Showing posts from June, 2011

Do I want to be an academic until they take me out in a box?

"When you're working, you have a sense of mission and purpose. What's going to keep you engaged in life when you leave?" - Nancy Schlossberg
Zalman Amit, a woodturner, performs his craft from a 220-year-old house overlooking the ocean in rural Nova Scotia, Canada, a place he describes as "one of the most beautiful spots on Earth." But Amit, 76, hasn't always been a rural craftsman. Until 11 years ago, he was a psychology professor at the Center for Studies in Behavioral Neurobiology at Concordia University in Montreal. He decided to retire after undergoing major cardiac surgery at 62. He asked himself, "Do I want to be an academic until they take me out in a box?" he says. "Me and my wife concluded there were other things we wanted to do."

In preparation for retirement, we are often urged to build up our financial portfolio or perhaps down-size our home or move closer to family. Often neglected in this process, however, are the psych…

Britain's new points-based immigration system: Protests by artists

London: Author Salman Rushdie and over 100 others of the likes of Hanif Kureishi and Hari Kunzru from the world of writing and art have criticised Britain's points-based immigration system for non-EU artists, terming it "needlessly bureaucratic and intrusive".

In a letter to the Daily Telegraph, 120 writers and artists have criticised the points-based visa system as "inappropriate for short-term visits by artists". Besides Rushdie, signatories to the letter include Kureishi, Kunzru, Ruth Padel, Kamila Shamsie, Michael Morpurgo, Anita Sethi and Simon Singh. They said: "Writers and performers who have long been welcomed by Britain now find that they are required to undergo a visa application process that is needlessly bureaucratic and intrusive". "Non-European Union artists wishing to enter the country have been treated poorly, either through the application process or at entry points".

The signatories said that acclaimed artists, such as the C…

Where to look to find a job

It can be very confusing deciding on where to begin your search for a job. The trouble is that it has been estimated that somewhere around three-quarters of all jobs get awarded 'on the nod' - in other words, they aren’t advertised so you won’t get to hear about them.

This means your jobseeking activities must be directed at the quarter of the iceberg you can see, so here are three main places you should try when looking for a job.

Internet Search Sites
There are some big internet jobs sites. These are free to use (and have to be by law) and their great advantage is that they will contain tens of thousands of jobs and cover the whole of the UK allowing you to see if relocating might be beneficial.

Tip: Keep a spreadsheet of which vacancies you've applied for as they may feature on numerous sites.

Employment Agencies
These are privately-run bodies who get paid through placing people in jobs. The difference is that, although there is a ruling body, there is relatively little c…

What do non-immigrant visas do?

International visitors add greatly to a nation's cultural, education and economic life. A visa shows custom officials that you are authorized to enter a nation. There are many kinds of non-immigrant visas, each with different restrictions on:
How long you can stayWhether you can work during your stayWhether you can leave and re-enter the country.
For example, non-immigrant visas for U.S. are for international travelers (citizens of other countries), coming to the U.S. temporarily. The visa, placed in your passport when issued, allows you to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry (airport, for example) and request permission of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Customs and Border Protection immigration officer to enter the U.S. A visa does not guarantee entry into the U.S.

Watch this video: Attending a Non-immigrant Visa Interview

What to expect when you attend the Embassy for a non-immigrant visa?

Non-immigrant visas: The issues and the facts (Philippine-American relations series)

What is a Schengen visa?

A Schengen visa allows a person to temporarily enter the Schengen zone. The Schengen zone refers to the area that encompasses the European states that are members of the Schengen Agreement. The Schengen Agreement is a set of international treaties that abolish physical borders among member states, and effectively synchronizes travel amongst member states under one visa program. If you apply for a visa to travel to one country in the Schengen zone, as long as you have proof of pre-existing travel arrangements, you can enter any other Schengen zone country with the same visa.

Immigration numbers plunge by almost half in two years

Melbourne: Australia is not wooing foreigners as latest official data says that the country's net migration has plunged by almost half in the last two years. Australia's Bureau of statistics report disclosed that net migration was just 171,000 in 2010, down sharply from 316,000 in 2008 and the lowest since the bureau changed its measuring system in late 2006, according to media reports.

