Education & Schools
Women selling to women; job opportunities for women across Iowa PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Sherri DeCoursey   
Tuesday, 15 January 2013 15:36


CHARLESTON, SC (January 15, 2013) - A newly formed national marketing company is introducing a unique business model offering simple solutions to help women succeed – through income and through insurance. Queen Street America LLC (QSA) is seeking full- and part-time, work-from-home female sales representatives across Iowa to launch its product to cancer-concerned consumers.

The QSA Plan for cancer-concerned consumers

The American Cancer Society states that cancer impacts one of every three women, one of every two men, and three of every four families. QSA has responded to these statistics by offering an insurance product called the QSA Plan. The Plan is sold to women by women in the workplace, coffee shop, gym, kitchen, playground, and in all of the places where women connect and build relationships.  The QSA Plan provides women and their families with up to a $70,000 lump sum insurance benefit should a covered individual receive a qualifying cancer diagnosis.

“Cancer has so many hidden costs that a major medical policy doesn’t cover,” says QSA Founder, President and CEO Chris Weaver. “When our customers receive a cancer diagnosis, their focus needs to be on healing and recovery and family, not on worrying about how to pay their monthly bills and mortgage of child’s tuition. Having a QSA Plan makes that possible.” He adds, “And, when representatives sell the QSA Plan, it’s fulfilling because they know they’ve shared something that can have a positive and powerful impact in another person’s life.”

Employment opportunities for entrepreneurial women

Despite the country’s lagging job market, QSA is expanding its nationwide network of women representatives to introduce its QSA Plan to cancer-concerned consumers. Prior experience in the insurance field is not required since QSA provides a step-by-step on-line training and coaching program, a comprehensive information portal with business tools and resources, and also personal access to QSA insurance professionals and business development experts.

Women from all educational and professional backgrounds serve as part-time or full-time independent QSA sales representatives to introduce the QSA Plan to customers. According to Sunnie Christiansen, Senior Business Development Manager for QSA, representatives determine their own level of activity within the company based on personal income goals and schedules. “QSA embraces representatives who want to earn extra income by working a few hours a week, as well as representatives who want to launch a full-time career and invest more time and energy in order to earn more,” Christiansen says.

Weaver echoes this sentiment of inclusiveness. “QSA prides itself on understanding the need for flexibility in women’s busy lives,” he says. “QSA was formed in part to create a business opportunity that lets women succeed and have flexibility without having to compromise or re-prioritize other important areas of their lives.”

Women interested in learning more about the professional benefits of becoming a QSA representative are encouraged to call 855-772-8517 or to visit

Queen Street America (QSA) LLC, headquartered in Charleston, SC, was founded in 2013 by Chris Weaver, one of the country’s leading supplemental insurance marketing experts. Weaver’s creation of QSA was fueled by his passion to provide simple insurance products that financially empower individuals and families who someday may manage a qualifying cancer diagnosis, and also fueled by his interest in providing business opportunities to women. Prior to forming QSA, Weaver served as founder, president and CEO of Performance Matters Associates of Dallas, TX, a wholly owned subsidiary of CNO Financial, formerly Conseco, Inc. and also as the president of the Business Marketing Division of Capitol American Life Insurance Company of Cleveland, OH.

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News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Jackie King   
Monday, 14 January 2013 15:38

1,708 receive degrees at ISU commencement

AMES, Iowa - At Iowa State University's fall 2012 commencement ceremonies, 1,708 students received degrees. Iowa State awarded 1,388 undergraduate degrees, 210 master's degrees, and 110 doctor of philosophy degrees.

Of the students receiving bachelor's degrees, 264 graduated "With Distinction" (cum laude, magna cum laude or summa cum laude). Two students graduated as members of the Honors Program, and 13 students graduated "With Distinction" and as members of the Honors Program.


Taylor Marie Downing, BS, Food Science (AGLS), M; Rock Island, IL

Jonathon Douglas Vandyke, BS, Supply Chain Management, Bettendorf, IA

Kenneth Vaughn Johnson, BS, Electrical Engineering, Davenport, IA

Jon Lee Baumgarten, BS, Industrial Engineering, Bettendorf, IA
David Thomas Zimmerman, BS, Industrial Engineering, Bettendorf, IA;
Benjamin W. Bramer, BS, Mechanical Engineering, Bettendorf, IA

Matthew Allen Burmeister, BS, Mechanical Engineering, S, Davenport, IA
Brett Christopher Ebert, BS, Mechanical Engineering, S, Davenport, IA
Alex Scott Ruggeberg, BS, Mechanical Engineering, Davenport, IA

