Medical Assistant Jobs as Your Next Career Path - Student Assembly of the State University of New York

Medical Assistant Jobs as Your Next Career Path - Student Assembly of the State University of New York Medical Assistant Jobs as Your Next Career Path - Student Assembly of the State University of New York Students learning to be Patient Care Technicians - Delphos Herald Org offers tuition-free nursing assistant training, guaranteeing a job - Medical Assistant Jobs as Your Next Career Path - Student Assembly of the State University of New York Posted: 05 Mar 2021 03:57 AM PST Behind every great nurse or doctor is a hardworking medical assistant. Medical assistants (MAs) are some of the most dedicated healthcare professionals that fly under the radar of the public. They support the healthcare system by undertaking clinical AND administrative tasks. Answering phones, scheduling appointments, checking vital signs, help with the ventilator — these are some of their duties. If you've always been interest

Starkville musician Wyly Bigger has big things in store - The Reflector online

Starkville musician Wyly Bigger has big things in store - The Reflector online

Starkville musician Wyly Bigger has big things in store - The Reflector online

Posted: 16 Feb 2021 10:01 AM PST

Starkville musician and Mississippi State University student Wyly Bigger is making his career by blurring the lines between music past and music present. His first extended play (EP) was released on Feb. 12 and features five original songs with a classic jazz and blues sound. 

Although this month marks his first big release, Bigger, a graduate student studying history at MSU, is no stranger to the music scene. His career can be traced back much earlier, to a toy piano his parents gave him for Christmas when he was just 4 years old. 

Soon after that Christmas spent in Bigger's hometown of Marion, Arkansas, it became clear Bigger had a gift which would one day outgrow the tiny plastic keys his parents had given him. They enrolled their son in piano lessons, and so began Bigger's love for the instrument. 

At the age of 13, Bigger attended a summer workshop at the Pinetop Perkins Foundation, a blues foundation in Clarksdale, Mississippi. He now cites his time in Clarksdale as the moment he fell in love with the blues, a genre that would become heavily influential in Bigger's own music. 

It was at this workshop Bigger met Jesse Black, a musician from Chattanooga, Tennessee, who played guitar on his new record. Black recalls their first encounter, stating he had a feeling about Bigger's talent before his fingers hit the keys. 

"I hadn't talked to him yet, but he got up on stage and started playing. He looks the part; he looks like a cool piano player. So I thought he was going to be good just from looking at him, and then he got up on stage and was just crazy good," Black said.

After graduating high school, Bigger brought his piano talent to Starkville as he began his career at MSU. It was during this time he began writing more and more of his own songs, and he said Starkville has been the perfect place to fine-tune his performance skills. Bigger can be found playing at venues such as Dave's Dark Horse Tavern, The Guest Room and Georgia Blue.

"I think Starkville has been a great place for me to be. In undergraduate, it was a lot easier to balance music and school. But the community has really embraced me. I've been able to play at a lot of places and make a lot of friends through my music," Bigger said.

Different places in the South serve as a great source of inspiration in Bigger's songs, such as "Louisiana Baby," "Down to New Orleans" and "Memphis Nights." Growing up just across the Mississippi River from Memphis, in particular, has shaped Bigger's musical style.

"So many great musicians came from Memphis, I mean, rock and roll exploded there so that was a big influence for me. I grew up listening to those legends like Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis and B.B. King," Bigger said. 

At first glance, Bigger's degree in history and his career in music may seem like two completely different endeavors, but his interest in musical legends throughout history ties the two together. 

"Music and history go hand in hand for me. I love history, and I love music. So that's influenced me to look into older music and then, from that, learn the history around it and the influence older music has had on future music and everything in between," Bigger said. 

Dylan Osmon, another Starkville musician who has played shows with Bigger, attested to the presence of an old-school influence in his sound. 

"Wyly is unique in that he's kind of bringing back an old, almost forgotten genre. He's kind of got a Jerry Lee Lewis vibe and feel to me. He has a very Memphis, bluesy old-school sound, and you don't hear many guys playing that anymore," Osmon said. 

According to Black, Bigger brings his own twist to the classic sounds he grew up on. 

"Wyly keeps it classic with the Memphis sound, but he also brings a lot of new stuff to the table ... I've played a lot of blues bands, and sometimes the material can feel all the same. But Wyly still finds a way to make things have a different groove change or more interesting chord progressions. I really like that Wyly keeps it true to the music but at the same time pushes a little bit," Black said. 

