across the world to honor Kansai’s legacy through the colorful designs. The collection of Max Cushioning Premier styles for men and women is now available on skechers.com, as well as at select Skechers flagship stores, and online at Skechers website.
Evesome Fall Winter 2021 2022 Collection
Evesome, the French boutique brand, features designs from Paris, produced by artisans with an eye for detail. This lavish company invites fashion and comfort into your life with their newest look book. Evesome features back to school essentials for students that are picture-perfect for photo day.
Show off your style with classy garments like berets, scarfs, kimonos, ponchos, shirts, and sweaters. For transporting supplies across campus, invest in one of Evesome‘s patterned totes. Evesome even has adorable dorm room decor, like cushy throw pillows. For more info, please visit their website.
Vontélle Eyewear × ViacomCBS Children’s Eyewear Line
Vontélle Eyewear, the black-woman-owned, luxury eyewear brand, is proud to announce a partnership with ViacomCBS Consumer Products for a children’s eyewear line centered around Nickelodeon’s beloved characters. Vontélle will create three to four new unique eyewear frames annually using characters from Nickelodeon shows like Baby Shark’s Big Show!,PAW Patrol, SpongeBob SquarePants, Rugrats, Teenage Mutant Turtles, and more
For this collaboration, Vontélle has created an exclusive set of frames specifically for kids that combines the classic Nickelodeon characters with their bold and vibrant styles. These frames are the perfect back-to-school swag for students. Vontélle X Nickelodeon eyewear line will be available December 2021 at retailers and online HERE.
The PANGAIA X HAROSHI BE@RBRICK Capsule
Looking for the perfect back-to-school drip? PANGAIA is pleased to announce a new partnership with renowned artist and skateboard enthusiast – Haroshi. As a skateboarder and self-taught woodworker, Haroshi creatively combines his two passions: fine art and subculture, utilizing upcycled skateboards as a medium for his hand carved sculptures. Each collaborative piece of Haroshi’s BE@RBRICK, created in partnership with the expert Karimoku woodworkers, is built from local Japanese maple wood that imitates the colorful layers of a skateboard deck. First released by MEDICOM TOY in 2019, it will now come to life across the range of PANGAIA X HAROSHI BE@RBRICK products through an assortment of adult and kids t-shirts, hoodies, and track pants.
The PANGAIA X HAROSHI BE@RBRICK capsule will be available to purchase today July 27, 2021 via the PANGAIA website and in Tokyo through 2G’s concept store that is jointly operated by MEDICOM TOY, Motofumi “Poggy” Kogi and NANZUKA. The new release furthers the brand’s dedication to working with communities, artists, and change makers that share the same values and mission as PANGAIA. Haroshi’s creativity, combined with his love for art and sustainability is perfectly aligned with the brand’s approach.
Team USA Surf Collection
To commemorate USA Surfing‘s first ever event at the Olympic Games in Tokyo, renowned marine life artist Wyland created a limited time commemorative USA Surf collection with a signature Octopus in his beautiful Japanese-influenced Gyotaku style. This lucky Octopus shows up throughout the collection. The Surf Tokyo hat is the perfect accessory to keep you cool during sunny afternoons by the sea. The Surf Tokyo shirt, which features illustrated dolphins, is the ideal beach-ready tee.
Look like an Olympian in this stylish surf apparel. Proceeds support the ocean conservation partnership between USA Surfing and the Wyland Foundation. Olympic gold medalist Carissa Moore supports these conservation efforts, and has created joint commemorative gear with Surfers for Conservation and the Wyland Foundation. Shop the joint surf collection HERE.
Old Trapper Original Beef & Cheese Snack Stick
Old Trapper’s Original Beef & Cheese Snack Sticks are the perfect back-to-school snack! Enjoy the best of both worlds because you get two tasty foods in one package– creamy American cheese and smoky beef. These hearty snack sticks are easy to throw into lunch boxes or quickly unwrap after a long day at school.
Old Trapper sets the standard for snacking utility with their delicious Beef & Cheese sticks. These snacks retail in convenient packs for just $21. Customers can choose between a one-time order, or a recurring snack subscription. For more info, visit Old Trapper’s website.
PUMA × TMC Collection – THE HUSSLE WAY | THE MIAMI STORY
To continue honoring the vision and legacy of Nipsey Hussle, PUMA and The Marathon Clothing are releasing their second collection of 2021 which represents THE HUSSLE WAY | THE MIAMI STORY. This series pays homage to select cities – the “MIAMI STORY” is the first in this series – and particular moments when famed fashion icon Groovey Lew collaborated with Nipsey Hussle to create unique, one-of-a-kind looks. The five-piece “MIAMI STORY” capsule collection draws inspiration from the multiple shades of blue in the majestic Miami water and includes co-branded shirts, blue pants, blue Bermuda shorts and an all-white PUMA x TMC Future Rider.
Retailing for $45-$90, the collection will be available on Puma’s website, at the PUMA NYC Flagship store, and at select retailers including The Marathon Clothing starting August 13. For more information, please visit HERE. On that website, users can view a video of Groovey Lew, who talks about his friendship with Nipsey Hussle, the meaning of the Hussle Way, inspiration behind the collection and more.
Rado x Great Gardens of the World Watches
Never be late for class again! When Rado announced their partnership with Grandi Giardini Italiani in 2017, it brought together the companies’ shared interest in design, beauty and nature at its best. Rado now extends its partnership with the Great Gardens of the Worldand brings to life three modern design timepieces with an essence of nature.
In full bloom, three new models celebrating exceptional design, eternal nature and futuristic materials, form part of the new line named Rado True x Great Gardens of the World. Each timepiece, or “chapter,” represents a stunning achievement of great subtlety and harmony, the glorious power of nature, and modern design. For more information, visit HERE.
MyMedic First Aid Essentials
Head into your next school year confident you’ve covered all your emergency bases with MyMedic’s conveniently compact safety kits for your car or backpack. Their MyFAK ultra-compact kit can store over 100 expert selected first aid items in only 7.5″ of space! It has everything you need to treat trail blisters, cuts and burns, blocked airways, broken bones, and more.
MyMedic’s MyFak first aid kit contains over 100 first aid and trauma supplies. The bag is easy to tote to school, thanks to it’s grab and go design and snag resistant zipper. The MyFak kit is MOLLE system compatible. MyMedic also offers the Solo First Aid Kit, which is more compact and lightweight. This portable kit is small enough fits in bookbags, but contains over 45 essential first aid supplies. For more info, please visit MyMedic’s website.
Doctor Plotka’s Mouth Watchers
Bacteria, viruses, and fungi. While we all know these bad guys lurk in our mouths causing bad breath and tooth decay, we often stop thinking about them as soon as the toothbrush has left our mouth. Unfortunately, these pesky microorganisms stick around on our brushes, doubling every 20 minutes when left in the warm moist environment of the bathroom
These pioneering toothbrushes are paving the way to a cleaner dental routine by using silver infused bristles to naturally eliminate 99% of bacteria, viruses, and fungi. When paired with their deep cleaning flossing bristles, you’ll enjoy that fresh from the dentist feeling every time you brush! For more info, visit HERE.
