Employers Value Candidates Who Study Abroad

Penn State, University of Notre Dame, University of Kentucky and Pacific Lutheran University participated in a recent study, which shows employers find value in Study Abroad when evaluating job search candidates. "In general, Study Abroad was looked upon favorably," said Robert Domingo, a research associate at Penn State in an interview with The Daily Collegian. In the same survey, to which 352 employers responded, having the preferred academic major was ranked most desirable by employers and completing a major or minor in a foreign language was ranked second. Study abroad was ranked third.

In a more recent study of 119 employers conducted by the Career Center at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 59% of respondents said that Study Abroad or other international experience, other than an internship, would be very valuable or somewhat valuable in an individual's career later on with their organization.

Study Abroad programs are becoming increasingly attractive as more and more college students seek meaningful ways to spend college breaks or explore true diversity of cultures. Additionally, as students return and share their positive experiences, others sign up to head overseas as well.

Two great resources for students considering studying overseas are StudyAbroad.com and Semester at Sea.

StudyAbroad.com is a comprehensive online source of information about educational opportunities for high school students, college students or graduate students wanting to study in other countries. It includes information on summer programs, internships, service learning programs and overseas volunteer opportunities. The information is easy to follow and is sorted by subject, country or city.

Semester at Sea, run by the Institute for Shipboard Education, gets academic sponsorship from the University of Virginia where students can apply for credit for the 2007 summer trip. This trip will have students traversing the Western coast of Central America and South America. Stops this summer will include Chile, Peru, Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Financial aid is available to help students cover the $ 8000 + cost of the just over 2 month journey onboard the floating university. The Fall 2007 trip is scheduled for stops in Japan, Thailand, China and India while Puerto Rico, Brazil, South Africa and Mauritius are on tap for the Spring 2008 journey.

No study abroad program is without risk and students and parents should do all the required due diligence to make sure these experiences do not end with less than positive results. Some general advice to be safe on a study abroad experience are as follows and include some tips from the University of Chicago's Study Abroad program:

1. Be alert at all times. Remember you are in unfamiliar surroundings

2. Trust your instincts

3. Be cautious and protective with your cash

4. Observe political gatherings from a distance

5. Learn where the nearest police station, hospital and embassy is located

6. Stay sober and away from drugs and alcohol. This is not the time to lose focus

7. Be particularly alert while on public transportation and in public places

8. Be mindful of new friendships that develop too quickly

9. Make copies of all your important papers. Keep a set of copies with you as well as leave one at home.

10. Be inconspicuous and try to blend in as much as possible. Avoid being the noisy tourist

11. Check in often with home. Have somewhat of a routine so that folks at home will know if you are off schedule.

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A History of Digital Radiography

Although X-rays have been in existence since the early 1900s, digital radiography has only been around since since 1970. However, since that time, digital radiography has been implemented into more and more large and small hospitals, imaging centers and medical facilities an in many areas of specialization. Popular imaging systems in use today include the CR and DR systems.

CR, or computed radiography, uses an imaging cassette of phosphor to create digital images, and DR systems, or direct digital radiography, uses a collection plate for image capture. DR systems are currently in use as urgent care DR, veterinary DR, chiropractic DR and podiatry DR units. These two systems, along with related hardware and software units such as the DICOM digital format, PACS and RIS, have brought many medical facilities up to the modern age with state-of-the-art digital radiography capabilities.

Much of the early medical digital radiography inventions and applications occurred at around the same time as personal computers became more affordable and thus more commonplace. The first digital imaging application was the invention of the CT, or computed tomography scanner, in 1967, and which became a prototype in 1971. Its inventors, Godfrey Hounsfield and Allan McLeod Cormack, won the Nobel Prize in Medicine for their invention in 1979. Television technology also paralleled medical technological innovation with the switch from analog to digital capabilities.

MRI, or magnetic resonance imaging, originated in the 1950s. Early research on the method was conducted in the 1970s and finally it was cleared for use on humans in 1984.

In the 1990s, a shift in digital radiography was made. X-ray images, it was discovered, could be stored on phosphor screens, and this formed the basis of today's CR imaging systems.

