Tutoring

Here: Certify This! … Court Reporting Students, Court Reporters and CART Captioners

 

Here: Certify This! … Court Reporting Students, Court Reporters and CART Captioners
By Monette Benoit

~~ Originally published in my column “Beyond The Comfort Zone” within NCRA’s Journal of Court Reporting, JCR
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved

If you registered for a NCRA, National Court Reporters Association, or a state court reporting examination take a deep breath and think big.

Write your name with your initials of the certification on a piece of paper. Make two copies. Post one on your bathroom mirror; this will be the first and last thing you see each day.

Put the piece of paper with your certification on your fridge. I want you to prepare a blueprint in success to prioritize this event. Prepare as an athlete.

Proper nutrition enables individuals to persevere. And competing is what you’re doing. (You’re competing with skills that enabled you to join the professionals in our occupation.)

People who do not eat properly, work long hours, and worry about money become overwhelmed.

When I speak to groups, tutor, coach students and court reporters, I share the mind/body approach. Many do not understand why they need to eat breakfast. Eat breakfast. Physical exercise is important; nutritional preparation is essential.

Proteins and carbohydrates sustain elevated blood sugar levels during work, tests and stressful situations. Bananas, peanuts and dried fruit are healthy, enabling a person to focus and improve concentration.

Pack a small bag with non-salted pretzels, carbohydrates; include non-salted peanuts for protein. Snacking on this combo improves your attention to detail and your stamina. I have snacks in my desk, briefcase, car, CART realtime case and usually in my hand as I race through life.

Two nights before your test, eat a protein dinner to build energy. I recommend fish with vegetables.

The evening prior to the examination, dine on complex carbohydrates. Carbs remain in the blood longer, building stamina.

Athletes eat whole wheat spaghetti the night before competition. They understand the importance of nutrition. (I eat yams.)

Vitamins are important. Include amino acids, Vitamin C, E, and B complexes. Sublingual B-12 can be placed under your tongue before any test.

Hatha Yoga improves concentration, building strong back and arm muscles; great for people hunched most of their day. Learn exercises which permit you to quickly send fresh blood into your spine and brain. And this ‘fresh blood’ calms nervous energy.

Court reporters understand that there are two parts to many national and state certification tests – a written and a skills portion.

Court Reporter Reference Books has an updated/revised Purple Books textbook, workbook, companion study guide, and a realtime vocabulary workbook, Complete Set, 4 books, and Trio Set, 3 books, to assist you to prepare for NCRA, national, and the state written portion of your court reporting certification examinations.

Purple Books sets teach you ‘how’ to take a test.  Also, we explain ‘why’ a word, answer is correct, incorrect.

Currently, there is only one textbook on the market to assist individuals to pass national NCRA RPR, RDR; State CSRs, and NY’s Civil Service written tests. The link for Purple test-prep books is http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=26

Individuals using Purple Books material have a 98% successful pass rate with Purple Books Sets (Complete Set and Trio Set) on national and certification written exams passing the WKT, written certification test, the first time.

If you are studying alone for the test or working to improve your skills, www.CRRbooks.com would be honored to assist you with the written portion of your state and national certification.

The second portion of the test concerns speed and accuracy.

Reporters and students building speed want material to be faster, faster, faster. But accuracy is built on the ability to write with control.

The push for higher speeds, in my opinion, should be in short spurts, not long practice periods. Start with material that’s comfortable. Build your speed while reading back and writing slower speeds for control. Your goal is to write comfortably 10-wpm, words per minute, to 20-wpm above the test speeds.

All reporters experience reading bad notes. When you’re struggling, I highly recommend reading those notes. Fingers have patterns. Many students and reporters have a finger that drags or slips. Study finger patterns. Adjust your steno machine on that specific key for a lighter or heavier touch.

Analyze your bad notes, enjoy your good notes, but focus on finger patterns.

Many students and reporters do not want to type tests.

You learn more from bad notes than good notes. With a positive attitude and focus, you will learn something you did not know about your fingers, your dictionary and your work. You’ve taken the time to prepare; you shouldn’t walk from any test.

NCRA national speed contenders do not write perfect notes. They compile and complete exceptional tests; a skill perfected over years.

Listen to tapes 20-wpm higher than scheduled speeds while you drive to work or school. (One of my students listened to a tape 40-wpm higher than her speed; she “got” lost on the way to school — Honest.) Increase your ability to listen, “carrying information.” When you carry for spurts, you’ll gain confidence.

I believe listening is more essential than writing, especially for tests where we have to “recall” verbatim material.

When practicing, remember numbers are important. Witnesses state his/her address, zip code, phone numbers (cell, home, office), social security numbers. Numbers often are included in tests.

Should you use briefs or should you learn to write every word, sound by sound? Use what works best for you. NCRA has a great book, “61+Ways to Write Faster, Speedbuilding Tips.”

After someone writes, I study their notes. They have words that they wrote during dictation that they did not type accurately. Enhance your transcription skills; your test scores will improve.

Here are my suggestions:

First, type from steno notes. Leave blanks on the computer screen or typing paper for “problem” areas. Valuable time is lost staring at a word or a flap. Often the word is repeated or reworded within the dictation.

Second, mark each flap or computer screen with an ‘x’ or pen as you transcribe to ensure you didn’t fold skip words or fold two flaps. (It’s happened in national speed championships.)

Third, check your transcribed notes for accuracy and punctuation.

Fourth, check steno notes to the transcribed material to find missed words. Too many people incur errors when they “had it” in their notes.

Fifth, go back and proof each page, each sentence, in a right to left pattern. This is where you proof each word for spelling.

After you have completed steps one through five, then go back and stare at the problem spots and look for each ‘x’ on the computer screen to see each word was transcribed from steno.

Let’s address the nerve factor.

My opinion is that candidates who “initially mess up,” experience lack of confidence in their ability for write that particular speed.

Those who “struggle” in the middle of a test or a take may suffer from lack of self-confidence and/or lack of ability for write that speed.

Problems towards the end of dictation indicate, to me, that the person does not have stamina at that speed.

Study your notes. Discover where you’re struggling; then build that area.

Gelsenium, homeopathy, and Rescue Remedy (Bach Flower Remedy) assists people with anxiety associated with public speaking and performance, test-taking, situations. Health food stores carry these items. They work wonders calming butterflies.

I recommend practicing 20 minutes. Readback, get up, stretch, sit down and get back to work.

Maintain a schedule. Chart your progress.

Having problems with specific prefixes, suffixes? How about finger combinations? Finger drills are great.

Practice when you’re most alert.

Write during your anticipated test time to peak your mental and physical skills.

Act on your goals; know that you deserve to pass the test.

After you’ve studied and honed your skills, relax and go play.

Train as an athlete. Concentrate on nutrition; focus on skills preparations.

And when you surrender your state or national test, you should be able to say, “Here, certify this!”

~~ –Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

03 Apr 2020

Mark Cuss Said To The Nymphs: CART Captioning Latin Classes

Mark Cuss Said To The Nymphs: CART Captioning Latin Classes

~~  Originally published in my column “Beyond The Comfort Zone” within NCRA’s Journal of Court Reporting, JCR

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

The phone rang Friday at 2:30. “Would you realtime, CART, a class? We need you Monday morning. It started two months ago. Oh, it’s Latin.”

As an experienced court reporter, instructor, tutor, I’m not lucky enough to get math or physics. The university request was for two semesters. I’d get a textbook Monday. I gulped, accepting the opportunity in 1999.

On Monday morning the student arrived, looked at me and my equipment near her seat, and stopped. I wrote on my computer, “My name is Monette. I’ve been asked to help you. Today will be the worst day I write. I don’t have a textbook yet. We’ll work as a team. I promise I’ll get better.”

The teacher began class. I began Latin.

I kid you not, my first day, the start of my first class: Callisto and the nymphs were having a metamorphosis over the birth of Arcas, Juno and the constellations and Mark Cuss (sic) said to the nymphs …

I’ve receive so many requests for information on how to write, how to CART, Latin. I tease: one prefix, root word, suffix at a time, and lots of fingerspelling. And somehow it translates – well, almost.

That day as each student read, translating sentences, learning declensions and tenses, I stroked sounds. When each student spoke Latin, I wrote, “Student Speaking Latin.”

Later I heard a gasp, and my consumer pointed to my realtime screen. I’d written: “Speaking Spanish.” (I had just finished CARTing to two large screens in one large room, five days for a large international Latino convention.)

I shook my head and wrote, “No, I just drifted. It’s still Latin.”

Immediately, in realtime, mortified, I erased those words from the screen.

But she and I got the giggles. Having begun our team building, we were now in the trenches together.

Writing this article, I asked the consumer’s permission to share how I (try to) realtime Latin.

Laney Fox, toes tapping and filled with energy, insisted on sharing.
Laney is deaf, raised oral deaf, and is now learning sign language.

We communicate with realtime, lipreading, sign language and gestures. Somehow it works. At the end of class I give her a rough ASCII disk (verbatim translation) of the entire class. Sometimes I’m reluctant to share it, but we’ve built a strong team communicating with each other and working with the university, instructor.

To provide CART (communication access realtime translation – voice-to-text) in this Latin class, I sit next to Laney with my computer on her desk. We share her text. I point to a selection if a student’s reading. If someone says a word I don’t know, I make a signed hand gesture (usually ASL), and Laney pushes the book to me (we’re sharing a desk for right-handed people; both of us are left-handed). I search for the word, fingerspell it and keep writing.

If the student’s reading from the book, I write, “Reading Latin” and point in the book as the student reads each word. (She likes to follow the class; this is her preference.)

If the student asks a question, I realtime each word to appear on the computer screen. When the professor gives explanations or references, I realtime each word.

Laney makes notes in the text and a notebook and reads my computer screen. As I learn more Latin (actually, sounds), I’m stitching words together. When she’s called upon, Laney translates Latin to English. She answers and asks questions. I stroke Latin phrases.

Sometimes Laney asks, “How do you pronounce that?”
The professor answers in Latin.

I phonetically stroke the word with spaces between sounds. She watches my phonetic translation and reads the word. (I always hold my breath.)

Initially I’d entered sounds in my dictionary when I was preparing to realtime. (I have CARTed to a large screen for St. Francis Di Paola, a Catholic Deaf mass, and various religious, interesting events since 1993.)

Preparing for religious events, I placed sounds with my asterick key, globaling strokes, so when I hit specific keys, they appear as phonetic, English sounds. I now can fingerspell a word faster than stroking it, but when it’s Latin, I have to rely on phonetics.

Sounds help me to help Laney in a Latin university setting at Trinity University.

Laney Fox shares, “Many people think it’s rude to correct a deaf person’s speech. It may be rude for strangers to do that, but after forming a relationship, I think it’s perfectly nice for someone to try to help out a deaf person’s speech.I know many vocabulary words. I simply don’t know how to pronounce them; English is one odd language. The words pronounced do not look the way they are written.”

One weekend I traveled to speak to a state court reporting convention.On my way back, Sunday afternoon, the airplane was canceled. I traveled all night to arrive in San Antonio with only minutes to get to class straight from the airport. I had on yesterday’s clothes.

I wrote, “This is not gonna be pretty; I’ve not slept in two days.”

Laney said, “You don’t have to be good today. It’s OK.”

My heart sang. This is why I do this. I worked so hard to “be good” for Laney.

After class, she said, “You were much better than I thought you were going to be. You were ‘good’ today.”

I sighed and placed my forehead down on the tiny desk on top of my warm computer.

Laney says, “I was so surprised to see Monette come in, telling me she was traveling all night. I would have stayed home and let her go through a class, clueless. After that, I learned her dedication to my involvement in Latin.”

If you want to provide this service, make sure you have a phonetic dictionary you can stroke. Become a confident fingerspeller. Build a rapport with the consumer and teacher. We’ve had challenges. But we’ve worked with gestures, signals and me asking, “Does this make sense?”

Listen for vents that open and close. External sounds interfere when students answer around your seat. Make sure you can hear everyone – front, back and to the side.

Don’t be afraid to tell the class when you have problems. If you can’t hear, others probably can’t hear.

Insist on faculty parking (since we haul heavy equipment, wear and tear dragging our equipment that is bumping over pavement may affect your computer, steno machine). You must have a text and all handouts.

I write all external sounds – sneezing, coughing, birds, stomachs grumbling. I am her ears. If I hear it, I write it.

Keep a sense of humor. Two months into the course, I phoned my dad. Emmett was raised in Jesuit schools, was an altar boy and graduated from Fordham University. He loves Latin.

When I told him about this assignment, he said, “You are in way over your head.”

I laughed and said, “Nope. Gonna do this one, do it well. I’m going to work hard, but I’m going to do this.”

So when I phoned to ask, “What is Ovid, Ovidian?” He howled.

Emmett said, “That’s the author of the huge orange text you’re carrying around. Haven’t you even looked at the cover?”

I laughed, “Nope, been everywhere else, but not the cover.”

After each class I look to Laney. She’s so forgiving and understanding. You must explain how and why words do not translate; why “funnies” pop up. She smirks and giggles when “stuff” appears.

Laney, “I love when we translate Latin stories in class. It’s fun to watch Monette. She frantically waves her arms when she can’t hear. I just love the energy to get me into class discussion.”

If I’d been told I’d be CARTing, realtiming, Latin and giving a rough ASCII verbatim disk to someone in a university classroom, I’d have never believed it. Not in a million years.

But now Marcus, those nymphs, the etymology of Latin with dative, conjugative, ablative, pluperfect, passive prosody applying to dactylic hexameter with basic rules of syntax trans – well, almost.

And it was just my luck to get a Latin honors students with whom I could expand my skills and learn so much about her world.

