Valerie Kirk

Brands are built, products are sold, customers remain engaged, and employees stay motivated because of great corporate storytelling and campaigns that touch people on a personal level. That is what I do. I am an experienced corporate marketing communications writer specializing in content marketing, brand messaging, and employee engagement. 

Why Workplace Culture Matters

That’s a lot of time, so it’s important for people to choose jobs that they enjoy. But during the job search process, it’s easy to focus only on the duties of the role. What is often overlooked is the workplace culture, which is more important when it comes to long-term job satisfaction. A poor workplace culture can negatively impact a person’s wellbeing. It can also significantly impact the company’s bottom line, leading to low productivity and high turnover. In contrast, people working in co

Meeting Federal Cybersecurity Mandates Requires AI/ML-Driven Big Data Analytics

From an overabundance of data to resource and skills gaps, Federal cybersecurity teams are facing an uphill battle to achieve Federal mandates and secure systems against growing and evolving cyber threats. Emerging technologies, including artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), can help technology leaders do more with less by analyzing large datasets and spotting unusual activity faster. Adding automated responses can deliver real-time security at scale, stopping threats before d

Benefits of Online AP Classes | ®

There are many benefits for students who choose to take AP courses online, especially when it comes to college admissions, including: Instead of the typical grading method in which an “A” earns four points, an “A” in an AP course may earn five points. This allows students to achieve GPAs that are higher than the traditional 4.0 average. Grading scales are determined by each school, so students should check with their counselor about which grading scale will be used. Many colleges accept AP cou

Why Study Abroad | Harvard

From the birthplace of democracy to a centuries-old Buddhist temple, the world is full of places rich in history and culture just waiting to be explored. Study abroad experiences offer motivated and enthusiastic learners from high school to retirement age, depending on the program, a chance to expand their learning environment to a different part of the world. Most programs offer college credits, and study abroad scholarships and financial aid may be available to help with costs. College studen

Finding Success in Online High School | ®

Whether you are new to online school or your student has been attending since kindergarten, the transition from elementary school to middle school and high school comes with a lot of changes—and a lot of concerns from parents. With the more advanced curriculum, the growing responsibilities at school and with other activities, and the social and emotional changes that happen in the tween and teen years, many parents wonder how to navigate this new world. “It’s common for parents to have concerns

Summer Activities That Will Boost A College Application

It’s a rite of passage — every year, millions of high school seniors apply to college. The college application process typically follows months of research, campus tours, and meetings with advisors and admissions officers to find programs that offer the college life and career opportunities the student is looking for. Finding the right colleges to apply to can be exciting. But completing the college application process can be stressful — really stressful. A recent survey found that 74% of stude

Careers in STEM: Why Should I Study Data Science?

Data is often referred to as the new gold because it has become an essential raw material. From smartphones to traffic cameras to weather satellites, modern technology devices are collecting massive amounts of data that support everything from cancer research to city planning. The importance of data in today’s world spans all industries including healthcare, education, travel, and government. Business decisions are made based on data and improving customer experiences relies on data. It is als

Improving the Government Customer Experience With Enterprise Service Management – MeriTalk State & Local

Customer service and the user experience includes internal clients. From managing requests to improving information flow, departments outside of the technology organization struggle with keeping track of an increasing avalanche of email inquiries, work orders, status reports, and data updates. MeriTalk sat down with Andrew Graf, chief product officer at TeamDynamix, an IT service management and integration platform-as-a-service software solutions provider, to discuss how enterprise service manag

Suicide warning signs for kids and where to go for help – Connections Academy

The statistics are alarming and the stories heartbreaking. Suicide is the third leading cause of death for people ages 15–24, and the second leading cause of death for kids ages 10–14. In 2021, emergency departments across the country noted a sharp rise in 12-to-17-year-olds needing treatment for suicidal actions. A survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 1 in 5 said they’d thought about suicide. Our children are facing a mental health crisis, with more than a thir

Good Enough Is Not Okay: Agencies Need a Holistic Approach to Cybersecurity

Against the backdrop of a significant rise in cyberattacks against the Federal government and private sector organizations, President Biden has made cybersecurity a critical focus of his administration. His Executive Order on Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity (EO 14028) gives technology teams marching orders with aggressive deadlines for securing Federal networks, systems, and endpoints. “With CIOs under pressure to meet the deadlines, technology teams may rush to implement disparate technol

Do You Know Who is Responsible for Disaster Recovery in the Cloud? (Hint: It’s Not Your Cloud Provider)

Since the release of the Cloud First mandate in 2011, the Federal government has been pushing agencies to modernize legacy technology and migrate to the cloud. While Cloud First evolved into Cloud Smart, agencies have historically taken a measured approach to cloud migration. On the most recent FITARA scorecard, only three agencies scored an A in the Modernizing Government Technology category. Eleven agencies scored a C or below. Building backup and effective disaster recovery solutions in an o

A Student’s Guide to Getting Started with Online School – Connections Academy®

School is so much more than academics. The student’s experience at school plays a significant role in their success and overall well-being. Negative experiences, such as bullying, not feeling challenged enough, or falling behind with no path to catch up, leads to student’s who tune out and disengage from school, hurting them academically and leading to mental health issues, including depression and anxiety. It’s estimated that over 15% of students miss one or more days of school due to bullying.

Virtual Learning and Working Parents: 5 Tips to Make It Work – Connections Academy®

Virtual school offers many benefits for K–12 students, including flexible scheduling, personalized learning, and a safe learning environment. For working parents, those benefits may seem out of reach for their students as they worry about balancing job responsibilities with online school. How do working parents manage virtual school? Don’t worry—you’ve got this! Finding success in online school requires balance, patience, and commitment for all types of families. And while each family has to fin

4 Ways to Teach Kids Kindness and Help Save the World

As parents, we all have secret dreams about the success our children will have in their future. our dreams for them are typically focused on the kind of success that shines a spotlight on their gifted achievements. But there are many ways to lead a successful life that aren’t tied directly to notable achievements. Helping others and being empathetic to those in need, being kind to people, and volunteering are examples of how our children can find a different kind of success—and be a positive force of change in the world.

10 Ways Your Student Can Learn About Black History

February is Black History Month, a time to celebrate the impact of African American heritage, culture, and achievement in our country. While most K–12 schools incorporate Black history activities into their curriculum, Black History Month offers a wonderful opportunity to extend your child’s learning at home or enhance your homeschool curriculum. Here are 10 ways your student can learn about Black history and culture. You don’t have to wait until February—these activities and resources can be used throughout the year!
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