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Removing Language Barriers from Math Education Improves Student Achievement

What if your biggest challenge in learning math was that you could not understand the words that the teacher used to convey math concepts? That the language in the math book was not your first language? Or that your learning disability involved difficulties with words and reading?

Dr. Matthew Peterson, co-founder and COO of MIND Research Institute, knows what that’s like. He is dyslexic. But after completing an undergraduate triple major and a Ph.D. in visual neuroscience, he decided to try to figure out a way to teach math that minimizes the use of words, but maximizes student understanding and achievement.

 

Dr. Peterson’s stunning innovation is called ST Math, a web-based, self-paced software program that uses language-free animation to help students grasp key math concepts. This resource is offered to students in addition to regular classroom instruction, twice a week.

It turns out that all students, regardless of language or culture of origin, gender, and in some cases even learning disability, do far better at math when they have additional help from solving the ST Math exercises.

As we outlined in an earlier blog post, Cisco’s initial expansion support for ST Math in Silicon Valley and in Arizona has shown strong student performance gains of double to triple growth in math proficiency. Our newly supported 22-school Virginia ST Math pilot sought to replicate these successful outcomes.

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Annual Event Targets Untapped Resource: Our Military Veterans

In America today there is a huge untapped resource that could dramatically improve the productivity of companies across the nation. Renewable energy? Tax breaks? No… It’s the 1 million military veterans returning to the job market. One million individuals who understand teamwork and leadership, have a proven ability to learn quickly, a strong work ethic, dedication, and the ability to work under pressure.

Time magazine called this wave of returning veterans “The Next Greatest Generation.” If we can tap into this resource we can do much to fill the skills gap that our country faces and make progress toward a faster-growing economy. However, many companies have been slow to see this wave. Unemployment for veterans between the ages of 18 and 24 hovers at a shockingly high 22 percent.

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Cisco Technology Allows for Virtual Visits with Medical Specialists

October 22, 2013 at 2:44 pm PST

Amanda Spencer’s young son, Jonathan, needs specialty medical care that isn’t available in the family’s hometown of Monterey, California. But through Cisco HealthPresence technology, Amanda and Jonathan can meet with a pediatric urologist at Stanford University, 80 miles away, without even leaving Monterey.

“In Monterey, it’s a small town and we really don’t have enough children in the community to support certain specialties,” Dr. Todd A. Dwelle, a pediatrician at the Pediatric Group of Monterey, said during an interview with KION-TV. “So this system allows areas such as ours that are underserved in that regard to bring in as needed pediatric specialists from Stanford.”

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Tune In, Turn On And Meet Your Doctor

This blog was originally posted on the Huffington Post

We are now witnessing children’s health care expanding across the nation with advancements in video-based networking and collaborative technologies. A virtual visit by a renowned pediatric specialist at your local clinic is now becoming a reality in a growing number of communities.

As one in five children in the U.S. seek specialist medical care this year, ready availability of pediatric sub-specialists is critical for our children’s health and healthy communities. These specialists are in short supply, however, and tend to be clustered in the major metropolitan cities. Wait times for initial appointments can range from three to nine months. According to Time Magazine, 15 million children live in rural enclaves where the ratio of pediatricians and family physicians is 22 for every 100,000 kids. That’s a patient load of more than 4,500 children per doctor. Outside the U.S., those numbers drastically increase.

Today, telehealth pilot programs with a video interface from a medical specialty facility to a local clinic are vastly improving access to pediatric specialty care. With no travel to the big city to see a specialist and no associated travel costs, families reduce time lost at work and school to receive care for their children.

In Jordan, Cisco “care-at-a-distance” technologies connect patients at two rural hospitals to specialists in Amman, the capital. Traveling to Amman is expensive or prohibitive for many people, but now they can get the specialty care they need through remote consultations.

In Jordan, Cisco “care-at-a-distance” technologies connect patients at two rural hospitals to specialists in Amman, the capital. Traveling to Amman is expensive or prohibitive for many people, but now they can get the specialty care they need through remote consultations.

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Supplier Diversity Programs Bring Out the Entrepreneur Within

October 14, 2013 at 2:00 pm PST

Jasmine-web-2This piece was authored by guest blogger Jasmin Herro, founder and CEO of Outback Global Australia and vice president of Outback Global USA. Outback Global is an Indigenous-owned business certified with Supply Nation, along with Cisco Australia, which is also a member. Supply Nation is an organization dedicated to growing diversity within the supply chain

 

I woke up one morning and suddenly realized I was an entrepreneur!

Those who know me, even for a short time, realize that I am an ideas person, I am constantly thinking, joining the proverbial dots, making connections and never taking myself too seriously. Every day starts at 5:30 a.m. and ends the next morning around 1 a.m., or when I drag myself to bed after falling asleep at my desk.

There are things that constantly go through my mind, random sets of ideas that could at any moment be the next big thing. Was I always like this? I remember, as an 8-year-old child needing money to go to the annual fair and thinking that if I could convince Glen, the man who worked for my dad, to help me pick all the mandarins off the two big trees in our yard, I could sell them in my dad’s petrol station. After some gentle persuasion (begging), Glen harvested all the mandarins off both trees and I convinced him to help me set up a table at the petrol station with a sign that read “Mandarins 10 cents or 6 for 50 cents.” After 2 days I made $23 and with my best puppy dog eyes offered half the money to Glen. He of course declined but offered to make me an extension arm so I could reach the top of the trees and pick the mandarins myself the next year.  This was my first taste of entrepreneurial creativity and from then on I’ve looked for value and opportunity in everything around me.

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