Today someone asked me how I was doing. I said, “I feel like a character on the I Love Lucy shows.”

The lady replied, “Without the soundtrack?”

Yeah – without the “sound-track”. But I’m looking forward to the final exam. After all, this is Latin.

And Laney Fox was first runner-up in the Deaf Texas Beauty Pageant. Yes, I am honored to be embraced within the deaf and HOH world. She and I are excited to share our passion for this technology with each of you.

Next we write Laney’s experiences and thoughts about receiving CART. Laney, “I want to share to help others. I really do.” Laney insists on sharing – as do I.

Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

02 Apr 2020

Laney’s Latin; Hearing Not Required, CART Captioning University Latin

Laney’s Latin; Hearing Not Required, CART Captioning University Latin

~~  Originally published in my column “Beyond The Comfort Zone” within NCRA’s Journal of Court Reporting, JCR

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Laney Fox and I became a team, in the trenches, during her first semester in Latin.

Previously, I wrote how I’m CARTing (communication access real-time translation), realtiming, her classes. I am a court reporter, instructor, author, and tutor translating verbatim voice-to-text upon request for Laney.

I’ve watched Laney blossom in Latin!

Her deafness may be viewed by others. Limitations may be viewed by others, but not to Laney. Her world is full of life and possibilities.

We hope our articles inspire others to step onto the branch, to feel the breeze – to create a new dream, to see it grow. Laney has a zest for life and has many dreams. Sharing her world and life, to help others, is important to her. As Laney repeatedly says (toes tapping), “I ‘want’ to help others. I really ‘want’ to help others.”

Laney was born healthy; she had her hearing. She became deaf approximately near 13 months old, possibly from a 24-hour virus/fever. They are not “entirely positive.”

Laney was mainstreamed into her first “hearing school” during fourth grade after nine years of oral education at C.I.C., Central Institute of the Deaf, in St. Louis.

Her parents relocated the family to Baltimore after a job promotion. “So it was decided that I remain in the C.I.C. dorms for another year to continue my education to speak,” says Laney. “However, I was not happy at the dorms. So I left to join my family. My parents told me that they decided to raise me orally first to see if this was the best method for me to grow up with. They said if I wasn’t happy being orally raised, they would have taken me out of C.I.C. and enrolled me in a signing school. My parents were not trying to make me ‘hearing,’ as some people assume. My parents just wanted to see what was the best way to go.”

“When they saw that I was living a happy childhood with many other children, they decided to continue with this method. They simply did not see the need to teach me sign language when they saw that I was doing well in school and sports.”

“I chose to learn sign language in my senior year of high school. I wanted to see what it was like to communicate through sign language.
My parents didn’t hold me back; they were totally supportive, but still to this day my parents don’t know sign language. This doesn’t bother me. It just allows me to participate in both worlds.”

“If I had a choice, I would have gone a slightly different way. I would have chosen to teach a deaf child sign language when the child is in middle school (after the language acquisition period closes … to ensure that the child’s speech doesn’t deteriorate) to allow the child to communicate the best way that a child can. At least the child would know how to communicate through the hearing world and the deaf world.”

“I think children should learn both ways for total communication. Parents should not let the child place more emphasis on sign language. Parents should work more on oral speaking throughout childhood. It’s important that children are able to speak, so they have a choice in their communication when they enter the real world.”

I asked Laney to describe her Latin experiences with a CART captioner. When I first appeared, Laney -had not received any notice from my Friday afternoon request to this Monday morning class – walked in, took one look at my equipment, stopped in her tracks.

“Let’s say I wasn’t expecting a captioner who was so dedicated to help me learn and ‘hear’ Latin,” Laney says.

“Some high school teachers knew that it was hard for me to understand them in lecture tone. When I was in high school, I took Latin for three years. But I always felt that I was missing out something (which I did because I failed the Latin placement test after three years of Latin!). I’d come into the class prepared with my version of the story and try to gather all corrections from other students. The teacher never corrected my versions.”

“However, I had many questions for the teacher after class. I think sometimes they were the same questions asked in class because he seemed frustrated when I kept asking questions about the translations or the lecture. I don’t think he ever truly understood my deafness. Anyway, I always depended on the students to tell me whether mine was right or wrong. In fact, I had a student, David; I would give him my translations. Then he would correct mine, and return my translations with all kinds of errors marked. He helped me for one year in (high school) Latin. I am grateful for his generosity.”

Laney had to deal with another problem. “I never heard the other students’ questions, translations or the professor’s corrections,” she explains.

“All of my learning relied on my own translations for three years. Throughout this time I didn’t know sign language; I didn’t have anyone to sign to me.”

“In my first semester at this university, Trinity, I’d write out translations before I went to class and have someone look over them. I was rather lucky in this class; there’s an excellent book that contains all the information lectured by the professor. I also had a notetaker, so I had more help than I was accustomed to.”

Laney was enrolled in Latin for two months before I was asked to CART (Communication Access Real Time Translation) caption for her (on a Friday afternoon) and give her a rough ASCII disk at the end of each class (beginning the following Monday morning).

The CART assistance has been a boon, per Laney and her instructor.

Laney says, “Now I enjoy class tremendously when we’re translating stories (instead of lecture days).”

“It’s more fun to watch Monette trying to get everything. When she can’t hear, she flaps her arms around. She also taps my shoulder to grab my attention for her corrections on her screen. I just love her energy to get me into class discussion.”

And when I could not hear, we changed rooms. And when the students could hear doors loudly squeaking, and I had to keep writing “doors squeaking,” the doors were oiled, per my request. The university, professor and students have all become part of this CART captioning team.

As I sweated and struggled to realtime Latin, I talked to Laney about my work, explained why ‘stuff’ popped up correctly – or not. Laney appreciated the information about my experiences in court reporting.

“I didn’t know what to really expect from a captioner. But when Monette Benoit told me that ‘all’ court reporters want to strive to be the best, I was very impressed. When she would get upset with the CART equipment, computer screen, at first I didn’t understand why she would get so frustrated.”

“I was so happy that I could at least have an idea of what everyone else was talking about. It didn’t matter whether you mistyped ‘declension’ or whatever. I now knew what was going on. I am entirely grateful for Monette’s help in showing the pronunciations of the words I was unfamiliar with.”

Laney is enrolled full-time at Trinity University and attends sign language classes once a week in the evening. She volunteers with Best Buddies (a program for people who are mentally retarded). “I just take my Best Buddy out to have some fun,” she says.

And what does Laney want to do with her life?

“My plans for the future are to become a veterinarian. I would love to be able to understand animals and be able to communicate with them. I am amazed how animals and humans can still communicate through body language, even without speaking. I would love to learn many more things about animals and perhaps help the world understand more about the animals we know so little about.”

So, do you want to help others?

Our wish is that you will want to help others – and yourself.

This is a great time to be a court reporter and work with deaf, hard-of-hearing people. Life is good! Hearing, sound, is not required to expand your life, to blossom and to grow. Just ask Laney Fox. She’d really like to “hear” from you.

Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

30 Mar 2020

She Never Speaks; She Spoke To You; Why Can’t She Just Learn English? She’s ‘only’ Deaf

She Never Speaks; She Spoke To You; Why Can’t She Just Learn English?  She’s ‘only’ Deaf

~~  Originally published in my column “Beyond The Comfort Zone” within NCRA’s Journal of Court Reporting, JCR

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

One morning in June, I got an early start. The store was near empty. I had me a 2007 Christmas gift certificate. My mission: new dish towels. I went to the kitchen area. This was easier than I thought.

Avoiding clearance racks, I saw the perfect T-shirt on a shelf. I debated — must I? Ahead of schedule I stepped to my left just to look. I spotted a woman who had her head down and was folding a mountain of clothes scattered over a metal table. And I’m talking marine-inspection folding.

The woman looked up; I smiled politely. She nodded and continued folding. I paused long and deliberately before I decided to see if she was the person I thought she might be.

With one motion I made a gesture  that often -only Deaf recognize. (It works very well, folks, Big D.) She tilted her head and smiled. Then her eyes sparkled. She did a small dance, head down, hands high in the air, before launching herself over that table to me.

I have not seen Stephie in ten years. Stephie is deaf, lives within the Big D-Deaf world.

I shook out my hands, signing, “Need put down purse. Signing rusty.” Placing my purse, towels on the table, planting my feet on the floor, standing tall, shoulders back, I began to (silently) talk with Stephie.

When I paused to sign or fingerspell, she signed with me, waiting while I struggled or correcting me (so very nice) as needed. This woman, who does not speak, began to laugh. Signing, she began to voice (words) and have sudden outbursts of sounds (words).

As I turned, I spotted employees watching. Customers approached, smiled at me (but not us), and then turned away. I asked Stephie if she might get in trouble for speaking to me. She laughed, “Nope.”

I asked if anyone in the store spoke or signed to her. “No,” she replied.

I asked how she communicates with her co-workers. Only her manager does – and only as needed. Then he ‘writes’ details on a small pad. I asked how she communicates with customers.

Stephie said that she tries to help, but “customers turn away, not responding.”

I winced. But Stephie beamed, stroking my face and hand, “I found you!”

In my rush that morning, I did not put on my wedding ring. She knows my husband from the years he was my “roadie” (his term) every Sunday when I CARTed to St. Frances Di Paola’s large screen for the Deaf mass. Stephie reached for my ringless hand, holding my ringless finger.

She shrugged and with hands in the air, she voiced loudly, “Sorry. It happens.”

I doubled over with laughter. Stephie then voiced, “Oops.”

This Deaf community is tight. When a hearing person is embraced into the Deaf world, it is an honor. In 1993, an elder within the Deaf community, gifted me with a sign name and named me “Our Token Hearing Girl” sharing my CART skills, learning from their culture. Oh, we have funny moments and memories.

Our conversation lasted 20 minutes. Now I was late. We exchanged information.

I signed, “Late. Must go.” She understood. Good-bye lasted 10 minutes with hugs, she touching my arm, my hand.

One employee who watched Stephie and I pointed to her register. I’m still holding only dish towels. Easy, right?

Anna looks like Priscilla Presley, early 1960s. She takes my towels and said, “She spoke to you.”

I blinked and looked at her hair and eye makeup.

Anna, “She spoke to you.”

I smiled, “We’re old friends.”

Anna paused, then leaned on her register, “She spoke to you. I heard her. She said words ‘to’ you.”

I smiled, “Stephie’s deaf. She communicates with sign language. How much do I owe?”

Anna, “She never speaks; she spoke to you. I don’t understand her. I’d like to …”

I almost put my forehead on that register counter. I’m thinking, “Please, God, don’t let this be a mini-deaf sensitivity seminar. I need to head to my office. I have court reporters and court reporting students confirmed for tutoring this morning and afternoon. Peter Rabbit here must run.”

Anna whispered, “You spoke to her. She understood you. She ‘heard’ you. How does that happen?”

I exhaled slowly without sighing. I looked to the people behind me and asked, “Anyone in a hurry?”

Each person (a first) shook their head.

Customers replied, “I have all the time in the world.”

“I’ve always wanted to learn about sign language — those deaf mutes.”

When I looked up — as I knew would be — Stephie watched, head down. She understood. I made eye contact with Stephie and smiled.

I slowly began my mini-seminar. “Stephie is an intelligent woman to work in a place where no one speaks her language – or will try.”

Anna asked, “But why do her words come up in wrong places?”

Me, “Well, Anna, her language ASL, American Sign Language, is a conceptual language created by hearing people long ago in France.”

Anna, “Why can’t she read lips? She stays to herself. She seems nice.”

I asked, “Has anyone here ever sat with her in the break room?” Anna shook her head. “Stephie wants to communicate,” I said.


Anna earnestly, “But sometimes her words don’t sound like English, yet you understood what she was saying. I watched. You two had a real conversation. Some words are louder than they should be. Can’t she just learn English?”

I winced. Calmly, I took a deep breath, shared tips about Big D, Deaf, sign language. “Stephie does know English. Her first language is ASL.”

Placing my towels in a store bag, I asked for the total. Customers leaned forward to listen when Anna whispered, “I wish I was brave enough to do what you did with her.”

Slowly counting to myself, I softly replied, “Start with one word. When you see her on break, coming into work or leaving, start with one word.”

I showed Anna several signs (and a few funny slang signs) to encourage and motivate her. I added, “And it’s fun.”

Anna finally totaled those dang towels and said, “Thank you for helping deaf people and for taking time to help us – who wish we could understand them.”

Me, “But you can.”

Anna, “No, no, I wish I could, but I can’t. Thank you for helping me and for helping us to understand.”

With one quick, shy motion, Anna raced around the counter and hugged me. Then she sprinted back to her register. Customers then thanked me “for helping those people.” I avoided sighing.

 

I closed the seminar, “Deaf have a wonderful culture with a beautiful language. We must learn from each other.”

I slowly looked down the aisle; I knew she was watching. Stephie nodded. She understood. I signed good-bye to Anna. Overhand I signed (the personal) “I love you” to Stephie. I took my towels and departed with my head down. I wondered what I could have or should have said to her coworkers to have had a more positive result.

Then a large UPS truck flew past me. Stopping on a dime, the driver leaned out the doorless truck and waved overhand. I blinked. Last year, he was stung by a bee at his previous delivery. He’s allergic to bees. After I signed for my delivery I treated his neck ‘timing’ to see if his bee reaction would need hospitalization.

While watching this UPS shorts-wearing dude with dark eyeglasses, energetically waving overhand to me, I thought about Anna and how wonderful it was to have found Stephie. I thanked God for life’s grand memory-moments.

