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Continuing and Professional Studies





Date August 14, 2018

HAZWOPER Training: What is it? Do I need it? 

HAZWOPER is an acronym for The Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response that was enacted by OSHA in 1990. Its purpose is to protect workers who are vulnerable to chemical exposure at hazardous clean-up sites. Due to the toxic, flammable or corrosive nature of these substances, this safety standard was created. Its origins date back to World War II, when the atomic bomb development sites left behind hazardous debris. OSHA then developed HAZWOPER based on existing Department of Defense (DoD) guidance - in addition to input from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the US Coast Guard. 

HAZWOPER has since then become a health and safety standard that trains workers on workplace safety while performing chemical response actions. The mandatory training is eeded if workers are going to be

  • Exposed to high concentrations of poisonous substances
  • Exposed to chemical conditions that are a fire or explosion hazard
  • Exposted to sites with at or above IDLH levels
  • Exposted to oxygen deficient atmospheres (less than 19.5%)
  • Lead evacuations due to chemical chemical atmospheres or oxygen deficient conditions
  • Perform in confined space entries
  • Supervise workers exposed to any of the aforementioned dangers


How are workers trained? 

At The Office of Continuing And Professional Studies, of The City College of New York in Harlem, a 40-hour certification course is offered throughout the year. The 40-hour certification course features training that meets current industry, government and academic standards - taught by an OSHA-authorized trainer. Students will learn clean-up procedures at uncontrolled hazardous waste sites, corrective actions involving clean-up operations, emergency response operations for releases of hazardous substances and more. 

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Date: August 6, 2018

A Career Overview: Paralegal

Behind every great lawyer is a great paralegal. 

As the saying goes, "team work makes the dream work." For legal firms, in particular, lawyers have a supporting cast whose work is just as important. Also known as "legal assistants," paralegals are responsible for tasks such as drafting motions, summarizing legal reports, conducting research, investigating facts of a case, obtaining statements or affidavits, and more. Depending on the size of the firm, however, a paralegal's list of duties could vary. 

For example, when lawyers are assigned a case, the paralegal is expected to help with trial preparation, hearings and corporate meetings. This could also include reviewing and organizing information or preparing legal arguments. Paralegals can also assume more responsibilities if they're specialized in different areas such as corporate law, personal injury, employee benefits, immigration, real estate or family law. On the other hand, there are also limitations to what a paralegal can do. 

Since paralegals are not attorneys, they are prohibited from engaging in the practice of law. 

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Date: July 31, 2018

What is TOEFL? And how do you prepare for the exam? 

If you are a foreign student, and/or a non-native English speaker wishing to enroll in English-speaking universities, you might find yourself asking about the TOEFL Test. What does it stand for? What is it? Do I need to take it?  Your list of questions is probably endless. And we’re here to help answer them!

First, what is the acronym?

TOEFL is an acronym for Test of English as a Foreign Language.

Second, what is it exactly?

TOEFL is an exam that tests English proficiency and is offered to evaluate the English speaking and understanding ability of a candidate.

Lastly, do you need to take it?

If you come from a country, where English is not the official language, the majority of universities and colleges require applicants to submit their TOEFL score. At The City College of New York, we conduct a full assessment of student's academic records. All applicants from countries such as India, China, Taiwan, Japan, countries in Latin America, most countries in Europe and Africa, are required to submit their TOEFL (or IELTS) score. TOEFL score reports must come directly from ETS (Educational Testing Service) to be official.  There are different minimum score requirements for each college, so keep that in mind when applying!

Fun Fact: In City College, alone, there are over 104 languages spoken throughout our entire student body! Our non-native speakers have a TOEFL score average of 61 on the web-based test and a 500 on the paper-based test.

Preparing for your TOEFL exam is not a complicated process at all.

In the exam, you will be tested in four areas: reading, writing, listening and speaking. What separates the TOEFL exam is that it is about utilizing the English language in real-life settings. No need to worry about memorizing complex grammar rules and definitions that are not used in every-day conversations.

Below you will find a few helpful tips on how to prepare for your TOEFL exam.