G-SHOCK’s All-New GA2200 Series
Casio announces the all-new GA2200 series, featuring three colorways designed for rugged toughness. The GA2200BB-1A, GA2200M-1A, and GA2200M-4A are equipped with heavy duty cases built with Carbon Core Guard Structures, a front button design and a three-tier construction that seamlessly integrates bezel, case back and buttons to slim the case down to a mere 12.8mm.
The GA2200 models also boast G-SHOCK’s features, including a Double LED super illuminator, 3-year battery life, 5 daily alarms (1 SNZ), world time, interchangeable bands and more. The GA2200BB-1A retails for $120, while the GA2200M-1A and GA2200M-4A retail for $130 each. Each model will be available in August at select G-SHOCK retailers, G-SHOCK Soho Store, and on G-SHOCK’s website.
Star Wars™ Fine Jewelry Friendship Collection
On August 6th, Star Wars™ Fine Jewelry will premiere the newest additions to the Friendship collection with pieces inspired by R2-D2™, the devoted lighthearted droid. The Friendship collection is designed with droid-distinct detail and iconic color cues. More information about the collection can be found on this website.
There are seven distinctive fine jewelry collections inspired by Star Wars, so every fan can connect with their favorite character’s journey, from R2-D2 to the Mandalorian™. Shop assortments that honor the light side or the dark side of the force. All pieces in all seven collections are beautifully crafted in gold or silver with diamonds and gemstones. Star Wars Fine Jewelry is an officially authorized fine jewelry collection crafted by Renaissance Global.
Quarto Kids Nonfiction Books
Still have some summer reading to do before the school year? Check out Quatro Kids’ selection of nonficntion titles for children. All of these texts will be coming out late this summer or early next fall. For more information on Quatro Kids, visit their website.
Inside Animals by Barbara Taylor and Margaux Carpentier
[64 pages; ages 4-8; $22.99/$27.99 CAN]
In this book, there are 21 cross-sections that show how skeletons, organs, nerves and muscles fit together inside creatures from across the globe. Animals can have some body parts in common with us humans, such as the brain, heart and lungs – but each creature has its own unique body to help it survive and thrive in the wild. This means that there are all kinds of weird and wonderful organs and senses in the animal kingdom, such as the honey stomach in a honeybee or the ink sac of an octopus. Prepare to be dazzled as you discover incredible information to wow your family and friends
Rescuing Titanic by Flora Delargy
[80 pages; ages 7-11; $22.99/$27.99 CAN]
This exquisitely illustrated story of quiet bravery tells in rich detail how the little ship Carpathia saved 705 passengers of the Titanic from the icy waters of the North Atlantic. Written and illustrated by debut Northern Irish artist Flora Delargy, whose grandfather and great grandfather both worked in the Belfast Shipyards where the Titanic was built.
When Plants Took Over the Planet
[64 pages; ages 7-11; $17.95/$25.95 CAN]
This large-format, highly illustrated book will guide readers through the key aspects of the life of plants, from early ferns which were most certainly munched on by dinosaurs, to carnivorous plants that snap and ‘attack’ their prey, or powerful medicinal plants that can heal ailments and boost health. This book also explores how humans use – and abuse – our precious plants, and how reliant we all are on the survival of our planet’s network of botanical life.
Work It, Girl: Rule the music scene like Queen Beyoncé Knowles by Caroline Moss and Sinem Erkas
[64 pages; ages 7-12; $15.99/$20.99 CAN]
Discover how Beyoncé became a superstar singer and entrepreneur in this true story of her life. Find out what makes Queen Bey tick, what inspires her, and what motivates her. Learn about her passion for activism–right up to date with her support for Black Lives Matter. Then, learn 10 key lessons from her work.
Roots of Fight’s Game Changers Gold Collection
Apparel brand Roots of Fight is honoring five extraordinary Olympians, including Jim Thorpe, Wilma Rudolph, Jesse Owens, Cassius Clay and Joe Frazier, as part of their Game Changers Gold Collection. These Gold medalists are Olympians who overcame setbacks, odds and prejudices with courage, heart and incredible self-belief.
All five of these American athletes shined on the world’s biggest stage. They were game changers and remain the gold standard. The Game Changers Gold Collection celebrates these icons with a range of apparel from t-shirts, to shorts, sweats and sweatshirts priced from $40 – $85 dollars, available HERE.
Casio’s A100WE-1AVT Timepiece
Casio America, Inc. is excited to announce the expansion of its popular Vintage collection with the A100WE-1AVT. Inspired by the F-100 digital timepiece, Casio’s first resin case model and originally released in 1978, the new A100WE-1AVT timepiece boasts a unisex design and stylish, retro gadget feel.
Although the new A100WE-1AVT is modeled after the original F-100 digital timepiece, its design was updated for this more modern version while retaining the distinctive four metallic front button design of the F-100. The new model comes in a stainless-steel band and a nickel-free plated case for a more refined look. Along with Casio’s signature metal elements, its band features a slide-type clasp that lets users easily adjust the band length without special tools. For more information, please visit HERE.
Isabelle Grace Jewelry
Just as layering is super trendy in the necklace department, having a strong wrist stack is also in style. Today’s fashionistas have discovered that you don’t need to stop there when exploring the possibilities of your bracelet collection. Be creative and intermingle different metals, materials and colors in developing your own personal style with Isabelle Grace Jewelry.
Isabelle Grace Jewelry’s new beaded bracelet collection features exquisite, handcrafted jewelry that’s sustainably made in the USA and of heirloom quality, and never goes out of style. Known for their beautiful distinct designs, each piece is created just for the wearer, perfect for an easy and effortless look that’s impactful, yet versatileenough to wear on a day-to-day basis. Isabelle Grace’s trendy and elegant jewelry are the most darling accessories for any student’s perfect back-to-school outfit.
Tenacious Toys Boo Berry GID Skull Dangler
Tenacious Toys is thrilled to continue their support of independent creators and manufacturers with a pair of exclusive releases at the end of this week which they are dubbing “INDY INSANITY”! This second drop this week is the Boo Berry GID Skull Dangler by Jonathan DuBose – a monstrous 8-inch-tall vinyl art toy designed and produced by DuBose Art. While the Skull Dangler is available in a rainbow of colors in the DuBoseArt shop, the GID Boo Berry colorway is a Tenacious Toys shop exclusive.