When it came time to get in the studio and record his songs in December of 2020, Bigger chose Memphis Magnetic Recording Company because their old-school methods complimented his classic sound. 

"It's all analog recording. They do it old school, so instead of recording to a computer, it's recorded on a magnetic tape. They use all vintage equipment, which fits my sounds perfectly. It's very crisp and has a classic sound to it," Bigger said. 

While he has five songs out now, Bigger explained his time in the studio has encouraged him to write even more. Since recording, he has written ten more songs and has taken to keeping a pen and paper on him in case inspiration strikes. Needless to say, people can expect much more from Bigger in the future. 

Bigger's new EP can be found on Spotify and Apple Music, and more information can be found on his website,

Opera Singers Help Covid-19 Patients Learn to Breathe Again - The New York Times

Posted: 16 Feb 2021 07:43 PM PST

LONDON — On a recent afternoon, the singing coach Suzi Zumpe was running through a warm-up with a student. First, she straightened her spine and broadened her chest, and embarked on a series of breath exercises, expelling short, sharp bursts of air. Then she brought her voice into action, producing a resonant hum that started high in a near-squeal, before sinking low and cycling up again. Finally, she stuck her tongue out, as if in disgust: a workout for the facial muscles.

The student, Wayne Cameron, repeated everything point by point. "Good, Wayne, good," Zumpe said approvingly. "But I think you can give me even more tongue in that last bit."

Though the class was being conducted via Zoom, it resembled those Zumpe usually leads at the Royal Academy of Music, or Garsington Opera, where she trains young singers.

But Cameron, 56, isn't a singer; he manages warehouse logistics for an office supplies company. The session had been prescribed by doctors as part of his recovery plan after a pummeling experience with Covid-19 last March.

Called E.N.O. Breathe and developed by the English National Opera in collaboration with a London hospital, the six-week program offers patients customized vocal lessons: clinically proven recovery exercises, but reworked by professional singing tutors and delivered online.

While few cultural organizations have escaped the fallout of the pandemic, opera companies been hit especially hard. In Britain, many have been unable to perform in front of live audiences for almost a year. While some theaters and concert venues managed to reopen last fall for socially distanced shows between lockdowns, many opera producers have simply gone dark.

But the English National Opera, one of Britain's two leading companies, has been trying to redirect its energies. Early on, its education team ramped up its activities, and the wardrobe department made protective equipment for hospitals during an initial nationwide shortage. Last September, the company offered a "drive-in opera experience," featuring an abridged performance of Puccini's "La Bohème" broadcast over large screens in a London park. That same month, it started trialing the medical program.

In a video interview, Jenny Mollica, who runs the English National Opera's outreach work, explained that the idea had developed last summer, when "long Covid" cases started emerging: people who have recovered from the acute phase of the disease, but still suffer effects including chest pain, fatigue, brain fog and breathlessness.

"Opera is rooted in breath," Mollica said. "That's our expertise. I thought, 'Maybe E.N.O. has something to offer.'"

Tentatively, she contacted Dr. Sarah Elkin, a respiratory specialist at one of the country's biggest public hospital networks, Imperial College N.H.S. Trust. It turned out that Elkin and her team had been racking their brains, too, about how to treat these patients long-term.

"With breathlessness, it can be really hard," Elkin explained in an interview, noting how few treatments for Covid exist, and how poorly understood the illness's aftereffects still were. "Once you've gone through the possibilities with drug treatments, you feel you don't have a lot to give people."

Elkin used to sing jazz herself; she felt that vocal training might help. "Why not?" she said.

Twelve patients were initially recruited. After a one-on-one consultation with a vocal specialist to discuss their experience of Covid-19, they took part in weekly group sessions, conducted online. Zumpe started with basics such as posture and breath control before guiding participants through short bursts of humming and singing, trying them out in the class and encouraging them to practice at home.

The aim was to encourage them to make the most of their lung capacity, which the illness had damaged, in some cases, but also to teach them to breathe calmly and handle anxiety — an issue for many people working through long Covid.

When Cameron was asked if he wanted to join, he was bemused, he said: "I thought, 'Am I going to be the next Pavarotti?'"

But Covid-19 had left him feeling battered, he said; after he was discharged from hospital, he'd had to make several visits to the emergency room, and was prescribed months of follow-up treatment for blood clots and respiratory issues. "Everything I did, I was struggling for air," he said.

He added that even a few simple breathing exercises had quickly made a huge difference. "The program really does help," he said. "Physically, mentally, in terms of anxiety."