The report said that country's population growth fell to 325,500 in 2010, down from 467,300 in 2008. However, in the six months to December, net migration slumped 37 per cent year on year, from 121,500 to 77,000. In the state of Victoria, net migration fell even more sharply. Since 2003, Indians had been the main source of permanent settlers in Victoria. But in 2009-10, their numbers slumped 14 per cent, and China became the state's main source of settlers. In 2010, migration of Indians to Victoria slumped 37 per cent, from 76,000 to 48,000, partly reflecting the impact of Indian media …

Vicious Cycle: 'Best job is with military'

Good news stories for the U.S. economy are few and far between - with mass job cuts, layoffs and a growing national debt. However, some are staying optimistic, saying things could be even worse, as our own resident in New York found out.

Do I need a transit visa if I am going through New Zealand airport?

Most people will not need a transit visa. You will not need one if:

you are from a visa-free countryyour next legal destination is Australiayou are a citizen of one of the following countries, which are exempt from transit visa requirements.Bahamas Papua New GuineaBermuda ParaguayBolivia PeruColombia PhilippinesCosta RicaRepublic of Marshall IslandsEcuador SamoaFederated States of MicronesiaSolomon IslandsIndonesia ThailandKiribatiTongaNauruTuvaluPalauVanuatuPanama Venezuela
However, you may require a transit visa. See details.

Note, if you are stopping off at a New Zealand airport on your way to another country, staying in New Zealand for less than 24 hours, and not leaving the transit area of the airport, you do not need a visitor visa. Find more..

Visiting New Zealand: Do I need a visa?

Quick check
Take the quick check to see whether you need a visitor visa to come to New Zealand. You don't need a visa to enter New Zealand:
If you are a New Zealand or Australian citizenHold a New Zealand residence class visaHave a current Australian permanent residence visa or a current Australian resident return visaIf you are a diplomat or carry out certain roles in a consular office part of the military personnel a cruise ship passenger who meets certain time and destination requirement an aircraft crew member on any commercial aircraft flying between any other country and New Zealand, for 7 days beginning with the day on which the aircraft arrived in New Zealand, orassociated with a Contracting Party to the Antarctic Treaty and other Antarctic travellers If you are from a visa-free country, and intending to visit for no more than your allotted time of three months (or six months if you are from the United Kingdom) - See more details
Visa-waiver countries
The following is a lis…

School kids are now seeking career guidance from Tarot card readers

Post-board exams results, every kid goes through the dilema of making a career choice. While career counsellors used to be of help till some time ago, now it’s the tarot readers that the kids are turning to for career advice.

When planning or even thinking about a career change, it's important to use all the resources available to you for advice. One of the best resources that many people overlooked till recently is a spiritual one: tarot reading.

Celebrity tarot card expert Munisha Khatwani agrees that the number of students and parents who rely on tarot readings to decide a career is going up every year. “In the last two years the number of people coming for tarot reading for career advice has upped by almost 100 per cent.

People come to me with all kinds of queries like ‘Will my child clear the exams? Or how much percentage will he/she secure? What career should they take up? Which college to enroll for?’ And so on. I do the readings after knowing the child’s interest and let t…

Apply for vacancies

Normally job application methods such as telephone for appointment for interview, submitting application letter and resume are provided in the recruitment advertisement. If you come across suitable vacancies, do not hesitate to submit your application at once.

Contact employer direct by phone

When phoning the person in charge for recruitment, you should:
choose a restful environment to contact the potential employer, and use pen and paper to jot down simple notesintroduce yourself in brief and explain the purpose of callingstate clearly the position you are applying for and the source of the vacancy calm, polite and confident.take note of the details such as the date, time, venue of the interview, the contact person and the documents needed etc. if you are granted an interviewDon't hang up the phone first at your side,. You should let the potential employer hang up first.

Writing application letter and resume

When the recruitment advertisement is released, the person r…

Dozens mistakenly told they won visa lottery suing

Dozens of people who were mistakenly told they had won a spot to apply for a U.S. visa through the annual visa lottery system are suing the federal government.