There are only 30 Boo Berry Skull Danglers made and they are priced at $140 each. Boo Berry Skull Danglers will be released on the Tenacious Toys homepage at noon EST on Friday August 13th. Each Boo Berry Skull Dangler will come with an exclusive sticker as well as a free enamel pin. Customers looking to create a super deluxe version can opt to head over to the DuBoseArt website shop to pick up a Clear Blue Ooze head to place on top of the Skull Dangler (must purchase Ooze Head separately). DuBose offers a selection of optional alternative heads which fit all Skull Danglers.
IVY PARK RODEO Collection
adidas and Beyoncé are returning to present the latest adidas x IVY PARK collection. Inspired by the inimitable style and undeniable influence of Black cowboys and cowgirls, the “IVY Park Rodeo” collection celebrates the formidable impact of Black men and women on American Western culture. The collection celebrates the oft-hidden history of Black pioneers within cowboy and cowgirl culture and their continued influence and impact on the American Rodeo.
IVY PARK Rodeo is where audacious design meets thoughtfully remixed classic streetwear and athletic wear fused with inspiration from the Black cowboy experience. The collection features 58 adult apparel styles, 5 adult footwear styles, and 13 different accessories. Boasting dark denim fabrics and washed heavy French terry materials throughout, the apparel and accessories are elevated with unique denim monograms and bold purple glow cow prints. Utilitarian-inspired zips and snap fastenings complete the details. The fourth IVY PARK collection launches exclusively on adidas’ website for 24 hours on August 19 and is followed by a wider global launch on August 20.
Champion × Naruto Capsule Collection
Champion Athleticwear has partnered with Naruto, a Japanese manga, to bring a unique capsule to market celebrating the story’s most well-known characters. Fans can shop the limited edition collection on August 13 at Champion (in-store and online).
The collection includes Reverse Weave hoodies and Heritage short sleeve tees for men, cropped Reverse Weave and Boyfriend Reverse Weave hoodies and heritage short sleeve tees for women, and hoodies and tees for kids. Plus, fans can go in any Champion store for an exclusive opportunity to customize their merchandise with hand-picked patches including characters Naruto Sage mode, Gaara, Shikamaru, Tsunade, Hashirama, Tobirama, Hiruzen and symbols Uzumaki Clan, Uchiha Clan, Akatsuki cloud, and Sharingan!
Rockstar Original’s Alaisa Jacket
Rockstar Original’s Alaisa jacket is the must-have wardrobe staple for Fall. The iconic puffer jacket for men comes in black ($199) and statement-making metallic royal blue ($209) and metallic red ($209). Staying true to the brand’s values of accessibility, the Alaisa starts at $199 in sizes Small to 3X-Large.
Designed to keep you warm and snug during the winter months, Rockstar Original’s bestseller in a matte fabric is made with a down alternative and includes a removable hoodie. This jacket is the perfect back-to-school coat to keep you warm throughout the upcoming, cooler months. For more info, visit HERE.
Hedon Helmets, the manufacturer of the world’s most luxurious and stylish motorcycle, bicycle and e-bike helmets, issue a bold and refreshing retake on two wheeled culture. Whether you’re taking your e-bike to school, work, or just on an afternoon joy ride, Hedon Helmets keeps you safe on all of life’s adventures. Kids will be kids, so keep them safe while they play!
Created in 2011, founders Lindsay and Reginald set out ot completely rethink the protective headgear of the contemporary urban rider. Without compromising on safety they developed a style that is bold, refined and nostalgic, with comfort driving design above all else Their core belief is that when form and function work seamlessly together, style is effortless. Their dedication has led Hedon Helmets to become essential accessories for all discerning riders.
Casio’s A100WEPC Watch
Casio America, Inc. announced today the release of the A100WEPC, a collaboration model featuring the iconic PAC-MAN game that is popular around the world. The A100WEPC is based on the recent reissue of the F-100 digital watch, which was originally released in 1978.
The new A100WEPC watch is based on the recently released A100 watch, which reprises the design of the original F-100, including the unique four-button front layout. The styling is designed to evoke the fun, retro look of the PAC-MAN game. The watch face features colorful pixelated PAC-MAN and ghost characters, and the center ILLUMINATOR logo is rendered using the PAC font. The face design faithfully replicates the PAC-MAN game screen, down to details like the pink line marking the exit of the ghost nest from which the ghosts emerge. The gold-plated watch case is inspired by the color of the PAC-MAN arcade game cabinet. The top watch band is laser etched with a rendering of PAC-MAN being chased by ghosts, and the reverse scene with PAC-MAN chasing ghosts is rendered on the bottom band. The case back also features the PAC-MAN logo and icons. The watch comes with special packaging imprinted with PAC-MAN character icons and the game score screen, to deliver the full look of the PAC-MAN game.
Marc Jacobs’ Color Collection Pop Up
Westfield Century City’s newest pop-up, THE COLOR COLLECTION, an everyday capsule designed by Marc to celebrate comfort, creativity and self-expression, will debut just in time for the back to school and back to work shopping season. For a limited time, the Marc Jacobs Color Collection will be on display for guests to shop and browse. The pop-up will feature accessories and athleisure in vibrant matching hues and shades – featuring everything from everyday wardrobe essentials such as t-shirts, biker shorts, tote bags, to slides, all donning the iconic Marc Jacobs logo.
This apparel in this vibrant, striking collection makes for the ultimate back-to-school outfit or picture day photo-op. Free for all, Westfield Century City invites the public to visit the pop-up from August 15– October 31. The pop-up is located between the Jo Malone and Tesla retailers, on Level 1. For more information, please visit HERE.
Kask’s urban, Italian style helmets are ideal for bike enthusiasts and microtransit commuters. With the recent launch of their URBAN R and MOEBIUS helmets, bikers can stay safe and fashionable on the road. URBAN R features more than just beautiful aesthetics. With an integrated active ventilation system, URBAN R’s airflow is fully adjustable to suit the rider’s needs. A simple slide of the rear lever will open the helmet’s vent to allow comfortable cooling while the sun is shining. MOEBIUS features the all-new and KASK-exclusive ERGO FIT adjuster to ensure precise fit and comfort, even when riding on uneven terrain such as cobblestone streets. Complete with removable and washable padding, MOEBIUS provides optimum comfort for day-to-day wear.
The URBAN R helmet will go on sale in North America from the end of June, retailing at $249 USD (CPSC 1203 certified). The MOEBIUS helmet will go on sale in North America from the end of June (CPSC 1203 certified). It will retail at $149 USD. For more information, please visit HERE.
Humphreys Witch Hazel
Humphreys Witch Hazel is sustainably wild harvested to preserve its natural potency and distilled to capture its more pure, vital plant essence – not diluted and never polluted. Humphreys is proud to responsibly manufacture products and offer a vegan, cruelty-free skincare experience free of dyes, sulfates, parabens, gluten and phthalates.