Complementary PACS systems had their debut in 1982, although the idea was conceived over twenty years earlier. When the Internet became a worldwide actuality in the mid-1980s, it also had a major impact on digital radiography. Today's digital medical images that are saved in the DICOM imaging format, similar to the common JPEG format, can be stored on a server for archival purposes, can be viewed on a personal computer outfitted with PACS software and a diagnostic monitor that turns it into a clinical workstation, and can be sent and received via the World Wide Web.

In the last decade, as the price of personal computers and other electronic devices has dropped significantly, and so too has the cost effectiveness of digital medical imaging increased, making digital radiography an affordable and modern alternative from its humble beginnings in film-based X- ray systems.

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Understanding the Definition of Health Related Fitness

Being a Health and Fitness Professional, it is my job to understand terms and definitions which are commonplace to this industry, as well to keep abreast of evolving trends. Through my experience, I have found that a number of terms deserve a little more clarification than that which they are granted.

Aside from clarifying the definition of Health Related Fitness, this article intends to shed some light on a few of the associated terms, and to show their respective distinctions.

Is it simply all in a name?

The fitness world seems to use the concept Health Related Fitness like a generic fitness principle – interchangeable with others like "Physical Fitness", "Health and Fitness" or simply "Fitness."

While all of these terms can be included under the broad term Health and Physical Fitness, they individually refer to different aspects – both generic and specific. Unfortunately, references to these and other fitness-related terms are often vague, while consistency in their intended use is meager at best; There is a kind of "generally accepted" use for them, but individuals often rely on own interpretation, and this can lead to confusion.

With that said, does Health Related Fitness simply infer fitness by means of good health? Not quite. That is why we need to understand a little more behind these words before digesting the definition.

How did the term Health Related Physical Fitness come about?

That is a good question. One could probably ask what is this concept all about – can we not simply use the terms "Fitness" or "Physical Fitness" instead? " Why Health" Related "?

The main reason stems from the fact that most health and fitness terms are used inconsistently and often refer to different concepts or notions. Subsequent to the 1996 report from the US Surgeon General (Physical Activity and Health; a report of the Surgeon General) , there was a move to try and address the alarming rise in obesity levels among the general American public. Studies and initiatives required standardization among clinicians, health practitioners and fitness trainers to grapple with the task at hand. Enter "Health Related Physical Fitness", a working term to address the general state of health among the public.

The definition of Health Related Fitness

According to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the main authority in this field, ineffective definitions with unclear and subjective wordings, as well as definitions containing terms which themselves require defining, have contributed to confusing the term "Physical Fitness."

There exists no reliable guide for Health and Fitness Professionals to measure "Physical Fitness", because the term has been so loosely and inconsistently defined. It is therefore that one should consider the concept of Health Related Fitness. The definition therefore centers on the 5 Components of Physical Fitness which relate to "good health." These Components are:

  • Cardiorespiratory Fitness
  • Body Composition
  • Flexibility
  • Muscular Strength
  • Muscular Endurance

On the other hand, Skill Related Fitness Components are:

  • Balance
  • Reaction Time
  • Coordination
  • Agility
  • Speed
  • Power

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the definition of Physical Fitness emphasizes the difference between Health Related Physical Fitness and Athletic Ability Physical Fitness. Its point-of-departure is the "health" of the US nation, which is often referred to as the "public health perspective." In that respect, the 5 Health Related Fitness Components are more important than those related to Athletic Ability (or Skill Related Components).

Although the concept of Health Related Fitness has an integral association with "good health", the 5 Components are addressed individually by health professionals to allow for their measurement.

Now that we have a deeper understanding of the term, what purpose does it serve?

Continuing from where the definition left off, the objective of measuring the 5 Components is to advise clients about their own particular Health Related Fitness, and to use data obtained from the tests to design appropriate exercise programs which can then be evaluated.

The 5 Components contribute evenly to make up a holistic Health Related Fitness, which is of direct interest to the health of the ordinary citizen, in that the concept is normative. In other words, it is a standard which allows for consistent application.

It is therefore important for those working in the health and fitness industry not to mistake "overall physical fitness" with "Health Related Physical fitness."

To conclude, let us consider this distinction between Physical Fitness and Health Related Fitness

One needs to bear in mind that regular physical exercise can improve overall Physical Fitness, as well as Health Related Fitness. However, overall fitness is a generic term and is up to subjective interpretation, while Health Related Fitness can be assessed.

