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Need A Cheaper Option Than Your State School? Try Harvard. Seriously.

A little known fact: As states cut higher education funding out of their budgets, state universities are becoming MORE expensive than elite, private universities. But public perception hasn't caught up with the trend. What's going on here?

The annual Grapevine study of state spending on higher education finds that money allocated to state schools decreased by 7.6% this year — the largest decline in 50 years. The cuts varied from as little as 1% in Indiana to as much as 41% in New Hampshire because the federal money from the 2009 stimulus legislation is finally running out.

Please share this to raise awareness. And to all you cash-strapped aspiring college students — looks like your best bet might be to set your sights on Harvard!

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3 organic recipes that feed a family of 4 for under $7 a serving

O Organics is the rare brand that provides high-quality food at affordable prices.

A woman cooking up a nice pot of pasta.

Over the past few years, rising supermarket prices have forced many families to make compromises on ingredient quality when shopping for meals. A recent study published by Supermarket News found that 41% of families with children were more likely to switch to lower-quality groceries to deal with inflation.

By comparison, 29% of people without children have switched to lower-quality groceries to cope with rising prices.

Despite the current rising costs of groceries, O Organics has enabled families to consistently enjoy high-quality, organic meals at affordable prices for nearly two decades. With a focus on great taste and health, O Organics offers an extensive range of options for budget-conscious consumers.

O Organics launched in 2005 with 150 USDA Certified Organic products but now offers over 1,500 items, from organic fresh fruits and vegetables to organic dairy and meats, organic cage-free certified eggs, organic snacks, organic baby food and more. This gives families the ability to make a broader range of recipes featuring organic ingredients than ever before.


“We believe every customer should have access to affordable, organic options that support healthy lifestyles and diverse shopping preferences,” shared Jennifer Saenz, EVP and Chief Merchandising Officer at Albertsons, one of many stores where you can find O Organics products. “Over the years, we have made organic foods more accessible by expanding O Organics to every aisle across our stores, making it possible for health and budget-conscious families to incorporate organic food into every meal.”

With some help from our friends at O Organics, Upworthy looked at the vast array of products available at our local store and created some tasty, affordable and healthy meals.

Here are 3 meals for a family of 4 that cost $7 and under, per serving. (Note: prices may vary by location and are calculated before sales tax.)

O Organic’s Tacos and Refried Beans ($6.41 Per Serving)

Few dishes can make a family rush to the dinner table quite like tacos. Here’s a healthy and affordable way to spice up your family’s Taco Tuesdays.

Prep time: 2 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Total time: 22 minutes

Ingredients:

1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

1 packet O Organics Taco Seasoning ($2.29)

O Organics Mexican-Style Cheese Blend Cheese ($4.79)

O Organics Chunky Salsa ($3.99)

O Organics Taco Shells ($4.29)

1 can of O Organics Refried Beans ($2.29)

Instructions:

1. Cook the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat until thoroughly browned; remove any excess grease.

2. Add 1 packet of taco seasoning to beef along with water [and cook as directed].

3. Add taco meat to the shell, top with cheese and salsa as desired.

4. Heat refried beans in a saucepan until cooked through, serve alongside tacos, top with cheese.

tacos, o organics, family recipesO Organics Mexican-style blend cheese.via O Organics

O Organics Hamburger Stew ($4.53 Per Serving)

Busy parents will love this recipe that allows them to prep in the morning and then serve a delicious, slow-cooked stew after work.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 7 hours

Total time: 7 hours 15 minutes

Servings: 4

Ingredients:

1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

1 ½ lbs O Organics Gold Potatoes ($4.49)

3 O Organics Carrots ($2.89)

1 tsp onion powder

I can O Organics Tomato Paste ($1.25)

2 cups water

1 yellow onion diced ($1.00)

1 clove garlic ($.50)

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

2 tsp Italian seasoning or oregano

Instructions:

1. Cook the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat until thoroughly browned; remove any excess grease.

2. Transfer the cooked beef to a slow cooker with the potatoes, onions, carrots and garlic.

3. Mix the tomato paste, water, salt, pepper, onion powder and Italian seasoning in a separate bowl.

4. Drizzle the mixed sauce over the ingredients in the slow cooker and mix thoroughly.

5. Cover the slow cooker with its lid and set it on low for 7 to 8 hours, or until the potatoes are soft. Dish out into bowls and enjoy!

potatoes, o organics, hamburger stewO Organics baby gold potatoes.via O Organics


O Organics Ground Beef and Pasta Skillet ($4.32 Per Serving)

This one-pan dish is for all Italian lovers who are looking for a saucy, cheesy, and full-flavored comfort dish that takes less than 30 minutes to prepare.