Then like the little Peter Rabbit, this bunny went back to her world – thankful for Stephie’s friendship and her laughter that morning.

I phoned the sign interpreter Stephie requested, sharing Stephie’s message.

 

My friend howled with laughter, “Dish towels with a 2007 Christmas certificate? Oh, Monette, you need to shop for better things. What ya doing tomorrow? Let’s meet there, see Stephie. Let’s go have us some real fun over there.”

     Perhaps we did; perhaps we did. Stephie and I wish Happy Holidays to each of you and your families.

—-Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

18 Mar 2020

Yes We Can, Yes We Did; You No Worry, My Husband, You Okay, Signed Big D -Deaf Lady in Dark Parking Lot, You Safe

Yes We Can, Yes We Did; You No Worry, My Husband, You Okay, Signed Big D -Deaf Lady in Dark Parking Lot, You Safe

~~  Originally published in my column “Beyond The Comfort Zone” within NCRA’s Journal of Court Reporting, JCR

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Recently I was out of state on business far from home when I encountered another “memory moment” (deaf term) that will stay with me. I work as a court reporter, court reporting instructor, tutor and coach. Of this I know to be true: if more of us could truly hear and see what’s around us, we would change the world as we know it – one person, one “moment” at a time. Yes, we can, and yes, we did.

After a long day, early evening, I stopped at a hardware store. I needed a few items.

On a long (single) line in the busy store with my cart, I heard a familiar sound.

I tilted my chin up.

“Ahhhhahh,” a woman was pointing a man to another counter. I blinked knowingly. I smiled, she looked away.

I then debated: Could I? Should I? The line wasn’t moving as I leaned on my cart.

I smiled, quickly gestured upwards with the flick of my wrist – and waited. She looked up. Again I smiled.

We looked at each other for a few seconds before I thought, “Oh, what the heck.” I began to sign (ASL) to her.

She watched and did not respond, but she was smiling. I signed that I have worked with deaf people in Texas. I had not signed in a while: “My sign stinky now.” Her smile beamed from ear to ear. She started signing so quickly, I had to remember the first sign I learned: “Slow down.”

My line barely moved toward the cashier. She and I were soon signing (ASL, American Sign Language) and communicating.

Children stopped complaining, whining about standing on line in the hardware store.

Adults looked stunned, clearly staring, as we laughed, spelled, signed. I had a great time; it felt good to sign again! As I approached the cashier, she nodded a brief good-bye and went back to work.

The cashier smiled. I asked if many deaf people worked there. “No, her husband works here.”

I asked the (hearing) cashier if there were interpreters.

“Nope, that lady worked ‘at a deaf place’ and used to come to the store every evening. The boss would say: You don’t have a job. He wasn’t going to pay her. But she continued to show up each night. Soon she began counting the money in each register, and she was very good at it. The owner hired the lady.”

I said, “You know, she’s reading lips, communicating with others; no one’s interpreting for her. She’s very smart. Trust me.”

As I left, I turned and waved good-bye to the deaf lady. The boss arrived at her register with more money, she smiled, I nodded … off I went … or so I thought.

My car would not start. The lights turned on, but not the engine.

It was now dark; I was in an unfamiliar city and stores were closing.

I strolled back into that store, flicked my wrist and signed, “Me car broke.”

The lady immediately signed to her husband, who sprinted out to my car.

Four men who worked with the couple appeared.

One man moved his truck and popped our hoods to “jump” the battery.

No one spoke to me; they were busy.

Within minutes, six men were in and out of my car: “What the hell’s this? What does this go to?”

They popped fuse boxes, flipped switches. I was stunned.

When I looked up, the deaf lady was signing, “You no worry. My husband. You OK.”

The men fervently worked; I turned my back on my car. It was too painful to watch and no one was answering my questions; they were busy.

In the dark parking lot, she and I signed and signed and signed, laughing, enjoying the nice breezes.

When my car was “fixed,” I was diagnosed with a neutral safety-switch problem. (Oh?) Then, each man who had worked on my car quickly vanished into the dark.

I yelled “thanks” to their backs as they silently left.

As I turned to get into my car, the husband asked, “Do you have someplace to stay tonight?” I paused. He asked again.

Standing under the street lamp, alone, stores closed, I hesitated.

Then I heard the deaf lady yelling, signing, “You OK. He my husband. You safe.”

I laughed, answered his questions, and we signed for the lady, his wife.

She then signed, “Firestone. You go tomorrow.”

I started to think this would make a great SNL, Saturday Night Live, skit clip.

She’s standing next to her car four spots away, signing to me.

Her husband is next to me signing into the air, so she can “hear,” and I’m trying to remember all the signs my rusty fingers used to know.

I asked, “What are your names?”

His reply, “Go to Firestone. Tell them Mike and the deaf lady sent you.”

“What is her name?” I asked.

He said, “They just know her as the deaf lady. They’ll know who you mean.”

The third time, I asked slowly, “What is her name? What do ‘you’ call her?”

He smiled and said, “I’m Mike. She’s Millie. We work at Johnny’s.” And he continued to sign (interpret) our conversation.

I signed up into the air, “Nice meet you, Millie.”

She tapped her heart, “You not worry. Go Firestone. You OK.”

I began to giggle when I looked around. People were sitting in their cars in the dark, motionless, viewing this entire scene.

Since my car engine was running, I was afraid to turn it off. Mike continued to stay with me, smiling.

Then I asked Mike what I had signed to Millie in the store.

Earlier I’d asked, “Do you watch TV?” She had said that she kept busy. Mike said, “She doesn’t like TV.”

I signed into the air, “Millie’s Big D. Signing her first language. She’s having trouble viewing captioning because too fast. Practice, reading improves.”

Mike agreed that was the reason she did not watch television. “She struggles with reading captions.”

I stopped signing to concentrate and concisely explain how broadcast captioners and CART providers help deaf and hard-of-hearing children and adults.

I discussed the work I’d shared with many deaf and HOH (hard-of-hearing) groups and a deaf mass since 1993.

I signed across the parking lot, “You watch TV. Captioners help you, better reading.”

Finally, Millie said, “Yes, I watch. I will. Promise. Yes, I can.”

As I left, I thanked God for my new friends and wondered why the only place my car had broken down in 17 years was somewhere I’d just had fun and shared with a new deaf friend.

Mike and Millie at Johnny’s … if only “you” could sign, hear, and see, you would shift.

I’m writing about this, yes, we can, and yes, we did because the reactions of court reporters and friends have been interesting.

All deposition court reporters and officials asked, “Why didn’t you just call a tow truck?

The CART captioners and sign interpreters said, “Yeah, I get it.”

Another confirmation, to me, of the differences in our consumers and possibly future clients.

I know Mike and Millie will watch captioning.

If you could sign, hear and see, you too could feel that your skills are wonderful.

Our court reporting and CART captioning profession is a gift to others. We’re not reminded often enough … but my heart knows. It feels so right “in the moment” to communicate, help, sign and laugh.

Mike and Millie confirmed my life path (again); another “sign” from the universe.

Come and join us. It’s fun. You’ll meet many people. They’ll appear anywhere during the day, the night, even in a hardware store.

Mike, Millie and I agree … yes, we can. Yes, we can sign, hear and see together as one.

Each time a deaf person taps his or her heart and smiles at me, I have another “memory moment.” 

That memory moment is mine to keep forever.

Do you ever wish you could have these moments? Trust me: yes, you can. Yes, we can.

 

— Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

15 Mar 2020

Exactly Why Am I Doing This Now, Part III of III

Exactly Why Am I Doing This Now? Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
May 24, 2013

Part I began: The requested tutor and empowerment coaching appointment began with a simple question.

My question to the court reporter was simply, “How are you?”

Part II began: We agreed to assess goals that had been met as a student and to evaluate where she is now as a certified court reporter.

The court reporter then said (I have permission to share) “When I was going to school then, I was not putting in as much as I should have. Then working with you, I decided I could do this – I really could do this. I decided to not do this and to not do that, but to really do this and to not make excuses. That was how I came a long way. I focused as you advised.”

Thus, we spent our time working together constructively, realistically focusing.

Part III: Instead of focusing on the loud voice in her head, we focused on the tasks that would realistically work with her present schedule and her goals now. Today.

Her question “exactly why am I doing this now?” remained with me after we scheduled updates and ended our time together.

This very question itself, in my opinion, will give you freedom.

Have you asked yourself this question and identified what is important?

Have you asked yourself this question on a good day – and not when events are comedy for Saturday Night Live?

I believe this is an excellent question. We take risks when we ask the question, “Why?”

Together we focused on the nutrition for the goals.

The court reporter and I made a conscious choice to create strength with training while working.

What I heard the court reporter say – and what was identified later by her words – were her fears. I heard, “I am afraid …” Her true fears were shared “straight up.”

Yes, I could hear fear in her voice, as well as the frustration.

I could hear fear as very real facts were shared by this working reporter.

When she was a court reporting student, she fear identified, too. Together we addressed the fears then.

Together we walked straight into her fears now.

Fear can be a motivator – if we are moving away from fears or toward goals.

I believe that we are imprinted with past moments.

My opinion is that any professional training that requires excellent daily standards as we learn a new language and begin to build technical skills will create survival skills that any TV reality show would ever understand.

Instead of “You’re Fired,” our TV show could be called “You Passed! You’re Hired!”

We are not cast on an island to fend for ourselves alone, though it may sure feel close to that.

Individuals outside our profession are often stunned to learn that pass rates on tests in our court reporting speedbuilding classes require a 95 to “pass” up to the higher speed.

A grade of 94 is not a passing grade in court reporting school within a 60- to 225-word per minute speed class. (I used to complain to my parents, each educators, “94 is a failing grade!” Mom and Dad, would smile, “You’re the one who chose the court reporting schooling and the NCRA-approved training, yes?” I would sigh, “Yes, but – ”)

We need a minimum of two tests (some schools require three tests) at 95 before we “pass” to the next speed.

Yes, we are challenged to always strive for perfection… in school, and then on the job. Always.

Having attended court reporting school myself when (it seemed like) every day was “you didn’t pass this one” as the (speed test) papers were handed back to students. To me, these were moments that could weaken individuals outside of our field.

I still refer to my court reporting schooling as “walking barefoot on broken glass.” Really. Good glass.

Exactly why are you doing this now? Is it your passion? Is it your desire to help others in court, depositions, captioning TV and/or providing CART? This is just a sampling where we know our skills are now valued and appreciated.

Do you have a vision where you want to go? Are you there now? Do you have support for your choices now? Have you met individuals who are fun and are proof to the fact that students and working court reporters do tweak their skills, do advance goals and do not let daily fears guide them?

Are you worried about others who may judge you on your choices? I have asked this question and listened to very private opinions.

I have also heard individuals say, “Nah, I just want to stay employed and pay my bills, okay?” Got it.

Perhaps asking the “exactly why am I doing this now” question is the healthiest step forward. My opinion is that by going within to ask the questions that are creating the fears is a good, healthy step.

Court reporters do not let the tail wag the dog.

Seeking success we define exactly why we are doing this now.

Part I of III is posted May 1, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted May 15, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

24 May 2013

Exactly Why Am I Doing This Now, Part II of III

Exactly Why Am I Doing This Now? Part II of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
May 15, 2013

The requested tutor and empowerment coaching appointment began with a simple question.

My question to the court reporter was simply, “How are you?”

There was a loud sigh. The answer began, “I am so tired of …” I watched the clock. How long? Over five minutes. I did not peep one word as I listened. After a noticeable silence, the court reporter asked me what I was thinking.

Soflty, I said, “Wow, that was almost a five-minute literary test. Now please tell me what you really think.” She howled with laughter.

Ah, court reporters and court reporting students.

When someone asks us what we think, and the question is posed by someone (my opinion here) related to our field, we can really let the words fly, yes? Yes.

Now that the energy had been expelled in a healthy manner – and we were clear that we would focus together – we began an open dialog for the goals.

We agreed to assess goals that had been met as a student and to evaluate where she is now as a certified court reporter.

The court reporter then said (I have permission to share) “When I was going to school then, I was not putting in as much as I should have. Then working with you, I decided I could do this – I really could do this. I decided to not do this and to not do that, but to really do this and to not make excuses. That was how I came a long way. I focused as you advised.”

Thus, we spent our time working together constructively, realistically focusing.

Instead of focusing on the loud voice in her head, we focused on the tasks that would realistically work with her present schedule and her goals now. Today.

Her question “exactly why am I doing this now?” remained with me after we scheduled updates and ended our time together.

This very question itself, in my opinion, will give you freedom.

Have you asked yourself this question and identified what is important?

Have you asked yourself this question on a good day – and not when events are comedy for Saturday Night Live?

I believe this is an excellent question. We take risks when we ask the question, “Why?”

Together we focused on the nutrition for the goals.

The court reporter and I made a conscious choice to create strength with training while working.

What I heard the court reporter say – and what was identified later by her words – were her fears. I heard, “I am afraid …” Her true fears were shared “straight up.”

Yes, I could hear fear in her voice, as well as the frustration.

Part I of III is posted May 1, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted May 24, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

15 May 2013

Exactly Why Am I Doing This Now? Part I of III

Exactly Why Am I Doing This Now? Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
May 1, 2013

The requested tutor and empowerment coaching appointment began with a simple question.

My question to the court reporter was simply, “How are you?”

There was a loud sigh. The answer began, “I am so tired of …” I watched the clock. How long? Over five minutes. I did not peep one word as I listened. After a noticeable silence, the court reporter asked me what I was thinking.

Soflty, I said, “Wow, that was almost a five-minute literary test. Now please tell me what you really think.” She howled with laughter.

Ah, court reporters and court reporting students.