The distinction therefore, between these two terms, exists in that Health Related Physical Fitness can be measured according to a set of established comparative norms.

This is where the "rubber hits the road." The guidelines set out by the ACSM enable health professionals to work with clients to assess and measure their response to exercise and prescribe appropriate exercise programs. A client's progress can then be monitored and adjusted where necessary in order to obtain the desired fitness goals.

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High School Wrestling: My 10 Favorite Moves

I never used throws in my wrestling career. Throws just weren't my thing. High amplitude throws look cool and can score a wrestler 5 points quickly and maybe even result in a pin. But, throws are also high risk moves. Throws are high-risk, high-reward moves. Investing in commodities is also a high-risk, high-reward endeavor. I'd rather put my money into a savings account or a CD with an assured rate of return on my investment.

Similarly, in the sport of wrestling I'd rather put my practice time to use on drilling double legs, single legs, and stand-ups. In the sport of football, you see a lot of hand-offs and short passes. You don't often see trick plays or really long passes (ie the bomb). Often a team will kick a field goal instead of trying for the touchdown because the field goal is more of a sure thing. I think you see what I'm getting at. It's good to learn throws and counters to throws. However, usually the fundamentals win wrestling matches. This is probably a message you have heard before. Ninety percent of the time, you will probably use the same moves. You may use a different version of the move or set it up differently, but use the same basic move nonetheless.

I had a teammate in junior high who liked to headlock everyone he wrestled. That worked in junior high, but it stopped working in high school. If you're good at throws then go for it. But, most NCAA champions and freestyle Olympic champions are not throwers. Watch a video of John Smith or Tom Brands and see how often they do a throw. I don't think I've ever seen either wrestler do a throw in competition.

Most of the following moves can easily be found online or in books. Several are featured in online videos. I'm sure you know all of these moves. They are basic moves. But, fundamental moves win matches which is why everyone uses them. The key is to find the proper techniques for applying these moves. Remember the importance of setting your moves up and not just wildly shooting takedowns. Be aware of your position at all times. Don't try to emulate other wrestlers or do moves just because your coach thinks they are good. Find out what works for you. Take the time to learn your craft (ie wrestling). Don't be lured in by fancy moves or instant gratification. Practice and drill fundamental moves religiously. Don't spend time in practice or in competition performing moves that are only likely to work two percent of the time. Now then, here are my ten favorite moves.

1. Double leg takedown

The double leg is one of the first moves I learned. The double leg is one of the first moves most wrestlers learn. The sport of judo has a similar technique known as morote-gari (two-handed reap or double leg grab). What could be more basic than tackling someone by grabbing both of his legs? Kids probably do it all of the time. Of course, it's a bit more difficult than that. Proper technique is required. You don't want to get overextended. You opponent could snap you down and spin around or put you in a front headlock. Therefore, make sure that you take a deep penetration step while keeping your hips under you. Some wrestlers like to drive through their opponents and some like to lift their opponent off the ground to finish the double leg. In junior high we were always told, "On a double leg you keep your head on the outside. On a single leg you keep your head on the inside." Sometimes you can lock your hands while doing a double leg and then use your head as a pry to take your opponent down. I had a high school teammate who used the double leg takedown 99% of the time when he was on his feet. He placed third in the state tournament during his senior year. Sometimes you can get away with doing the same move repeatedly when you're really good at it. You can often switch off to a double leg after performing a high crotch. The double leg is a fairly low-risk move. If you don't finish it, you often simply end up back on your feet again. Former UFC champion Matt Hughes executed double legs in matches often and slammed his opponents to the canvas. Mixed martial artists often learn how to perform a double leg. Of course, you can't slam your opponent in folkstyle wrestling. But, the double leg takedown is a great move. The double leg is a high percentage move (ie it often works).

2. Single leg takedown

The single leg is another basic takedown. I used primarily single leg takedowns in high school. There are many ways to set up and finish a single leg. The single leg is also a high percentage move. Push and pull your opponent causing him to bring the leg you want to attack forward. Make him "heavy" on the foot you want to attack. Lower your level and shoot in with your hips under you as a strong foundation. Keep your head inside and get an angle off to his side. Or, don't tie up and simply make sure you are close enough to perform your shot without getting overextended. I think it's fairly easy to shoot a single leg. I think the real secret is being able to finish it. You may have to pivot around and grab his far ankle. You may have to get his ankle on your knee to help you lift his leg. You may have to tripod up and then do a "boot scoot." Spend a lot of time working on your ties, set-ups, and finishes for single legs and other takedowns.

