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Curiosity Rover still going strong after 2 years on Mars

After two years, NASA’s Curiosity Rover is still going strong, analyzing rock samples and taking stunning photos (even selfies like below).

The original goal of the $2.5 billion Curiosity mission was to determine if the planet has ever been able to support microbial life.

Analysts believe they found sufficient evidence to support that idea, during the rover’s side trip to an area called Yellowknife Bay last year. Though Curiosity wasn’t built to detect actual life, drilling samples showed that the Yellowknife area once had drinkable water and was habitable billions of years ago. In fact, scientists now believe that the area was once covered by water.

Because of the unscheduled time in Yellowknife, the solar-powered rover has traveled less than 6 miles in two years. Though it’s still a little more than 2 miles from its main target - Mount Sharp - the mission team expects it to arrive at the mountain’s foothills by the end of 2014.

And while Curiosity’s mission is far from over, NASA teams are already planning for the next mission to the red planet. Its next rover - likely launched in 2020 - will search for sings of past life that might even be returned to Earth for analysis and might work to produce oxygen on Mars!


Sep 8

Outdoor Concert kicks off Alvernia Arts Series

Alvernia University is launching its 2014-15 Performing Arts Series with an open-air Francis Hall Amphitheater performance by Grupo Éxito, this Sunday (Sept. 14), at 5 p.m.

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage month, this Latin American rhythms concert features bachata music and dance, and is free and open to the public.

About the 2014-15 Performing Arts Series at Alvernia:
 
Several ticketed performances will be held in Alvernia’s Francis Hall Theater this year:
 
Zion & Bryce Canyon Soundscapes — Video instrumental concert
Tuesday, Oct. 7, 2014, 7:30 p.m.
 
Gershwin on Broadway with Leon Bates — Pianist/Vocalists
Friday, Feb. 27, 2014, 7:30 p.m.
 
Berks Jazz Fest presents Cyrille Aimée — Jazz vocalist
Wednesday, March 18, 2014, 7:30 p.m.
 
For ticket information visit http://www.alvernia.edu/arts-culture or call 610-796-8322.



VIA The Associated Press on YouTube:

"Alvernia University is trying to help kids break the cycle of poverty in Reading, Pennsylvania, one of the nation’s poorest cities, by offering them full scholarships along with intensive tutoring and mentoring. (Aug. 28)"


Associated Press:   — Long seen as a way out of poverty, higher education eludes most students at Reading High. The public schools here are plagued by low test scores in reading, math and science; the school district has one of the highest dropout rates in the state; and, in a city where almost 60 percent of the population is Hispanic, many students’ parents speak little or no English.

Yet, as another school year gets underway, Reading’s Alvernia University is placing a $10 million bet that it can help kids in one of the nation’s poorest cities get ready to do college work — and to succeed once they get there.

Click to read story, see video

Associated Press: — Long seen as a way out of poverty, higher education eludes most students at Reading High. The public schools here are plagued by low test scores in reading, math and science; the school district has one of the highest dropout rates in the state; and, in a city where almost 60 percent of the population is Hispanic, many students’ parents speak little or no English.

Yet, as another school year gets underway, Reading’s Alvernia University is placing a $10 million bet that it can help kids in one of the nation’s poorest cities get ready to do college work — and to succeed once they get there.

Click to read story, see video


Gearing up for a great fall? Here’s a list of 35 things every college student should do this semester. Share it! Print it out and check it off! Just don’t forget to splash your best friend at the Francis Hall fountain :) — Alvernia

Gearing up for a great fall? Here’s a list of 35 things every college student should do this semester. Share it! Print it out and check it off! Just don’t forget to splash your best friend at the Francis Hall fountain :) — Alvernia


Welcome home Class of 2018!

Welcome home Class of 2018!


On August 18, Alvernia President Thomas F. Flynn made a big splash for a great cause, with help from the university’s field hockey team.


Campus is soo quiet today. But this time next week will be crazy! (at Alvernia University)

Campus is soo quiet today. But this time next week will be crazy! (at Alvernia University)


College Choice: Points to Consider

Now that you’re an expert on college jargon (see previous post), consider a few other important things before you pick a college.

How big is your future college?
You can look at the number or students and the faculty to student ratio for a good picture. But how big do you want it to be? Do you want a smaller school with approachable professors and familiar classmates - or do you want to be part of a large college where you can float in an anonymous crowd?

What kind of campus will it be?
This college will be your home for four years. Campuses are located in cities, in rural areas, suburbs, even in their own little oasis spots. Not sure what appeals to you? Visit. Visit. Visit.

What can you do there?
Yes, you’ll be studying. But college is about other experiences, too. Hopefully, you’ll meet life-long friends and take part in new adventures. College tours are often given by current students. Ask them about ‘college life’ when you visit.

Accreditation
Colleges can be ‘accredited’ by outside organizations that look at things like teaching effectiveness, dynamic evolution of programs, leadership and integrity. But be careful. Not all colleges are accredited. Accreditation is a requirement for federal student aid. It might also be hard to transfer credits from a non-accredited school.  

Heritage and school values
Finding a school that honors the same values as you might help you find like-minded classmates and professors. Be sure to ask about a school’s heritage and what sets them apart.



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