When someone asks us what we think, and the question is posed by someone (my opinion here) related to our field, we can really let the words fly, yes? Yes.

This individual and I have worked together in the past. She emailed with a question requesting numerous sessions.

Again, I found it interesting that the tenacity and goals that were set by this person while enrolled in court reporting school (her words) “who would never make it out of school fast enough” were now similar to today’s scheduled session.

“I’m not going to spend another dime to improve my skills when I have paid so much to get where I am.” (I remained silent.)

“I know people can do what I am trying to do now. If they can do it, why can’t I? I want – No, I need to earn more money. I didn’t go to court reporting school to be at the bottom of a seniority list with working court reporters after this period of time, did I?” (I remained silent.)

The sentence I truly enjoyed (professionally and personally here), “I’ll just get there and take it from there when I do get there, okay?”

I listened to this gainfully employed court reporter.

“The support on my software is about to expire. I have to pay for that, too. And the support on my new writer is about to expire. More money there! All that adds up to a lot of money and it is due very, very soon!”

The reporter summed it up, “I just am wondering exactly why I am doing this now …”

And there we had it. The dancing zebra in the room was bowing and exiting.

Now that the energy had been expelled in a healthy manner – and we were clear that we would focus together – we began an open dialog for the goals.

Part II of III is posted May 15, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted May 24, 2013, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

01 May 2013

Wheels Slowing Spinning? What’s Your Motivation? Part III of III

Wheels Slowing Spinning? What’s Your Motivation?
Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.
October 2012

Part I began: If you could do anything with your life what would it be?

What would you ‘really’ do with your time, your heart, your ears, and your hands?

Would you share your court reporting skills with individuals who are waiting to ‘hear’ from you?

Would you work in court? Would you focus on specialty freelance reporting? Would you really work with attorneys? (Yes, I asked that question.) Many of us have enjoyed the thrill of working with attorneys and many still do now.

Would you provide CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation)?

Would you learn sign language to have the ability to share your top-shelf skills to communicate with all your consumers? Would you learn about the Little D world, Big D, oral deaf, late-deafened, and hard-of-hearing children and adults?

Would you caption? Would you be able and willing to caption during the evenings, weekends, and holidays? It goes with the territory for many broadcast captioners. I know captioners who have shared with me that they spent years writing “down the hall” or “in the basement” or “upstairs” away from their family, yet were able to hear family laughter and loud voices. Would they do it all again? Many state they would.

And there will be individuals who will read this column, tilt their heads and think, “I am doing what I really want to do. I am.”

To that I say, “Bravo.”

Part II began: Yet if you could do anything with your skills, have you made a list to find out what “that anything” is? Have you listed what you would have to learn, what you would need to finish, to accomplish that list? I know people like the term “bucket list.” If those words for you, great.

If your heart is almost full after working, or you believe it would be “fuller if …” then perhaps now is the time for you to peek up from that desk. Now may be the time to move away from some of the daily drama that we “know” fills our busy world.

When we know a commute will require a longer drive-time on a particular road, we make different choices, yes? We find another road or perhaps we leave at another time, if that is possible. Often, we will do our darnest to avoid sitting in that darn traffic.

We avoid sitting with the wheels slowly spinning.

Are your wheels slowly spinning? What is your motivation?

Part III: What would motivate you to act on your motivation once you define specifics?

Is money again at the top of the list? When was the last time you left a job, onsite or remote, as a court reporter, captioner, CART provider, or student and felt that you had pitched your best? When did you last know you accomplished what you had planned and had worked toward?

Perhaps you want to raise your expectations for your world and to believe that you do have the coping skills to live the life you planned.

When I listen to individuals sharing their dreams, their hopes, their expectations, their fears, and yes, their successes, I am honored at what is shared straight-up, no excuses given. Court reporters tell it like it is. Really straight-up.

As we prep to roll into the holidays many of us will spend time helping others. We will schedule our time around other people’s schedules, personally and professionally, adding to the expectations of others with our hearts, our ears, our hands, and our time.

I want to suggest that you remember you are an investment that will multiple into grand, new paths when you are truly making the best choices for you.

What is your motivation to get up each day? For what are you grateful each evening and within your quiet moments?

My wish is that your goals, your dreams, will begin to whisper to you.

I wish that your whispers will become dreams, then goals.

Your goals will become committed statements.

Your statements will become reality.

You are what motivates me as I finish this article late in the evening on another extended deadline.

So many reporters and students have crossed my path as a result of my years of court reporting, publishing books and CDs, learning how to provide and then sharing CART, captioning, teaching, tutoring, coaching, public speaking, and sixteen years writing this JCR (Journal of Court Reporting) “Beyond The Comfort Zone” column.

Tonight I am working with eyeglasses that are broken (yes, we just move forward, don’t we?). I am helping my mother continue to deal with serious health issues as she grieves the death of her husband (my dad) of fifty-eight years. Then I read an email or receive a message wherein you share. The spark(s), and sparkle, in many of you is what motivates me, and I thank you.

Part I of III is posted October 4, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted October 18, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted October 30, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

30 Oct 2012

Thriving In Five – Or Less, Part III of III

Thriving In Five – Or Less, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: Why thrive in five? Why thrive with less?

I believe the majority of individuals in the court reporting profession think of the number ‘five’ as a take, a 5-minute take.

Thriving in five? Yes.

Thriving in less than five? Yes, this relates, too.

Recently, I read that the average person thinks 50,000+ thoughts a day.

I smiled immediately thinking (adding to my average number of thoughts that day) that court reporters must have many more than 50,000 thoughts a day.

Our tenacious personalities, our “word” work and our “word” schooling, in my opinion, would add up to many more than the average person, yes? …

Part II: Is steno a new language? Yes. Do we learn new skills every day? Oh, yes.

Do we learn new words each day?

Yes, each and every day.

And that thrive in five mindset is a frequent flier program in our court reporting world.

We do earn frequent flier points and note skill advancement once we decide to focus on this concept.

The mindset is doable and assists us to measure our progress and our goals. It is.

Often I may ask where a court reporter is (spending time) advancing their skills?

Many professionals share that they practice after a full work day, “At home in my office.”

I may ask students, “Where do you attend school?”

A common answer, “Online in my room alone.” Hm. …

Part III: Thriving in five is a simplistic approach to find some fun (their words) – court reporting students and court reporters shared with me – when I trotted it into my tutoring and coaching time.

“Might as well try this,” some said. “It seems worth a go.”

My reply, “Now that’s the true spirit.”

I also suggest that individuals embrace their discomfort – momentarily – to isolate what is stopping or halting the advancement of skills and goals.

Thriving in five includes finding your interruption(s) focus, to isolate an interruption in your strength, and in your confidence.

Remember when you struggled on the steno machine in your new theory, your new language, writing “a cat sat on the hat?” Did you just smile?

We huffed and puffed writing those words, yes?

As a court reporter, “I absolutely can do this,” is one thought I have when the mojo is flowing.

I may also think, “This will never happen again.” Why? Because my head may be on a table or the steering wheel.

And the action that created that thought is one I truly do not ever want repeated. Not ever.

We earn many of the thoughts that cross our mind – remember I quoted the stat above for 50,000+ per day for the average person.

What are your favorite five word thrive in five possibilities?

Multiple individuals have shared this focus “is like scrabble, and I can use vowels and consonants.”

Each day we collect data in our personal and professional world.

We trust the method and the process that has successfully set us apart from the “average” person with our skills, our thoughts, and our focus.

Refine, define, and know that you are the expert.

Part I of III is posted July 13, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted July 31, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted August 8, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

08 Aug 2012

Thriving In Five – Or Less, Part I of III

Thriving In Five – Or Less, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: Why thrive in five? Why thrive with less?

I believe the majority of individuals in the court reporting profession think of the number ‘five’ as a take, a 5-minute take.

Thriving in five? Yes.

Thriving in less than five? Yes, this relates, too.

Recently, I read that the average person thinks 50,000+ thoughts a day.

I smiled immediately thinking (adding to my average number of thoughts that day) that court reporters must have many more than 50,000 thoughts a day.

Our tenacious personalities, our “word” work and our “word” schooling, in my opinion, would add up to many more than the average person, yes?

Back to the thriving in five.

We can create five goals while in school, while working as a reporter, while testing, and while improving skills and our goals.

Thriving in five may be customized for working reporters and for students.

Thriving in five may be long term.

Thriving in five may also be short term.

Five words. “I will accomplish this now.”

Five? “Bring it on; I’m prepared.”

Less than five? Yes, there are many.

“I will remember to breathe.”

(In class, one day, during a mandatory test, a student forgot to breathe and hit the floor with a bang. I could not stop dictating the test. Yet my ears and eyebrows remained raised for almost five minutes. That student then stayed down on the hard, tile floor, “so I didn’t interrupt anyone,” waiting for the end of the test and the moment until all fingers stopped writing in a large classroom. I cannot make that up.)

Five words. I note when people share and ask, “What is your lowest fee?” “Then get that bid back.”

As summer marches forward the thrive in five may become “a task to be accomplished.” “Something I need to finish now.”

I started thinking about thrive in five while working with students and reporters.

“I need to learn it.” “How do I write it?” many students ask.

Me, “How does your theory define it?” (Okay, that’s six words.)

“I haven’t looked it up.” “Why transcribe all my tests?”

“I’m sure I didn’t pass.” Yikes.

After a 5-minute take and while at work we have the ability to learn so much about how we write, how we hesitate, how we misstroke a word or a phrase.

We can also learn how to avoid repeating that same error, that untranned word or phrase.

When we learn a new skill or new language, typically there is a steady climb with improvement.

As we continue to hone the new skill or a new language, typically the skill plateaus and/or the skill may pause.

Our skill advancement may seem to slow down or – worse – have a dip. This is normal, say experts.

Yes, one might state that it is normal if they are not the individuals who are experiencing the change in rapid advancement. Yet this is how we learn a new skill, a new language. It is.

Part I of III is posted July 13, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted July 31, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted August 8, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com
Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

13 Jul 2012

Weeding, Inner Landscapes, Nuclear Implants, Part III of III

Weeding, Inner Landscapes, Nuclear Implants, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: The sun is shining; it is almost 80 degrees in Texas as I write this column in March.

Winter was mild here and after months and months with severe drought and watering restrictions, we have rain. We have much rain. …

Part II: Many court reporters and court reporting students share they are overwhelmed.

As I help each person, I hear conversations where individuals want to “cram” (my word) years of schooling and work into an extremely short period of time with “extreme changes” (their words).

Perhaps “inner landscaping” needs to be defined.

Where does one begin?

As this varies with each person’s goals and commitments I advise starting with a position we clearly define to advance forward into a steady adventure.

Steady strength building (my term), in my opinion, prevents burn out with goals that may be(come) challenging.

Again, this will change with each person.

Inner landscaping involves weeding out what is not working and planting seeds for growth that will now organize your skills and your desired skills. …

Part III: Individuals in our field desire to improve and to advance management techniques.

Where are you stuck?

Where do you think you are stuck?

What weeds do you want to eliminate to avoid frustration and wasting time (words often shared with me)?

So where does the “nuclear implants” from the title come into this month’s column?

Simply put, I thought you would enjoy this true event.

As I was “weeding” this article, my office received a phone call.

I was informed I needed to promptly return the call as “they need help for someone with a nuclear implant.”

Yes, I promptly returned the call.

Yes, the individual has a (long) job title specific to assisting consumers and individuals with specific requests.

The person making the request then stated, “The reason for phoning is to have you translate the language for nuclear implant people.”

Yes, I am sure the request was for a cochlear implant – not nuclear implant – and translation of a language is not necessary.

As a court reporter I listened and was then informed by this individual what “all we really need is your lowest price to translate the language for those nuclear implant people? That’s all we want to know.” Imagine that.

Weeding, inner landscapes, and nuclear transplants.

Our work and our world is changing.

I believe that you deserve to remove the weeds (this may include people, too) in your world.

You deserve to customize your inner landscape and to enjoy the process.

And I wish you persistence on your path.

As I finished this article, the mail was delivered.

The postal lady said, I kid you not, “Here you go. I spent the last several days weeding my yard and my mother’s yard. She’s too old, 96, to do it by herself. It sure is soothing to weed, isn’t it?”

I blinked hard and tipped my head.

She said, “At the end of my busy day I actually look forward to going out there and just ripping those weeds up out of the ground – roots and all!”

I bowed my head, smiling.

“Yes indeed,” was my only reply.

She wiped the sweat off her forehead with her elbow and upper arm.

She laughed, “I work hard all day outdoors, too, to then go out there and go get ‘em. That’s how I’m relaxing now. And I find it soothing. I get to think and plan my next day and my world. Whoever thought I’d actually look forward to that?”

I smiled and watched her depart. Yes indeed.

Weeding helps her to sort the details and to plan her world.

And you? What helps you?

Part I of III is posted June 1, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted June 21, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted June 29, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

29 Jun 2012

Weeding, Inner Landscapes, Nuclear Implants, Part I of III

Weeding, Inner Landscapes, Nuclear Implants, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: The sun is shining; it is almost 80 degrees in Texas as I write this column in March.

Winter was mild here and after months and months with severe drought and watering restrictions, we have rain. We have much rain.

Warm winter temperatures and so much rain have brought the gift of bluebonnets, roses that bloomed all winter – as well as weeds and fire ants.

We have so many weeds that we are now being “warned” (actual word) by “experts” via newspapers and news that the weeds and bugs “to come will be extreme” (actual words).

The lack of low temperatures also has gifted us with “extreme” pollens, and we are being warned about allergens that “will explode” as temperatures rise.