3. High crotch takedown

The high crotch is a kind of single leg. It's also similar to a duck under. You can set up a high crotch from an underhook, a two-on-one tie, or many other ways. I like to hit a high crotch and then finish it by switching off to a double leg.

4. Whizzer

If someone shoots for a takedown, you can sprawl, whizzer, and crossface him. I consider a whizzer to be a basic and effective move for countering leg attacks. The whizzer involves a deep overhook on your opponent's near arm when he is in deep on a takedown attempt. The pressure of a whizzer on your opponent's arm is often enough to fend off his attack. Sometimes in a whizzer situation, you can wrap your free hand around his neck and drive him to the mat in a half nelson. Other times you end up on your feet with the whizzer still secure and you can try to hip toss your opponent. The whizzer is an important move and should be drilled often.

5. Stand-up

This is the most standard move for escaping from the bottom position. Keep your elbows in, explosively stand up, break your opponent's grip, and turn to face him. Hand and wrist control is important. You'll have to be good at hand fighting. After you break his grip, you can try to take his captured hand and place it in your "back pocket" before you turn quickly to face him. Stand-ups are great for getting that 1-point escape. Make sure that you aggressively seek a takedown immediately after getting the escape.

6. Switch

I love the switch. The switch is the most fundamental reversal technique in wrestling. It involves a hip heist type movement. Sometimes it helps to push back into your opponent before you pivot and scoot your hips out to hit the switch. I really enjoyed doing the "standing switch" in high school. I would stand up from the bottom position. When he pulled me back to the mat, I would immediately hit a switch. You should know how to do a standing switch.

7. Sit-out

This is another fundamental move from the bottom position. After you achieve the sit-out position, you can often execute a hip heist and escape. In addition, if your opponent sticks his head over your shoulder, you can grab it, rotate hard in the opposite direction, and put him on his back. The sit-out is fundamental and you should know how to perform it.

8. Cross-body leg ride

The cross-body ride is performed from the top position and involves putting one or both of your legs inside of your opponent's legs. We used to call it the "cowboy ride" if a wrestler put both of his legs in. I liked using a cross-body ride when I was having trouble keeping my opponent down in the bottom position. I used to do turks and guillotines from the cross-body position. Sometimes I merely used the ride to break opponents down. I was once ridden for an entire period by an opponent who put both legs in and used a force half nelson. That was not fun. The cross-body can be higher-risk. You have to keep your back arched and not let yourself get too far forward on your opponent's back. Nonetheless, I think it's an effective move. Olympic champion Ben Peterson was good at leg riding.

9. Arm bar (aka the chicken wing)

The arm bar was my favorite pinning move. I used single and double arm bars often. I liked to secure a single arm bar and then swing my leg over my opponent's head and use it as a pry. This usually got my opponent to turn over to his back. Dan Gable was exceptional at arm bars.

10. Front quarter nelson

The front quarter nelson is a great move after you have sprawled and stopped an opponent's shot. You place one hand on the back of his head while threading your other hand behind his near arm. You then place the hand you've threaded behind his near arm on top of the hand on the back of his head. You apply pressure, elevate his near arm, and force his head to the mat. You can often turn him onto his back in this manner. I used to apply a front quarter nelson, get my opponent moving one direction, and then arm drag or shuck him as I spun around behind for the takedown.

Other Favorite Moves

  • Granby roll
  • Cradles
  • Low single
  • Ankle pick
  • Inside trip (in judo it's called ouchi-gari)
  • Arm drag
  • Half nelson

Remember, fundamentals win wrestling matches. Practice hard and drill your moves religiously. I hope some of my favorite moves are favorites of yours too.

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What Are the Best Paint Colors For Hospital Walls?

There's hardly a secret anymore that human behavior is highly influenced by colors. Scientific studies have proven that our emotions and mood are affected when surrounded by particular colors. Some cause us to be more aggressive, whereas others have a soothing effect on us. From psychologists to interior designers, everybody seems fascinated with the phenomenon.