Prep time: 2 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Total time: 27 minutes

Servings: 4

Ingredients:

1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

1 tbsp. olive oil

2 tsp dried basil

1 tsp garlic powder

1 can O Organics Diced Tomatoes ($2.00)

1 can O Organics Tomato Sauce ($2.29)

1 tbsp O Organics Tomato Paste ($1.25)

2 1/4 cups water

2 cups O Organics Rotini Pasta ($3.29)

1 cup O Organics Mozzarella cheese ($4.79)

Instructions:

1. Brown ground beef in a skillet, breaking it up as it cooks.

2. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic powder

3. Add tomato paste, sauce and diced tomatoes to the skillet. Stir in water and bring to a light boil.

4. Add pasta to the skillet, ensuring it is well coated. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

5. Remove the lid, sprinkle with cheese and allow it to cool.

o organics, tomato basil pasta sauce, olive oilO Organics tomato basil pasta sauce and extra virgin olive oil.via O Organics

Image shared by Madalyn Parker

Madalyn shared with her colleagues about her own mental health.






Madalyn Parker wanted to take a couple days off work. She didn't have the flu, nor did she have plans to be on a beach somewhere, sipping mojitos under a palm tree.

Parker, a web developer from Michigan, wanted a few days away from work to focus on her mental health.


Parker lives with depression. And, she says, staying on top of her mental health is absolutely crucial.

"The bottom line is that mental health is health," she says over email. "My depression stops me from being productive at my job the same way a broken hand would slow me down since I wouldn't be able to type very well."

work emails, depression, office emails, community

Madalyn Parker was honest with her colleagues about her situation.

Photo courtesy Madalyn Parker.

She sent an email to her colleagues, telling them the honest reason why she was taking the time off.

"Hopefully," she wrote to them, "I'll be back next week refreshed and back to 100%."

Soon after the message was sent, the CEO of Parker's company wrote back:

"Hey Madalyn,

I just wanted to personally thank you for sending emails like this. Every time you do, I use it as a reminder of the importance of using sick days for mental health — I can't believe this is not standard practice at all organizations. You are an example to us all, and help cut through the stigma so we can all bring our whole selves to work."

Moved by her CEO's response, Parker posted the email exchange to Twitter.

The tweet, published on June 30, 2017, has since gone viral, amassing 45,000 likes and 16,000 retweets.

"It's nice to see some warm, fuzzy feelings pass around the internet for once," Parker says of the response to her tweet. "I've been absolutely blown away by the magnitude though. I didn't expect so much attention!"

Even more impressive than the tweet's reach, however, were the heartfelt responses it got.

"Thanks for giving me hope that I can find a job as I am," wrote one person, who opened up about living with panic attacks. "That is bloody incredible," chimed in another. "What a fantastic CEO you have."

Some users, however, questioned why there needs to be a difference between vacation time and sick days; after all, one asked, aren't vacations intended to improve our mental well-being?

That ignores an important distinction, Parker said — both in how we perceive sick days and vacation days and in how that time away from work is actually being spent.

"I took an entire month off to do partial hospitalization last summer and that was sick leave," she wrote back. "I still felt like I could use vacation time because I didn't use it and it's a separate concept."

Many users were astounded that a CEO would be that understanding of an employee's mental health needs.

They were even more surprised that the CEO thanked her for sharing her personal experience with caring for her mental health.

After all, there's still a great amount of stigma associated with mental illness in the workplace, which keeps many of us from speaking up to our colleagues when we need help or need a break to focus on ourselves. We fear being seen as "weak" or less committed to our work. We might even fear losing our job.

Ben Congleton, the CEO of Parker's company, Olark, even joined the conversation himself.

In a blog post on Medium, Congleton wrote about the need for more business leaders to prioritize paid sick leave, fight to curb the stigma surrounding mental illness in the workplace, and see their employees as people first.