  1. Familiarize yourself with the test format.

If you visit the official TOEFL website, you will find information on how the test is formatted. The test always has three parts: reading, writing and listening.

Paper-based Test:

  • Listening: 30-40 minutes, 50 questions
  • Writing: 25 minutes, 40 questions
  • Reading: 55 minutes, 50 questions
  • TWE: 30 minutes, one essay

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Date: July 24, 2018

What is the Difference Between a CCMA & a CMAA? 

In the medical field, acronyms rule the world. Two acronyms that get confused a lot are CCMA and CMAA

What do they stand for? 

CCMA is an acronym for Certified Clinical Medical Assistant, while CMAA stands for Certifed Medical Administrative Assistant. 

So, what is the difference? 

Certified Clinical Medical Assistant is a vital member of a medical team whose work entails administering medications, assisting with minor procedures, collecting laboratory specimen, perfomring electrocardiograms, providing patient education, and more. A Certified Medical Administrative Assistant, also a vital member of a medical team, is responsible for scheduling appointments, data entry, managing patient check-in/check-out, managing the front desk, or performing the overall administrative procedures of any healthcare facility. 

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Date: July 23, 2018

5 Reasons to Start Your Medical Billing & Coding Career! 

You've always considered a career in healthcare but didn't want to work in patient care. 

Well, medical billing and coding might be the job for you! Their role is pivotal in reading and analyzing patient records, using codes to bill insurance providers, keeping track of patient date, and maintaining pateint cofidentiality. Here are five reasons to influence your decision! 

1) No need for medical school!

You can become certified in just a few months from an accredited school such as City College's, Offie of Continuing And Professional Studies, and pass the state state certification exam. 

2) Wide range of employer options.

Hospitals, medical clinics, nursing homes, medical laboratories, phsyical therapy centers, and aministrative support centers, all employ medical biller and coders! 

3) The job market is open! 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the projected job growth for medical billing and coding specialists is set to rise by at least 22% by year 2022. This can only mean that a lot fo companies are looking to hire and fill positions! 

4) Work shift flexibility. 

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Date: July 18, 2018

What is a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)? 

A certified nursing assistant, or CNA, is one of the most important roles on a health care team. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of nursing assistants is projected to grow 11% from 2016 to 2026; which is faster than the average for all occupations.*
But what exactly is a Certified Nursing Assistant?
How do you become one?
Let us answer these questions for you.
Under the supervision of a Registered Nursed (RN) or Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse (LPN/LVN), a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) provides direct care to patients. Nursing assistants give personal, hands-on care to patients by providing assistance with essential daily tasks. These tasks include bathing, dressing, eating, as well as observing & reporting to the LPN/RN, ambulating & repositioning patients, taking & recording vital signs, and communicating with other team members about patients.

With a basic understanding of what a CNA's responsibilities entail, you can decide on whether becoming a CNA is for you. Generally speaking, there are plenty of good reasons to consider it. To start, it's the fastest route to becoming a professional member of a healthcare team - without having attended college. Once you're actively working in the healthcare industry as a CNA, you can then specialize in an area of medicine (hospice, senior living, or home health). It is also easier for CNA's to train and transition into becoming an LPN or RN.
On a personal level, the best reason for becoming a CNA is the satisfaction one receives by making a difference in other people’s lives. A CNA spends the most time with patients, and in doing so, they become most familiar with them; forming a trusting relationship that can greatly impact their lives. What's more satisfying than that? For those looking to become a CNA, getting certified isn't as difficult, or time consuming as you may assume.
Consider the steps outlined below:
1) Enroll in a CNA certification course.
Many public colleges in your city, offer quality, affordable classes that are certified by the State. At City College of New York's, Continuing And Professional Studies, our CNA program is not only New York State approved but it provides 100 hours of classroom instruction, in addition to 30 hours of internship experience. After successfully completing a course, you will be better prepared to take (and pass) your CNA certification exam!
Note: You must pass both the written and the clinical parts of your exam.
2) Register for your CNA certification exam.