No wonder then that when it comes to paints, specialists are extremely careful to make the right choice. As their ideas come as colors do, in a wide variety, ultimately the only thing they have to consider is the appropriateness of their vision. For instance, a hospital room wouldn't be painted in the same shades as a private residence's living room. The patients would it find difficult to cope with some red painted walls instead of the usual white, green or blue ones.

We all may have in contact, one way or another, with the imposing, intimidating places which are hospitals. Either as patients or visitors, we are most certainly overwhelmed by their presence. But, once inside, hospitals have this huge power of conveying a sensation of calm and peace. How do they manage to do that? It's simple to find the answer by just taking a quick look at the walls and noticing the colors they are painted in.

Hospital walls are usually covered in colors such as white, green and blue. There is an explanation behind these choices and it has to do with the psychological effects these colors have.

White is the most common color to be seen on a hospital wall. And that is due to the peaceful and calm mood it provides. Other reason for choosing it is the fact that it denotes cleanness. It implies sterility, which has the effect of making patients feel reassured. This is also why doctors and nurses wear white uniforms.

Blue and green are considered to be the most relaxing and refreshing colors, promoting peaceful atmosphere which encourages concentration. Designers, psychologists and feng-shui experts, they all tend to consider that shades of blues and greens make us fell calmer, more balanced and less emotional. Because green has a calming effect on our nerves, hospital waiting rooms and even psychiatric wards are painted in this color. And surgeons wear green scrubs for the same reason. As for blue, it has often been noticed that children in pain are put in hospital rooms painted in light blue due to its healing effect it conveys.

When coming inside a hospital, the general atmosphere must make us feel reassured and calm. Before knowing anything about the staff's professionalism, our worried look will check for visible signs that we will be well taken for. And the hospital's walls, either white, green or blue, are our first impression.

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What Makes Moto X Unique?

The thing about Moto X that would fascinate you does not only include the looks, and size but also numerous features and enhancements that will surprise you. It is offered with a great user experience along with features and other things that make it exceptionally good phone on the Android OS.

Let us find out more about it:

Hardware

The first thing that you may notice about the Moto X is the size that seems to be similar as if you have seen it elsewhere. However, the design is something that stands out. This model is bigger than its predecessor that is now on par with other bigger sized phones. You will notice the difference when you attempt to hold it in your palm and find it hard to fit.

The form factor of Moto X is 5.5 x 2.9 in and is 5.1 oz that clearly indicates the device is lightweight. The screen size measures 5.2-inch that makes way for more apps on display than before. With AMOLED display, you will enjoy impressive screen display quality. This is a bit bigger than Galaxy S5 that measures 5.1-in in display and HTC One that has a 5-inch display panel. Other things too are impressive like the 423ppi along with video quality of 1080p that brings out beautiful colors and brilliant images. The texts look crispy and the screen is good to view regardless of being indoor or outdoor. The contrast and the color saturation is amazing too with darks better and deep. As far as camera quality goes you get the usual 13 MP back camera and 1.2 MP front facing camera. Camera settings are accessible with swiping functionality. You can make adjustments to images that include panorama pictures, resolution, and focus control.

Special Design

Now that you already know about the design there is another thing that would fascinate you is the ability to be able to customize it. Yes, you read it right; you can go online and customize the back of your Moto X as per your wish. However, the available choices that you have include wood backs (real wood), plastic back, and leather back that would require shelling out $25 extra. You can even choose to go for two tones like b/w front and go for 10 accent colors that will adorn the trim of your phone. Now, this does mean a lot when it comes to customizing your own device according to your preferences. The back of the phone is slightly sloped that makes it easy to hold and manage using just one hand. It is more like a dimple at the back of the phone that lets you hold it firmly without letting it slip by.

The speakers are located at the bottom of the device and the audio is loud that sounds great. You will never complain about poor audio quality rather you will enjoy listening to music even on full blast.