"It's 2017. We are in a knowledge economy. Our jobs require us to execute at peak mental performance," Congleton wrote. "When an athlete is injured, they sit on the bench and recover. Let's get rid of the idea that somehow the brain is different."


This article originally appeared on 07.11.17

Images provided by P&G

Three winners will be selected to receive $1000 donated to the charity of their choice.

True

Doing good is its own reward, but sometimes recognizing these acts of kindness helps bring even more good into the world. That’s why we’re excited to partner with P&G again on the #ActsOfGood Awards.

The #ActsOfGood Awards recognize individuals who actively support their communities. It could be a rockstar volunteer, an amazing community leader, or someone who shows up for others in special ways.

Do you know someone in your community doing #ActsOfGood? Nominate them between April 24th-June 3rdhere.Three winners will receive $1,000 dedicated to the charity of their choice, plus their story will be highlighted on Upworthy’s social channels. And yes, it’s totally fine to nominate yourself!

We want to see the good work you’re doing and most of all, we want to help you make a difference.

While every good deed is meaningful, winners will be selected based on how well they reflect Upworthy and P&G’s commitment to do #ActsOfGood to help communities grow.

That means be on the lookout for individuals who:

Strengthen their community

Make a tangible and unique impact

Go above and beyond day-to-day work

The #ActsOfGood Awards are just one part of P&G’s larger mission to help communities around the world to grow. For generations, P&G has been a force for growth—making everyday products that people love and trust—while also being a force for good by giving back to the communities where we live, work, and serve consumers. This includes serving over 90,000 people affected by emergencies and disasters through the Tide Loads of Hope mobile laundry program and helping some of the millions of girls who miss school due to a lack of access to period products through the Always #EndPeriodPoverty initiative.

Visit upworthy.com/actsofgood and fill out the nomination form for a chance for you or someone you know to win. It takes less than ten minutes to help someone make an even bigger impact.

What will the future look like?

A Reddit user asked an innocent question about the future and it exposed a lot of the issues that people worry about today. It also highlighted the things we should appreciate while they are still around.

Klausbrusselssprouts asked the AskReddit forum, “In 50 years, what will people be nostalgic for?” and the responses went two ways. Some people mentioned the things they fear will get a lot worse in the future such as the role that technology plays in our lives and climate change.

Others saw the question as a way of appreciating the things we have now that may not survive over the next few decades.


As the old saying goes, you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone, so it’s hard to predict the things that we have today that people will feel nostalgic for in the future. Back in the late ’80s and early ’90s, nobody would have ever guessed that people would feel nostalgic for everyday experiences such as going to Blockbuster video or the sound of an old dial-up modem. But a lot of people get a warm, fuzzy feeling when they think about them today.

It’s safe to say that in 50 years, a lot of the real experiences we enjoy today will be replaced by digital technology. So take time to appreciate face-to-face interactions with other people, technology that isn’t implanted into your brain and attending events in person.

Here are 17 of the best responses to the question, “In 50 years, what will people be nostalgic for?”

1. 

"Owning something you don't pay a subscription for." — JohnnyNumbskull

Switchplayerclassic added:

"THIS is exactly what I hate rn about everything."

2. 


"Drinking water from the tap." — Credible cactus

3. 

"Grandparents will say to their grandkids, 'When I was your age, I had to get off the screen and actually GO to school.'" — Truck_Stop_Sushi

4. 

"Privacy. Even babies are overexposed today." — birdiewings

5. 

​"Being able to do basic maintenance on your car without needing a shop manual and a years salary worth of special tools." — kilroy-was-here-2543

6. 

"Keys. Even more specific vehicle keys." — UpMan

7. 

"Social media. Not because it’s good, but because whatever comes next will probably suck more." — RockoTDF

8. 

"The number of wild animals that exist and can be seen. They are already on the decline." — SpikedBubbles

9.

"Wired earbuds with an actual headphone jack. Not USB version 93 delta." — Rodeo6a

10. 

"The abundance and availability of power, water, and food." — wrath__

11. 

"Retail shopping. There will be these cutesy, extremely expensive retro shops selling things you'd find at the convenience store." — shay1990plus

12. 

"I'd say people will miss being uncontactable. Like back in the day, you could just go to your bedroom, and block the rest of the world away for a couple of hours. Now we've got video calls, phone calls, texts, emails. Urgh." — mr_wernderful

13.

"Having sex with someone who isn't a robot." — Clarenceworley480

14.