Almost as important, he added, was being able to share a virtual space and swap stories with other sufferers. "I felt connected," he said.

Alongside the weekly classes, he and the other participants were given access to online resources including downloadable sheet music, refresher videos — filmed on the English National Opera's main stage — and calming Spotify playlists.

For the singing element, the tutors had the idea of using lullabies drawn from cultures around the world — partly because they are easy to master, said Ms. Zumpe, partly because they're soothing. "We want to build an emotional connection through the music, make it enjoyable," she said. "It's not just physical."

And how was Cameron's singing now? He laughed. "I'm more in tune," he said. The program had helped him reach high notes when singing along in the car, he added. "Having learned the technique, you can manage much better," he said.

Elkin said that other participants had also reported positive effects, and she had commissioned a randomized trial to deepen clinical understanding — not least because it would help convince colleagues doubtful about complementary therapies and so-called "social prescribing."

"Some people think it's a bit touchy-feely," she said. "They want evidence."

Nonetheless, the program is being expanded to post-Covid clinics elsewhere in England, supported by charitable donations and free to anyone referred by a doctor. The aim is to take in up to 1,000 people in the next phase, the opera company said in a statement.

It wasn't just patients and clinicians that had benefited, Mollica said: E.N.O. Breathe had also given musicians and producers at the company something to focus on during a bleak time. "Everyone's found it really motivating," she said. "It's fantastic to realize that this skill set we have is useful."

Though Cameron wasn't back to full health, he said, he had recently had a snowball fight with his daughter, a level of exertion that would have been unthinkable a few months earlier. "I've got far more confidence than I did," he said. "That dark feeling has disappeared."

He added that the program had also done something immensely valuable: taught him how to breathe. "Until Covid, I took breathing for granted," he said. "So it's a blessing, in a way."

Troy DeWinne and Ethan Dirks on Creating Animated Goblin Music Video with Chef Giants | Slamdance 2021 [Exclusive Interview] - LRM Online

Posted: 16 Feb 2021 09:21 PM PST

Troy DeWinne
Troy DeWinne and Ethan Dirks co-crated the animated music video Chef Giants

Sometimes the best creativity comes to a person by just messing around.

Two college friends, Troy DeWinne and Ethan Dirks, formed a goblin band back in the day. They wrote a ton of music and it grew into a larger world for themselves. Eventually, their musical path turned into an animated music video.

Now, those singing goblins rapped their way as a feature short film at this year's Slamdance Film Festival.

Here's the synopsis of the short film:

Two goblin bandmates—Luther and The Boy—visit an outdoor diner run by the famous chef giants. Praising the giants' tasty dishes, The Boy can't wait to stuff food in his mouth. Luther, however, feels the chef giants don't deserve such praise; their health code violations being totally unacceptable.

With that in mind, Dewinne and Dirks donned goblin masks and filmed a live-action music video. They painted over the music video with rotoscoped characters and vibrant backgrounds. Then this world expanded to include devils, satyrs, and elves.

ALSO CHECK OUT: Ola Orebiyi, Darragh Carey, and Bertrand Desrochers on A Brixton Tale | Slamdance 2021 [Exclusive Interview]

LRM Online's Gig Patta chatted with the two co-creators Troy DeWinne and Ethan Dirks. We discussed the music and the animation that came through in this short music video.

Troy DeWinne is a director, animator, and writer. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in its radio-television-film program. In 2018, he directed Boys' Club, a dark comedy short that featured at the Overlook Film Festival, Brussels International Film Festival, Nashville Film Festival, and deadCENTER Film Festival.

Ethan Dirks is an art director, designer, and game developer. In 2016, he co-founded the streaming startup Plot Guru. Several publications covered the startup, including Popular Science, Business Insider, and Wired. Built In Austin named Plot Guru as one of Austin's top startups to watch.

Chef Giants is currently streaming at the Slamdance Film Festival until February 25. For ticket information, visit

Watch the exclusive interview with Troy DeWinne and Ethan Dirks below. Let us know what you think.

Source: LRM Online Exclusive, Chef Giants

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CLC’s virtual annual gospel music salute features Jonathan McReynolds - Chicago Tribune

Posted: 16 Feb 2021 11:52 AM PST

"With so much uncertainty this year, this program brings so much positivity and hope," said Cotton-Wilson, coordinator of the CLC Lakeshore Campus in Waukegan. Cotton-Wilson and Effie Rolfe, a Chicago-based media personality, speaker and author, will serve as emcees.


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