Free Educational Topics in Chicago

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  • A Consumer’s Guide to Going Solar

    Christina Uzzo, Environmental Outreach Coordinator, Citizens Utility Board (CUB)

    Are you interested in going solar? Learn if solar is right for your home and how to get the most value out of your solar system from consumer advocate experts. In 2019, CUB staffers gave over 70 solar presentations, and we are excited to answer all your solar questions! MORE >

    CUB is very excited about new solar incentives available to homeowners in Illinois. However, we know that with all the new advertising and high pressure sales pitches it can be confusing to know what is best for you. At this presentation we will go over solar basics, including:
    ---why now is the best time yet to go solar,
    ---how solar panels work with your home and the grid,
    ---an overview of state and federal incentives,
    ---why it is almost always better to purchase, rather than lease solar panels.

    Please note that depending on my availability, another one of our trained outreach staff may take my place as speaker at your meeting, but I will confirm when you contact me.

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  • The 3 Biggest Problems with Utility Bills

    Christina Uzzo, Environmental Outreach Coordinator, Citizens Utility Board (CUB)

    Most Illinoisans are overpaying for gas and electricity and don’t even know it! In this engaging lecture, I’ll show you how to decode your bills, spot errors, and take advantage of real programs designed to save you money. MORE >

    CUB is a non-profit, statewide utility watchdog organization created in 1983 to work for lower gas, electric and telephone rates. CUB has been on your side for 30 years—blocking utility rate hikes, winning consumer refunds and helping to pass important consumer protection laws. Our outreach team has spoken at hundreds of community meetings across Illinois and would love to come to yours.

    Please note that depending on my availability, another one of our trained outreach staff may take my place as speaker at your meeting, but I will confirm when you contact me.

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  • Energy Efficiency, Utility Bills, & Your Home

    Christina Uzzo, Environmental Outreach Coordinator, Citizens Utility Board (CUB)

    Wouldn’t it be great to do your part to save the environment, and save money at the same time? Here in Illinois, it’s possible--thanks to a number of statewide policies that CUB fought long and hard for. In this talk, I’ll give you the lowdown on how you can benefit from cost saving energy efficiency programs. MORE >

    CUB is a non-profit, statewide utility watchdog organization created in 1983 to work for lower gas, electric and telephone rates. CUB has been on your side for 30 years—blocking utility rate hikes, winning consumer refunds and helping to pass important consumer protection laws. Our outreach team has spoken at hundreds of community meetings across Illinois and would love to come to yours!

    Please note that depending on my availability, another one of our trained outreach staff may take my place as speaker at your meeting, but I will confirm when you contact me.

    Request This Free Speech
  • The History Connected to Celebrating Certain Days of the Year

    Marcella Davis, Retired CPS Teacher

    Human beings are social beings. We have certain aspects in our lives that re-enforce our commonality as people. One of those aspects is the celebration of certain times during the year. However, most of us celebrate those days, without really understanding the reason for making those days special, or why we eat certain foods on those days. MORE >

    For instance, Halloween is celebrated by wearing spooky costumes, telling ghost stories, or decorating with pictures of witches and goblins. We carve pumpkins, and go trick or treating. Every one of those aspects in the celebration of Halloween is tied to a belief, or a historical reason.
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  • Restore our Democracy

    Ed Spire, Co-lead, Restore our Democracy Project, NWSOFA-Indivisible

    Restore our Democracy addresses the problem of unlimited political money corrupting our democracy. We explain the problem clearly, and discuss the causes and possible solutions, including steps that we can take in our own communities to begin addressing this structural problem in our country. The presentation is non-partisan and brings issues to light which are of concern across the aisle. MORE >

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  • Level Up: The Demand for Soft Skills Is the Future of Education

    Troy Sandidge, Social Media Jedi | Global Speaker | Storyteller

    Synopsis: LinkedIn’s 2018 Workforce Report found that the four most in-demand soft skills are within leadership, communication, collaboration, and time management. MORE >

    3 percent of HR Managers say technical skills are much easier to teach than soft skills—work ethic, communication skills, emotional intelligence, and a whole host of personal attributes that are crucial for career success. What we find a bit frightening is that 44 percent of top executives report this skill set as the largest gap experienced in the workforce. And 14 percent believe this gap is most prominent when it comes to the crucial skill of leadership.