The subject of weeds has overtaken, my opinion, the majority of topics when people now greet each other.

Running an errand recently, a man approached and said, “It sure is warm out there. The fleas are going to be abundant this year. You better take care.”

I was not sure if he was joking. Nope, he was sincere.

I stood poker-faced and listened before he shared “the bad news about weeds” and what is predicted.

I looked around the store, paused, and softly said, “You sure are full of good news today, yes?”

He nodded and said, “Yeah. Remember. And I warned you!”

How does this relate to court reporting?

We continue to receive frequent emails and news that our profession is shifting.

I listen to court reporting students, court reporters, CART providers and captioners sharing their deepest concerns and fears.

Since the death of my father and Mom’s continued hospitalizations with serious complications and gifted hospital MRSA, C-Diff and other infections, I find weeding now to be a task where I am mentally sorting out details.

Weeding abundant new growth in the soil and yard has become a task that is simpler than it used to be (for me).

And the small snake I picked up as I was weeding recently was just as surprised as I was. Really.

As I weeded today, after multiple days of recent rain and multiple days of heavy rains yet to come this week, I thought about the landscaping in the yard and landscaping in our world.

Many court reporters and court reporting students share they are overwhelmed.

As I help each person, I hear conversations where individuals want to “cram” (my word) years of schooling and work into an extremely short period of time with “extreme changes” (their words).

Perhaps “inner landscaping” needs to be defined.

Part I of III is posted June 1, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted June 21, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted June 29, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

01 Jun 2012

How To Write Ineffectively, Part II of III

How To Write Ineffectively, Part II of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

“There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus”, March 2012, included one sentence that has resulted in (many, many) private emails from students, court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners.

I have been asked to elaborate. …

Part II: Is the problem not having the word translate correctly? That is fixable.

Is the problem being in over one’s head with a job that is too technical?

Knowing when to ask for backup and seeking help is essential here, too.

Have you ever written a test or a job where you thought the speaker(s) would never stop talking?

Have you endured and stayed in the chair while the words were “way” fast, too difficult?

Yet, when the event finished, the earth did not swallow you (I have prayed for this, CARTing to large screens).

Then upon review of your notes after realtiming (I know you want to realtime all your work), you discover that your work was better than you thought? That happens, too. Really.

Our dedication, training, and discipline to detail ensures we always seek 100 percent.

When we are less than 100 percent, what do we remember?

The words that did not tran or were problematic.

We all have written words wherein we were sure the individual was not speaking English.

(CARTing college Latin for an honors student, was easier than reporting individuals and expert witnesses who insisted they were speaking English. It happens in our field, right?)

Writing ineffectively might be failing to overcome patterns and areas that continue to expose our errors.

I am not suggesting that we change (all of) our writing, yet I am suggesting that we focus on precisely what is creating problems.

Writing every day and not progressing?

What is tranning correctly, and what is an error is, again, going to be very different for a student and reporter taking a 5-minute test and a court reporter, CART provider, or captioner, providing the verbatim, accurate record.

Do you know your software?

Are you trailing when you make the error?

Are you dropping multiple words?

Do you know your theory?

Can you fingerspell the word? (I cannot tell you how many individuals tell me they have never been able to do this and will never be able to accomplish fingerspelling.)

Learn to fingerspell words, know what is in your dictionary, fingerspell the dang word and get on to the next word. Really.

Do you have test anxiety? Anxiety contributes to errors.

Where did you excel on a test or on the job?

What enabled you to feel good, to sit taller, to know you were doing a great job? Focus on that, too.

Good writing – excellent writing is vital.

Analyze what is working for you and what needs improvement.

The “evidence” is right there in front of you. Truly.

Part I of III is posted May 3, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted May 25, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

15 May 2012

How To Write Ineffectively, Part I of III

How To Write Ineffectively, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

“There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus”, March 2012, included one sentence that has resulted in (many, many) private emails from students, court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners.

I have been asked to elaborate.

I wrote, “… The circus comes to town in the blink of an eye. … Students and court reporters know how to work, and we know how to write ineffectively. In short, we know what does not work.”

As I received comments and questions I read, “I received my school certificate, but I haven’t passed state or NCRA certification. I have so much – as other students – to contend with, and even though we try to practice every day, we don’t progress. Lord knows we pray. This can be depressing.”

Multiple emails from reporters detailing how they write ineffectively, another email about not seeming “to get anywhere” while “trying to practice” every day, including the term depressing and earning certification – these are each important words to me.

Students develop specific skills, in my opinion, while in school.

Upon graduation, court reporters learn a complete new skill set while realtiming.

(I am in awe of the students now graduating with conflict-free dictionaries and custom software packages to specifically meet their needs, their requests.)

Our intention while in school, in my opinion, is to pass that test.

Our intention while on the job as a court reporter, CART provider, and broadcast captioner is to accurately have each word translate accurately.

Certificate pages in depositions and courtrooms require our signature stating we provided an accurate transcript (wording varies with each venue, state, and court, we know).

CART providers and captioners know that their consumer(s) and/or viewing audience are relying upon their finely tuned skills to accurately realtime each word.

Writing ineffectively, for a student and/or a reporter, would include not eliminating efforts that are unproductive. Yes?

Simple, yes?

Perhaps not, it seems, from the students and professionals who contact me.

“How do I change my writing?” they ask.

Working harder for each test and on each job does take its toll.

Stress, burnout, ill health – we know these issues may surface when work and testing are challenging.

Yet many people with a refocus will change the challenge.

I have placed my head on my desk or the steering wheel with the simple mantra, “That will never happen again.”

Then I work and focus upon removing that problem.

Does it work the first time?

I wish.

Yet, a focus draws attention.

We learned theory and progressed through school, yes? You can change your focus.

Part II of III is posted May 15, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted May 25, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘eR Done in Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are online — from students, instructors, program directors, CART Captioners, novice and senior court reporters, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound, covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information, the Purple Books from CRRbooks.com are time-tested and proven in the classroom with educators and with independent study.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabulary, medical, technology and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The Workbook contains **2,002 practice test questions; the Companion Study Guide cross-references every word in the workbook’s 2,002 multiple-choice text practice questions.

The “Full Test Prep Set” and “Trio Test Prep” – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. * Bring it today!

03 May 2012

There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus, Part III of III

There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved

Part I: Privately working with students and experienced court reporters a theme appears with each person. A desire is born. A wanting is experienced. Boundaries are removed. Fences (insecurities) are lowered. …

Part II: Students and court reporters know how to work and how to write ineffectively.

In short, we know what does not work.

When the circus is loud and stomping around your home and/or work place, it can be colorful.

Yet when we permit the circus to remain at the forefront in our daily and weekly schedule we witness shifts in our empowering moments. …

Part III: Our circus may have colorful connections; yet we know that every word, and every new skill, every new goal, and every new item added on our to-do list will change the whole enchilada.

And this can be a good thing when we are the masters at the circus gate, and when we are the one who remembers to set aside time to reach our personal and professional enrichment.

When we have the tools to know how to successfully write each word, how to succinctly respond and react to each action which may have power over our journey, we are one step toward mastering our crossroads.

We can be the conductor in “that there” three-ring circus.

Oh so true, many of us have been inside the circus so long that the circus feels comfy and familiar.

Coaching, I frequently comment to students, reporters, and to court reporting instructors, “There’s a whole lot you got going on in that there circus.”

Each person responds with sincere, honest replies.

Every student, every reporter and every instructor, shares full and complete accountings to their circus. I’m talking sustained, detailed descriptions. Many, just listening to their own words, laugh saying, “Did I really just say that?”

When we step back and look around, many of us are amazed at what we are actually accomplishing while in the circus each and every day.

Thus I ask you to listen to your words containing “should, could, need, want” and to then listen to your circus.

I am not requesting a complicated flowchart with systematic details and annotated exhibits.

I am suggesting that you (me, too) may be permitting exterior people and exterior energy to divert you away from your true “expansions.”

Do you have a lot going on in your circus?

Ask yourself this question three times a day, and you will know the answer.

You will know where you are headed and where you want to be.

The circus then becomes a focused mindset enabling each of us to transform our world moment by moment.

“Monette’s Circus Survivor Manual” is a simple yet powerful tool when you are the chef to your whole enchilada – and you are not on autopilot.

Part I of III is posted March 2, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted March 20, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

29 Mar 2012

There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus, Part II of III

There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus, Part II of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I began: Privately working with students and experienced court reporters a theme appears with each person. A desire is born. A wanting is experienced. Boundaries are removed. Fences (insecurities) are lowered.

Individuals who have been on autopilot seek to regain their private and professional world. How? Ah, grasshopper, this varies with each person and with the circus.

The circus, as I coin the term, is the whole enchilada. It is the noise, the chatter, the bright lights, and the colorful people you permit to join your festival. …

Part II: Students and court reporters know how to work and how to write ineffectively.

In short, we know what does not work.

When the circus is loud and stomping around your home and/or work place, it can be colorful.

Yet when we permit the circus to remain at the forefront in our daily and weekly schedule we witness shifts in our empowering moments.

Recently, as I worked with an individual seeking to regain balance I asked, “What is the best quality you now have?” I kid you not – the answer was two words: “Nothing works.” Hmm.

Yet if I spoke to that individual a few hours later, a day, or even a week after my direct question, I am willing to bet that the answer would not be “Nothing works.” The answer, and the circus, would be different.

The colorful circus with loud music was present at that moment.

Yet many of us have experienced calm moments in a circus.

There are sounds of soft music as we stroll the circus path.

There are wafts of delicious smells as we stroll the circus. There are moments of quiet and calm as we twirl on a ride.

There are sweet moments watching small children, wide-eyed, who reach up and out to an animal or to an adult.

The guide to surviving the circus is simple, yes?

Take the good, leave the bad, don’t overeat, know when to walk away, and remember where you left your car.

Once the guide is clear at the circus, and we know the circus can march into our world now with 24-hour cycles of technology, communication and social media, we then have a motivation to place our circus boundaries and to stick the boundarird, yes?

Court reporters, students, and instructors have stunning survival skills.

Students are working and attending school online or onsite; court reporters, captioners and CART providers are capturing words, challenged with new experiences every day, and working to expand skills.

Our goal is to accurately write each word the first time and to preserve events.

Simple, right?

Simplicity in our world involves multiple exterior variations on the job, in school, and while racing to a store to purchase food that is essential for that next meal.

Part I of III is posted March 2, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted March 29, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

20 Mar 2012

There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus, Part I of III

There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved

Privately working with students and experienced court reporters a theme appears with each person. A desire is born. A wanting is experienced. Boundaries are removed. Fences (insecurities) are lowered.

Individuals who have been on autopilot seek to regain their private and professional world. How? Ah, grasshopper, this varies with each person and with the circus.

The circus, as I coin the term, is the whole enchilada. It is the noise, the chatter, the bright lights, and the colorful people you permit to join your festival.

When we watch our own circus we are able to see the excuses (I include myself here, too), the shoulds, woulds, needs, and wants – which also include other people’s needs and wants.

Often we allow the currents, typically swift, to move us powerfully into directions we might not have desired.

How does that happen? My opinion is that we set out with the best intentions.

The tenacity for this profession, and the well documented 92 % failure rate in court reporting schools, ensures that those who successfully complete the program are disciplined.

Our “best intentions” may become overwhelming when we check e-mail, return calls, and begin the daily commute to work or to the home office (that can be tricky, too).

And I have not included essentials like food and equipment that “needs” to consistently work together to ensure a record or a test with the “needed” passing score.

When changes occur, we respond.

Other people’s forest fires may quickly become inroads into our circus.

Work forest fires may require that we step up to the plate and quickly move our established boundaries.

Did an expert witness appear without full communication to all parties?

Is an ill jury member altering the week’s schedule for the courtroom?

Remote CART providers and broadcast captioners may experience (audio) problems – beyond their control – that may not be resolved for extended periods of time.

“This just in” quickly shifts boundaries or schedules.

The circus comes to town with the blink of an eye.

In realtime, we then work to cope with ensuing changes.

My opinion is that this relates to our personal world, too.

Part II of III is posted March 20, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted March 29, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘eR Done in Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are online — from students, instructors, program directors, CART Captioners, novice and senior court reporters, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound, covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information, the Purple Books from CRRbooks.com are time-tested and proven in the classroom with educators and with independent study.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabulary, medical, technology and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The Workbook contains **2,002 practice test questions; the Companion Study Guide cross-references every word in the workbook’s 2,002 multiple-choice text practice questions.

The “Full Test Prep Set” and “Trio Test Prep” – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. * Bring it today!

02 Mar 2012

My Village Chief is HOH, Part III of III

My Village Chief is HOH, Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: My village chief sprinted into a parent’s hospital room wearing shorts, sandals (no socks), and a NCAA basketball T-shirt, Saturday morning.

He was all business, dressed casually. When he spoke his first two sentences, I knew. I listened and focused on the voice I know well.

When he turned his head, I saw the aid. Then, I saw the second hearing aid. …

Part II: He paused, “Can any court reporter do that?” pointing to flawless live captions.

I ducked my head, thinking … thinking. He leaned in to hear my answer.

“May I ask you something first?” I asked softly.

He nodded. Slowly, I asked, “Can any GP, general practicioner, any doctor, do what you just did?”

The doctor looked puzzled.

I asked, “Can any doctor go into an organ, one bleeding for months from cancer radiation not knowing what the doctor will find, eliminate multiple blood clots, clean the organ, and assist the patient – all in realtime – as you just did?”

He shot back in his chair, “No!”

