Tuesday, November 29, 2011

You Tubing Tuesday - Songs Once Hits but Now Better Known For Being Part of A Commercials

This song will help you meet your special someone...

After you find your true romance with the first song, this will help you last with them...

Monday, November 28, 2011

Media Monday - Student Don't Study Enough

Last week the annual National Survey of Student Engagement  released its latest findings.  The primary finding was the the average senior only spending about 15 hours a week studying.

As a professor in a business school, I found it particularly interesting that business students only spent on average 14 hours a week studying while working on average 19 hours per week.  In the past few years, I have heard more students placing increasing emphasis on part-time work experiences over their education.  While the economy has something to do with this imbalance, I believe there is a greater player involved as well.

The economy has obviously been a factor in this finding.  States have cut funding to Universities.  For instance, the State of South Carolina now only provides my College with eight percent (8%) of its total operating budget. in turn, universities have had to raise tuition to keep up with costs.  Students now require classrooms to have the latest technology, buildings capable to house that technology with faculty and support staff with the ability to facilitate its use.  This was a cost not borne by schools in the same way prior to the turn of the millennium and has added large capital expenditures and operating costs to the universities which in turn has been passed on to the students.  This has created a need for students to have to work more hours in order to afford schooling and live the lifestyle they so desire. This has created a situation where the tail has started to wag the dog.

Due to technology, students feel that they can get any information they need as quickly as Google will let them.  This means that there is a feeling that I don't need to know this stuff because I can look it up when I need it.  The immediacy issue is what I call it.  This is why many students also work too much. I need that cell phone data plan, to have money to go out Friday night and/or to pay for rent next month.  They are only living in the present day.  They are only examining their present needs and wants (the heart of immediacy).

At present, they can get away at work with learning ideas and concepts last minute (or as they arise) because they are mostly in front line positions and most issues that they are relatively simple and have straightforward solutions. What happens however, when this group gets into management positions where the issues are nuanced and require delicate and deliberate strategies?  What the students do not realize their missing is the ability to manage information, judge its quality and use it to integrate it into a comprehensive strategy.   They use technology as a crutch to replace real thinking and that is dangerous in relation to their long term growth.

The biggest complaint from students I get today is how they hate to read long boring pieces of literature.  This is also due to the age of immediacy.  They are so used to getting information in quick, concise sound bites that to take the time to read and ponder is almost perceived as being painful.  They do not want to take the time to read and thus study time goes down.  They can gain the major points from a reading from a summary found online.

Now, this sounds like it is complaining about the students of today and perhaps some of it is.  The reality is that it is much harder to get the students to engage material today then it was even when I first started teaching seven years ago.  It is our jobs as educators to create opportunities for students to see the value in taking the time to 'learn how to learn.'  It is imperative that we demonstrate to them the importance of not just examining issues from a micro perspective but from a macro one as well.  This is going to take further innovation in our approach to teaching to get students to engage and develop the desire to spend the time in order to be truly successful in mastering concepts and ideas.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Sundays in My City - v2

Last Sunday we went to see the C of C Equestrian Team in action:

Please don't let my lack of photography skills take away from how beautiful it was!

One does not normally associate fall colors with Charleston...

but colors there were.  It was spectacular!

Congratulations to the ladies for winning the day! 

Though I wonder what it says about the school I teach at, that our best sports are Equestrian & Sailing!
Once again, thanks to the Unknown Mami for hosting this hop.  It is my favorite of the week.  Click on the button below to visit more cities!

Unknown Mami

Saturday Soliloquy

I was going to go deep and metaphysical on you all but with sick children in the house sharing their sick ways with me, I am lacking the energy to do so.  I have decided therefore, today is the perfect day just to You Tube away.

Today's theme - songs that were made better by their videos.  Shall we do a top three list?

#3. I like Wheezer and I like Happy Days but put them together and I love this video

#2 - When I was a teen (pre-Internet days), it took me a couple of weeks to figure out how they did this video.  It really did drive me into a virtual insanity.

1. This was a great video that was a technological wonder when it was first released.  The song is okay but the video makes it a real piece of art!  