Roughly 22,000 individuals were told in early May they'd been selected through the Diversity Visa Lottery Program, whereby foreign nationals from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States can apply for up to 55,000 available visas. But two weeks later immigration officials announced the selection was skewed due to a computer glitch and the initial round was invalid. Instead of selecting the candidates randomly, nearly all were chosen from those who filed on the first two days of the application process.

A new lottery is set for July 15, and those from the first round will be eligible. They must still go through security and other background checks, but those who qualify are generally accepted.

Heide Bronke Fulton, a State Department spokeswoman, said Tuesday the department was aware of the "potential…

Choose your career

Know yourself and the market well

What kind of job I am looking for? To answer this questions, job seekers should first of all know more about themselves and the current labour market situation. By doing this, they can avoid wasting their precious time and missing the chance of employment.

Know yourself

Know yourself is the first step towards success in job hunting. Job seekers should clearly understand their own characteristics and job preference, and to choose their job accordingly.

You can know yourself more through different aspects such as personality, interests, ability, merits, qualifications, job preference and job expectation, etc. Knowing yourself well not only can help job seekers set up their career goal and to choose a suitable job, but also help them to answer questions about themselves in the interview.

Know the current labour market and industry situation

Besides knowing yourself, job seekers should acquaint themselves with the current job market situation, so as to set u…

Two nabbed for duping visa seekers

AHMEDABAD: A 42-year-old woman and her manager running a visa consultancy agency near Swastik crossroads were arrested for duping 13 people of Rs 16.50 lakh.

Navrangpura police arrested the duo from SG Highway on Monday.

According to police, Mehul Soni, a resident of Khamasa, filed a complaint in April 2010 against Asha Shah, a visa consultant running operations from her residence in Anhill Complex near Swastik crossroads. As per the complaint, Shah had advertized her consultancy Alpha Infocomm in newspapers that claimed to provide assistance to procure a work permit and visa for the UK.

"In July 2009, Soni and his group of 10 youths approached Shah and her manager Frances Joseph, 44, for jobs in London. Shah promised them quick processing and charged for the services. Over the next four months, she took their passports and signed documents for visa processing. During this time, the youths paid Rs 16.50 lakh to Shah and Joseph," said P M Sarvaiya, inspector of Navrangpura po…

Examination stress

Some people are afraid of failing their exams, causing them to suffer from nervous tension, insomnia, confusion, loss of appetite, shaking of the hands and feet, and headache, all of which can affect ability to study. With the appropriate physical and psychological preparation, you can reduce fear and worry before an exam.
Ways to deal with exam stress It is important to have the right attitude toward exams. Exams are simply a stage that a student must pass through. Grades don't mean everything. If you fail an exam, it's not the end of the world. The important thing is to do your best and be satisfied with that.

Plan out your exam study sessions. Make sure that your study environment is quiet and well lit. This will not only help you concentrate, it will also improve your memory.

Group study sessions can be helpful. Discuss the exam subjects with your fellow students, and take sample exams to help you get used to answering exam questions.

Don't expect too much …

U.S. Jobless Claims Fell to 414,000; Housing Starts Rose

June 16 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. jobless claims declined by 16,000 to 414,000, fewer than forecast, in the week ended June 11, Labor Department figures showed today. Separately, housing starts increased more than forecast in May, led by a jump in the West as other parts of the country languished. Work began on 560,000 houses at an annual pace, up 3.5 percent from the prior month, according to the Commerce Department. Michael McKee and Betty Liu report on Bloomberg Television's "In the Loop." (Source: Bloomberg)
 Watch Video:

Canada announces new 10-year visa for Indians

The Government of Canada recently announced a 10-year multiple entry visa that will now be available for Indian citizens. The new visa is hoped to boost trade ties between Canada and India by tripling their trade to $15 billion within four years.

Preneet Kaur, Minister of State for External Affairs with the Government of India, has stated that Indian citizens living abroad play an important role for India’s prosperity “by sending remittances back home, making investments, transferring technical knowhow, and projecting India's soft power by popularizing its culture, films and dance.”