I leaned into my village chief, “That’s my answer to you.” …

Part III: A nurse ran into the room with a phone. She said slowly, loudly, “HERE! When it rings, you answer, okay? The cardiologist will phone, okay!?”

My village chief paused before he looked away. I saw it.

Everyone could hear that nurse.

When the phone rang in my village chief’s hand, the nurse loudly said, “It’s ringing!!” He looked to the floor and said nothing before he placed that phone to his ear.

Soon, he departed without looking back, “We have to do this before this patient leaves Recovery. We only have minutes.” I thanked his back as he exited. Yes, he heard me.

A cardiologist appeared.

Soon, I answered my parent’s questions, and chose not to volunteer details while anesthesia and specialists were flowing in and nearby – all in realtime.

Then I drove to the one parent, recuperating after 57 days in hospitals now able to sit up.

I left out “Really bad. Could die …”

I focused on, “The doctors are wonderful.”

I checked meds, fed my parent, took out the trash, drove home.

That night a package arrived. (I receive a JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, for my library due to this column.) I was surprised to see the March 2010 JCR, not a current edition.

The cover detailed court reporters reporting veterans’ stories. My column that month was “A Number Of Firsts” profiling Karen Sadler, Ph.D., self-described “severely hard of hearing,” and Karen’s path to doctoral studies.

The next day I took the NCRA JCR, within envelope (to avoid others seeing my magazine), and waited for my village chief.

In IM-ICU I said, “I think this is a sign that I’m supposed to give this to you. I circled HOH and veterans articles you might enjoy.”

The proud WW II vet said, “I have multiple surgeries, and I’m helping doctors tonight. I’ll read this before I go to bed. Promise!”

He patted my arm; my JCR was tucked under his left elbow. Then, he ran down the hall to his next surgery.

We see each other often now with two parents hospitalized for seven-plus months.

Recently, a parent was re-admitted through ER, then moved to the surgical floor.

Married 57 years, my parents were 500 feet apart before an ambulance transported one parent to another hospital without letting them see each other.

When I see my chief, I call to his back (he hears), “Hey, Village Chief!”

He always turns around, “Hi! I have a patient …”

I smile, “I know. You have a patient waiting in surgery.” “Yes,” then sprints off.

When he has a moment, I share a hug.

Privately, I share events that baffle me.

“There’s too much blood – on the floor, the patient, in a cup on a shelf, in the cath; the patient does not know where the door is. Still the hospital is working to discharge this ICU patient today.”

He listens, sharing private opinions. Private opinions.

The hospital did discharge the patient hours later. I insisted that my concerned “are charted” for this patient.

The patient, my parent, was readmitted approximately 7 hours later with a 103 degree fever.

The ER staff was adamant that the hospital never should have discharged this patient, and the patient would have died that night if the patient had not returned to the ER.

I immediately requested my village chief.

He stepped back in, again this man saved my parent’s life – again – and I am listening to this wise doctor who has a passion for his work – again.

My village chief is hard of hearing, and I would have it no other way. He has saved my parent’s life so many times I have lost count.

This is perfect in my world right now.

And now I thank each of you, court reporters, broadcast captioners and CART providers for all that you do to help others – to include my village chief. Thank you, mon amis.

Part I of III is posted September 2, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted September 12, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted September 23, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

23 Sep 2011

My Village Chief is HOH, Part I of III

My Village Chief is HOH, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I: My village chief sprinted into a parent’s hospital room wearing shorts, sandals (no socks), and a NCAA basketball T-shirt, Saturday morning.

He was all business, dressed casually. When he spoke his first two sentences, I knew. I listened and focused on the voice I know well.

When he turned his head, I saw the aid. Then, I saw the second hearing aid.

He scheduled surgery, shook our hands, left to return to (his words), “What else? NCAA playoffs. You can phone my home; here’s my number. Nothing by mouth after midnight, okay?”

My parent said, “I like him.”

The nurses, “The doctor can’t hear very well. Everyone knows he has problems on the phone.”

I had been quiet. “He has high coping skills. His hearing aids greatly assist him.”

A nurse with IVs and a bleeding cath line, “If you want to speak to him you have to speak loud.”

I said softly, “He is highly trained. Wearing two hearing aids, I have great faith in this man.”

Another nurse, “People have trouble understanding him.”

I did not roll my eyes. My parent asked (knowing I have worked with hard of hearing, HOH, and Deaf since 1993), “Do you think he can hear me, others, and operate with hearing aids?”

I smiled, “Very much so. He will do an excellent job.” The nurses remained silent.

The next morning at 7 a.m. we rolled into pre-op.

I said I would wait in the room for updates.

O.R. staff insisted that I wait in the designated surgical area.

I looked to the surgeon, “No. I’ll wait in the room for your updates.” He nodded; off they went.

Post-op the doctor sprinted into the room, “It’s much quieter in here. Thank you. Now let me tell you what happened.”

I asked if I could write medical terms he was sharing – technical terms – including “this is very bad – could kill … We have a cacophony of bad events …”

He nodded, “I know you’re a court reporter. Sure.”

I wrote new medical words. He gently corrected my spelling. I felt guided.

Then I said, “I need a village chief right now. It’s been so many months with two very ill parents. There’s so many doctors I can’t count. Many do not speak to each other as they ‘round’ giving different orders and meds. If you guide me, I’ll follow. Would you be my village chief?”

He beamed, nodded, and touched my left elbow.

Then he lowered his voice, “May I ask ‘you’ something?”

I nodded.

My village chief pointed to the TV (I had turned captions on), “I know you’re a court reporter, teacher and author; you do that.” (I had not spoken about my work.)

He paused, “Can any court reporter do that?” pointing to flawless live captions.

I ducked my head, thinking … thinking.

He leaned in to hear my answer.

“May I ask you something first?” I asked softly.

Part I of III is posted September 2, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part II of III is posted September 12, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted September 23, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

02 Sep 2011

“I Don’t Listen Well,” He Said, Part I of III

“I Don’t Listen Well,” He Said, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

When the medical specialist stood over my mother’s ICU bed and said, “I don’t listen well,” I was sure he was joking.

My mother was admitted into the hospital via ER. We thought it was a virus or food poisoning.

Soon, she was in intensive care.

Mom spent nine days, including Christmas Eve and Christmas day, in ICU.

The seven doctors I met had fill-ins for Christmas holidays.
Some physicians had fill-ins for the fill-ins.

Yes, then we shifted back to fill-ins, and then back to the original doctors, Monday, December 27th, 2010, as each read the chart.

Many physicians and professionals shared details with me about specific windows of time each had to visit their family – or two families (their words).

I believe the holiday season, and watching me sit alone, shifted people as they “blew through” (their term) to ‘round’ my very sick mother.

A few whispered to me, “There but for the grace of God go I at my parent’s bedside.”

I nodded each time, listened, honored with their sharings.

Individuals privately discussed that they were driving distances to open gifts with loved ones with whom they no longer live.

As I listened, their eyes filled with tears.
Then each regained composure and continued ‘rounding’ of patients.

The physician I am writing about is a distinguished specialist with multiple letters after his name.

We liked this man immediately when he entered our small room (a unit) with a large smile.

Squeezed into an ICU spot, Dad had just described a CD series as “fascinating” and handed it to me with a simple, “Here you go.”

The physician’s interest was piqued; he asked about the CDs.

“The Buried Book, The Loss and Rediscovery of the Great Epic of Gilgamesh” by David Damrosch (unabridged) details “Gilgamesh himself at the dawn of recorded history,” from tablets lost in Mesopotamia.

The physician knew (a lot) about Gilgamesh.
He and my father began a spirited, factual, historical discussion ripe with proper nouns and dates.

Mom beamed in her bed.

Mom, Dad and the doctor had just discussed facts surrounding her grandfather’s, Adolphus Floyd, Civil War capture and two-time imprisonment (P.O.W.) for the south.

(I was pleasantly surprised that Mom was able to formulate the accurate facts and words – as she sick as she was.)

I stood at the foot of the bed and smiled.
It was so good to see bright spirits shine.

The nurse working one of many machines at bedside stopped to tip her head and listen, her back turned to us. I watched her, too.

Court reporters notice that, yes?

I had the Gilgamesh CD collection in my right hand.

Due to the doctor’s fascination and complete unabashed enthusiasm I asked softly, “Would you like to see the epic?”

The doctor quickly tucked his equipment around his neck and reached to my hand saying, “Yes! I don’t listen well.”

I paused before I softly teased about his work and why he was in the room – working in realtime.

Sincerely, he said, “Really. I score in the top percentile of the country for skills. Yet I don’t listen well. I need to see it.”

Dad said, “She’s a court reporter. You may want to watch your words. She remembers everything and can repeat your words back to you.”

The doctor said, “No, really. It’s true.”

I shared that he might be a profile for my next article saying, “I’m always trolling. Your ‘listening’ would be great for my court reporting column.”

Dad and Mom looked the best I had seen in a while. Everyone laughed, and all was right for a moment in our world.

The next day, the physician strolled into ICU and said, “I shouldn’t have said that to you, but it’s true.”

He re-introduced and expanded the conversation.

That’s when I said, “Now you are so the topic for my next column.”

Court reporters listen. We listen precisely.

We listen while thinking about our lists, working and tasking – all in realtime.
Others I’m learning? Not as much.

Christmas and then New Year’s became my quest to “listen” to their listening. People have (seriously explained to me) territories.

One could not simply step on another’s toes. (Excuse me?)

Many medical moments required instant decisions from family members with professionals, and then another specialist would enter and have a different request, set of facts, or “they can’t do that!” (Oh, yes, they did.)

One physician said, “I want to put them all in the same room and have them duke it out together.”

Dad reminded that doctor that I remember words.

The doctor said, “Good! I’m trying to help your mother! And save her life!” with two fists in the air.

I sat at the edge of the hard, uncomfortable chair, eyes and ears open.

I worked to avoid looking stunned (the court reporter look we know well).

Individuals wearing white coats and specialists wearing polo shirts appeared surprised that I listened at Mom’s bedside, then asked a brief question following a four-minute explanation.

This is what we do. We listen. We listen. Then we listen.

Part II of III is posted April 19, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Part III of III is posted April 26, 2011, on Monette’s Musings at www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching

http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

07 Apr 2011

CART: Up-Skills For The Job, And Confidence For The Future, Part 3 of 3

CART: Up-Skills For The Job, And Confidence For The Future,
Part III of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I was posted on Monette’s Musings: www.monettebenoit.com 2/8/10.
Part II was posted on www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com 2/25/10.

Michelle Coffey, Premier Captioning & Realtime Ltd., entered reporting in 1992. She earned her RPR in 1996, and her CRI in 2001.

Michelle also holds a degree in criminal psychology and diploma in counseling from the University College Dublin in Ireland.

Michelle Coffey and I met in Australia in 2000 when I was keynote speaker for the Shorthand Reporter Association of Australia, SRAA.

In Fremantle, I spoke about reporting to the Internet and also working with deaf/Deaf, oral deaf and hard of hearing, HOH.

My seminars were real-timed to a large screen and sign interpreted in Australian sign language, a first.

Our friendship began the day we spoke on a captioning panel. She has the brightest spirit. Michelle truly enhanced the session with her wisdom and humor. Several days later, we bumped into each other – deep within the Australian Bush. A small world indeed.

Michelle Coffey has been a true leader in Ireland.

She has a wonderful can-do attitude. When I see her name in my e-mails, I smile knowing “this is going to be entertaining and good.”

Michelle was the first captioner in Ireland.

No surprise here that she has led another first in her country.

I am honored to share Michelle Coffey’s first CART path within Ireland.

Part III

Michelle Coffey: We spoke to Irish Sign Language interpreters, to Speedtexters, and to note-takers, and in the process we all learned a lot about the pros and cons of all the services.

Next, we spent some time talking to different interest groups, from the National Association for the Deaf, to DeafHear (a hard-of-hearing association), to Irish Deaf Kids, all the way through to the access officers at educational institutions.

And at each point, when we did our “show and tell” the response was always the same, “This is fantastic, why haven’t we heard of it before?”

But the most important people we met were the students who were with us on this new road of discovery.

And it was never far from our minds as we prepared for the beginning of term, that the weight of expectation on us was enormous; from the students that they would get a service appropriate to their needs; from the colleges that we would provide a suitable access solution for their students; and from ourselves and the up-and-coming CART reporters, that we prove that CART services can, and should, be an integral part of accessibility services for all educational establishments in Ireland.

However, much more telling and – proof that this service is necessary and will be a success is a statement from Emma, the first student to take up the service.

After having only two sessions with a CART provider, she had this to say, “I can’t believe the difference CART has made to my life.

Did you know that I began this degree course four years ago but had to drop out because I couldn’t participate in my PBL (peer-based learning) lectures?”

Well, we didn’t know that, but it certainly makes it much easier to study and up-skill for the job when you hear that what you do can has such a profound effect on someone else’s life!

Another fan of the newly available Irish CART services is Caroline Carswell, founder of Irish Deaf Kids, a charity supporting inclusive mainstream education for deaf children in Ireland.

Caroline was new to CART, and its simplicity blew her away.

She said, “For the first time in my life, I could follow a group discussion word for word and contribute without risking a non sequitur. For lip-readers, the law of multiples applies: the more speakers in a group, the harder a discussion topic becomes to follow. It’s like, Chinese whispers, anyone?”

Now, as we look back on our journey to get CART recognized in Ireland, we think “How did we do it?”

Well, did you ever have the feeling that being a member of an organization, whether it’s CARTWheel or the NCRA, is like being a Musketeer? You know, “One for all and all for one”?