Humphreys Witch Hazel offers three Organic Toners including Humphreys Clarify Pure Witch Hazel Organic Toner, Humphreys Calm & Clarify Witch Hazel with Lavender Organic Toner and Humphreys Soothe & Clarify Witch Hazel with Rose Organic Toner. Additionally, the brand offers four Alcohol-Free Toners including Humphreys Soothe Witch Hazel with Rose Alcohol-Free Toner, Humphreys Nourish Witch Hazel with Aloe Alcohol-Free Toner, Humphreys Refresh Witch Hazel with Cucumber Alcohol-Free Toner and Humphreys Recharge Witch Hazel with Grapefruit Alcohol-Free Toner. The full collection features botanical ingredients specially selected for the beautiful benefits they bring to senses and skin, always wild & free. Humphreys Witch Hazel is available at Walmart, Amazon and select Target stores.
Tonino Lamborghini Timepieces × BeauGeste Luxury Brands at Couture in Las Vegas
Tonino Lamborghini Timepieces and BeauGeste Luxury Brands, the Brand’s exclusive agent in the USA, will participate in the next edition of Couture in Las Vegas from August 24-26, 2021. Visitors will have the opportunity to view the newly redesigned Cuscinetto timepiece.
Held annually at the luxurious Wynn Resort, the Couture Show is one of the leading trade shows specializing in designer fine jewelry and luxury timepieces. In addition, BeauGeste Luxury Brands will exhibit Tonino Lamborghini watches in the “Krug” ballroom and showcase the entire collection to America’s elite top-tier buyers and the most recognized luxury consumer and trade media.
APERCU EYEWEAR – THE LAURENCE FRAME IN BLEU MARINE
Introducing the newest addition to Apercu’s bestselling silhouette: BLEU MARINE. The luxury sunglass brand has recently welcomed their newest, navy shades. This innovative colorway is an instant classic and proves to be the perfect mix of novelty and refinery. Bleu Marine shades are sure stun at any occasion this Fall.
Aercu’s mission is to create sophisticated, timeless sunglasses. As such, the company designed a 1970’s inspired silhouette that complements any outfit. A chic, navy hue was combined with the perfectly oversized, square shape to create the Laurence in Bleu Marine. The future is bright for students returning to school this fall. As such, these sunglasses are the ideal back-to-school style statement.
Fabletics × Liza Koshy Second Collection
Fabletics releases a new, limited-edition capsule collection with actress, producer and entertainer, Liza Koshy. Following the success of her first collection and based on customer demand, Liza is back to deliver her unique design perspective again. In her second activewear collaboration with Fabletics, Liza took inspiration from nature and urban utility for a collection that is bold yet versatile.
Designed in a variety of the brand’s high-tech fabrics and textures, like second-skin Seamless, contouring SculpKnit®, and PureLuxe in a new ultra-shine fabric for added texture, Liza’s collection goes beyond bras and leggings, sporting a wide variety of pieces including bodysuits, joggers, hoodies, and more. Grounded in a neutral pallete of powder lights, the collection features pops of colors and a psychedelic Haze Wave print throughout to reflect Liza’s energy and creative personality.
The Wale Collection x Kaz
Rapper and entrepreneur, Wale, has teamed up with Foot Lockerand Footaction to drop his second collection: “The Wale Collection x Kaz.” Designed with Kazeem “Kaz” Famuyide and in partnership with the WWE, the second collection is inspired by Wale’s love for the WWE and features T-shirts and hoodies from some of his favorite WWE Superstars from the ’80s.
Launching just in time for SummerSlam, the collection will be available exclusively at Foot Locker and Footaction starting today. This one-of-a-kind launch merges the world of music, sports, entertainment and fashion. Students looking for the most hip back-to-school apparel should check out this collection!
Skechers x kansaïyamamoto D’Lites Capsule
The second Skechers x kansaïyamamoto collection, inspired by the late Japanese designer, is set to drop on Saturday, August 21 at online and at select Skechers retail stores in North America and Japan, followed by the release of the limited-edition pairs in select European markets.
A celebration of avant-garde artistry, the Skechers x kansaïyamamoto D’Lites capsule honors the iconic Japanese designer’s use of color alongside Skechers’ signature silhouette and builds on the success of the initial launch on July 21. The global collaboration—years in the making—was one of the last influenced by acclaimed designer Kansai Yamamoto before he passed away and provides an opportunity for fans across the world to honor his legacy through the colorful designs.
Game Changers/Ground Breakers Collection
“The Brown Bomber,” Joe Louis, is boxing royalty. Furthermore, he is a national hero and unconquerable champion. Between 1937-1949, Louis stood as the world’s heavyweight champion. He wasn’t just loved, he was also s a serviceman during World War II, the embodiment of national pride. For generations of boxers since, he was the motivation to greatness. Now, Roots of Fight is creating a capsule inspired by this timeless icon.
As part of Roots of Fight‘s Game Changers Series, this new collection features an assortment of bright, stylish apparel. Tee-shirts inspired by historic legends will make you feel like you’re paving your own path to history. Wear shirts inspired by great leaders like Rey Mysterio, Rosa Parks, Julio Cesar Chavez, Joe Louis, Jesse Owens, Jackie Robinson, Roberto Clemente, and more. Celebrating standing up and speaking out with Game Changers new Ground Breakers collection featuring Joe Louis.
Spice of Life’s Bonfire Bluetooth Speaker
The Bonfire is a Bluetooth Speaker and flickering light all-in-one! “Pink noise” is a natural soothing rhythm in nature that comes from flames and/or bonfires. The Bonfire Bluetooth Speaker creates a form of “pink noise” and creates a calming ambiance! Its flickering light mimics a flame, while playing high-quality sounding music. Push once for a flicker or two for a full-like fire glow!
Use this speaker for a romantic outside dinner for two, a group bonfire on the beach, or to relax after school. The Bonfire Bluetooth Speaker will give you ambient lighting and quality sound anywhere you want to create a perfect setting! The small handle makes it easy to carry and hang anywhere! IP65 Certified (International Protection: recognized standard for classifying its water & dust resistance). Includes USB charging cable.
The LUMICHARGE II LED is an all-in-one desk lamp. Its multi-functional features include a convenient place to charge your phone with a universal charging dock for all types of smart phones and the 10W Wireless Fast Charger charges two phones at once! Modernity, sophistication and overall minimalistic presence the LED lamp 2.0 version will steal the spotlight in any office, kitchen, bedroom or workspace!
There are 3 different hues (cool, warm and yellow), different levels of brightness, directional lighting, built-in-motion sensor that turn on when you enter a dark room and an anti-bacterial surface-important in today’s environment. This model includes an upgraded dimmable calendar display with daylight savings, date, temperature and calendar with alarm options. Lumicharge is available on this website, Amazon and Amazon Prime, and ShareSale.
LITA by Ciara
Ciara launched her new ready to wear fashion collection today – LITA by Ciara – the latest brand to join The House of LR&C. The new women’s ready-to-wear collection is built on the belief that Love Is The Answer (LITA) and is designed with Ciara’s signature tomboy chic and effortless style as the inspiration. The consciously created collection brings to life the notion that consumers shouldn’t have to choose between style and sustainability which is an integral part of the brand’s ethos.
