Zoom Scheduler, now generally available, allows users to align calendars with clients and contacts quickly and easily

Zoom extends free signup period for Zoom Scheduler to July 20

SAN JOSE, Calif., June 21, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Today, Zoom announced general availability for its new Zoom Scheduler tool and the extension of the free signup period. Zoom Scheduler makes finding the perfect meeting time easier by sharing availability for others to conveniently book appointments.

“We heard again and again from our customers that they were looking for a convenient way to book appointments without leaving the Zoom platform,” said Joseph Chong, Head of Product, Solutions, and Industry Marketing, Zoom. “With Zoom Scheduler, they can. Based on positive feedback, we will be offering Zoom Scheduler for free for anyone to try for one more month.”

Zoom is known for simplifying collaboration tools, and its latest product has taken on everyone’s least favorite meeting task: aligning calendars. Sharing availability windows back and forth manually takes up valuable time and adds more friction to a workday. Meeting with potential customers or clients often compounds this problem, as external participants lack visibility into one another’s calendars. Zoom Scheduler allows hosts to generate windows of availability that others can use to book appointments. With Zoom Scheduler, users will be able to grow their businesses faster and get more done so they can spend more time on what matters: preparing for the meeting or taking a break.

Get together with Zoom Scheduler

Now generally available, Zoom Scheduler places a meeting on the host’s calendar with a Zoom Meetings link already included, saving both participants time. Hosts can use their preferred calendar: Zoom Scheduler works seamlessly with Zoom Meetings and Zoom Mail and Calendar and integrates with both Google Calendar and Microsoft 365.

Features of Zoom Scheduler include:

  • Ability to schedule one-on-one meetings or one-to-many group meetings and specify how many people can attend any available slot.
  • Choose recurring availability or custom availability for one-off meetings.
  • Generate slots of availability when any or all team members are available.
  • Automate and customize email notifications.
  • Collect preferred information during the attendee booking process.

Beta customers love how Zoom Scheduler saves time and consolidates meeting scheduling where it makes the most sense: in the middle of the communication platform they know and love.

“Zoom Scheduler offers an easy, no-effort integration with the rest of the Zoom platform,” said Gabe Moronta, Visla. “It has all the features, settings, and capability I need.”

Zoom Scheduler integrates with Zoom Calendar, which has become a resource for meetings both before and after. Zoom Calendar offers a sidebar view alongside the Zoom desktop client, so attendees can maximize their time by seeing if others have joined the meeting yet. After the meeting, shared files live in the Calendar invite for future reference.

Free and paid Zoom users can try out Zoom Scheduler for free anytime before July 19, 2023. On July 20, 2023, Scheduler will be available as an add-on for purchase for $5.99/month per user on Zoom’s website (add to any existing legacy Zoom plan or Zoom One plan), and will be included in the Zoom One Business Plus and Enterprise Plus plans.

About Zoom
Zoom is an all-in-one intelligent collaboration platform that makes connecting easier, more immersive, and more dynamic for businesses and individuals. Zoom technology puts people at the center, enabling meaningful connections, facilitating modern collaboration, and driving human innovation through solutions like team chat, phone, meetings, omnichannel cloud contact center, smart recordings, whiteboard, and more, in one offering. Founded in 2011, Zoom is publicly traded (NASDAQ:ZM) and headquartered in San Jose, California. Get more info at zoom.com.

Zoom Public Relations
Lacretia Taylor

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8862086

Trailblazing Cameroonian mathematician recognized by UNESCO, takes home FCFA 30M

Cameroonian mathematician, Dr. Abdon Atangana has been recognized by the United Nations Educational Scientifice and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for his trailblazing work in mathematics.

The recognition took place on June 19 at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris, France where the 37-year-old was recognized for his “significant contributions to the field of mathematics, particularly in the areas of fractional calculus, fractional differential equations, and mathematical modelling” according to a release from UNESCO which CNA has seen.