Well, that’s exactly how I felt, but the Athos, Porthos and Aramis to my d’Artagnan were some of the most experienced and supremely talented people in our profession. They each gave of their time, expertise and encouragement, instantly and unstintingly when I needed it.

My eternal thanks, and admiration to Dayette Zampolin, Gayl Hardeman and Monette Benoit for their help, advice, vision, encouragement, and even offers to jump in and help out (remotely of course) if we needed it!

Does that not speak volumes about our profession?

Even though our work can be a solitary job, we know that we will never be alone when there are still so many passionate and generous colleagues out there.

And that gives me confidence for the future of our profession!

Michelle Coffey may be reached: www.pcri.ie and michelle@pcr.ie

Monette may be reached for private tutoring and coaching: Tutoring@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE
Coach, Tutor and Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Coaching
All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR or a state court reporting exam? I want to help you and others to pass your test and to exceed career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivation skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Communication skills and daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and coaching?

• Veteran court reporters, CART providers and captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re falling behind or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students or veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters and captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with one or two key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check It Out: Reach Your Goals! Tutoring and Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit can help you achieve at much high levels. Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life? Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:

As a 25+year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material and an instructor, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, students and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

08 Mar 2010

CART: Up-Skills For The Job, And Confidence For The Future, Part 2 of 3

CART: Up-Skills For The Job, And Confidence For The Future,
Part 2 of 3

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I was posted www.monettebenoit.com, 2/8/10.

Michelle Coffey, Premier Captioning & Realtime Ltd., entered reporting in 1992. She earned her RPR in 1996, and her CRI in 2001.

Michelle also holds a degree in criminal psychology and diploma in counseling from the University College Dublin in Ireland.

Michelle Coffey and I met in Australia in 2000 when I was keynote speaker for the Shorthand Reporter Association of Australia, SRAA.

In Fremantle, I spoke about reporting to the Internet and also working with deaf/Deaf, oral deaf and hard of hearing, HOH.

My seminars were real-timed to a large screen and sign interpreted in Australian sign language, a first.

Our friendship began the day we spoke on a captioning panel. She has the brightest spirit. Michelle truly enhanced the session with her wisdom and humor.

Several days later, we bumped into each other – deep within the Australian Bush. A small world indeed.

Michelle Coffey has been a true leader in Ireland. She has a wonderful can-do attitude. When I see her name in my e-mails, I smile knowing “this is going to be entertaining and good.” Michelle was the first captioner in Ireland. No surprise here that she has led another first in her country. I am honored to share Michelle Coffey’s first CART path within Ireland.

Part II of III

Michelle Coffey: We spoke to Irish Sign Language interpreters, to Speedtexters, and to note-takers, and in the process we all learned a lot about the pros and cons of all the services.

Next, we spent some time talking to different interest groups, from the National Association for the Deaf, to DeafHear (a hard-of-hearing association), to Irish Deaf Kids, all the way through to the access officers at educational institutions.

And at each point, when we did our “show and tell” the response was always the same, “This is fantastic, why haven’t we heard of it before?”

But the most important people we met were the students who were with us on this new road of discovery. And it was never far from our minds as we prepared for the beginning of term, that the weight of expectation on us was enormous; from the students that they would get a service appropriate to their needs; from the colleges that we would provide a suitable access solution for their students; and from ourselves and the up-and-coming CART reporters, that we prove that CART services can, and should, be an integral part of accessibility services for all educational establishments in Ireland.

However, much more telling and – proof that this service is necessary and will be a success is a statement from Emma, the first student to take up the service.

After having only two sessions with a CART provider, she had this to say, “I can’t believe the difference CART has made to my life.

Did you know that I began this degree course four years ago but had to drop out because I couldn’t participate in my PBL (peer-based learning) lectures?”

Well, we didn’t know that, but it certainly makes it much easier to study and up-skill for the job when you hear that what you do can has such a profound effect on someone else’s life!

Part 3 of 3 will be posted 3/8/10.

Michelle Coffey may be reached: www.pcri.ie and michelle@pcr.ie

Monette Benoit may be reached for private tutoring and coaching at Tutoring@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE
Coach, Tutor and Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Coaching
All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR or a state court reporting exam? I want to help you and others to pass your test and to exceed career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivation skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Communication skills and daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and coaching?

• Veteran court reporters, CART providers and captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re falling behind or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students or veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters and captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with one or two key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check It Out: Reach Your Goals! Tutoring and Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit can help you achieve at much high levels. Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life? Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:

As a 25+year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material and an instructor, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, students and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

25 Feb 2010

CART: Up-Skills For The Job, And Confidence For The Future, Part I of III

CART: Up-Skills For The Job, And Confidence For The Future
Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Michelle Coffey, Premier Captioning & Realtime Ltd., entered reporting in 1992. She earned her RPR in 1996, and her CRI in 2001.

Michelle also holds a degree in criminal psychology and diploma in counseling from the University College Dublin in Ireland.

Michelle Coffey and I met in Australia in 2000 when I was keynote speaker for the Shorthand Reporter Association of Australia, SRAA.

In Fremantle, I spoke about reporting to the Internet and also working with deaf/Deaf, oral deaf and hard of hearing, HOH.

My seminars were real-timed to a large screen and sign interpreted in Australian sign language, a first.

Our friendship began the day we spoke on a captioning panel. She has the brightest spirit. Michelle truly enhanced the session with her wisdom and humor.

Several days later, we bumped into each other – deep within the Australian Bush. A small world indeed.

Michelle Coffey has been a true leader in Ireland. She has a wonderful can-do attitude. When I see her name in my e-mails, I smile knowing “this is going to be entertaining and good.” Michelle was the first captioner in Ireland.

No surprise here that she has led another first in her country. I am honored to share Michelle Coffey’s first CART path within Ireland.

Michelle Coffey, RPR, CRI: I’m proud to say that Ireland was there at the beginning of court reporting, that is Ward Stone Ireland, who is generally accepted to be the inventor of the stenograph keyboard, as we know it today. But in modern-day Ireland the court reporting profession is under threat, from electronic recording and declining numbers of experienced professionals.

Ireland has a very different court-reporting environment to that of the United States. In Ireland we have a reasonably small number of court reporters; however, we also have a small number of courts in which to work. But when, in the last 18 months, a large portion of the courts moved over to electronic recording, we saw a massive reduction in the amount of available work for the reporters. This caused panic, with many reporters questioning what they were going to do now? How were they going to earn enough money?

All the ‘hard’ questions came to the fore.

We were left with a decision, whether to wade into the ever-shrinking marketplace and vie for work there, or to venture out into an area as yet untried in the Irish market.

The question of whether to stay in a declining marketplace, where everyone will undoubtedly face a decrease in earnings, or to look to a new opportunity which would leave the status quo relatively intact, was simple.

Our answer was CART.

And so, after many months of negotiations, explanations and demonstrations, we are proud to announce that the first-ever CART services have begun in Ireland.

Prior to this, a cart was something pulled by a horse; Irish CART services did not exist. Well, they didn’t!

But once we set out on this road we were determined to change that. So our first job was to engage with the different types of service providers already in this field.

Part 2 of 3 will be posted on Monette’s Musings and www.CRRbooks.com on February 25, 2010.

Michelle Coffey may be reached: www.pcri.ie and michelle@pcr.ie

Monette Benoit may be reached for private tutoring and customized coaching: Tutoring@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE
Coach, Tutor and Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Coaching
All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR or a state court reporting exam? I want to help you and others to pass your test and to exceed career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivation skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Communication skills and daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and coaching?

• Veteran court reporters, CART providers and captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re falling behind or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students or veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters and captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with one or two key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check It Out: Reach Your Goals! Tutoring and Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit can help you achieve at much high levels. Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life? Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:

As a 25+year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material and an instructor, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, students and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

08 Feb 2010

You, Ken-Tu, And The Mockingbird, Part III of III

You, Ken-Tu, And The Mockingbird, Part III of III

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I in this series was posted October 9, 2009, link: https://www.monettebenoit.com/2009_10_08_archive.html

Part II was posted October 13, 2009, link: https://www.monettebenoit.com/2009_10_13_archive.html

Later, I heard the garage open; my husband does not immediately enter. When he did, this husband was ‘not’ happy.

He slowly (perhaps to contain anger?) asked, “Did you know the mockingbird was in the garage when I pulled my car in?”

Me: “WHAT!?”

Husband: “Yes, dear, it was in, flying all over the garage.”

Me: “That can’t be. I left the garage door just cracked.”


He: “Then that bird followed Ken-Tu. Ken-Tu was lying on his towel licking himself. The bird was flying into the walls and the ceiling. When I opened the door, it became trapped within the small space between the garage door and ceiling.”

Me: “WHAT!?”


He: “Yes, then – I had to get a broom.”

Me: “WHAT!?” (I could not keep a straight face.)


He: “The bird was frantic. It was throwing itself around, hurting itself.”

Me: “Really???”


He: “So, I had to use the broom, open the door to the side yard, move the mower and yard equipment, and sweep that bird out the side door – not an easy job – as it became more frantic.”

Me: “Maybe that bird will move? Where’s Ken-Tu?”


He: “Asleep in the garage. What the hell were you thinking?”

Ken-Tu moved to the dining room and began pre-emptive screaming. If something looked at him, Ken-Tu screamed.

And the dog? You don’t want to know.

Soon Ken-Tu moved into the bedroom. Woah, daddy! Did spit and hair fly.

But as life rolled itself forward, events calmed down. Ken-Tu now spends his time in the dead armadillo pose under our CD player.

As we prepare for the holidays, I wish you great peace and the ability to laugh at some of your/our silliness. I know ‘you-ken-tu’ grow from life’s lessons.

The day before I submitted this series, Chicos died in my arms. I desire to share with you that I continue to learn multiple lessons from this one question: “Is my life better from this experience?”

My answer today is ‘yes’ regarding Chicos and Ken-Tu.

And the mockingbird? It’s back – singing, perched on our garage roof.

Now I ask you, “What makes your experiences and your life lessons better?”

Part I and Part II were posted www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com


21 Oct 2009

You, Ken-Tu, And The Mockingbird, Part II of III

You, Ken-Tu, And The Mockingbird, Part II of III

By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I was posted October 8, 2009, and linked: https://www.monettebenoit.com/2009_10_08_archive.html


That afternoon – just prior to bringing the cat ‘in’ from the outdoors – my husband went to the store. Upon each return, I know he usually rushes in with the groceries. In my worry that my husband would trip over Ken-Tu (who was passionately vaulting head first into the laundry door to get back into the garage) – I opened the laundry room door to avoid a collision with my husband and this cat.

Thus, silliness begins.

Ken-Tu sprinted through the garage to the front yard. My husband stopped, his arms loaded with groceries. I immediately went after Ken-Tu, but I’m not as fast as the mockingbird living in our front yard. (Within the garage, Ken-Tu stood on a car roof looking through the window at that bird.)

Immediately, the mockingbird began diving Ken-Tu’s head with its beak first. I headed for ‘escaped’ cat, avoiding all eye contact with my husband.

The cat darts for cover – in the neighbor’s large hedges. Husband was cussing. It’s Texas hot; he immediately departed for Lowe’s – “to return later.” Husband simply drove off and did not look back.

With my arms outstretched, I call Ken-Tu. The mockingbird never dove for me but flushed the cat out of hedges. The cat scampered, low to the ground – crossing into my yard, and went under our hedges. As I tried to retrieve this cat, Ken-Tu accurately swatted me.

In realtime, I remember that the neighbors might be watching – I’m in my short shorts bent over this cat in my front yard. I can just imagine someone saying, “Yes, and she hit that kitty.” (No one could see the scratches ‘leaking’ small amounts of blood.)

I refrained from hitting the cat, which was swinging overhand with two paws after he rolled in dirt around all hedges.

I refocused on trying to coax cat back into our garage – until my meter goes off – and then I’m done.

I lowered the garage door to the height a cat could return to his food. Done. I returned into house. The kung-fu kitty was on its own.

Soon, I feel guilty; I sit in a chair within garage, reading my JCR, NCRA, Journal of Court Reporting, calling Ken-Tu until ‘that’ becomes silly. I can tell exactly where Ken-Tu was because of the mockingbird shrieks. That bird was working to injure that cat – feathers flew.

Part II and Part III will be posted www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette's Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re "stuck" and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette's Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

13 Oct 2009

You, Ken-Tu, And The Mockingbird, Part I of III

You, Ken-Tu, And The Mockingbird, Part I of III

By Monette Benoit, All rights reserved.


Well, some days are not dull. I swear my life could be a sitcom. This is only one gem when silliness seemed to unfold at record pace.

I view many life lessons as I read forums and e-mails from court reporters and students. Respectfully, I share my life lesson below.

My sister-in-law appeared with nephews and skateboarding teens. She needed help closing her car’s trunk because the key had broken inside the lock. (Schools were closed for the swine flu.

Locally, skateboarding kids gathered in ‘teen pods’ [my term] – pretending to cough on each other, while laughing at adults.) That is the moment a cat appeared from the heavens on her car roof as we worked to help her close the trunk, so she could drive home.

In the driveway, a nephew gasped and pointed, “Hey! Where did that cat come from? It catapulted from the sky!”

The cat was bleeding with multiple fresh wounds on both sides of its neck and back.

Then the cat raced into our garage. It parked and sat with its front paws pointed ‘to’ the spot where my husband said a few hours earlier, had said, quote, “I wish I could do something about that mouse in the garage!”

That night, the cat placed a warm, dead mouse near my feet. How do I know? I picked it up.

I named the cat Ken-Tu. He did not understand any words except “stop that.”

I spoke to him saying, “You-ken-tu” and “He-ken-tu” as I observed the cat, considered adopting this wounded animal. Perhaps someone was missing their pet?