Alexa Rae Ashcraft, BS, Child, Adult, and Family Services, Eldridge, IA

Emily Marie Kenneke, BS, Elementary Education, C, Davenport, IA

Jennifer Ann Garter, BS, Kinesiology and Health, Bettendorf, IA

Emily Erin Martin, BA, Religious Studies, Davenport, IA

Emily Marcene Doerder, BM, Music, M, Bettendorf, IA

Aislinn Grace D'Auben, BS, Genetics (LAS), Bettendorf, IA
Michael Paul Hayes, BS, Psychology, Bettendorf, IA
Michael Webster Mulvihill, BS, Technical Communication, Bettendorf, IA
Brian Joseph Kilby, MEN, Mechanical Engineering and Industrial and Manufacturing Systems, Davenport, IA
Jordan Ray Thistle, MS, Aerospace Engineering, Davenport, IA

BAR - Bachelor of Architecture
BA - Bachelor of Arts
BFA - Bachelor of Fine Arts
BLA - Bachelor of Landscape Architecture
BLS - Bachelor of Liberal Studies
BS - Bachelor of Science
MAA - Master of Accounting
MAG - Master of Agriculture
MAR - Master of Architecture
MA - Master of Arts
MBA - Master of Business Administration
MCP - Master of Community and Regional Planning
MED - Master of Education
MEN - Master of Engineering
MFS - Master of Family and Consumer Sciences
MFA - Master of Fine Arts
MLA - Master of Landscape Architecture
MPA - Master of Public Administration
MSM - Master of School Mathematics
MS - Master of Science
PHD - Doctor of Philosophy
(1) Graduated Cum Laude and in Honors Program
(2) Graduated Magna Cum Laude and in Honors Program
(3) Graduated Summa Cum Laude and in Honors Program
(4) Recipient of University Teaching Excellence Award
(5) Recipient of University Research Excellence Award
(6) Recipient of University Teaching Excellence Award AND Research Excellence Award
(C) Graduated Cum Laude
(M) Graduated Magna Cum Laude
(S) Graduated Summa Cum Laude
(H) Graduated in Honors Program


Branstad, Reynolds, Glass propose reforms to ensure great teaching in every classroom to dramatically raise achievement PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Office of the Governor of Iowa   
Monday, 14 January 2013 15:28

(DES MOINES) - Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds today released an education reform package that will bring Iowa closer to its goal of providing a world-class education to all children, no matter where they live.


The package presented for the 2013 legislative session focuses on providing great teaching in every classroom to raise student achievement and to prepare Iowa’s children to compete for jobs in a competitive global economy.


“We have many good schools with committed educators, but they are stuck in a system designed for the 20th century, not the 21st century,” Branstad said. “I am ready to invest significant resources into these educational reforms, which truly have the power to dramatically raise achievement.”


Branstad added: “I do not believe we should spend even one minute discussing additional resources to prop up our current educational structure until we have first agreed on the reforms our children need.”


The investment proposed by Branstad and Reynolds scales up over five years, starting with $14 million in the first year, $72 million in the second year, and $187 million at full implementation in five years.


Other states and nations have made dramatic, whole-system changes that have pushed their education systems past Iowa’s. Iowa, meanwhile, has slipped from being a top performer to middle of the pack on national tests.


“Iowa’s children deserve the best education we can provide so they leave our schools with the knowledge and skills necessary for successful and rewarding lives,” said Iowa Education Director Jason Glass. “We stand at a pivotal moment in Iowa’s storied education history, in which we have the opportunity and will as a community to make the transition from being ‘good’ to being ‘great.’”


World-class schools are one of four top priorities set by Branstad and Reynolds, along with 200,000 new jobs, a 25 percent increase in family incomes and to reduce the cost of government by 15 percent.


The centerpiece of their 2013 education reform package is establishing a new teacher leadership and compensation system. This proposal is based on recommendations from the Task Force on Teacher Leadership and Compensation, which thanks to the Legislature’s action, was established as a diverse group of Iowans who spent seven months studying this issue.


The teacher leadership and compensation system raises the status of the teaching profession and attracts and retains talented educators through these approaches:




  • Raise Iowa’s minimum starting salary from $28,000 to $35,000 to make teaching more attractive.


  • Keep top teachers in front of children, but pay these teacher leaders more to take on more instructional leadership responsibility alongside school administrators, which will strengthen the teaching throughout the building.  Teachers who are selected for model, mentor and lead roles will be paid more for sharing their expertise and for working additional days to coach, co-teach and to foster collaboration among all educators.


  • Give brand-new teachers a reduced teaching load in their first year so they can spend more time learning from outstanding veteran teachers.


