Boy With Autism Who Ate Lunch With Football Player No Longer Sits Alone

 An 11-year-old Florida boy with autism, who gained Internet fame when a college football player joined him for lunch because he was eating alone, no longer sits by himself, his mother said.

Bo Paske went from often being secluded at his middle school lunchroom to being one of the popular students after a photo of his interaction with Florida State University wide receiver Travis Rudolph went viral earlier this week. His mom said he was bombarded with attention in the cafeteria when he returned to school Wednesday.

“They were all cheering for him. All the girls all wanted him to sit with them,” his mom Leah Paske told TIME on Friday. “I think everybody will probably want him to sit with them going forward. I would be very surprised if he was ever sitting alone again in that cafeteria.”

The 39-year-old Tallahassee mom said she used to always find herself heartbroken that her son didn’t have many friends. She said Bo, who was diagnosed with autism when he was 3, used to spend most days eating lunch alone. “It bothered me way more than it bothered him,” Leah Paske said. “It makes me feel much better to know that people would surround him with love there.”

Now, she worries less — and she said Bo’s story has inspired dozens of people around the world and has brought hope to other parents of children who have autism. “To know a picture and few words could be that life-changing for moms and families all over the world is so humbling,” Leah Paske said. “I’m speechless.

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New York City debuts plans for upgraded subway cars with WiFi and USB chargers

Governor Andrew Cuomo talked up some ambitious plans for the future of the New York City Subway during an address to a crowd at Brooklyn’s Transit Museum this week. At the top of the list is the addition of 1,025 new/refurbished subway cars, featuring some relatively high-tech amenities.

“New York deserves a world-class transportation network, worthy of its role as the heartbeat of the 21st century economy,” the Governor told the crowd. “The MTA design team developed a bold and visionary reimagining of the quintessential commuter experience, incorporating best practices from global transit systems, and focusing on our core mission to renew, enhance and expand.”

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Some 750 of the revamped cars will feature accordion-style connectors to free up standing space, as opposed to the current “do not walk between cars” door arrangement. The entrance doors will be widening up as well, from 50- to 58-inches, which should free things up a bit as everyone attempts to rush on and off all at once during rush hour.

As far as the high(er) tech bits and bobs, plans include on-board WiFi, which certainly makes sense and USB chargers – which, lets be honest, could become something of an issue on a system where people grapple for the last open seat during rush hour. And let’s be honest, given the exceedingly slow rate of subway car turnover, it seems like a safe bet that standard will be antiquated long before the MTA does another upgrade.

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That said, Governor Cuomo seems intent on rushing out the new cars, along with their new LED headlights and digital displays, as quickly as possible. The MTA will utilize contractors to implement the changes as part of a five-year, $27 billion upgrade plan.

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Hot Jobs for 2020 and Beyond

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The world around us is changing so quickly that only those who don’t even try to understand it have any chance of dealing with it. Jobs that used to pay the bills will soon fade into the murk along with such former occupations as stevedore, elevator operator, and the guy who separates editorial content from advertising. The good news is that as old careers disappear, new ones are arising to take their place. Here are just a few.

Fitbit walker: Face it. Sometimes you just don’t have the time or inclination to do your steps. This employee will don your wearable tech and do your 10,000 for you, making sure you stay in shape.

Identity broker: Increasingly, our “real” selves are simply too quotidian to make it where it counts in the virtual space. These entrepreneurs will provide personae that are much more engaging and marketable. I plan to be a pugnacious, idealistic mountaineer looking for fun, but still capable of deep commitment if the right person comes along.

Online shaming consultant: Along with an Internet rage manager, these professionals will work with you to make sure that you’re properly gang-bullying the right people on Twitter and Facebook and not being attacked by the angry mob yourself for a random joke, comment, or honest opinion.

Self-driving-car driver: Silicon Valley will have its way, and at some point pretty soon none of us will have the right or ability to drive ourselves. Instead, vehicles powered by AI almost as stupid as we are will be in control. When they get into trouble, individuals capable of running a yellow light in order to avoid an accident will be needed.

Genuine friend locator: I have many “friends” who are unknown to me. When they wish me happy birthday, it’s about as meaningful as when a talking elevator tells me to have a nice day. Somewhere buried in all those contacts, I must have some real friends who mean something to me. This person will help me find them.

Disrupter disrupter: I’m sick of these buttheads and their enablers in the media and would pay big money to see somebody with some mad skills mess them up.

Emoji exterminator: There are simply too many. Some must die.