According to UNESCO, Atangana’s expertise in the aforementioned mathematical specialty enables other scientists “to solve real-life problems such as the spread of infectious diseases, heat transfer problems, groundwater flow and contamination or weather patterns” and can also be used in the development of the cruise control function in cars.

Atangana’s work is also “contributing to new strategies for minimizing energy consumption and optimizing renewable energy systems”.

The scientist was not immediately reachable for comment when contacted by CNA South Africa correspondent, Hans Ngala.

However, it should be noted that Atangana is a lecturer at the University of the Free State in South Africa and has also been recognized by the university for his groundbreaking findings.

His recent recognition by UNESCO was alongside four other scientists in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) disciplines. He and another scientist from Egypt were the only two to be recognized from Africa; and each went home with prize money of $50,000 USD (about FCFA 30 Million).

Source: Cameroon News Agency

Bawku Forestry Division reawakens tree distribution with onset of rains

With the onset of rains in the Upper East Region, the Bawku Forestry Division of the Forestry Commission (FC) is distributing tree seedlings to institutions and individuals in the Bawku Enclave as part of the Green Ghana activities. This year, the Bawku Forestry Division targeted to plant over 80,000 site matching trees but for lack of moisture and delay in the coming of rains, only a ceremonial tree planting exercise was carried out in Zebilla in the Bawku West District as part of the launch of the event. The Presbyterian Development Service, the Ghana Education Service (GES), The Ghana Fire Service, Ghana immigration Service, Ghana Police Service and the District Assemblies are some of the institutions who have received tree seedlings. Mr Emmanuel Omane , reflecting on this year’s theme, ‘Our Forest our Health’ at the launch in Zebilla earlier, reiterated the importance of trees, ‘forests produce oxygen and absorb Carbon dioxide, which is a greenhouse gas that gets trapped in the atmosphere and compounds the warming of our planet, and forest can help combat that process. ‘By absorbing the gas during photosynthesis, and storing it in their wood, leaves and the soil, trees keep more carbon dioxide from ending up in the atmosphere where it traps heat, trees also absorb other airborne pollutants like sulfur dioxide and carbon monoxide,’ he said. He noted that nature and forests did much more for human health and spending time outside in a green environment helped to improve mental health, ‘exposure to forests can reduce human stress levels, recover from fatigue, and improve general wellbeing. Mr Omane said with the involvement of all key stakeholders in the area, the FC was committed to equipping local communities especially the youth and rural communities with more knowledge and hands on skill on how to combat climate change and restore the dwindling degraded landscape. He acknowledged the World Vision Organization as one important partner in combating landscape degradation, through the Re-greening Africa programme and promoting community mobilization and technical capacity building in providing tree seedlings of high economic value to support household and community incomes.

Source: Ghana News Agency

36 per cent of adolescents are sexually active – Study reveals

One in three adolescents (36 per cent) are sexually active, a study commissioned by the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) in collaboration with the Ghana Health Service (GHS), has revealed. The study, which was conducted in the Bono East Region also showed that 43 per cent of girls/young women had had sex as compared to 29 per cent of boys/young men. It formed part of a project being implemented by GHS and UNICEF to address the sexual and reproductive health needs of young people in transition to adulthood especially with regards to their access and utilisation of adolescent services. Findings of the study was disseminated to key stakeholders drawn from eight regions at a meeting held at Fumesua in the Ejisu Municipality as part of strategies to address challenges confronting adolescents in the country. Dr Joshua Amo-Adjei, a Lecturer at the University of Cape Coast and Lead Researcher, said positive attitudes around schooling was significantly associated with being sexually active. He said respondents who viewed school positively and expressed positive intentions of advancing in education were less likely to be sexually active. Adolescents who reported limited access to services, according to him, were also at higher risk of sexual initiation. Dr. Amo-Adjei further disclosed that more than half of sexually active respondents were coerced into first sex, adding that 13 per cent were forced physically. ‘Adolescent childbearing was frequently mentioned as the most concerning health problem in all the participating communities. The other was lack of access to menstrual hygiene products,’ he told the meeting. Dr Emmanuel Tinkorang, the Regional Director of Health Services, said adolescent sexual and reproductive health was an important health issues because it was one of the most difficult issues that could confront any health system in any country. He said because adolescents were in transition, they were vulnerable to a lot of challenges which if not managed well could jeopardise their future. He mentioned unwanted pregnancy, teenage pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases as well as exposure to social media as some of the challenges mostly confronting the adolescent. The Regional Director entreated all stakeholders to step up their respective efforts in addressing adolescent and sexual reproductive health as a country. Madam Charity Nikoi of the Social and Behaviour Change (SBC) Unit of UNICEF Ghana Office, said her outfit conducted research during the COVID-19 pandemic which revealed that the adolescents were not visiting health facilities not solely because of the pandemic, but also due to reproductive health issues. ‘This study is to support the Ghana Health Service in having an evidence-based approach to whatever they are going to do for adolescents in terms of sexual reproductive health,’ she noted. She said the goal was to look at the social and institutional determinants of access to services and utilisation to ensure issues affecting the development of adolescents were tackled.