Friday, November 25, 2011

Friday Fragments

I must have upgraded my brain, the past few nights I have been dreaming in HD.  Now, this wouldn't be so much of a problem if I was dreaming about watching something fun and maybe even a little naughty but I have been dreamin' more in the Alfred Hitchcock and Edgar Allen Poe realms.  Just like my computer, can I go back to the previous version?

I graded term papers last week and for some reason citing seems to be out of fashion.  I am not even picky about which style you use, APA or MLA, I just want to know where you got for information from.  This is stuff my middle school child is doing, so I don't buy the we never been taught this excuse.  Grrrrrr!

A sad day has occurred.  My five year old has discovered Barney and likes it.  What did I do to deserve this?

Every year my wife and daughter go out a midnight for black Friday shopping.  I do not myself get it but it is one of the things they share in common so it can not be all bad I guess.  Then again, why couldn't they share a love of cleaning?

Thanks to Mrs. 4444's and her blog Half-Past Kissin' Time for hosting Friday Fragments!  Click on the button below to see more!

Mommy's Idea

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Technology & Tourism Thursday - Did you Pay Too Much for Thanksgiving Travel?

Buying a plane ticket seems a lot like playing the lottery.  You are never quite sure when you are going to get the cheapest price possible for the ticket?  You could be sitting in a seat thinking you got a deal with a $200.00 yet the guy sitting right beside you bought the same ticket for $150.00.

This is called within the industry as revenue management.  The airlines are trying to maximize their revenue based on demand curves.  As demand for a flight goes up, so does the price.  The airline is working its hardest to ensure as close to a full plane as possible while generating the maximum revenue in the process.

Yapta, a new App, help customers who don't have time to figure out each airline revenue management systems to track flight prices.  When the prices for a desired flight lowers, the App alerts them.  Further, several airlines will reimburse you if you discover that someone paid a lower price than you for the same flight (for essentially the same seat).  For instance, Jet Blue will reimburse you any price difference while Virgin & AirTran will reimburse you if the difference is over $75.00.  The Yapta App helps with that by tracking your flight even after you purchased the ticket and alerting you when and if you could be reimbursed.

As the App was recently released, I will be tracking several flights and compare their alerts to industry data.  I will be fascinated to find out how accurate their alert system is.  The premise behind this App seems solid.  I look forward to telling you about its accuracy.  Let me know what you think in the meantime.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

You Tubing Tuesday - Thankful Songs

So since this Thanksgiving Week in the good ol' USA, I thought I would add some thankful songs...

and in honor of Black Friday...

Monday, November 21, 2011

Media Monday - Understanding Scale - China vs. USA

On Halloween, I wrote in the blog about the seventh billion person being born.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the population as of the United States as of July 2009 was just over 307 million.  China on the other hand had an 2010 estimated population of 1.34 billion (over 4 times larger than the USA).  It is no secret that China's economy is growing and that this is a nation that is going to be a dominant player in the world economy for the foreseeable future.

Just to give you an example of the growing buying power within China; The Next Web reported on the current sales figures of China Mobile.  China Mobile reported having 638.89 million customers (more than double the population of the USA).  In the last year, China Mobile more new customers (over 63 million) than three times the combined population of New York (8.2 million), L.A. (3.8 million), Chicago (2.7 million), Houston (2.1 million), Philadelphia (1.5 million), Phoenix (1.5 million), San Antonio (1.3 million) and San Diego (1.3 million).  As the by Jon Russel states, that is an average of adding two new customers every second!

For those still thinking China is a paper tiger, please think again or be prepared to be mauled.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sundays in My City

I have moved the Soliloquy from Sunday to Saturday.  I am doing this for no other reason than because I found this really cool blog hop called Sundays in my City hosted by the Unknown Mami.  As s tourism professor, once I found this hop, I just couldn't resist especially with Charleston as a subject.

Charleston, South Carolina was recently named the "Top City in the United States" by the 2011 Condé Nast Traveler Readers' Choice Awards.

I work at the College of Charleston (founded in 1770) which is one of the oldest universities in the USA (and a very good school as well).