Software

Now that you are familiar with the unique hardware and design, there is something to watch out for software as well. The Moto X runs on 2.5GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor that has a RAM of 2GB. This makes the device amazingly fast to perform any task effortlessly. You can easily go from moderate to heavy usage on this phone without bothering about performance. It would be easier to run it full day on single charge because of the massive 23000mAh battery power. The sad part is that it is not removable, so you need to be careful with it. However, the feature of turbo charging is unique about it that is another interesting thing to look out for. Interestingly, with this option, you would be able to run it for 8 hours and 15 minutes.

With 16GB storage space, you are given an expansion of 32GB that comes at an extra cost of $50.

The Moto Display feature helps in fetching notifications that flash on the screen. So, you would not miss any even while you are away, even when you pick your device up it will flash pending notifications as a reminder. You can swipe and decide the functionality that you want to apply to any notification.

Interestingly, the most amazing feature would be the air gesture that you perform to mute the phone. Just wave your hand above the device and mute it. Same can be done with the alarm.

Conclusion

This Motorola smartphone costs you $99 with AT&T contract and the unlocked version would cost you $500. The thin, light, stylish and attractive looks will have you fascinated. The clean UI and intuitive software is definitely unique to this phone. The only thing that would irk you are no wireless charging and lack of proper camera app features. Other things stay true to its uniqueness.

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What Motivates Students To Succeed In College?

In college, each student is motivated to succeed by a combination of things. That’s why it makes sense for students to discover and utilize the motivators that effectively push them forward, toward their most important goals. Here are some of the motivators that help students find success.

1. Self-Realization – College is a time when students can discover, become and experience the person they want to be. When they are motivated in this way, they will find college to be a fun and exciting time, a time when they can explore a variety of courses, join interesting clubs, participate in campus activities, meet interesting people, explore their capabilities and identify their passions. As they begin to learn and grow, they will be motivated to push those limits and find the person who resides inside.

2. Personal Satisfaction – Some students take pride in facing the challenges of college and coming through it all having done well. They are motivated internally and get a great deal of personal satisfaction from doing a good job.

3. Challenge – There are students are motivated by a challenge. They see college as a big challenge, one that requires them to fight for success. Students who have the personality, operating style and self-confidence to face and overcome challenges will do well in this environment because they won’t allow themselves to fail.

4. Fear – For some students, fear is a good motivator. These students do well in college because they don’t want to lose their scholarships, don’t want graduate without a job, don’t want to fail out and still have large loan repayments and don’t want to anger or embarrass their families.

5. Joy of Learning – Some students truly love the college environment. They enjoy learning and devour information on subjects that turn them on. They strive to become knowledge experts, thought leaders and information repositories. The need for information motivates them.

6. A Clear Purpose – When students head off to college with a clear and single-minded purpose, they are usually motivated to do well. They see college as a means to an end, one that is important to them. On the other hand, students who enter college with no clear purpose in mind are less likely to perform well. They don’t place a high value on a college education because they don’t see how a college education will help them get where they want to go. It serves no purpose for them.

7. Approval – Many students seek and are motivated by praise, encouragement and recognition for good work. When students are good at something and achieve exceptional results, their status in that environment goes up. When people compliment them, point them out as examples and look up to them, they shine.

8. Life Goals – Students frequently see their college education as a launching pad to their futures. A good education can lead to a good job, money, security and all of the trappings of success. They are motivated to do well because college will help them build a better future.

9. Aid Others – Some students are motivated by the need to help others. To reach their goal, they must perform well in college. A college education will to enable them fulfill their dream of serving others. They know that nurses, teachers, caregivers, counselors and other helpers can only get started with a good education.

Everyone is motivated by something. In fact, most college students are motivated by a combination of factors. Therefore, wise students recognize and utilize their own personal motivators. They understand that motivated students will always perform at a higher level than students who are unmotivated and uninspired.

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Are Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) Legal?

A special purpose vehicle (SPV) or a special purpose entity (SPE) is a legal entity created by a (sponsoring) firm for a specific and limited purpose: To house a risk, to carry out some transactions, to own assets, to minimize risks and to maximize profits for the sponsoring firm, sometimes by taking advantage of differences in the legal, regulatory or accounting environment.

There are usually no offices, management or employees. SPEs often consist of a set of legal documents. They can be financing subsidiaries, or a holding company, a limited liability company, a new corporation, a trust, or a partnership. Only imagination is the limit.

SPEs are usually “bankruptcy remote”. If the sponsoring firm has financial problems, its creditors cannot seize the assets of the SPE.