    Yes, technical skills will get you in the door today, but soft skills will open future doors. Team building, motivating, and delegating are all much easier for those with excellent soft skills. Still, however, the importance of these skills continues to be greatly undervalued.

    The biggest mistake companies seem to make is assuming that people know how to behave on the job.
    You wouldn’t hire a new software engineer without testing his or her technical aptitude, correct? So why not give the same consideration to soft skills? You cannot assume that everyone knows and understands the importance of being on time, taking initiative, being friendly, and producing quality work.

    Takeaways:
    - Soft Skill vs Technical Skill
    - Discover how far one can go with soft skill and lacking technical skills versus the opposite
    - Learn why now is the time to focus on soft skills
    - Strategies on how to develop soft skills for the next generation of leaders
    - Answer the question, why C students tend to be leaders of billion-dollar companies

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  • Use what you have decorating

    GraceAnn Simoni, President & Premier Home Stager, Staging Redesign Group Inc.

    Don't be fooled into thinking you need to purchase all new furnishings to get the 'Decorated Look'. Learn from a redesign specialist, simple tips and tricks to give any room a fresh new look. Learn how placement of furniture is critical to he overall look and feel of a room. Learn tip on wall art and accessorizing. We all have wonderful things just maybe in the wrong place. MORE >

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  • Get it SOLD

    GraceAnn Simoni, President & Premier Home Stager, Staging Redesign Group Inc.

    Selling your home now or in the future. When you’re ready to put you house on the market will you know where to start? Do you think the Realtor will do everything for you? Does the thought of getting your home ready for the buyer’s critical eye scare you? Are you willing to take a price reduction rather than investing a little into the house? MORE >

    Staging a home results in fewer days on the market and a higher selling price. Be one step ahead of the competition. Learn how to stage your home today! Get it ready now before even calling the Realtor!

    What can be done to get your house ready for little or no money?
    From the curb to the back door!
    What home Staging is and what it is not.
    What are buyers in this market looking for in their new home?
    How to shorten the time on the market and get the best offers.

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  • Exploring Careers with a Social Impact

    Matt Kinnich, CEO, Roland, Ruth & Mitchell

    This presentation is for individuals, teams and/or organizations that want to explore careers with a social impact. The presentation is a combination of Matt’s social impact journey and an interactive workshop for participants. Participants will engage in the following: MORE >

    • 1-2 things you hope to get out of today’s presentation
    • Matt’s social impact career journey
    • What are you Passionate about?
    • What are your Strengths?
    • Passions & Strengths – what’s the intersection?
    • How do I explore options & opportunities?
    • Individual/Group questions
    • What actions am I willing to do next?
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  • Solving Climate Change with a Solution We Can All Like

    Mike Zanillo, Illinois State Coordinator, Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL)

    Climate Change has been called ’NOT the BIGGEST challenge of OUR time, but, the BIGGEST challenge of ALL time’. The topic can be confusing to many. Often, there is uncertainty of what Climate Change is, what are its effects and what can be done about it. MORE >

    In today’s media-rich environment, many policy issues are in the news, but, often not at a significant level of depth. One of the topics of growing interest to many engaged groups is the topic of Climate Change. The discussion related to Climate Change can be confusing to many. Often, there is uncertainty of what Climate Change is, what are its effects and what can be done about it.

    The Citizens Climate Lobby, is a national nonprofit, non-partisan organization that provides presentations to groups such as Rotary Clubs, League of Women Voters, college clubs and other local groups

    The presentation will educate, enable, and entertain your group members. The presentation can include short videos, slides, stories and time for audience questions. While the length of the presentation is at your discretion, the following topics will be covered.

    Learn about a simple, comprehensive, Climate Solution that is:
    - Rapidly growing in public, bi-partisan support
    - Endorsed by 27 Nobel economics laureates
    - Many view as the most effective climate policy
    - Will speed a transition to renewable energy
    - Considered as being a fair and just policy
    - Provides for economic growth and jobs

    After participating in our meetings, participants often feel more informed, energized and hopeful for a future stable climate. There will be no solicitation of donations or attempts to sell anything.

    Please contact me if you would like to discuss this opportunity for a presentation of this timely topic.

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