"Probably movie theaters." — rsvredditacct

15. 

​"Life before covid." — ButterflyGirlie

16. 


"Human made art and music without the use of AI. Or even just knowing it was made without the use of AI tools like DALL-E 2 or similar. Kind of like how before autotune you knew for certain a singer could sing that way." — ConfidentlyNuerotic

17. 

​"Democracy." — K3b1N

This article originally appeared 9.22.22

Brielle Asero lost her job after 2 months.

TikTokker Brielle Asero, 21, a recent college graduate, went viral on TikTok in October for her emotional reaction to the first day at a 9-to-5 job. The video, which received 3.4 million views, captured the public’s attention because it was like a cultural Rorschach test.

Some who saw the video thought that Asero came off as entitled and exemplified the younger generation’s lack of work ethic. In contrast, others sympathized with the young woman who is just beginning to understand how hard it is to find work-life balance in modern-day America.

“I’m so upset,” she says in the video. "I get on the train at 7:30 a.m., and I don't get home until 6:15 p.m. [at the] earliest. I don't have time to do anything!" Asero said in a video.


“I don’t have the time to do anything,” she continued. “I want to shower, eat my dinner, and go to sleep. I don’t have the time or energy to cook my dinner either. I don’t have energy to work out, like, that’s out of the window. I’m so upset, oh my god.”

@brielleybelly123

im also getting sick leave me alone im emotional ok i feel 12 and im scared of not having time to live

On December 16, Asero gave an update on her professional life, and sadly, things aren’t going too well. After just 2 months on the job, she was laid off. It had taken her 5 months to find the job and she had recently relocated to New York City to be near the office.

"I worked for a startup, and they didn't have the workload or the bandwidth they needed to train me and to give me work to do," she said. Being laid off during the holidays makes Asero's situation even more difficult because most employers are closed for business in late December and early January.

Asero had some stern words for those who would blame her for losing her job.

"I know that I'm a hard worker, and my boss literally said that I'm one of the smartest people he's ever had working under him, and he knows that I'm going to land on my feet, and he will give me a great referral to anybody, so don't start," she warned.

@brielleybelly123

can someone tell me im going to be okay !!!! feels like the world is ending i need a job immediatley i am feeling so lost rn like i moved for this...!?

"I have done everything I possibly could have, and it's still not enough," she said. To supplement her income while looking for her next big break, Asero says she will look for work as a server or nanny.

Even though Asero took a lot of criticism for crying after her first day at work, the comments on the new video were overwhelmingly positive and supportive. There were also a lot of people who shared how they had recently been laid off, too.

"Just want to note that there’s no shame in taking a service job while you’re still looking. You’re going to be okay, you got this," Baby bel wrote. "It happened to me, seems like ur life is ending, but I promise it's just getting started. You’ll laugh about it at some point," Rachie added.


This article originally appeared on 12.22.23












Kennyi Aouad totally lost it when he tried to say "sardoodledom."




Almost 100 years ago, nine newspapers joined forces to create a national spelling bee to help promote literacy. Now the Scripps National Spelling Bee has become so popular that was televised for 27 years on ESPN before moving to its own network in 2022.

The Scripps National Spelling Bee is a serious competition with students who have studied arduously to memorize root words, phonetic rules and unusual spellings in the hopes of being crowned the nation's spelling champion. The honor also comes with a $50,000 cash prize, so the competition is fierce.

But that didn't stop one competitor from bursting into giggles at being asked to spell the word "sardoodledom."


During the 2007 Scripps National Spelling Bee, 11-year-old Kennyi Aouad approached the microphone with serious concentration when it was his turn to spell. But when the judges told him the word he was to spell and he repeated it, he burst out laughing.

"Sardoodledom" isn't a word most of us have ever even heard, much less recognize. (It means "mechanically contrived plot structure and stereotyped or unrealistic characterization in drama"—basically "melodrama"—according to Merriam-Webster.) It does sound a bit funny saying it out loud, and even one of the judges started giggling at the young contestant's reaction to it.

Watch Kennyi lose it repeatedly as he tries to make it through his turn:

Despite how serious the competition is, these kids are still just kids and people loved seeing his joyful reaction to a silly-sounding word.

"His laugh!! ❤️ I love that in the seriousness of spelling bees, he was able to be himself. This made me smile!" wrote one person.