LITA features prints that embody the spirit of the rare and beautiful black king cheetah, an ode to Ciara’s fashion identity. The collection includes an Armor Coat in Faux Fur Jersey, Lover Shirt Jacket in Lamb Papery, a 90’s inspired Varsity Tour Jacket and Leader Track Pant in Stretch Leather. The collection is now available online at The House of LR&C, as well as on Nordstrom’s website and at select Nordstrom stores.
Are you tired of having a big black tv staring back at you from the wall? What if you could have an art collection valued at over a billion dollars instead? Enrich your life through the beauty and emotional connection of your favorite works of art with the BillionDollarArtGallery.
The perfect gift idea for the person who has everything, the BillionDollarArtGallery is an ingenious way to put your tv to work showcasing an extensive collection of over 500 paintings that span the ages and the imagination. Featuring the world’s most famous and influential pieces in ultra-high definition, now you can experience the fine details your coffee table book could never capture. Each slimline memory stick comes enclosed in a beautiful laser-etched maple gift box for safe storage and easy gifting for the person who has everything! For more info, please visit Amazon.
School can be stressful and the last thing you need is having to pick out what to wear. The key to back to school outfits are having staple items that are comfortable, stylish, inexpensive, and versatile. Luckily, Fabletics has made is easy for you to look cool and trendy. These back to school essentials will have you covered for the entire year.
The Postgame Jogger: A softer than soft brushed fleece jogger, equipped with sweat-wicking and anti-stink tech. Designed with a tailored fit and the perfect amount of stretch, you’ll never want to take these off.
The Training Day Polo: Built for training but cool enough to wear beyond the tennis courts, this isn’t your basic polo. Sweat-wicking fabric keeps you dry during your sweatiest workouts while its versatile slim fit and ribbed collar take the look to a whole new level.
The Franchise Short: Our bestselling short is made from our most durable fabric that’s coated with sweat-wicking and anti-stink tech. Its multiple pockets (including bounce-free hidden storage for your phone) make this a top performing utility short.
Rockstar Original Faux Grill
Not a new trend, but an exciting one. As an expansion or expression to your personal style, Rockstar Original now offers faux grills in silver and gold. An affordable and unique way to add character to your outfit.
P.S.: Rumor has it that grillz and tooth gems are it right now, “In 2021, grillz and dental ornaments are having a rebirth, and this movement is being spearheaded by a cohort of avant-garde, experimental designers who are set on pushing the boundaries of dental jewelry into a whole new realm. Mandatory-mask-or-not, being stuck at home has revealed an insatiable appetite for getting our mouths blinged-out.”
MomRemedy Household Cleaner and Stain Removal
College dorm rooms aren’t very big and don’t have a ton of storage. A good multi-surface cleaner can help keep your dorm clean with an all-in-one formula. From crayon on the walls to pet stains on the upholstery, discover the only grab-and-go household cleaner you need for jobs big and small with MomRemedy!
Their eco-friendly Everything Household Cleaner & Stain Remover is the key to decluttering your cleaning cupboard while making your routine a breeze. Simply grab one bottle to tackle stains, dissolve grease, eradicate odors, and more without harmful chemicals or obnoxious scents. When you opt in to their Subscribe & Save feature, you’ll get a great deal on their 64oz refill to use with your new chic reusable glass bottle.
Made with just 4 ingredients
Uses the natural cleaning power of citrus and hydrogen peroxide against stains, spots, odors, dirt, grease, and grime
Safe for the entire home
No sulfates, phthalates, or parabens
No added dyes or fragrance
Naturally light lemon scent adds a touch of freshness to your space
Made in the USA
Includes 64oz refill and 16oz reusable glass bottle with silicone sleeve
Sold in Giant Food Stores near you
Since introducing the very first organic lip balm in 2003, Eco Lips has helped make organics part of people’s lives. USDA Certified Organic and 100% edible formula made from food grade ingredients. This back-to-basics Pure & Simple lip balm line is packaged in our new Plant Pod® Innovation – the first 100% plastic-free plant tube. Offered in a variety of flavors including Coconut, Raspberry, and Vanilla. Delicious, pure and simple, and also great for kids.
Pure & Simple line: this back-to-basics Pure & Simple lip balm is made with just FOUR ingredients – sunflower oil, beeswax, Vitamin E and flavor. Certified organic and 100% edible – yes, you actually eat it!
This 9-pack features 3 Pure & Simple flavors: Raspberry, Coconut, Vanilla
WonderWorks Panama City Beach has an array of exhibits that help educate people about science. The newest exhibit on earthquakes, called Good Vibrations, opens June 11, 2021. Good Vibrations will spotlight Tuckaleechee Caverns, and how they document seismic activity around the world. The new exhibit was a topic request from educators, so it seemed appropriate that they also name the exhibit.
“We are happy to offer this new exhibit about earthquakes, which was a request by teachers,” said Michael Walsingham, general manager of WonderWorks Panama City Beach. “People will have a great opportunity to learn about seismic activity, along with where and how it’s measured.”
The Tuckaleechee Caverns are home to the most sensitive seismic station on Earth. It detects any and all tectonic movement anywhere in the world. If a country is testing a nuclear weapon or there is an earthquake, it has that information within seconds. Once it does, within 300 of a millisecond, it relays that important information directly to the U.S. Military; Vienna, Austria and Geneva, Switzerland. The information is collected 24/7 and is crucial to national security, as well as being able to provide earthquake information.
The exhibit, Good Vibrations will help share the importance of the Tuckaleechee Caverns and what they are doing in monitoring seismic activity. The information in the exhibit meets the educational standards on earthquake and seismic activity, and is one of WonderWorks’ many STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) related learning exhibits. The exhibit name was suggested by teachers.
“This is going to be a great summer, with families taking the time to include learning activities along with having fun,” added Walsingham. “At WonderWorks, we are where learning and fun come together, with the whole family enjoying their time here.”
WonderWorks Panama City Beach offers many STEM-related exhibits and activities all year long. There are also demonstrations, activities, virtual learning labs, science fair partnerships, homeschool days, and more. To get more information about the WonderWorks STEM programs, visit the site at: https://www.wonderworksonline.com/panama-city-beach/stem-programs/.
The interactive indoor amusement park offers STEM-focused activities for all ages. There are over 100 hands-on activities that are focused on the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math. Some of the exhibits will include a bubble room, Professor Wonder’s adventure, interactive sandbox, illusion art gallery, and xtreme 360 bikes. For more information on WonderWorks, visit the site at: https://www.wonderworksonline.com/panama-city-beach/.
