All posts tagged college

When you are an entrepreneur, you will knock on a lot of doors. Get comfortable to the sound of the door bell. You will make a lot of cold calls. Get comfortable talking to voice mails. You will send A LOT of e-mails and messages. Get comfortable getting ignored. See a pattern? You will get comfortable dealing with all of these things, but one thing you cannot get comfortable about is your progress. Don’t get comfortable about where you are in life. Don’t get comfortable about your vision or your goals. Comfort will lead you to make excuses. Comfort will lead you to lose sight in your WHY. Your WHY is why you started this project.

The most successful people in any industry are not always the smartest, strongest, fastest or richest, but they are the hungriest. They get ignored time and time again, but they never stop knocking, calling or messaging. They know that there is someone out there who will take a chance on them. They never sell themselves short.

We are all entrepreneurs. You are an individual brand. Your smile is your business card. Your story is your resume. Your passion is your mission statement. Never lose sight of your WHY. For college students today, you might graduate & embark on a career that might not be what you expected. You might be struggling to land a solid career. You might even be struggling to find your WHY.

Today’s Lesson is simple. Some succeed because they are destined to, but most succeed because they are determined to. Spruce up that business card. Write out that resume. Look deep inside your heart and find your mission statement. Whatever you do, no matter how many times you get ignored or rejected, NEVER SELL YOURSELF SHORT.

There is someone out there who thinks you are worth every penny!


-Professor Stern

It was August 16th, 2014 around 10:00am and we were halfway done with the bottle of vodka, but this was not your average Saturday. It was wedding day at my house, but the conversation wasn’t about the ceremony. It was about’s “Back to the Grind” 6-week transformation challenge. I knew I wanted to be a part of this, so when my cousin Frank turned to me and said, “I Do,” (no, he wasn’t the groom to be) I just figured it was the Grey Goose talking.

The party ended & Summer was coming to a close. Frank insisted we take the challenge. This 26-year old was motivated to get the body he always wanted. The plan was simple -wake up, kick ass, eat right, repeat. Now with him working a full time job & my daily schedule being hectic and irregular, we had the issue of finding a common time routine. Some days were at 5:30am while others were at 9:30pm. That clock didn’t matter. The calendar did. 42 days to get in the best possible shape!

Frank is not obese. He is not fat by any means. He is your average sized guy. Just under 6 foot & weighs 176 pounds. He suffers from Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome which resulted in years of knee operations. So first and foremost, we crossed “cardio” off the todo list.

Day 1. It was a beautiful Sunday morning. Frank rode his bike over for his first mission. 20 tire smashes, 10 medicine ball push ups, :30 combat rope… Results? Throwing Up!

I’ll be honest, after throwing up just from about 5-minutes of a workout, I thought this was over and we would give up. Frank didn’t give up. He showed up the next day and the next and now we are here today, day (1)

To say Frank motivated me would be an understatement. He helped me realize why I got into this industry. He reminded me that every workout I teach, no matter how tired, sore or unmotivated I am, that I have to give my students my best effort. That’s all I ever asked of Frank. I didn’t care that he threw up. I didn’t care that he couldn’t do a single pull up. I cared that he kept showing up. I cared that he asked questions, pitched ideas, never made excuses, and most all of – gave it his best effort every time.

As the contest wraps up and we wait for the decision, I hope his story and transformation gets the credit he deserves. His commitment and honest work ethic is a testament to what fitness really is about. It is not about a cleanse or a miracle product. It is not about a specific diet or pill. It is about hard work and the desire to change. While this contest has come to an end, Frank’s transformation story has just begun. He proved to me that you can make changes in 42 days, but more importantly… imagine what can happen on day 43.
Just Keep Going!

-Professor Stern

You get out what you put in. A simple mentality that can apply to almost anything. SO when it comes to college, and we put in on average 4 years of life and tens of thousands of dollars, how come we don’t get out what we really need??

I have spoken to thousands of students, past and present. No matter where they went to school or what their major was, there seemed to be one common complaint. College does not prepare you for the real life issues. Sure there are classes that touch on topics, but what really is a 401-k? What are property taxes? How do you even file your taxes? What is a deductible when it comes to insurance? How about out of network or in-network? What about a mortgage? Did you leave college confidently knowing about tax, title, and due at signing for your new car? How about shopping around for a credit card – which one is the best one for you? I won’t even mention the daily tasks like washing clothes, cooking, or cleaning. To think, “I have a bachelors degree that cost me $100,000, but I know hardly anything about those above topics.” is scary!