"So cute. Smart with a touch of sense of humour," wrote another.

"Talk about breaking the tension!!" shared another. "I love it and he got it right!"

If you're curious, Kennyi placed 34th in that year's spelling bee. He would go on to compete again, however, and tied for 5th place in the 2009 bee.


This article originally appeared on 9.28.23

@ashleyteacozy/TikTok

Every generation has it's own flavor of fun




The coming of age era known as your twenties are a time for experimentation, branching out, learning about different aspects of yourself, and of course, having stupid fun.

Of course, every generation's definition of fun varies. Just what might Gen Zers, those who navigated their teenhood through TikTok and basically came of drinking age during a global pandemic, do to elicit feelings of fun?

Thirty-two year old (read: millennial) Ashley Tea wondered this very thing. In a video that went viral on TikTok, she shared "I genuinely think millennials got to have a way better time than Gen Z does."

Tea then reminisced about her own experience of being “an emo kid in 2005,” going out to clubs, bars and restaurants with her friends having a “fun, great, trashy” time.

That simply wouldn’t be financially feasible in today’s economic landscape, Tea noted, leaving her “mystified” as to how today’s college age adults might enjoy themselves.

So again, Tea posed the question: “ it's a Friday night, a Saturday night…What do do? Where do you go?”

gen z, cheap things to do for fun, fun activities

Ashley Tea wants to know how young people are having fun

@ashleyteacozy/TikTok

Thousands responded to Tea’s question, and their answers were…illuminating, to say the least—and certainly different than how she spent her early 20s.

For starters, Tea’s joke about “Gen Zers not having any fun at all” rang true for many people of that age group.

“As a 23 year old: I don’t have any fun, hope that helps!” quipped one person.

Another joked, “sometimes I sit outside if I'm feeling extra.”

gen z, cheap things to do for fun, fun activities

"Sometimes I sit outside if I'm feeling extra."

@ashleyteacozy/TikTok

One obvious factor behind this is finances. With everything being far more expensive, many Gen Zer’s simply cannot afford to have a social life that resembles earlier generations.

“As a 21 year old, the economy makes it difficult to have fun that way, I work 40 hours weekly and I’m either too tired or can’t afford it,” one person wrote.

Another reason, which isn’t maybe as obvious, is surveillance. Tea noted that a lot of young people said that since either “parents can track their phones everywhere” they are deterred from doing things that could get them into trouble. Perhaps that’s a win for safety, but there is something to be said about excessive levels of control.

Then of course there’s the pandemic, which sucked the fun out of everything big time.

“I got ROBBED of my early 20s bs COVID started when I was 22 😭 Nwo things are normal but all the good bars and clubs in my area didn’t survive the lockdown,” one person wrote.

Plus a lack of third spaces to gather, leaving very little options beside staying home and scrolling on TikTok.

However, it’s not all gloom and doom, Tea discovered.

@ashleyteacozy

im genuinely curious

♬ original sound - Ashley Tea

For one thing, Gen Zer’s don’t “glorify binge drinking” nearly as much as millennials and Gen Xers. According to a study held at the University of Michigan, many are forgoing booze entirely. Part of this comes down to Gen Zers prioriotizing health and wellness more than previous generations. And the other, again, is the cost.

Plus, when Gen Zers do actually have fun, it tends to lean towards more wholesome activities, like house parties (sometimes even themes house parties) and crocheting. Lots and lots crocheting apparently.

gen z, cheap things to do for fun, fun activities

Grocery stores are the new clubs.

@ashleyteacozy/TikTok

gen z, cheap things to do for fun, fun activities

Love that self care is considered entertainment these days.

@ashleyteacozy/TikTok

gen z, cheap things to do for fun, fun activities

Fitness groups are a new way people are finding friends

@ashleyteacozy/TikTok

gen z, cheap things to do for fun, fun activities

Coffee shops instead of bars? Sign me up!

@ashleyteacozy/TikTok

So maybe things look quite a bit different for this generation. That’s not entirely a good or bad thing. And it’s definitely to be expected in some ways. The struggle of rising costs and limited opportunities to form connections and have fun are undeniably issues that must be addressed. But the fact that Gen Zers are leaning into their creativity is worth noting too. And it makes it clear that even though it might not look like it, there is still fun to be had.


This article originally appeared on 1.12.24