The College of Charleston is located in downtown Charleston and is truly one of the most beautiful campus' in the world...

I look forward to sharing more of my city with you over the coming weeks.  Charleston is a truly special place.

Unknown Mami

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Saturday Soliloquy - Wishes for a Colleague

My thoughts and best wishes goes out to a colleague who lost their son this week.  I could not imagine the pain of burying one of my children. I hope one day she will be able to see the sunshine once again.  May the fates be kind.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Friday Fragments

Yesterday, I discussed a story about a school that outlawed balls on the playground. I know and understand that we live in different times and that we need to protect our children but at what cost? Children are now rarely getting to be just that, kids. I think back to when I was a kid and the freedom I had and the lessons I learnt as a result. How are the kids of today going to learn to be functioning adults if we continue to make all their decisions for them?

Congratulations to the Htmt 488 class on the amazing job they did presenting their business plan concepts. Thanks to our industry partners for taking the time to listen to the presentations and giving our students a 'real world' perspectives on their plans. Finally, a big thanks to Dr. Frash, a professor that works countless hours helping these students to create viable business plans.

I am a pretty big NBA fan (I am actually a Raptors fan sadly). The lockout really has affected my ability to think of the sport in an enjoyable manner. Billionaires and millionaires not being able to agree how to split their money is reprehensible especially in this marketplace. So, I will watch more of my College of Charleston Cougars and pay more attention to the NHL and my Leafs. I am not sure that when the NBA decides to come back that I am going to have space in my life for it.

Thanks to Mrs. 4444's for hosting the Friday Fragments blog hop. Click below to see many more great Friday Fragments.

Mommy's Idea

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thirsty for Thursday - No Balls Allowed at School

Yesterday, the Toronto Star reported a story whereby the children at Earl Beatty Elementary School were banned from 'hard balls' such as soccer, tennis and basketballs were no longer permitted on the school yard during lunch break or recess.  The kids following current events, decided to 'occupy the playground' over the lunch period (click here for a great video clip of this protest).

This is a true story of fear of litigation gone rampant.  Perhaps, the school administrators should be chanting what the kids were.

Acting Balanced

Technology & Tourism Thursday - Google Flight Search

According to TNooz.com  Google is planning to expand its Flight Search product to other countries around the world.  First of all, I love this product.  The website's interface is clean, the search capabilities are excellent and the ability to easily control and manipulate the search is astounding.

The expansion of this site could lead to real competition for OTA's (online travel agencies) such as Travelocity, Kayak and Expedia.  With the airlines unhappy working with the OTAs in general but not being able to really do anything about it because customers prefer them, Google maybe their escape.  This will be a fascinating story to follow over the coming months.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

You Tubing Tuesday - College of Chalreston

The College of Charleston's basketball team plays on ESPN this morning. Here is a nice reminder of the big win last year...

So, Go Cougs!

Monday, November 14, 2011

More Media Monday - Midnight Classes?

What are fascinating story this is.  Would I turn into a pumpkin teaching a midnight class?

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Media Monday - Netherlands Banning Tourist from 'Coffee-Shops'

My disclaimer: I do not condone the use of drugs for recreational purposes in any way.  

In a fascinating story, Maastrict, a city in the Netherlands has passed a law which requires the local 'coffee shops' which sell cannabis to become private clubs to which only Dutch citizens can be members.  Dutch authorities argue that they are doing this to combat 'Drug Tourism.'


The Dutch government for years has been trying to maintain an image across the globe as a place of Vincent Van Gogh, windmills & tulips and not of drugs and prostitution (which curiously avoided this type of law so far).

This approach has lead to some very interesting questions.  If an activity is deemed inappropriate for tourists; why not ban it for citizens as well?   While countries have had this type of double-standards for years (see legal drinking ages), they are commonly brought forward because of health and safety concerns rather than those of image.  If this ban is being brought forward as a question of image rather than being implemented for health or moral reasons, does this not lead the nation down a potentially very slippery slope?  One rule for some and another for others.  An interesting case study indeed.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sunday Soliloquy - Work/Life Integration

I would like to take credit for this idea but it actually came from a guest we hosted last week at the College, Ms. Jimmie Paschall.  Ms. Paschall was an impressive guest in every manner possible but the most striking idea she talked about during her visit was a concept she referred to as Work/Life Integration.