The point I am making is not to bash the education system, but I just want to raise a point. Maybe two semesters spent learning about western civilization or an entire semester on Beowulf could be left in the High School curriculum. Maybe a semester on theater, calculus, and one semester of a world language should really be reconsidered. There should be more of an emphasis on basic living. College was established to give us a higher education and prepare us for the real world. So why do all of these students, past and present, feel under-prepared?

I can say that EVERY college student has once experienced a class where they purchased a textbook, but never opened it. I used to blame the professor for wasting my money, but now I blame myself for wasting my money and my time. I should have opened that textbook and learned the material myself. I should have studied it and asked questions, but studying the course material is far different than not being educated about the real world. That textbook would have made me more of an expert about that particular class, but it would have not taught me about the heating or cooling in a new house, about 0% apr, or simply how EXPENSIVE being an adult really is.


-Professor Stern

I used to think pictures held memories, but then I found Pop2k on XM Radio. Most of the lyrics in these songs hold no value to my life, but they allow me to travel time every day.

I didn’t have 99 problems. I was too young to be  In Da Club so I certainly couldn’t have Love in the Club.  I worked part time so I  wasn’t on the Gold Diggers target list. You could barely Drop It Like Its Hot at a high school dance. I didn’t have to Confess about having baby with a stranger. I couldn’t buy myself a drink let alone buy one for a lady. There were no diamonds on my grill. Wasn’t riding dirty. Wasn’t about money, hoes, cars or clothes. Wasn’t a skater boy slamming on a guitar. Wasn’t Crying a River or writing fan mail to Eminem.  And I certainly wasn’t dating Stacy’s Momtimecircuits

So why do I listen to all of these songs? I still can’t relate to most of the lyrics, yet they still hold so much value in my life. Maybe the lyrics mean absolutely nothing. Maybe the song holds more than just a beat, but it holds a memory. It holds a place in time. A time that may have been good, bad, happy or sad. The fact is,  that time is in the past. That moment is a moment in history. Maybe we embrace these old songs because they are a comfort zone.  Listening to those songs, even just for 2-minutes, lets you go back to that moment. To that comfort zone. The song allows you to travel through time to a moment that you already experienced.

Far too many of us are afraid to change the station because we aren’t sure what the song will be. If you are always listening to yesterday, you won’t hear about today. Today is the time to play a new song. Today is the time to step out of your comfort zone. Yesterday’s songs were great, but tomorrows will be even better. Turn the beat off from the speakers & Lose Yourself to your heartbeat. Embrace the lyrics that are yet to be written, The Best Is Yet To Come (Okay, maybe Sinatra was a few years before Pop2k, but our parents always said the oldies are the best!)


-Professor Stern

The mid 20s should be considered “The Prejudice Years.”  Well hopefully I can help end the trend, but these seem to be the most prejudice years of life. Recently out of college – you reconnect with some high school friends, you stay in-touch with some college friends, but thanks to social media, you know A LOT about your entire network. You follow them because just because you want an extra follower. You have been Facebook friends for years and are just too lazy to delete people (until you make a post about how you are deleting people) Anyway, you see all these instagram pics, tweets & statuses. First reaction – –  judging!

We are all guilty of it, but why now more than ever? Simple. This is a major crossroads of life. For argument sake, let’s call them all “friends.” Some friends on your news feed are getting married. Some are having kids. Some are still partying like they are freshman in college. Some moved out – others are staying home. Others maybe haven’t found a solid career yet. There are even some that have this really cool job title & you count their money more than they count it. Fact is – you prejudge all of their decisions. You compared them to your own. You might even stoop as low as to gossip about them.

Today’s Lesson is not about telling you to stop being prejudice or about judging a book by its cover. (preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience) The lesson is to remind you that this is your life. When you lay your head down at night and scroll through social media, quit passing judgement on how others are living & think about the day you just lived. Don’t compare roads. You are on your own road. If you are unhappy with the road you took, don’t look back and find the wrong turn. Don’t turn around. Simply look ahead to the next morning. Look ahead to moving forward. Look forward to the day when you stop comparing yourself to others. To the day you decide to put your best foot forward & embrace the journey. To the day you stop reading the covers of their stories & focus more on writing your story.

Create a life so full that even your reflection is looking forward.

-Professor Stern


During High School, the goal was simple. Higher Grades =  Higher GPA = More Scholarship Money to College =  More Savings

Unfortunately that mentality SUCKS in college. I was so caught up getting good grades, the best grades possible, that I missed out on so much education. Sure the transcript says 4.0, but I never went on an interview that asked ” what was your grade in finance 200 ”

Today’s Lesson to my classmates is simple. LEARN. Take your 15 credits and break them down like this.

