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Friday Facts: Government Information You Can Use

This Week's Facts:

  1. Online Resources Help Raise HIV/AIDS Awareness

  2. Whitehouse.gov Provides Latest Info on Sequestration

  3. War Memorials Commission Debuts Virtual Tours of Properties

  4. SBA Offers Tips for Starting Your Own Business

  5. INDOT Announces Engineering Scholarship Opportunities

State Accepting Applications for Summer Internship Program

Indiana’s State Personnel Department is now accepting resumes for the 2013 Governor’s Public Service Summer Internship program. This program provides interns the opportunity to work with state agency officials, as well as participate in a Speakers Series which features various elected officials, state agency directors and other government representatives.

The deadline to submit your application and any other requested documents (cover letter, resume writing sample, etc) is Mar. 10, 2013.  Click here for more information including eligibility and application requirements.


INDOT Announces Engineering Scholarship Opportunities

The Indiana Department of Transportation has announced the INDOT Engineering Scholarship opportunities for eligible civil engineering students who are accepted into or currently enrolled in the School of Engineering at an ABET accredited Indiana college or university. Scholarship recipients also benefit by working for INDOT during summer breaks and after graduation. A limited number of scholarships are available for $3,125 per semester or $2,083 per trimester and can be applied toward an undergraduate or graduate degree in Civil Engineering, or any combination thereof, not to exceed five years total with a maximum of two years toward a graduate program.  Scholarship recipients must attend school full-time.

More information on the INDOT Engineer Scholarship program and an application form are available online. Applications for the 2013-2014 school year must be postmarked by April 30, 2013.


Friday Facts Editorial Team:

Katharine Springer
State Data Center Coordinator

Kim Brown-Harden
Federal Documents Coordinator

Andrea Glenn
State Documents Coordinator

Indiana Federal Depository Library Program


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Remember to Spring Ahead Clocks this Weekend

It’s Daylight Savings Time again, as of Sunday, March 10 at 2:00 a.m. The U.S. Navy provides a brief history and explanation of DST here and An online exhibit and discussion of why we change our clocks is here. Not sure what time it should be? Check Time.gov and click on your time zone for the current time.

Online Resources Help Raise HIV/AIDS Awareness

AIDS.govHIV/AIDS is a disease that affects many people regardless of socioeconomic status, sex, age, or race.  Unfortunately, nearly 25% of people infected with HIV/AIDS in the United States are female, according to 2009 CDC data. For more data, visit the CDC’s HIV among Women and the Medline Plus webpage HIV/AIDS in Women. AIDS.gov offers information and resources for those just diagnosed with HIV or how to stay healthy while living with HIV.  You can also access federal resources such as federal HIV policies, programs, funding, and other federal news and initiatives. If you want to get timely, up-to-date information and what’s trending about AIDS/HIV, check out the website’s blog. Doctors and scientists have come a long way in the treatment and cure of AIDS/HIV, but there’s still a long way to go.  Information is crucial in protecting yourself and learning about this disease.

Whitehouse.gov Provides Latest Info on Sequestration

Whitehouse.govAs you might already know, the federal government is in a sequester. If you turn on the TV or listen to the radio, you’ll hear about it. Do you and your patrons know the impact of a sequester and what it means as U.S. citizens?  A sequester is a process that automatically cuts the federal budget by a set amount across most departments and agencies.  Sequestration was included by Congress in the Budget Control Act of 2011.  Congress did not pass a budget to reduce the deficit by March 1st so $85 billion in spending cuts have gone into effect. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has Sequestration Reports to the President and Congress which provide detailed information on the cuts the federal government made on certain programs and which programs were exempt. If you have thoughts and concerns to share about the sequester, you have the option of contacting your Senators or Representatives in Congress. The White House also provides contact information for comments and questions. The OMB produces the United States Budget for Fiscal Year 2013. Also, USASpending.gov is a website provided by the federal government to help taxpayers learn how money is spent.

War Memorials Commission Debuts Virtual Tours of Properties

Indiana War Memorial CommissionThe Indiana War Memorial Commission announced this week the addition of a virtual tour of the building.  Several weeks ago, the Commission posted a virtual tour of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument.  These tours are intended to give an overview for those unable to visit the sites and to encourage on-site visits.

The Commission also added a virtual tour of the Soldiers & Sailors Monument and the Colonel Eli Lilly Civil War Museum. Click the forward arrow at the bottom of the screen to start your tour. Then click the left arrow to tour the Civil War Museum or forward again to ride the elevator up to the Observation Deck for a panoramic view of downtown Indianapolis.

The Indiana War Memorial Plaza Historic District, along with the Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Monument, two blocks to the south, and the USS Indianapolis Memorial, five blocks west, comprise the holdings of the Indiana War Memorial Commission. For more information, visit the IWM website at www.in.gov/iwm/

SBA Offers Tips for Starting Your Own Business

http://www.sba.gov/local-assistance?ms=nid8853Opening a new business can be overwhelming, especially if you don’t have any experience in the world of business. There are so many things to consider, from identifying the perfect product or service to sell to finding the right financing.

With so many moving parts, getting started can seem rather challenging. A business plan is always a first good step. It will help you lay out your plans, anticipate how you will manage your business and help you get the right financing. In other words, it can really help your company succeed.

A business plan includes:

  • Executive summary: Every business plan begins with an executive summary which features basic information about the business, the types of products and services it sells, the state of the industry and future plans. If you are just opening a business, this summary should include your professional experience and the reasons why you think your company will succeed.
  • Company description: This section describes your business goal and details the different parts of your company, including the types of product or services it sells, consumer demand and potential new clients. It also describes its competitive advantages in the marketplace, such as its location and type of operation. It can be as long as a few paragraphs, but the shorter the better. The goal is for the reader to have a good idea of what the business is about and understand its competitive advantages.
  • Market analysis: Who are the customers? How big is the market? Who is the competition? A market analysis answers many of these questions in detail. You can describe, for example, the type of customers you anticipate having (office workers and area residents) and describe the area where the business is located (there are five commercial buildings and 200 residential apartments within a mile radius, etc.)
  • Company organization: Here you explain how your company is organized and who is involved. In other words, describe who is doing what. This information is useful particularly if you’re looking for financing. Bankers need to know how your company is structured and who they are dealing with.
  • Description of products and services: Use this section to explain in more detail the products or services you plan to sell. How will your product be consumed? How often? How will consumers benefit from your products?
  • Marketing plan: This is your chance to explain in detail how you will market your products and services to potential clients. This can include plans for a website, advertising in local newspapers, promotions or other ads.
  • Finances and projections: The purpose of this section is to provide financial information about your company, including short and long-term sales projections. You can also include fixed and variable costs and when the company anticipates profits.

How to Get More Help
The Small Business Administration (SBA) can help you perfect your business plan. Use this locator to find a local SBA office and schedule an appointment.

This information is brought to you by the U.S. General Services Administration via the USA.gov blog.

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