Work/Life Integration is about merging your various worlds together so that you do not think of them as separate entities but as a component of a well rounded existence.  In this age of connectivity we are never truly separated from any aspects of our lives.  Why fight it?  While work now follows you home regularly, your work can be integrated with your home as well.  You don't need to be in the office 24/7 anymore, we are now living in a non-punch clock world.  It is because of this world, that I can volunteer at my kids school one day a week or be 'kidnapped' occasionally by my wife for an afternoon of togetherness.  As a wise woman once said, 'we only have one life why are we trying to divide it?'

In a university setting, this philosophy can work quite well.  I regularly take my children to events on campus.  My daughter loves going to volleyball games for instance.  When I have had students on the team, she has had fun meeting them after the games and I believe they get a 'kick' out of having fans that truly enjoy their play.  By exposing my children to the campus environment, they get to see people from around the globe and hear ideas that they would not normally be exposed to (though sometimes I have some explain' to do afterwards). 

Overall, I believe this philosophy works for me.  Why not share the love with both my work and my family?

Saturday, November 12, 2011

California Girls vs. California Gurls

Which is the better song?

David Lee Roth (w/o Van Halen)- California Girls or

Katy Perry (with Snoop Dogg)

Friday, November 11, 2011

Friday Fragments

Today is Remembrance Day...Lest we forget those who have fallen for the price of freedom.

On to the Fragments!
  1. May my children know a world were war is remembered but never experienced.
  2. Last night, I went to a benefit to raise money for Water for Kenya.  According to UN Statistics over 880 million people world wide do not have safe access to clean drinking water.  This statistic really does make me think how lucky I am to live in the United States.  Access to clean water should not be a privilege but a right.  In too many places in the world, that is not a true statement.  Congrats to Dr. Andrea Canberg and her College of Charleston students' on putting on such as great event!  Also thanks to David Desplaces and his SIFE team for running a great silent auction as well!
  3.  Between meeting with the PGA Championship folks this week and the affluence on display at last nights charity event, I have been given a stark reminder about how the gap between rich and poor (not that I am in either group) is ever widening.   How can some speak of spending $1700.00 on cushion seats while millions of people do not have access to clean drinking water?  Not sure what we do about it but this is a problem that needs to be addressed. I do wish I had an answer for this.

    Mommy's Idea

    Thursday, November 10, 2011

    11-11-11 - Remembrance Day - In Flanders Fields

    In Flanders Fields 
    John McCrae
    In Flanders fields the poppies blow
     Between the crosses, row on row,

    That mark our place; and in the sky
     The larks, still bravely singing, fly
     Scarce heard amid the guns below.

     We are the dead. Short days ago
     We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
     Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
     In Flanders fields.

    Take up our quarrel with the foe:
     To you from failing hands we throw
     The torch; be yours to hold it high.
     If ye break faith with us who die
     We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
     In Flanders fields.

    Technology & Tourism Thursday - Digital Piracry

    I was recently asked to review some articles on digital piracy.  It made me think of the last one, I wrote on the subject.

    Digital piracy is a persistent and pervasive problem for society. Based on both the general theory of crime and deterrence theory, this study investigates the role of self-control, perceived severity of punishment and perceived certainty of punishment in predicting digital piracy behavior as well as self-efficacy. The results of the study show that risk-taking and punishment certainty are strong predictors of digital piracy behavior. Self-efficacy is also significantly related to punishment certainty and digital piracy behavior. Implications of the study for research and practice are discussed.

    Monday, November 7, 2011

    Media Monday - Reminder Again Appearances Can Be Deceiving

    On October 25th several British news agencies reported that Ryanair was using duct tape to repair a cabin window. Please see the screen clipping from the Daily Mail below as an example.