The Oxford Method Puts Emphasis on Diversity and Inclusion
The Oxford Method, a tutoring community, is on a mission to help underprivileged students around the country
The pandemic changed how education was delivered for millions of students. While just about everyone was impacted, it has been especially difficult on minority students. According to McKinsey & Company, the disparities among student groups grew over the last year. It reports that when it comes to learning, the pandemic took a heavy toll on Black, Hispanic, and Indigenous communities around the country. It found that students of color had fallen 3-5 months behind, while white students were 1-3 months behind. One company, The Oxford Method, is out to help bridge that gap and bring those students up to speed.
“There must be a spotlight put on diversity and inclusion because the achievement gap has widened in the last year,” explains David Florence, professor and founder of The Oxford Method, a community that offers tutoring services around the country. “We are taking steps to help those students so they can get caught up and have the foundation they need to succeed.”
The Oxford Method is an online learning community made up of educators who help to provide tutoring to those in need. It provides a full range of tutoring services, covering all types of subjects, and has experienced educators who can work with all levels of students. They help students who are gifted, special needs, traditional, and from rural and urban areas around the nation.
The educational community helps underprivileged students in a variety of ways, including by:
Providing free computers and high-speed internet. With that, it provides free instruction to the students, including those who are special needs and gifted.
Working with students who are in urban and rural areas. These are areas often overlooked and that fall short in the technology category.
Having instructors from all socio-economic, psychographics, demographics, and geographic areas. The community of educators not only has a mission of helping those who are in diverse categories, but they are a group that is diverse.
“We have helped many students who would otherwise have a difficult time getting assistance,” added Florence. “We look forward to helping even more to finish this school year strong, get caught up over summer break, and be able to go into the new school year feeling confident.”
The Oxford Method has over 100 tutors around the country, covering all subject areas. It offers online tutoring, as well as in-person and in-classroom options. Its tutoring services are available 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. The Oxford Method works with its nonprofit, Social Actualization, Inc., by giving it 10% of all profits. The funds are used to provide free computers, high-speed internet, and instruction to underprivileged families in urban and rural America. Plus, 40% of the instructors are PhDs, 40% have a master’s degree, and 20% have only a bachelor’s degree.
The Oxford Method believes that education is the great equalizer and the best gift you can give the next generation. Subject areas include science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), as well as business, social studies, psychology, English, history, public speaking, study methods, test-taking, and more. To get more information about The Oxford Method, visit the Oxford Method website.
THE ALL-IMPORTANT SUBJECT OF MAINTAINING EYE CONTACT DURING VIRTUAL CONVERSATIONS AND PRESENTATIONS
Did you know that we have oxytocin receptors in our eyes? When we make eye contact with someone (researchers say about 30 seconds of maintained connection should do it), the receptors tell the brain to produce the hormone, which travels through the body, hits the internal organs, and ends in the heart. Each time the eye contact is maintained, the reaction repeats. The result? Our breath and heart rate slow down, we feel calmer, we feel… happy. Even better, research shows that this effect is achieved when we make eye contact virtually as well as in person.
The Dangers of Losing Human Connection
Connecting with others doesn’t just make us happy, it can apparently also make us better people. In one study, researchers found that individuals who felt connected to others were more likely to want to volunteer in their community or do kindness for strangers. Researchers are now trying to determine how our wellbeing and connection to others is being impacted by spending so much time distanced from our social groups.
Some studies seem grim. One extensive study out of the UK analyzed over 80 research articles on loneliness indicates that as children experience increasing levels of loneliness due to being away from school and friends, they’re at increasing risk of depression and anxiety.
But the good news is that we are getting really creative (and effective) at keeping our human connection going despite the social distancing.
For children navigating distance learning and time away from friends, doctors from the University of Michigan encouraged parents to see this time as an opportunity to teach children new skills that focus on kindness, resilience, and flexibility, while reminding parents that children are incredibly resilient as long as they are in a supportive and loving environment.
Kids can find social connections in lots of creative ways, from Zoom playdates to video game challenges with friends’ half-way around the world.
Technology also helps adults maintain — or form — meaningful connections. More than ever, meeting online is leading to meaningful, romantic relationships despite (or maybe because of?) couples waiting longer to meet in-person. Apparently, flirting via video chat is incredibly effective, despite the fact that you’re never quite really looking each other in the eye.
We are also connecting deeper with our coworkers, as Zoom happy hours have brought socializing into our homes, making for more relaxed conversations. There’s something about seeing your colleagues sipping seltzers from their kid’s playroom that really ups the camaraderie.
Research has shown that the key to virtual connection is the same as it is in person — eye contact. Now we just need to get better at forming that connection during video calls.
The best way to do this is to look into the camera intermittently as you would someone’s eyes when meeting in person. I know, easier said than done! Our instinct is to look at the person’s face on the screen. But one solution to make maintaining eye contact with a camera more natural is having a tool like Eyelinez around your lens. The fun designs will grab your attention and remind you to keep looking into the lens.
What Are Eyelinez?
Maintaining proper eye contact with a camera is not a new challenge. In fact, the challenge has existed ever since anyone had to stare into a cold dark camera as if they were engaging with a smiling human. An “eyeline” is where the speaker is looking and Eyelinez is the solution to enable you to maintain a natural and engaging eyeline with the camera.
1,500+ Parents of Transgender, Non-Binary, and Gender-Expansive Youth Condemn Anti-Trans Bills in Open Letter to Lawmakers
More than 1,500 parents of transgender, non-binary, and gender-expansive youth — from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico — signed a letter imploring elected officials to oppose anti-transgender bills under consideration in state legislatures across the country.
The letter comes in response to a fast and furious effort led by national groups aiming to stymie LGBTQ progress made on the national level and in many states. There are currently more than 200 anti-LGBTQ bills under consideration in state legislatures across the country. Of these discriminatory bills, 106 directly target transgender people, including efforts to ban transgender girls and women from participating in sports consistent with their gender identity and prohibit evidence-based, life-saving health care for transgender youth.
“Transgender kids all across the country are listening to what you say and watching what you do. The act of writing bills like this, holding hearings, and later casting votes sends a direct message to them: ‘You aren’t real to us. We don’t believe you when you tell us who you are. Your existence is dangerous to the other kids around you. We are okay if you feel lonely, isolated, and unwelcome. We are willing to take away even the smallest concessions that have been made for you because we have power and you don’t,’” the parents wrote. “Transgender folks are so tired, tired of fighting for their existence. And parents like us are tired of begging you to see our kids and treat them as full and equal members of society.”
“Transgender children are children. They deserve the ability to play organized sports and have access to medically necessary care, just like all children. These bills are cruel — and parents are not going to be silent when elected officials attack their children through discriminatory legislation,” saidHuman Rights Campaign President Alphonso David. “Transgender, non-binary, and gender-expansive youth impacted by these bills are among the most vulnerable to experience depression and engage in self-harm, including suicide. Legislators must realize the seriousness of this issue and remember that they were elected to lead — not call into question whether certain children have the right to exist, to be happy, or to live authentically.”