I have “Marketing” 2x a week for 1 hour 15 minutes each class. The person in front of the room is an expert. Pick their brain. Learn the material, don’t just memorize it. The test is not a test for your professor’s health. The test is to show you what you actually know so that when an employer asks you to do it, you can do it. In a world that is always evolving, there has always been one constant. Education is power. Do not stress about a grade. Do not memorize material just to forget it after you spit it on out a test. Do not cheat. Do not cheat yourself.

I unfortunately memorized so much in college. I said to myself, oh it is just a vocab test. I will have Google when I graduate to just look up a word when the time comes. No! It is more than just learning the word. It is about learning how to apply it. 4 years will fly by, but unfortunately you don’t really have 4 years to learn. you have a semester or two to become a master at that one subject. To soak in as much knowledge as possible.

For me, owning COREiculum requires me to wear a lot of hats. Some hats I never thought I would wear. Other hats I don’t want to wear, and some hats I want to wear, but I did not get the education behind it to do it successfully. I regret getting a 4.0 in college because I think I would be smarter with a 3.0

You will always hear ” it is not what you know, but who you know.” How about you become that person that everyone wants to know, simply because, you know everything you are suppose to know!

-Professor Stern

Photo Credit: NY Daily NewsHalloween came and went. Midterms are over. Next on our calendar is when we get to go home for Thanksgiving and YES! you get to eat “real food.”

One topic of conversation at almost every dinner table is the Black Sale Deals. Who’s the “crazy aunt” that is out at 4am or worse, who is the “bad cousin” that skipped dinner to wait outside of Walmart to buy Playstation 4.

We get it. We can get great gifts for awesome prices, and to the college student who works part-time or not at all, a dollar saved is a dollar earned. Below is a list of things to consider before you rush out the door and spend all your money on gifts for “everyone” (including mostly gifts for yourself. Hey you had a tough semester so far, you earned new Ugg boots)

1. Be prepared. This means studying the ads before Black Friday. By now, many of the major retailers have released their Black Friday in-store specials, so check one of the comprehensive Black Friday-focused websites such as,,, and to see whether you’re getting the best deal.

2. Shop online first. In past years, some of the biggest retailers have offered online sales during Black Friday week that have included many of the same items offered as part of their in-store Black Friday events and often combined with low- or no-cost shipping deals. And some retailers will offer online exclusives you couldn’t get even by walking into one of their retail locations.

3. Sign up for e-mail alerts. Many retailers now use e-mail alerts to encourage store loyalty and frequent shopping. Sign up for alerts that will let you know about upcoming promotions and to receive coupons or discounts. Shoppers can also learn if the products they want are stocked and available, or if an item is eligible for a “buy online, pick up at store” option that can save shipping charges.

4. Use social media. Before you decide to buy, visit the Facebook pages and Twitter feeds of your favorite retailers and see if they’re offering any incentives, such as discounts, when you “like” their page or follow them. Also, if you have friends who’ll be shopping on Black Friday for similar items, text, tweet, or post to a social-media site the best deals you encounter, and hopefully they’ll return the favor.

5. Get appy.  Before you head out to the store, make sure your smart phone is charged and loaded with a few key comparison-shopping apps (such as ShopSavvy, ShopKick, and RedLaser) that will let you see special deals and compare prices while you’re in the store. Many include a bar-code scanner that lets you scan and compare prices, plus a QR-code reader that can sometimes get you coupon codes or special deals.
6. Create a budget—and stick to it. Many Black Friday sales, especially doorbuster specials that are typically available in limited quantities, are designed to get you into the store so retailers can try to sell you something more profitable. Decide ahead of time how much you want to spend, and resist impulse buying in the store, especially if you don’t know how good a deal you’re really getting.

7. See if you can get a price-match guarantee, and check store return policies. Often, stores say they’re suspending price-match guarantees during the Black Friday weekend, but you should ask for one anyway. After all, these are supposed to be “the lowest prices of the year!”

And to be safe, check your local chain’s return and exchange policies to make sure that they aren’t different for a Black Friday special. Sometimes, Black Friday sales are final, meaning the item can’t be returned. Other items may have a shortened return or exchange policy, or one where you can get only a store credit and not a refund. Also, make sure the store isn’t charging a restocking fee on a returned item.

8. Check the warranty. If you’re loyal to a certain brand, you may feel you’re aware of its standard product warranty. But even major brands offer special “derivative” models during promotional periods such as Black Friday, and they may alter the terms of their standard warranties for these sets.