She also commented on the growing relationship between Canada and India, “We have already signed the historic civil nuclear agreement. In the near future, India and Canada will sign the social security agreement, conclude a bilateral investment protection agreement and complete an ambitious comprehensive economic partnership agreement. India-Canada ties are developing at a time of enormous…

Unemployment and Underemployment Statistics for March - May 2011

Hong Kong (HKSAR) - According to the latest labour force statistics released  on June 16, 2011 by the Census and Statistics Department, HKSAR Govt., the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate stood at 3.5% (provisional figure) in March - May 2011, same as that in February - April 2011.The underemployment rate also remained unchanged at 1.9% in the two periods (provisional figure).

Comparing March - May 2011 with February - April 2011, decreases in the unemployment rate (not seasonally adjusted) were mainly observed in the wholesale, foundation and superstructure, as well as manufacturing sectors, while increases were more apparent in the decoration, repair and maintenance for buildings, warehousing and support activities for transportation, and food and beverage service activities sectors.As to the underemployment rate, decreases were mainly seen in the arts, entertainment and recreation sector, offsetting increases in the decoration, repair and maintenance for buildings…

Canada prepares to introduce biometric scanning for immigrants

The Canadian government will soon require immigrants to undergo biometric scanning in order to enter the country in order to improve border security. This technology has been used for years by other Western countries to reduce the instances of immigration fraud.

At the present, Canadian border officials use photo identification to determine if the person before them is the same as listed on the passport, a process that can be subjective. To remove the subjectivity, biometrics would use digitial measurements of a person’s fingerprints, face, and retinas which will be stored on computer chips and machine-readable strips.

The Canadian government has decided to use fingerprint technology rather than facial recognition software, investing approximately $200 million on the program. $3.5 million was invested on a biometrics field trial at Canadian offices in Hong Kong, Seattle, and Etobicoke. During the trial, over 14,000 visa applicants provided fingerprints and photos and ver…

How to get into charity work

So you want to get involved with a charity, but how to you take those first steps? Well, there’s obviously a big difference between unpaid short-term tasks and full-time roles designed to progress you along your career path. Also, as a hefty chunk of the UK job market, the charity sector contains myriad job types, and to go into all of these would require substantially more of your time than we intend to take up, so instead we’re going to focus on a few key areas.


Most charitable organisations live or die by their public perception – the better known a charity is, the more likely it is to maintain those all-important fundraising contributions at a level that allow it to continue its good work. In this regard, public relations and marketing staff are vital in ensuring that media outlets are constantly being reminded of the charity’s actions and that the charity’s brand is consistently implemented to help keep its aims and needs in people’s minds. Either of these roles are a…

Fulbright Fellowships in ENVIRONMENT; Professional Development opportunities in the USA - 2012-2013

USIEF administers Fulbright-Nehru and other Fulbright fellowships for study, research, teaching and professional development in the U.S. Two fellowship programs in the field of environment are available for 2012-2013.

1. Humphrey Fellowship Program: This is one of the most prestigious programs under the Fulbright banner. Funded by the U.S. Department of State, Humphrey is a 10-month professional development program in the U.S. Selected candidates will be placed at a top rated U.S. University and will get lots of opportunities for professional development and networking with decision makers in the U.S. Some of the prominent Humphrey fellows from India include: RBI Governor Dr. Subbarao, NAC Secretary Dr. Rita Sharma, PMO JS Ms. Vini Mahaj, Pune Police Commissioner Ms. Meeran Borwankar among others. Natural Resources, Environmental Policy, and Climate Change is an important field for Humphrey. Applicants need not to contact the U.S. University. Humphrey, Washington, D.C. office will tak…

Legislation - Immigration Bill - Battling bureaucracy

The new legislation introduces extensive changes to SA’s travel, visa and permit system, which critics says will have severe implications for foreign skilled professionals working in this country.

Despite the fact that the controversial new Immigration Bill was muscled through the national assembly two months ago, industry professionals are hoping that some of the more contentious provisions may still be revised during the parliamentary process.

The new legislation introduces extensive changes to SA’s travel, visa and permit system, which critics says will have severe implications for foreign skilled professionals working in this country.