“As a trans person, I know what it means to have lawmakers try to write me out of existence — imagine being a trans child trying to cope with this reality. There is a coordinated attack on transgender, non-binary, and gender-expansive youth being waged in state legislatures across the country and it is having a devastating impact on the mental health of kids, who just want to be kids,” said Jay Brown, Senior Vice President, HRC Programs, Research & Training. “Parents will not back down when it comes to protecting their children, and they will not tolerate their elected officials using their positions of power to harm and further oppress them. We will never give up hope that if people — including elected officials — hear from people at the center of the policy debate, and their loved ones, that their hearts will open, and their minds will change.”
The full letter is below.
April 12, 2021
Dear Elected Officials,
Many of you are sponsoring, co-sponsoring, or considering voting for legislation that would force transgender children to participate in sports based on a letter on their birth certificate rather than who they are – or not participate at all. Some of you are also sponsoring, co-sponsoring, or considering voting for bills that would criminalize best-practice, evidence-based, life-saving health care that transgender youth need (and deserve!) to thrive.
Parents of transgender, non-binary, and gender-expansive youth like us have called you, sent you emails, and have showed up in the midst of a global pandemic to testify about how devastating these bills are…not only if or when they pass and become law, but also right now because, by whipping up a firestorm of attacks on our kids, they have already caused damage to our families.
Parenting during a pandemic is hard enough. The fact that these bills exist at all—that the lives of our children are up for debate in any state in this nation—adds a layer of worry to an already fraught time. Let’s be clear: the impact of these bills goes far beyond sports and medical care; they call into question whether our children have the right to exist, to be happy, to live authentically. The answer is yes. They absolutely do.
We have shared studies with you explaining that trans youth are more susceptible to struggle with anxiety or depression, not because they are transgender but because of stigma and discrimination. You have heard that being able to participate in sports and being on a team with friends and classmates can improve their mental health. You have heard adolescents tell you how afraid they are of experiencing the wrong puberty or how terrified teenagers are of having their medically-prescribed hormones denied to them.
This isn’t the first time. We tried telling you all of this a year ago before the pandemic thankfully cut many legislative sessions short and these bills floundered. After hearing some of these concerns last year, a senator in Missouri was quoted dismissively saying “We can’t be responsible for everyone’s mental health.”
We are pointedly telling you now that you actually are responsible for the mental health of these kids. We are holding you personally responsible for the amount of stress, anxiety, and fear our precious children are currently struggling with. We are holding you responsible for how some of our children are crying themselves to sleep every night, asking why so many people hate trans kids and want them to suffer. You are the reason they are asking to move somewhere where they will be protected, because their home doesn’t feel safe anymore with you in charge of creating its laws.
You were elected to your positions to lead. And leaders understand that in our great but imperfect system of government, we favor the concept of “majority rule, minority rights.” Leaders do not use their positions of power to harm and further oppress a struggling and hurting minority.
Transgender kids all across the country are listening to what you say and watching what you do. The act of writing bills like this, holding hearings, and later casting votes sends a direct message to them: “You aren’t real to us. We don’t believe you when you tell us who you are. Your existence is dangerous to the other kids around you. We are okay if you feel lonely, isolated, and unwelcome. We are willing to take away even the smallest concessions that have been made for you because we have power, and you don’t.”
Transgender folks are so tired, tired of fighting for their existence. And parents like us are tired of begging you to see our kids and treat them as full and equal members of society.
Here is a powerful quote from Nomi Ruiz, a Puerto Rican trans woman, artist and performer, that we’d like you to take time to think about…
“The outside world will never truly understand the magnitude of the trans experience, especially that of a child who has an undying need to live in truth despite being ostracized for it. The only way for trans children to thrive is to allow them to live freely in the face of a society that abuses them for it.”
Stop abusing our kids by creating legislation that targets them. Kill these bills now and leave our kids alone.
Parents of Transgender, Non-Binary, and Gender-Expansive Youth
The Oxford Method, a tutoring community, offers tips to help your child be successful in school
Over the last year, during the pandemic, there have been many kids who have struggled academically. This is in part due to the millions who have had to do online learning and find the setup difficult. Whether children are learning online, in person, via classroom, or through a combination of the three, there are things that parents can do to help them be more successful. Knowing what to do can help make a world a difference and reduce the struggling.
“Many parents are aware of the way their kids are struggling with school over this school year,” explains David Florence, professor and founder of The Oxford Method, a community that offers tutoring services around the country. “Rather than let them fall behind, it’s a good idea to take action and do what you can to help them keep up and even pull ahead.”
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 93% of households with school-age children report that their kids have engaged in some sort of distance learning during the pandemic. They also report that the vast shift in the way kids are learning has also caused digital inequality because some kids don’t have access to computers and/or the Internet. Whether students are learning online or in class, there are things parents can do to help them get a good education.
Here 7 ways to help ensure your child gets a good education:
Sleep. It’s crucial for a child to get enough sleep each night, which will help them to be more focused, as well as improve their behavior, quality of life, and mental and physical health. The American Academy of Pediatrics reports that children ages 6-12 should get 9-12 hours of sleep per night, and teens ages 13-18 should get 8-10 hours of sleep per night.
Teach value. It usually starts at home whether or not a child values an education. Parents who want their kids to get a good education should instill a love of learning in their children and teach them to value the education they are getting.
Get them help. If your child is struggling, you may be able to help them, but there also comes a time when kids need a tutor to step in. A good tutor can make a world of difference in ensuring that a child gets a good education. They can help ensure that students will not fall behind and that they will get the foundation they need to move on in a subject.
Show them how. Oftentimes, kids don’t know how to effectively study for a test or to take notes when they are in class. Take the time to show them how to do it effectively, as well as how to stay organized with their schooling. When students are organized, they are more likely to succeed.
Ask them questions. Be sure to ask your kids how it is going, if they got their homework done, if they need any help, or if there’s anything they need to be more successful. They like to know that you are interested in how they are doing, so it’s good to show an active interest.
Get involved. It’s always a good idea if you can get involved with the school and have good communication with the teacher. That way you will be aware of what is going on and know how to help your child more. Teachers love it when parents take an active interest in their child’s education.
Praise your kids. Help kids to know what they are doing is right or what they are doing is wrong. Praising and encouraging the kids builds their confidence and helps them to succeed as they grow.
“Just about every parent has the ability to help kids succeed with their academics, even if it’s ensuring they have the tools they need to succeed,” added Florence. “We help parents be successful, even those who don’t have the funds to pay for a tutor. Our mission is to help as many students to achieve as we can.”
The Oxford Method has over 100 tutors around the country, covering all subject areas. They offer online tutoring, as well as in-person and in-classroom options. Their tutoring services are available 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. Instructors have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree, with many of them having a master’s degree, Ph.D., and at least four years of teaching experience. The Oxford Method works with their nonprofit, Social Actualization, Inc., by giving them 10% of all profits. The funds are used to provide free computers, high-speed internet, and instruction to underprivileged families in urban and rural America. Plus, 40% of their instructors are PhDs, 40% have a master’s degree, and 20% have only a bachelor’s degree.