The teacher leadership and compensation system, which will be phased in over several years, gives school districts the flexibility to customize leadership roles to meet their local needs. It builds on landmark, bipartisan legislation in 2001 that created, but never funded, a teacher career ladder.


“This is about strengthening the teaching profession for the benefit of both students and teachers,” Reynolds said. “Teachers are the single most important influence on a child’s success inside school, and educators are being asked to do much more to prepare students for our knowledge-driven economy. We must make sure new teachers are ready to rise to that challenge, while also providing more support for teachers already in the classroom.”


The education reform package introduced today by Branstad and Reynolds also includes four other components:


  • Teach Iowa Initiative: Expands an existing program to provide both relief and incentive through tuition reimbursement to top students who commit to teach in Iowa schools for five years, with a focus on hard-to-hire subjects such as math and science. Teach Iowa scholars will receive an extra $4,000 for each year of service, for a total of $20,000. This initiative also includes a new pilot program to strengthen clinical experience with a full year of student teaching in the senior year of college, rather than the typical one semester.


  • College- and Career-Ready Seals: Use diploma seals to identify and recognize graduating high school students who demonstrate that they are college- and career-ready. A blue-ribbon commission of business and education leaders would set high standards for the seals to better define what it means to be college or career-ready. The seals are in addition to a high school diploma. The purpose is to help students better prepare for the future and to align education with workforce development in a thoughtful way.


  • Improving educator evaluations: Iowa needs to update existing teacher and administrator evaluations to provide more valuable feedback. This will include deciding how student achievement growth should count. This work should help the state win a waiver from the federal No Child Left Behind law.



  • Expand the Iowa Learning Online program: This proposal expands an existing program at the Iowa Department of Education to allow more high school students the opportunity to take high-quality online courses taught by Iowa teachers. Small districts that often struggle to find applicants for hard-to-hire subjects also will find this helpful. This will require an initial state investment, but would be self-sustaining in three years.


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New Lights ON School begins program PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by M. McNeil   
Monday, 14 January 2013 15:02
A Rock Island Elementary School will begin offering afterschool programs beginning today (Monday) thanks to a new federal grant

(Rock Island, IL)  Earl Hanson has been given a $138,000 annual federal grant to provide educational and enrichment activities for struggling students after school.  The school will receive $138,000 each year for five years.

Earl Hanson joins the long list of Lights ON for Learning Community Learning Centers (CLCs) that have received grants over the past eleven years and will now be hanging a bright yellow Lights ON banner in their entrance.    The RIROE is the fiscal agent and project manager.  This is the eleventh 21st CCLC grant the Rock Island School District has received over the years for seven different RI schools.  Judy Hipskind will be the Lights ON Site Coordinator for Earl Hanson.  Hipskind, an experienced 21st CCLC grant coordinator, has worked with the former Lincoln School program and is currently with the RI Academy.  Programming begins January 14th.

The money is part of a $14 million dollar 21st Century Community Learning Center grant the Illinois State Board of Education recently announced.  These programs are expected to serve more than 13,600 students from 110 Illinois schools state-wide.
The 21st CCLC grant program provides academic interventions to help students meet Illinois state standards. The program also offers a variety of enrichment opportunities for students and their families, including life skills, art, music, recreation, technology classes, and character education.

“After-school programs keep students active and engaged in learning outside school hours,” said State Superintendent of Education Christopher A. Koch said in a news release. “But those positive afterschool experiences — new opportunities or time with mentors — often inspire new and continued motivation in the classroom.”

Illinois receives funds for the program based on a formula from the U.S. Department of Education. A total of $14 million was available for Fiscal Year 2013 awards through a competitive grant process. The agency received 104 proposals, totaling more than $33 million from 29 school districts, 50 community- and faith-based organizations, two universities and six regional offices of education. Thirty-seven 21st CCLC grants on behalf of 110 schools were awarded while 67 proposals were not recommended for funding. The 2013 grantees can be renewed for four years but subsequent fiscal years depend upon a sufficient appropriation for the program and satisfactory progress in the previous grant period.

News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Melissa Perry   
Monday, 14 January 2013 14:48
WACO, Texas -- Baylor University conferred degrees on almost 800 graduates including Nicole Leeann Cantrill of Bettendorf, who received her Bachelor of Science in Education - Health Science Studies degree during fall commencement exercises Dec. 15 in the Ferrell Center on the Baylor campus. Baylor University is a private Christian university and a nationally ranked liberal arts institution, classified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as a research university with "high research activity."
Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor offers 144 undergraduate, 77 master, 32 doctoral degree programs, and two education specialist programs plus the juris doctor degree, through its 11 academic units. Baylor's 735-acre campus in Waco is home to more than 15,000 students from all 50 states and 80 countries.

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