9. Buy the item you really want, and avoid pricey accessories. Items designated as “doorbusters” draw us in because of their low prices, but they may not be the best products for your needs. In electronics, for example, this is especially true of bigger-ticket items such as TVs, which you’ll be living with for a number of years. But one of the easiest ways to blow your great deal is to pad the deal with pricey accessories. This is where retailers make their money, so avoid the hard sell. If you know you’ll need an HDMI cable, buy it ahead of time from an online retailer such as or and avoid the temptation entirely.
10. Avoid the old bait-and-switch trick. If you’re really buying only on price, stick to your guns and don’t get pushed toward a more expensive model. Retailers will sometimes advertise a great deal on a certain TV but then denigrate it once you’re in the store, hoping they can push you to a more profitable model.

Thanks to Yahoo Finance for the tips!

  1. Plan your life, but don’t spend your whole life planning
  2. Appreciate family dinners, even when you have nothing to say, say something
  3. Listen to other people. You can learn from them without having to go through something bad
  4. Love yourself before you say I love you to someone else
  5. Don’t be selfish. Ever
  6. Donating your time is more valuable than money
  7. Enjoy a night out without having to tell the world or share the photos
  8. Order something random on a menu. Step out of your comfort zone.
  9. Hold the door for someone, literally and figuratively
  10. Have patience with the slow car in front of you, that might be you one day
  11. Leave 5-min early anywhere you go
  12. Save your change. A penny saved is a penny earned
  13. Talk to the stars, just make sure you don’t expect them to talk back
  14. Chase a ridiculous dream. That childhood dream that you were SURE you were to live. Go after it
  15. Print those pictures from your phone every 6 months
  16. Learn to relax
  17. Get up for someone on the train or bus 
  18. Relax with the social media. Just relax.
  19. Go for a run without headphones
  20. Have a party with friends you haven’t seen in years.
  21. NEVER answer a “what’s new?” with “nothing”
  22. Learn how to cook. Even the most basic foods
  23. Learn what a mortgage is, a 401k is, and what a credit score is
  24. Never forget where you came from. good or bad. It helped create your story
  25. Ask questions! Nobody was born with the knowledge. They learn by asking.
  26. Make a New Years Resolution and complete it
  27. Make a New Month Resolution right after you fail your New Years one
  28. Read the news so you have a clue whats going on in the world.
  29. Make your own opinions up. Everyone can reiterate what they just heard. Thats lame
  30. Don’t go to bed mad. Smile and be thankful for the hard day of life because it was filled with lessons
  31. Wake up and learn from those lessons
  32. If you have nothing to wake up for. stay in bed.
  33. Donate clothes that you haven’t worn in years. Someone will appreciate them
  34. Put on that new outfit and go out in it on a completely random occassion
  35. Say thank you
  36. Say please
  37. Say sorry
  38. When are having a rough day, remember someone would give anything to have just one more day
  39. Do not bring your cell phone to the dinner table
  40. Growing up will be easier if you plan an exciting future for yourself
  41. Be empathic to everyone. You don’t know their story
  42. Dance in a club like you would at home by yourself. Let the world watch
  43. Don’t talk about your diet
  44. Don’t talk about your money
  45. Do the things that are challenging.
  46. Don’t always sit in the same seat in class
  47. Go to the dentist & doctor for check ups
  48. Don’t text and drive. Your not invincible.
  49. Dont drink and drive. Your not “good to drive”
  50. Jump up and down on the hotel bed
  51. Order room service and fall asleep before you finish eating. Now you have breakfast in bed
  52. Learn your family history. If you don’t, then you can’t teach the future about the past
  53. Realize the oldest you are right now is also the youngest you’ll ever be again
  54. Don’t let a go day bye without a smile
  55. Travel. There will never be a “perfect time”
  56. Write. You can capture your emotions. A status or tweet is just the tip of the iceberg. Be descriptive
  57. Call someone, don’t text them.
  58. Look at a sunset on the beach. Go back and watch it rise. Everything will ALWAYS be okay
  59. Appreciate even the “bad gifts” because someone was generous enough to give you something
  60. Don’t cheat. Grades only matter to get in college. Your employer doesn’t care if you got an A or B-
  61. Make to-do lists. If you have nothing to do, are you really living your life to the fullest?
  62. Don’t snooze. Unless you set your clock to be 10-minutes fast
  63. Make your life into something you hate to see end, but can’t wait to see how it turns out
  64. Avoid drama, it just adds unnecessary stress to your life
  65. Stay up all night. It will hurt to do this when you are older.
  66. Your comfort zone is your weakness
  67. Learn that a year of life is really just 52 weeks. You live your life on a weekly schedule
  68. Learn to appreciate the little things in life
  69. Don’t be fooled, you won’t leave college “prepared” for the real world unless you prepare yourself
  70. Go create a life filled with stories that you can tell your kids about… “back in my day”