Geriatric navigator: Egotistical billionaire moguls are working hard to live forever. It appears they’ll be around for 10, 20, even 40 years longer than prior generations. By the time they hit 120, they’ll be physically fine but unable to tell which end is up or how many third homes they own.

Cyber-pet euthanizer: What do you do with a 60-year-old cyborg Shih Tzu who won’t stop its high, strobed-out barking? Someone will be needed to take Fluffy out and gently remove its tiny little silicon brain center.

Brain rebooter: Drugs will appear soon that make us smarter, faster, and more fun at parties. In addition, they’ll tend to separate our cerebellums from our corpora callosa. Enter this specialist to get our heads back together–until we choose to scramble them again.

Dirt farmer: What’s old is new again. Experts tell us we’re only about 30% through the whole climate change thing. When the entire world is covered with nothing but dust, we’re still going to need broccoli.

Funeral director on Mars: Elon Musk wants to die there. He’s been right about a lot of things so far. A clear opportunity for the right mortician awaits.

A version of this article appears in the July 1, 2016 issue of Fortune.

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More than just tax accountants…

Here at Prinzo & Associates, we are far more than just your seasonal tax accountants. We have been serving individuals and businesses in the Pittsburgh metro area for over 25 years. Watch our latest video to see just a few of the other services we offer. To see a full list of how we can help with retirement, starting a business, estate planning, payroll and more, visit our website.

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The Unexpected Payoff of Failure

In recent years the notion that failure brings rewards has become so venerated by business thinkers (and publications) that you could be forgiven for thinking yourself lacking if you haven’t suffered at least one calamitous, abject disaster in your career. In truth, people who have tried and failed at launching their own startup know that it incurs many unrecouped costs: time, sweat, emotion, and, most often, money.

But new research reveals an unexpected reward for those who abandon the entrepreneurial life. According to a paper by finance professor Gustavo Manso of the University of California at Berkeley, self–employment does, in fact, pay off–often in the form of higher wages when the person returns to work at another company. “You don’t need to be crazy to be entrepreneurial,” says -Manso, who holds the school’s William A. and Betty H. Hasler Chair in New Enterprise Development. “There’s a reasonable payoff.”

Manso analyzed the earnings of more than 5,000 Americans between 1979 and 2012, using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. They showed that the typical person makes less as an entrepreneur than he could earn at a bigger company. Most of those people go back to salaried jobs after two years or less–and that’s where it gets interesting.

People who had been self-employed at one point in their career did better financially compared with people who hadn’t, according to Manso’s research. Those who tried and abandoned entrepreneurship after less than two years weren’t punished financially when they moved to another employer. And those who lasted more than two years as entrepreneurs ended up earning 10% to 20% more than their peers.

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“Big companies are willing to pay more because they believe they’ll get more bang for their buck,” says John Reed, senior executive director at IT staffing firm Robert Half Technology. In just the past few years he has seen increased demand for entrepreneurial recruits, especially among large companies.

Former business owners often bring a broad set of skills gained from handling multiple problems, -moving fast, and getting things done with limited resources. Says Reed: “Big companies need that different way of thinking.”

That was the case for David Bloom, whose e-commerce software startup, Ordrx.com, shut down last year despite $2.5 million in investment from Google and Techstars, industry accolades, and 40 employees. Failure couldn’t have worked out better for him. It turns out all the sleepless nights about meeting payroll and the long hours building software and doing customer research set him up for a big promotion. Before he started Ordrx, he had been a product director at American Express axp . When he returned to the workforce late last year, he nabbed a vice president job at Dow Jones, earning nearly double his previous salary. “What I got out of leaving was much more diverse professional skills than if I had stayed at American Express,” Bloom says. “A startup was a business education at warp speed every day.”

Bloom says the entrepreneurial stint also gave him the confidence to apply for higher-level jobs at large companies and in a wider array of industries. Headhunters regularly call him for new job opportunities. “Big companies want that mix of startup and big–company experience,” he says.

Failure, he says, is irrelevant to most hiring managers if you’re honest about why you failed and what you learned from it. “Just own it,” Bloom says, “because you went out and did it.”

Running your own business can also help chart a completely new career path, as was the case for former entrepreneur Rachel Honeth Kim. She spent a year running Nailed Kit, a startup that sold designer fingernail decals, before deciding she wasn’t passionate enough to continue long term. She discovered she hated the back-office tasks of budgets and taxes, but she excelled at getting press for her startup in a number of national beauty magazines.

When she went back to the workforce, she applied for high-level public relations jobs, despite no formal training or past PR positions. (Most of her 10-year career was spent in marketing.) Yet Kim landed a senior-level job heading all the communications for Gusto, a 300-person online payroll company. Plus, she says, she received a 20% pay raise from her last salaried job. “It’s my dream job,” she says, “but I never would have gotten it if I hadn’t been an entrepreneur.”

