Paul's Blog

  • Why do we celebrate Halloween anyway?

    The history of halloween is a long and complex.  And the ancient beginnings of Halloween are even contested if you ask various groups of people! But let’s go through some of the more widely believed and confirmed details of the fun and meaningful holiday. Besides being a time of much superstition, it is a holiday steeped in tradition. With it’s origins coming from the Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced: ‘sow-in’), meaning Summers End, in which people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off roaming ghosts and spirits as it was believed the veil between the living and the...

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  • What IS Accent Reduction?

    What IS accent reduction? You might be wondering exactly what we do here and exactly HOW you can work on “losing” your accent, so that native English speakers can understand you clearly. Well, the technical definition for “Accent Reduction,” which is also known by many other names, such as elocution, accent modification, accent neutralization, or deaccentation. And it is a systematic approach for learning or adopting a new agent and there are many, many ways, programs, and people out there who can or can try to help you achieve this goal if you are trying to change or reduce your...

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  • A Short History of Labor Day

    Happy Labor Day!  The last day in a three day long weekend that is about more than the end of summer and grilling out. A Federally recognized holiday marking the American labor movement and the contributions that workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of the country. Unfortunately, the history of how this day become a holiday is steeped in tragedy and protest. In the late 19th century, after labor unions and trade unions of various states began celebrating their own local labor days, and following several strikes and Haymarket-style protests supporting socialism and anarchistic movements, President Cleveland...

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  • Top Tips for Public Speaking Part 2 - Some Helpful Videos

    In this post about public speaking, we thought it would be helpful to go out and find the best videos on YouTube specifically to help you with how to improve your public speaking. So here are the five highly viewed public speaking videos on YouTube: Five Basic Public Speaking Tips How to Speak with Confidence 6 Public Speaking Tips To Hook Any Audience 5 public speaking tips from TEDxPortland speaker coach Become a Better Speaker: 9 Essential Public Speaking Tips - College Info Geek        

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  • Road to the Rio Olympics

    The 2016 Rio Olympics are ALMOST here!  And there is almost nothing that could dampen our excitement. Even with controversy, health concerns and scandal swirling in the media, here in the good ole US of A, we love to watch our boys and girls head out onto the pitch, playing field and into the water for competition against the other countries of the world. The glittering and over the top opening ceremonies. The parade of athletes. It is all so surreal to watch on tv. The hopes and dreams of so many people coming true, the world coming together for...

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