A new kind of college education

college educationEarlier this month my husband and I moved my niece, an incoming freshman from Connecticut into her college dorm room at USC. The experience revealed to us just how much has changed since our days on a college campus. For starters, I was amazed at all the help available. Before arriving on campus, new USC parents could visit a Facebook page to communicate with other parents, getting questions answered and receiving advice and referrals from those who “have been there done that” with a child. In addition, each freshman can take advantage of a Facebook page strictly for the Class of 2018, where they share information with their fellow classmates. Student by student, a new social network is built. There’s also a program that looks similar to Match.com, except instead of helping to make love matches. It helps match up roommates. Students fill out a survey and the automated system highlights, for example, “5 students who have 80 percent of your same interests.” Students can begin...

Calling all inventors

doorbellIt’s been said that necessity is the mother of invention. Where's the story?4 Points Mentioned While this proverb is frequently true, I can say from my time in the consumer products industry that it isn’t always the case. Based upon marketplace staying power, Ben-Gay aspirin, Quisp and Quake cereals, and New Coke weren’t really necessities. The mothers of invention in those cases were probably the potential for higher profit margins or expanded product categories; in some cases they may have been a brand manager’s crazy idea that just went too far. Not being necessities, I suppose, these products never withstood the test of time. With so many people in our society entering seniorhood, mothers (and fathers) of invention will have lots of opportunities to devise new ways to address the needs of an aging population. Listed below is a small sampling of little inventions that have made a big difference in the lives of those on the other side of 50. For people with failing...

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