A version of this article appears in the April 1, 2016 issue of Fortune.

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The Best Way to Network

The Entrepreneur Insiders network is an online community where the most thoughtful and influential people in America’s startup scene contribute answers to timely questions about entrepreneurship and careers. Today’s answer to the question “What’s the best way to make fruitful connections?” is written by Simon Berg, CEO of Ceros.

As a self-confessed hater of “networking,” my approach to making connections is a bit different than many CEOs’. As with everything I do in life or in business, I start with a goal that has a greater meaning, rather than a selfish goal. For instance, I run Ceros to do great, which is gratifying and ultimately leads to success–not to become a billionaire and retire early. I approach networking the same way.

When I’m making new connections, I look for relationships to invest in that will be fruitful, fun, and enjoyable for me and for the other person.

So what should you do if you’re just starting to build your professional network? If I rewind the clock to a time when I had no connections outside of my tiny universe of friends or colleagues, my first step was to seek out the people close to me who I found interesting and inspiring. I met with them, and out of genuine curiosity and interest, I asked lots of questions to learn about who they were, what they did for a living, and what inspired them. As the old sales adage goes: You have two ears and one mouth, so use them in that proportion.

 

This advice isn’t earth-shattering, but that’s really all there is to it. Find individuals you’re intrigued by. Spend time getting to know them. Express your opinions and share your excitement in an honest way. When you do, you’ll inevitably find common ground and become friends. Ta da! You’ve just made connection number one.

Now guess what that new connection is going to do? Since they like you and also find you interesting, they’re going to introduce you to someone else they find interesting. Ta da! You’ve made your second connection. And your network will keep growing from there.

As your number of connections grows, it’s important to keep being honest, intriguing, and occasionally charming. Always remember that networking is a two-way activity–you should give as much as you take. Do so in a natural way, not a forceful way.

For me, it’s important to develop deep connections I can rely on during good times and bad times, peacetime or wartime. I like knowing that I’ll receive the same level of support, no matter what the circumstances might be. Fewer connections that are really solid mean more to me than knowing thousands of people.

Others advocate for serial networking instead, and if that’s what you want to do, then by all means do it. Then your approach is more of a numbers game–you’ll have a long list of connections, but individual connections won’t be as fruitful.

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Americans Feel More Pressured by Job Competition Now—And They Like It

After the mass layoffs that plagued the financial recession, Americans have entered an era that seems even more threatening to their job stability: the creation of robots, outsourcing to other nations, a potential recession–all could lead to a layoff or even make their jobs obsolete.

That’s according to a Pew Research Center study, which surveyed workers about why they decided to up their job training. Many pointed to the mounting pressures of an increasingly competitive atmosphere for workers in the U.S.

“(In 2008) I saw everything going on around me with co-workers, neighbors, friends and asked myself, ‘Who’s coming after me and my job? How long are my skills going to last?’” Pew reported one of their anonymous participants saying during one of a series of focus group interviews regarding their feelings about increased job training. Participants came from St. Louis, Atlanta, and Baltimore metro regions.

Another participant noted that with the rapid pace of technology–some jobs having been replaced by robot workers in just the past decade–he or she already assumed that their work would be “obsolete in the next decade.”

“That’s our reality,” a millennial in a starter job from St. Louis region said.

That’s led to workers to constantly upgrade their skills and knowledge in a seemingly unending game of catch up to stay at the top of or in their jobs. About 63% of workers polled by Pew said they got job-related training in the past year.

But according to the same study conducted from Oct. 13 to Nov. 15, many Americans are finding the “catch up” part of this high-pressure atmosphere “delightful,” “dreamy,” even “euphoric.”

That’s because people like the learning, according to Pew’s research released Tuesday.

When asked to provide a single word to describe their feelings about learning new things, most participants gave words that were overwhelmingly positive. People said accomplished, energized, dreamy, even heavenly. Just a few participants gave negative one-word answers, such as overwhelming, exhausted, and twisted.

And that also helped them feel better at work.

People also told Pew in a focus group that aside from staying employable, they also took the courses because it was “satisfying” and “good”: it made them feel valuable to their colleagues. It also made them feel self-reliant, well-rounded, and challenged. Others said it satisfied their curiosity, and in other cases helped “prove others wrong.”

55% of workers polled said they took classes to learn, maintain, or improve job skills, 36% said it was for a license or certification required at the job, and 24% said it was for a raise or promotion at work.

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