It will herald new areas of bureaucracy for an already over burdened home affairs department and has also imperilled the work of legal and immigration practitioners .

Every major opposition political party voted against the bill during its passage through the national assembly and the ruling ANC had to use its parliamen…

Tier 4 English Language Requirement Changes

Clarification of English language requirement for Tier 4 sponsors and students:
Following the recent announcement of changes to the English language requirements for students under Tier 4 of the points-based system, the UK Border Agency has produced a document clarifying the requirements for students and sponsors.

Clarifications include 'students who wish to study at NQF/QCF level 6 (SCQF 9) and above normally need to produce a Secure English Language Test (SELT) certificate, from a UK Border Agency approved provider, showing that they have achieved level B2 on the Common European Framework of Reference for languages (CEFR) in each of the 4 components: speaking; listening; reading; and writing.'

'Students who wish to study between NQF/QCF levels 3 and 5 (SCQF 6-8) normally need to produce a SELT certificate, from a UK Border Agency approved provider, showing that they have achieved level B1 on the CEFR in each of the 4 components: speaking; listening; reading; and w…

Murthy unhappy over US probe on B-1 visa issue

Manorama, Saturday, June 11, 2011 - Bangalore: Infosys' outgoing chairman and chief mentor N.R. Narayana Murthy Saturday expressed disappointment over a US court issuing a legal notice to the IT bellwether on its reported misuse of B-1 visa rules.

"As I leave the board, I feel sad that Infosys, voted most often as India's most respected company during the period 1995-2011, has been issued a subpoena by a grand jury in the US on the B-1 visa issue. The issue will be decided on its merits in due course," Murthy told his shareholders at the 30th annual general meeting (AGM) here.

Though a district court in Texas May 23 served the legal notice to the company on the alleged violation of visa rules, the management decided to contest it and clarify its position to clear the air.

Asserting that the blue chip company would strengthen its well-acclaimed and much respected focus on embracing meritocracy and transparency, Murthy said during the last three decades he had never co…

Skilled migration blog fosters informed decisions - DIAC, Australia

The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) has launched a blog to promote Australia’s skilled migration policy and contribute to an informed public policy-making environment.

The blog will highlight existing skilled migration policy, flag potential program changes and be a vehicle for engagement with the community to increase awareness about skilled migration in Australia.

These programs include the temporary 457 visa program, the permanent employer-sponsored programs and the permanent general skilled migration program. The first blog post focuses on enterprise migration agreements (EMAs), a policy response to the tight labour market in the resource sector.

Visitors to the skilled migration blog,, will be able to explore different aspects to skilled migration over the coming months. The department will update the blog regularly.

More information about skilled migration programs can be found on the department’s website at…

Canada Immigration - Fast Track Immigration for Skilled Workers

A comment about this video: Fast tracking immigrants is beyond stupid. I work with a group of engineers and we have a new guy on board. Every day we have to teach him what engineers do!! Every step? of the way! It looks politically correct that we have this guy on board but he is being paid a lot of money for what??? His schooling (laughs) has him prepared for a job at Tim Hortons at best. See Immigrating to Canada and Finding Employment

Obtaining Green Card (become permanent residents) through family

Many people get Green Cards (become permanent residents) through family members. You may be eligible to get a Green Card as:
an immediate relative of a U.S. citizenthis includes spouses, unmarried children under the age of 21, and parents of U.S. citizen petitioners 21 or oldera family member of a U.S. citizen fitting into a preference category, this includes unmarried sons or daughters over the age of 21, married children of any age, and brothers and sisters of U.S. citizen petitioners 21 or oldera family member of a green card holderthis includes spouses and unmarried children of the sponsoring green card holdera member of a special categorythis can include battered spouse or child (VAWA), a K nonimmigrant, a person born to a foreign diplomat in the United States, a V nonimmigrant or a widow(er) of a U.S. Citizen
Obtaining Permanent Residency Through Marriage to a US Citizen

A foreign national who has married a U.S. citizen is generally entitled to apply for permanent residen…

Unemployment is highest among the most recent veterans in US

Discussions has been done about the high unemployment rate among veterans from the post-9/11 wars, but a new US Congressional study offers some fresh insights into the nature of the problem.