Are special purpose vehicles (SPVs) legal?

SPVs are perfectly legal, and almost all major (and well respected) corporations use them. It is not the SPV itself; it is the way it is used that can be illegal.

Special purpose entities are used in financial risk management, as they are excellent ways to segregate specific activities (risks) from a firm’s core operations. By isolating high risk projects from the parent organization and by giving to new investors the opportunity to take a share of a very specific risk in a firm with a simple and clear balance sheet (as it is created for a single purpose only, and there are no debt obligations), SPEs definitely can help both, firms and investors.

According to the European System of Central Banks (ESCB), SPEs can be investment funds, financial vehicle corporations, financial corporations engaged in lending, financial holding corporations, security and derivative dealers and “others”.

SPEs can be illegal, and can be used for tax evasion, avoidance of regulatory restrictions, money laundering, misstatement of earnings and concealment of problems.

Red flags Is the SPE incorporated in a tax haven? Why? Is the SPE incorporated in a place where there is no activity of the sponsoring firm? Is the SPE raising debt without making it obvious to the investors of the sponsoring firm?

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Why Do Viruses Slow Down Computers?

Most people have virus protection installed on their computers. This is a great thing! Many of the virus protection programs around today protect computers against spyware and adware and all other known types of malware as well as viruses. This, too, is a great thing!

The word malware is the quick substitute word for the term “malicious software.” It refers to any type of virus or spyware that can get into your computer. Some years ago, the only kind of malware we had to deal with were computer viruses. The job of a computer virus was always to annoy computer operators to one extent or another.

A Nuisance and a Threat

Some viruses were simply written as jokes. A computer geek may actually write such a script to entertain himself. On the other hand, the purpose of a computer virus may be to kill your computer forever! Even worse the goal of a virus might be to shut down a large network of computers. This would usually be referred to as cyber-terrorism.

Spyware are closely aligned with viruses. The subtle difference is a person who writes a virus is out to do your computer harm. A person who writes spyware is usually out to steal your passwords, banking account numbers and the like. If he does harm to your computer’s operating system while doing so; oh well.

Stealing Your Power

Viruses and spyware slow down computers because they use the computer’s resources to do whatever it is they are doing. They are computer programs. Like all computer programs, some of them run on XP, some on Windows Vista, etc.

Unlike normal programs, they don’t have an icon on your desktop so you can start it up if you chose to. Viruses run on their own terms. You don’t have an option to shut them down either. Many viruses replicate themselves. So, if one computer virus program steals some of your resources, 50 of them, which could be one virus that has replicated itself 50 times, might put you out of business altogether.

Ubiquitous Spyware

I’ve seen spyware make computers unusable as well. Spyware by itself doesn’t replicate itself. However, it is not unheard of to find a spyware-unprotected PC with more than 1,000 spyware infections. With this much spyware present on a hard drive, the operating system will have all it can do to try to accommodate them. In a situation like this, you probably wouldn’t be able to start any of you programs, like Word or IE, for instance.

The bottom line is viruses and spyware have the capability of keeping your operating system and microprocessor busy to the point you will not get any response from your computer or at best, a very slow response. So, it is very important to keep your computer free of these things. I recommend using a good virus protection program that cleans out all types of spyware as well.

It is also very wise to have a registry cleaner on hand as well. From what I’ve seen, registry corruption has slowed down more computers than anything else. There is nothing malicious about it. It simply occurs from normal use and tends to make computers very sluggish.

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Neuromuscular Physical Therapy – Megan’s Case Study

In studying Megan’s case history and symptoms, key moments and events stand out in her time line of pain and dysfunction. Nine years ago, after the birth of her second child, was the first time that Megan noticed that her left foot was slightly wider and longer than her right foot. The timing of this is relevant as during the course of her pregnancy a hormone called relaxin would have been released into her system to loosen the ligaments of her pelvis in anticipation of childbirth. However, relaxin can also loosen ligaments elsewhere in the body and a longer and wider left foot would indicate the collapse of the main arches of the foot due to ligament laxity. This is one of the turning points in Megan’s history that has had a detrimental effect on her health ever since. The relaxed ligaments may never have fully recovered their full stabilizing strength and when she developed a tired aching sensation in her left medial arch a few years later it was probably as a result of this. A fallen arch will lead to over pronation and this will in turn put the tibialis anterior and possibly tibialis posterior muscles under undue stress as they try to stabilize and counteract over pronation. Stressed or overwhelmed muscles will form trigger points (TPs) within them and for tibialis anterior this can refer pain anteromedially as it passes the retinaculum. TPs in the tibialis posterior will refer pain into the sole/arch of the foot. Over pronation will lead to shortened peroneus longus which will further inhibit the tibialis muscles which will further exacerbate the problem in a continuous vicious circle.