    It turns out, that this story was less than accurately reported.  In reality, according to the Economist who actually did some investigative reporting, the maintenance staff was actually using a $700.00 per roll Aluminum bonding tape to ensure that a potentially uncured sealant was kept in place. The tape was approved by the manufacturer, the FAA and the company's engineering department for temporary situations such as the one stated above.

    The moral of the story, is that the media has to stop worrying about being the fastest but rather concentrate on the story right.  This story, which is now in folklore, could have potentially derailed a rather successful airline.  In an industry where few airlines are actually making money, Ryanair reported a second quarter pretax profit of 463m Euros.  This type of unsubstantiated reporting however, could have cost the airline several millions in revenue (and potentially hundreds of people their jobs as a result).  Then again, the caption under the picture from the Daily Mail Report did call it Duck Tape - so one should not be impressed by their editorial standards.

      Sunday, November 6, 2011

      Sunday Soliloquy

      We live in a new world now (see the picture below):

      Children of this generation are now truly living in a wireless world. These children will not know a world where a trillion pieces of information is unavailable to them at an instant. This has made me think a lot about whether or not this a good change in our society. On one hand, the children of today will have a wealth of knowledge available to them that is unparalleled. I think in my field about how TripAdvisor.com has changed the entire way businesses are marketed for instance. On the other hand, these kids rarely have to think for themselves or have to struggle for knowledge. What would happen to this generation if the 'lights went off' so to speak.

      All in all, I believe that this generation is very different from those older. The world they are living in has hit 1000 miles per hour and the constant changes they face in the economy, environment and social fabric is a challenge that has not been faced any other generation. These kids will most likely never know a world that is static. This made me think of the Chinese proverb, 'May you live in interesting times.' Some see it as a blessing and others a curse. Guess we will get to find out as these are the most interesting of times indeed.

      Saturday, November 5, 2011

      Saturday Special

      Today was a great day at the James island connector run. It was the best organized JIC I have seen in the six years I have been involved with the event.

      Even more important, Robyn ran her first adult 5k and finished third for her age group.

      I will put up some more on this later.

      Friday, November 4, 2011

      Friday Fragments

      1. I was reminded this morning of how much it is important to help others.  The funniest part of that is, by helping others you help yourself so much more.
      2. Yesterday, we had a very productive meeting with the new human resources director at Kiawah. It sounds like our students will be provided with some excellent opportunities for growth and development there.  I just love the Kiawah HR attitude towards employees.  They really do look at their employees as people and not components of a machine.  It makes a world of difference...
      3. It would be nice to see my wife at some point...I seem to recall her being smart, fun and even dare I say it, quite sexy. 
      4. Good luck to the C of C women's soccer team this weekend...they are playing  in the SOCON tournament this weekend.
      5. I am not looking forward to falling back this weekend...I am however, looking forward to the James Island Connector Run on Saturday.   This run supports scholarships for students with physical disabilities.  A great cause and a great group of people!

      Mommy's Idea

      Thursday, November 3, 2011

      Technology & Tourism Thursday - Mobile in 60 Seconds

      This was probably the best explanation of the mobile world that I have seen. People do not realize how quickly technology is changing the world and how we are interacting with it.

      Please see: http://techcrunch.com/2011/11/02/infographic-the-mobile-world-in-60-seconds/ for the full story.

      Where hospitality marketing was once making pretty brochures and ads, today it is a complex web (please forgive the pun).  As hospitality marketing has evolved over the past the couple years to the current environment, tremendous challenges in relation to human resources, budget management and strategic focus have been increase exponentially.  So today, I give a warm congratulatory note to those working in hospitality marketing - it is a much more challenging job that it was just a decade ago.

      Wednesday, November 2, 2011

      An Extension to Media Monday

      On Monday, we talked about the 7th Billionth person being born.  This is probably the best explanation of reason for this growth, I have every seen.

      Thanks to NPR for posting is brilliant video piece.

      Wordless Wednesday - Halloween Pre & Post

      Tuesday, November 1, 2011

      You Tubing Tuesday

      Today I thought I would present an angelic song with a devilish undertone...

      A perfect mix for Halloween & All Saints Day!

      Shaggy - Hit it!