Source: Ghana News Agency

GES to roll-out Professional Learning Community in SHS/SHSTS

The Ghana Education Service (GES) has initiated plans for a national roll-out of Professional Learning Community (PLC) sessions across all Senior High Schools (SHSs) and Senior High Technical Schools (SHTSs). This is aimed at strengthening teachers’ understanding and adherence to the National Teachers’ Standards (NTS) and preparing them for the introduction of the new secondary education curriculum, which will be rolled-out in the 2024/25 academic year. A press release issued by Ms Cassandra Twum Ampofo, Head of Public Relations Unit of GES, copied to the Ghana News Agency said: ‘Weekly PLC sessions have been piloted by GES since 2022 in 12 SHS and SHTS using structured Handbooks developed in partnership with the National Teaching Council (NTC).’ It said in a recent evaluation, it was found that the weekly sessions had had a significant impact on improving teaching and learning in the 12 schools, providing a strong evidence-base for the national scale-up of the approach. The release said to ensure the smooth institutionalisation and roll-out of the PLC sessions across all 726 schools, GES organised a five-day training session for a 100-member National Training Team comprising representatives from GES, T-TEL, Senior High Schools and Colleges of Education. The training, which took place in May 2023, focused on equipping the National Training Team with the necessary skills and resources to support teachers and officers across regional and district education directorates to effectively implement PLCs in SHSs and SHTSs. The sessions demonstrated how teachers could be supported and equipped with interactive and innovative approaches to make teaching and learning more engaging for students. With a strong focus on leveraging technology and promoting Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI), the training also highlighted the importance of socio-emotional learning in the classroom. It said all approaches used in the training were drawn from the National Teacher’s Standards (NTS), which outlined the values and attitudes, knowledge and practices expected of all professional teachers in Ghana. The release said the weekly PLC sessions, facilitated by trained teachers within each school, would help to ensure that all teachers were familiar with the National Teachers’ Standards (NTS) and able to incorporate concepts related to Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI), Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) in the classrooms. It said PLC sessions had the potential to bring about lasting positive changes across Ghana’s secondary education system and could be used to ensure that all teachers understood and embraced the new secondary education curriculum before it was rolled-out nationally in the 2024/25 academic year.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Law to mandate companies to set up plastic waste collection systems in the offing

The Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation (MESTI) is putting together a legal framework to compel companies that use plastic packaging to assume some responsibility in the collection and recycling of plastic waste. The law will make the Extended Producer Responsibility Principle (EPR) mandatory for such companies and compel them to establish plastic collection centres as part of their marketing arrangements to rid the environment off plastics. Data from the Ghana Plastic Manufacturers Association indicate that 87 per cent of industries in Ghana use plastic packaging. In an interview with the Ghana News Agency at a workshop on Marine Litter and Mircoplastics in Accra on Wednesday, Mrs Lydia Essuah, Director of Policy, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, MESTI, said the current EPR regime was voluntary and thus companies complied at will. She said the country must adopt what she described as the ‘polluter pay principle’ to ensure that companies that used plastic packaging were responsible for the collection. ‘The private sector has started their own process but that is voluntary. To be able to achieve higher levels of collection and recycling and for us to get rid of plastics, we need to make the EPR system mandatory. ‘We are working on legal backing to make it mandatory so that we will move from the current voluntary into mandatory regime to ensure that once you put out a plastic product on the market, you are mandated by law to collect it,’ Mrs Essuah said. Mrs Essuah said the Ministry had adopted a ‘partnership approach’ where the private sector would play key role in plastic waste management. She said financing was a major challenge in the sector and indicated that the Ministry would collaborate with the private sector to explore avenues to address those challenges. In Ghana, some 120 companies manufacture over 52,000 tonnes of various plastics and plastics products per year, according to the Ghana Plastic Waste Management Policy Document. According to the Document, more than one million tonnes of plastic waste are generated every year, suggesting that domestic manufacturing accounts for less than 5 per cent of all plastics in the country. It is estimated that out of one million tonnes of plastics produced in Ghana annually, only 10 per cent is recycled, with nine per cent leaking into the ocean. The workshop discussed lessons learnt from the implementation of a project dubbed: ‘Marine Litter and Microplastics: promoting the environmentally sound management of plastic waste and achieving the prevention and minimisation of the generation of plastic waste in Ghana’. The Project was implemented by MESTI in collaboration with its partners, including the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation, and the Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam, and Stockholm (BRS) Conventions. Mrs Essuah said through the Project, the team discovered how sea weeds could be used to develop plastic bags, which is environmentally sustainable. She said the team had also identified useful information on how and what legal frameworks should be set up to guide sustainable use of plastics in the country. Ms Tatiana Terekhova, Programmes Management Officer at the BRS Conventions Secretariat, urged Ghana to strengthen its legal framework to control plastic waste.

Source: Ghana News Agency

‘Ofori-Atta is not opening on IMF updates’ – Adongo

Mr Isaac Adongo, the Ranking Member on the Finance Committee of Parliament, says Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, the Finance Minister has for sometime now not updated Ghanaians on the $3 billion Internatioanl Monetary Fund (IMF) loan. At a News Conference dubbed ‘The Update of the Finance Minister and Comments Made by Dr Mahamudu Bawumia,’ in Parliament on Wednesday, Mr Adongo alleged that Mr Ofori-Atta purposely failed to inform the public about conditionalities of the IMF government signed onto. ‘…Such as three months upward adjustments of utility tariffs, restrictions on public sector salaries, restructuring of pension funds and local banks,’ he said. Mr Adongo alleged that the government was likely to default in the payment of first matured bonds under the Domestic Debt Exchange Programme (DDEP). Mr Adongo, also a National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament (MP) for Bolgatanga Central, questioned Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia’s vision for Ghana, particularly when he was hopeful of becoming the next President in 2025.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Angola Airline orders nine aircraft from Airbus

Angolan Airlines ,TAAG, Wednesday announced the strengthening of its fleet, with the formalisation of an order for nine aircraft of the Airbus 220-300 type, with phased delivery scheduled for April, 2024.

In its note reached ANGOP, TAAG states that the order is the result of the signing of three commercial agreements during the Paris Air Show 2023 with Lessor companies ACG , Azorra and NAC.

“This is an achievement that will work on long-term leasing contracts, under dry lease,” the report said.

The document adds that the equipment will have Angolan flying personnel and with maintenance secured by local staff.

Currently, TAAG has a total of 15 A220-300 aircraft ordered from manufacturer Airbus, through international partners.

With this acquisition, TAAG estimates a saving of around 25% in fuel costs and a reduction in operating costs of 20% at global level.

The Airbus A220 aircraft has a capacity for 142 passengers (130 in economy class and 12 in business class).

TAAG explains that the strengthening of the fleet is evidence of the company’s modernisation and growth path.

TAAG was founded in 1938 and is based in Luanda, the country’s capital city.

For over 80 years, TAAG has been connecting Angolans through domestic and international connections

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)