The report, citing data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, shows that the unemployment rate among men and women who served in the military in the aftermath of September 11, 2001 was 10.9 percent in April. Despite their training and experience, many of these veterans are unable to find civilian jobs after leaving active duty.

In 2010, the unemployment rate for these veterans averaged 11.5 percent, compared to the overall veteran-unemployment rate of 8.7 percent, and 9.4 percent unemployment rate for nonveterans. Job gains in recent months have brought down the national unemployment rate, which is now 0.8 percentage point below last year’s level. New data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics put the unemployment rate of Post-9/11 veterans at 10.9 percent in April, 2.2 percentage points lower than i…

Non-UK born workers and the skill level of their jobs

This podcast from the Office for National Statistics explains how the number of non-UK born workers within the UK has changed since 2002.

It then looks at the changes in those born in the EU 14, EU A8 and rest of the world, before then looking at differences depending on the skill level of their jobs.

US - Hiring slowed dramatically in May; jobless rate ticks up to 9.1%

Recent report from the Labor Department confirmed earlier data pointing to a U.S. economic recovery in deceleration, but the same report also contained signs that a slide back into recession is unlikely.

After two consecutive months of strong hiring, the pace slowed precipitously in May 2011 with employers adding just 54,000 jobs as the jobless rate ticked up one-tenth of a point to 9.1 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The dip in hiring wasn't a complete surprise, since Wednesday's ADP National Employment Report had forewarned what might be coming. It measures private-sector hiring and reported employment gains of just 38,000. The broader government report Friday actually showed more robust private-sector hiring at 83,000 jobs. The overall national jobs number was dragged down by continued layoffs by state and local governments, which shed another 29,000 posts. Read more

Employment cafe in Toronto helps job seekers take action

Moshe Sakal was looking for a career change when he happened to visit Centennial Library in Toronto and came across the Bathurst-Finch Employment Cafe.

For the past year and a half, the cafe has run out of the Bathurst Street and Finch Avenue library every Tuesday from 1 to 3:45 p.m.

The cafe is a collaborative effort of local employment service providers to reach out to job seekers. The free service is open to everyone who needs employment assistance.

Agencies involved are JVS Toronto; Toronto Employment and Social Services; Toronto Public Library; Toronto Social Services, Finance and Administration; vpi; St. Stephen's Community House; AYCE; and YMCA.

The cafe went on hiatus in December and started up again at the beginning of May, much to the relief of those seeking help.

The cafe helps one to identify their needs and then refer them to the appropriate partner agency. Many people are visiting the cafe, a lot of newcomers who are looking for work and also get a lot of youths who …

France visa and work permit

First of all, visit the website of the Consulate General of France in your country which provides information on procedures applicable to foreign nationals who wish to apply for a visa to travel to France.

For Prospective Applicants
If you wish to apply for a temporary visa to France, read the information on the Consulate website carefully. If you follow the guidelines listed on the site, you will be able to submit your documents accurately. This will reduce the chances of your application being rejected due to inadequate or faulty submission of documents.

Spouse of a French citizen
As the spouse of a French citizen, you need to get a spouse visa and that you have to do through the French consulate in the country in which you are currently resident. This being France, each consulate seems to have slightly different procedures for visa applications so you should check the local consulate's website.

Basic process, though, should be much the same. You need to get a French livret de fa…

Finding a job in construction

Construction is a really varied industry that offers lots of diversity, challenges and jobs to suit all levels of qualification. This makes it a really great option for anybody hunting for a new job – whether you’re after your next career move, your first job after leaving education, a career change or to re-enter the labour market after a break, construction could be the industry for you.

If you say ‘construction’ to people, they tend to immediately think of building, because that’s the most obvious form of construction. But there’s much more to it than that – construction entails architects, building surveyors, facilities managers, town planners, painters and decorators, welders, foremen, joiners and more. You can see just from the list the potential wealth of jobs available to you and the creativity and importance of the industry.

When you’re looking for construction jobs, you need to think carefully about what you really want. Do you want a skilled job, like an architect, that re…

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