The whiplash injury experienced last year would also add to Megan’s problems and since then she has experienced occasional headaches and neck stiffness. The whiplash injury almost certainly would have affected her sub occipital muscles, sternocleidomastoids (SCM), scalene and other stabilizers of the neck and spine. This whiplash would lead to improper neck movement which in turn would lead to TPs in the SCM and possibly the longus colli on one side (left) possibly due to the leg length discrepancy. TPs here would leave these muscles in a shortened state resulting in rotation of the head to the right hand side. If the longus colli is involved it result in kinetic chain problems and affect the peroneals on the lateral aspect of the lower limb further exacerbating the fallen arch. With the peroneus longus muscles in such an unhealthy state it is possible that it could have an effect on the sacrotuberous ligament of the pelvis and its ability to hold the sacrum in position. Megan states that one day last year she felt a twinge in her right sacroiliac joint while assisting an obese client up from a supine position. She experienced locking/jamming and diffuse soft tissue pain in QLs, multifidis and shooting pain into her hip. The fact that she was locked into torso flexion to the right suggests that the QLs went into spasm on the right side after insult and as we find out later her sacral base is an inch high on the right and there is posterior rotation of the right ilium with resultant postural imbalance whereby 2/3rd of Megan’s weight is pressing down on her right side. This extra load and postural imbalance has led to shooting pain in the trochanteric region and referred pain on the lateral aspect of the thigh due to TPs in the weakened gluteus medius and iliotibial band issues due to the over worked tensor fasciae latae.

With all this pain getting to unbearable levels, Megan turned to prescription drugs, codeine based painkillers, antidepressants, Zoloft, anti inflammatory tablets all of which would have exacerbated her problems through time by building up toxins in her system. She was also whilst under the influence of painkillers probably injuring tissue by doing activities that she would not have done if she had her natural alarm system of pain stopping her. The elastic support belt and the taping would have made the situation worse by encouraging atrophy of supporting muscle tissue.

Megan’s right shoulder is lower than the left possibly due to shortened latissimus dorsi pulling on the humerus and inhibiting upper trapezius and hypertrophy of the pectoralis minor muscle pulling the scapula forward and down.

As we consider Megan’s problems, symptoms, and case history, we can appreciate that she is suffering abject pain and dysfunction up and down her functional kinetic chain. From the pain in the plantar fasciae, spastic peroneus longus, inhibited tibialis, medially rotated tibia, medial knee pain, lateral thigh pain, trochanteric pain, lumbo – sacral pelvic pain and dysfunction, posteriorally rotated right ilium, lower left anterior superior iliac spine, 2/3rd weight imbalance to right hand side, lower back pain with QLs and multifidis in a shortened state, latissimus dorsi, neck extensors and flexors all giving problems we have to ask the question as to which functional kinetic chain we are dealing with. In my opinion, considering all areas involved, it would be the spiral oblique chain.

Megan would have to be informed that her treatment will be extensive and prolonged because some issues have been there for a while and would involve neural retraining for the dysfunction and imbalances present.

  • Medical screening.
  • Case history.
  • Postural assessment.
  • ROM testing / neural testing.
  • All shortened and restricted muscles would have to be relaxed / lengthened with TP therapy, METs, positional release / strain- counterstrain.
  • Inhibited muscles would have to be fired and strengthened with tapotement, METs and strengthening exercises.
  • Any areas of bind would need STR, cross fiber friction etc.
  • A consideration would be referral for PCIs to address the pronating left foot initially with a plan to strengthen that area long term.
  • Megan’s nutrition was not mentioned but I would be referring her to a specialist in that field to ensure that she has no nutritional deficiencies that would hinder the healing process.
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