The Oxford Method believes that education is the great equalizer and the best gift you can give the next generation. Subject areas include science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), as well as business, social studies, psychology, English, history, public speaking, study methods, test-taking, and more. To get more information about The Oxford Method, visit the website.
The exhibition features more than 200 works of art and writing by New York City based Gold Key recipients participating in the 2021 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, the country’s longest-running and most prestigious award and recognition program for creative teens. This year, students from all five boroughs in grades 7-12 submitted more than 10,000 works in 28 categories to the New York City regional program of the Awards, representing more than 300 schools.
Education has been at the heart of The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s mission since our founding in 1870, said Heidi Holder, the Frederick P. and Sandra P. Rose Chair of Education at The Met. Now, more than ever, we are committed to investing in education and supporting the creativity of New York City’s young people. It is an honor to present the 2021 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards: New York City Regional Exhibition in partnership with the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. This annual exhibition demonstrates the power of art to transform, uplift, and challenge us.
All works were blindly adjudicated by accomplished creative and literary professionals based on originality, technical skill, and the emergence of a personal vision or voice. This year, the exhibition will present framed prints of students’ work, due to ongoing restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to ensure equitable access for all the student artists.
The artworks on display at The Met received top regional awards and were eligible to receive national honors through a second round of judging, which can open further opportunities for exhibition and publication, as well as access to scholarships. The Awards have honored distinguished artists since 1923, including Andy Warhol, Cy Twombly, Kay WalkingStick, John Baldessari, Luis Jimenez, and Catherine Murphy, whose works are in The Met collection.
Chris Wisniewski, Executive Director, Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, said: The creativity of our city’s teens has continued to flourish despite a year of unprecedented challenges. It has never been more important to celebrate diverse student voices and encourage the artistic expression of a generation of rising leaders. The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers is thrilled to partner with The Met to showcase the exceptional young winners of the 2021 New York City Scholastic Awards.
The Alliance partners with Parsons School of Design at The New School and Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts at The New School to present the regional New York City Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. The 2021 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards: New York City Regional Exhibition at The Met is presented with generous support from The New York Times, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, The Maurice R. Robinson Fund, and Scholastic Inc.
The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, identifies teenagers with exceptional creative talent and brings their remarkable work to a national audience through the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Founded in 1923, the Awards program is the longest-running, most prestigious initiative of its kind, having fostered the creativity and talent of millions of students through recognition, exhibition, publication, and scholarships.
About The Met
The Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded in 1870 by a group of American citizens, businessmen and financiers as well as leading artists and thinkers of the day, who wanted to create a museum to bring art and art education to the American people. Today, The Met displays tens of thousands of objects covering 5,000 years of art from around the world for everyone to experience and enjoy. The Museum lives in two iconic sites in New York City: The Met Fifth Avenue and The Met Cloisters. Millions of people also take part in The Met experience online. Since its founding, The Met has always aspired to be more than a treasury of rare and beautiful objects. Every day, art comes alive in the Museum’s galleries and through its exhibitions and events, revealing both new ideas and unexpected connections across time and across cultures.
JAIN (Deemed-to-be University) has announced the launch of JAIN Online to offer Undergraduate and Postgraduate Online Degree Programs, in Commerce, Management, Information Technology, and Humanities recognized by the University Grants Commission (UGC). JAIN (Deemed-to-be University) is a world-class institution promoted by JAIN Group, with over 30 years of excellence in Education, Research, and Entrepreneurship.
The Chancellor of JAIN (Deemed-to-be University) Dr. Chenraj Roychand stated,
“The changing landscape of education [has been] globally shaped by disruptions due to the pandemic and technological advancements has caused challenges as well as opportunities for the education sector. When Universities, as we have known them, are being forced to change, online education brings a paradigm change that not only helps in reaching the unreached, but also helps in differentiated program offerings in line with market demands. With JAIN Online, we are extending our commitment to provide high-quality and globally benchmarked education to the masses. The programs are designed in a way that also fulfills the needs of international students. With an industry-driven curriculum and cutting-edge technology, JAIN Online is set to reshape the careers of millions of students, making them global leaders and change-makers of tomorrow.”
The efficient and robust Learning Management System (LMS) of the University provides a high degree of convenience and flexibility to the learners who can access videos, self-learning materials, virtual labs, assignments, quizzes, discussion forums, and live classes over the weekends from top-notch faculty members are drawn from across the globe. Personalized support is offered to the students to clarify their queries from a dedicated program manager. The learning hours and credits of the online degree programs are at par with the regular programs of the University.
With technology playing a major role in its teaching-learning methodology, the University is all set to deliver an exceptionally engaging and enriching learning experience for its students through its Learning Management System. The learners will additionally get access to live classes on 25 key skills for success and more than 16,000 courses on LinkedIn Learning, where they can learn as per their interests and get certified by LinkedIn and various industry partners like SHRM, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, EC Council, IIBA, etc. The University also extends its Career Advancement Services to its students on JAIN Online to facilitate job placements with over 2000 hiring partners.
With this, JAIN (Deemed-to-be University) has become the first University in India to launch online degrees with prestigious Global Professional Bodies like ACCA – UK, CIMA – UK, CIM – UK, CIIS – UK, IOA – UK, CMA – US, and CPA – USA. The students would also be eligible for exemption of papers or get relevant professional memberships from these professional bodies on successful completion of the Online Degree Programs.
To know more about the programs, please visit this website.
Recent Survey Findings Validate the Crisis Behind it
Six in 10 Americans have faced “food insecurity” at some point in their lives, and of those, 73% experienced it for the first time since the start of the pandemic, according to this new research. The ongoing issue of food insecuritycontinues to receive more attention from celebrities and programming, like Michelle Obama’s new Waffles and Mochi show, which is directed at children to learn how to eat and prepare healthy meals.
To understand the true impact and severity of the food insecurity crisis, recent findings from a new study launched yesterday from Feed the Children, a nonprofit dedicated to ending child hunger around the world, and Herbalife Nutrition, not only validate the crisis that’s happening today, but also shows how the U.S. compares to the rest of the world
The global survey of 9,000 respondents in 21 countries touches on families experiencing food insecurity for the first time, how they are managing to keep their families fed, along with some of their biggest concerns.
Below are a few of the U.S. stats that have come out of the survey:
73% of Americans surveyed experience food insecurity for the first time during the pandemic.
31% of which have said their family has had to skip meals
59% of parents are concerned their children will have lasting health effects as a result of food insecurity
78% of parents rely on their child’s school meals to ensure their kids receive healthy meals
63% of parents feel the government should promote flexible working hours to parents, so they can ensure their kids are eating balanced meals
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