The vet shared Ken-Tu is eight years old and had been “homeless at least one year – possibly more, based upon deformed ears, ear mites and bulbous tumor that exploded, creating a cauliflower ear.” Ken-Tu ‘healed’ in the garage (post a huge vet bill).

Years ago, I volunteered with the St. Vincent de Paul Society, SVDP, as a caseworker. I also volunteered to assist in the initial organization of a new animal shelter (rescuing wild and abandoned animals) and a new women’s shelter. I learned many lessons.

Each event was a teacher, to me. I filled my car many times for families, children, rest homes and hospitals. We helped a wide area. I then delivered donations and offerings to individuals and churches.

The weekend I’m documenting, I was assisting my cat Chicos, a special spirit, who was in kidney failure for eight months. I softly teased people that I was the hand-maiden who shared food in syringes and “closed the deal.” (We have rituals; cats love rituals.) I administered IV subcu fluids, as needed; Chicos and I were rounding another one-way corner.

The court reporters and students whom I privately tutor and coach reached out to me. I know Chicos’ life was extended as others shared their experiences and their wisdom.

Soon on a Sunday, we decided to bring Ken-Tu into our humble house, which already had two cats and one 70-pound, two-year old dog (all rescued animals). Ken-Tu was in the laundry room, snarling as needed. At 17 pounds – our ‘starving kitty’ was a force. (Because of abuse – with little provocation – he swung overhand.)

Part II and Part III will be posted www.monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Empowerment Coach,
Multiple Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART, & Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: www.ARTCS.com

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com

Blog: Monette's Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?
Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: www.CRRbooks.com has material to help you advance skills for NCRA exams and state certifications?

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and empowerment coaching?
Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Empowerment coaching and tutoring topics include:

• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and empowerment coaching?

• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, to create new possibilities, to advance their career, to author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re "stuck" and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exam and career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Empowerment Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? What have you really wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART provider, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART providers, captioners, students, and instructors. She has also helped create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette's Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day.

08 Oct 2009

Real-Time Rules And The Good Old Days, Part IV

Realtime Rules And The Good Old Days, Part IV

By Monette Benoit
Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part IV in IV

Some of us have felt the realtime technical squeeze, holding our breath, as those of you who graduate realtime-ready – geared to go – may step right into a spot we could not envision.

Yet experienced and beginning realtime court reporting professionals are making their mark, producing verbatim records, recording history.

Court reporters, CART providers, broadcast captioners, and end-users with the savvy to stay on top of technical advances have guided (okay, dragged a few of us) many into a new era.

Deaf were the first to use pagers as hand-held tools. This astounded me in 1993 when I began realtiming to a large screen for St. Francis Di Paola’s Catholic deaf mass in San Antonio, Texas (praying to get better “quicker”).

We – early realtime writers – invented conflict-free strokes, phoned friends long distance (remember ‘long distance’?) to ask, “What about this …?”

I was routinely told consumers who are Deaf (not hard-of-hearing) led the paths for much of our communication equipment.

We, wordsmiths, are goal-focused and busy. We may simply look up and wonder what the fuss is about. Yet Deaf individuals were communicating in realtime much earlier than ‘hearing’.

How does this relate to Realtime Rules?

Techs, consumers, end-users and information managers know technology will continue. They remind me their goals are to push forward.

Individuals in global one-room apartments and garages are working on becoming the next huge company.

Court reporters and captioners remember specific events as memories; others read or listen to history. We now have a seat together – listening and preparing for future moments.

If you’re feeling Realtime Rules pressure, perhaps it’s time to look up and see how far this profession has come in the past few decades. Boy, howdy, have we evolved. I ended my June column, the third article in this “Realtime Rules” series, with “Lemonade, anyone?”

Court reporters continue to master the skill of thriving where excellence is requested and needed. We are powerful.

Realtime Rules means taking advantage of our technology and preserving huge opportunities. The bottom line is that we are essential in today’s economy.

Perhaps it is up to us to calculate the top-of-the-line, realtime-rules readiness, and deliverance in a national shortage.

I want you to remember that you are important. Realtime is now the good old days. Professionals will continue to motor forward. Others will take bite-sized pieces. The choice is yours.

So how will you reach out, then up? Focus your court reporting compass; concentrate and harness your strengths. You are the master of your path and our future.

Part I, II and III in “Realtime Rules And The Good Old Days” may be found on www.Monettebenoit.com

About the Author:

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, is a JCR Contributing Editor for the National Court Reporters Association, NCRA.

She is the author of multiple books and Test Prep for the Court Reporting & Captioning Industry to include the national and state RPR, RMR, RDR, CSR ‘Written Knowledge Exam’ Textbook, Workbook, Companion Study Guide, ‘The CRRT WKT’ CD Software Program, Advanced SAT, LSAT, GRE, Real-Time Vocabulary Workbook and ‘CATapult’ Your Dictionary CD Software Program series.

Books, CDs, private tutoring, mentoring services and articles may be referenced www.crrbooks.com/

Monette is an experienced consultant, instructor, real-time court reporter, tutor, life coach, CART provider, columnist. She teaches, tutors and coaches home-study students, college students, court reporters and professionals. Monette speaks to groups at state, national and international conventions about motivation, technology, expanding skills and Deaf, Oral Deaf, Hard of Hearing.

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., Certified Court Reporter, Certified Reporting Instructor, Certified Program Evaluator, Paralegal, may be reached at: http://www.crrbooks.com/ http://www.catapultdix.com/ and All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: http://www.artcs.com/

27 Jul 2009

Real-Time Rules And The Good Old Days, Part III

Realtime Rules And The Good Old Days, Part III

By Monette Benoit
Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part III in IV

Realtime rules: we now have organizations, companies, sign interpreters, and deaf and hard-of-hearing consumers who routinely consider us as part of a team, requesting to work with us.

Reporters who currently take equipment to a job, set up without real-time and produce records, post event, often are requested less (and paid less). Why should someone wait ten days to receive any record when professionals hand a rough ASCII, deliver a realtime transcript or captioning file at the end of the job, on air, or after any class instruction?

In 1999 I realtimed Latin classes for a university student. There were moments when I paused, as each class ended, prior to handing an instant verbatim copy of the class to the consumer. This was university Latin. Yet this was my job. Some days I handed the ASCII overhand with a smile. Other days I simply handed the ASCII without comment (or smile) as we advanced into Latin studies. We were a great team. Clear communication was the focus and thus, we did.

“Realtime Rules And The Good Old Days” is continued on www.Monettebenoit.com

About the Author:

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, is a JCR Contributing Editor for the National Court Reporters Association, NCRA.

She is the author of multiple books and Test Prep for the Court Reporting & Captioning Industry to include the national and state RPR, RMR, RDR, CSR ‘Written Knowledge Exam’ Textbook, Workbook, Companion Study Guide, ‘The CRRT WKT’ CD Software Program, Advanced SAT, LSAT, GRE, Real-Time Vocabulary Workbook and ‘CATapult’ Your Dictionary CD Software Program series.

Books, CDs, private tutoring, mentoring services and articles may be referenced www.crrbooks.com/

Monette is an experienced consultant, instructor, real-time court reporter, tutor, life coach, CART provider, columnist. She teaches, tutors and coaches home-study students, college students, court reporters and professionals. Monette speaks to groups at state, national and international conventions about motivation, technology, expanding skills and Deaf, Oral Deaf, Hard of Hearing.

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., Certified Court Reporter, Certified Reporting Instructor, Certified Program Evaluator, Paralegal, may be reached at: http://www.crrbooks.com/ http://www.catapultdix.com/ and All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: http://www.artcs.com/

20 Jul 2009

Real-Time Rules And The Good Old Days, Part II

Realtime Rules And The Good Old Days, Part II

By Monette Benoit
Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part II in IV

The good old days some people chat about is when court reporters were paid more. Really? Maybe. Maybe.

There were (limited) ‘x’ number of courts, ‘x’ number of positions for reporters in jurisdictions, courthouses, venues and firms (run by court reporters). When numbers were met (typically by males in really old days) we often were wait-listed.

Remote work was not a conceivable idea. Traveling (on the road by car) was typical for beginners. Many court reporters worked to avoid traveling. (I did travel – never a dull moment – without cell phones, a challenge for single women.)

The good old days stenotype of work typically was court, freelance depositions, FBI, CIA, United Nations, government or state agencies. The plethora of categories we now see were not possibilities. Captioning, CART, TTY, remote financial calls? What’s that?

No tape backup was another standard. Many states outlawed tape recorders. I was warned, “If you have it on you, you will be arrested. Why would you need it?”

When I relocated to Miami and was instructed to purchase a tape recorder for my first assignment, a federal magistrate and international maritime appeal with multiple lawyers and multiple expert witnesses (oh joy), I thought they were joking. I had never been permitted to use a tape recorder in any other venue (many). Prior to court, I was accompanied to a store to ‘buy’ a $79.99 General Electric recorder – a huge dent in my food budget.

Remarkable moments also include numbering steno pads for the steno machine. (We documented flap numbers when witnesses began and finished.) We had to handwrite ‘flap’ number on the top of each page of each steno pad (300 turns to a pad), so we readback “faster without taking up time” to do our job. This was required. Mornings were spent flipping pages, pen in hand, before work began.

Research? Not by Internet. We used large books and telephone. We became very good friends with telephone operators, research university librarians, and pharmacists in teaching hospitals.

We learned to juggle the telephone with long cord in one hand (no headsets back then), book on one knee, slim steno pad on other knee, to accurately produce a verbatim record. Case files, documents and exhibits (which varied) were additional items for the desk or chair on which we sat.

We now access information by pushing buttons, work with IMs, instant messaging (another wonder tool) sharing information and real-time with consumers and peers. We display text to large screens, small screens or to straw huts across the globe.

“Realtime Rules And The Good Old Days” is continued on www.Monettebenoit.com

About the Author:

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, is a JCR Contributing Editor for the National Court Reporters Association, NCRA.

She is the author of multiple books and Test Prep for the Court Reporting & Captioning Industry to include the national and state RPR, RMR, RDR, CSR ‘Written Knowledge Exam’ Textbook, Workbook, Companion Study Guide, ‘The CRRT WKT’ CD Software Program, Advanced SAT, LSAT, GRE, Real-Time Vocabulary Workbook and ‘CATapult’ Your Dictionary CD Software Program series.

Books, CDs, private tutoring, mentoring services and articles may be referenced www.crrbooks.com/

Monette is an experienced consultant, instructor, real-time court reporter, tutor, life coach, CART provider, columnist. She teaches, tutors and coaches home-study students, college students, court reporters and professionals. Monette speaks to groups at state, national and international conventions about motivation, technology, expanding skills and Deaf, Oral Deaf, Hard of Hearing.

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., Certified Court Reporter, Certified Reporting Instructor, Certified Program Evaluator, Paralegal, may be reached at: http://www.crrbooks.com/ http://www.catapultdix.com/ and All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: http://www.artcs.com/

08 Jul 2009

Real-Time Rules And The Good Old Days, Part I

Realtime Rules And The Good Old Days, Part I

By Monette Benoit
Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I in IV

My series on “Realtime Rules” touched a nerve. Professionals and students have written how this column’s thread “spoke to me” and “motivated me.” When someone has been spoken to and motivated, that is a good moment for me. Each time I am humbled as a court reporter, CART provider, instructor and coach.

The students and court reporters I work with know well my quote, “Huge steps are taken one at a time.”

Now I want to explore Realtime Rules and reach out, then up. Many reporters speak about the ‘good old days’ during coaching. Students comment upon this during tutoring.

Here’s the way I see it – my opinion – when reminiscing about reporting good old days: That was then, this is now.

Though students believe our schooling was shorter (not entirely accurate), easier (not entirely accurate), and cheaper (okay, maybe that’s true), the fact is the education of court reporting students often was shorter. Many states, including Texas, had a graduation long ago of 175 words per minute. Oh, I can just hear “What!!?” from here as many states, including Texas, now graduate and test graduates at 225 words per minute.

Students enrolling in school were different, too, and were often dedicated to full-time attendance (not working part-time and fulfilling family responsibilities). In short, many attended school, then returned to a dorm or home. That was our job.

Equipment was manual, not computerized; pricing was different (lower). My first machine, which was new: $150.00.

Looking back to the good old days before computers, when the prices of mainframes were above $30,000 and firm owners rented time to reporters to produce the official record, we see typewriters.

We remember carbons and painstakingly – page by page – correcting errors and then praying we did not make another error on that page. Pages were occasionally tossed into the air. Then we retyped that entire page with carbons, building the transcript page by page. We’re talking title, appearance, exhibit, certification and all Q&A pages. Then we bound the transcript. I was instructed to use a hammer to secure the staples, so people did not get staple-cuts. It worked, and hammering the transcripts was a favorite part of the final job as we worked on a hard wood table and swung that hammer overhand as instructed.

“Realtime Rules And The Good Old Days” is continued on www.Monettebenoit.com

About the Author:

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, is a JCR Contributing Editor for the National Court Reporters Association, NCRA.

She is the author of multiple books and Test Prep for the Court Reporting & Captioning Industry to include the national and state RPR, RMR, RDR, CSR ‘Written Knowledge Exam’ Textbook, Workbook, Companion Study Guide, ‘The CRRT WKT’ CD Software Program, Advanced SAT, LSAT, GRE, Real-Time Vocabulary Workbook and ‘CATapult’ Your Dictionary CD Software Program series.

Books, CDs, private tutoring, mentoring services and articles may be referenced www.crrbooks.com/

Monette is an experienced consultant, instructor, real-time court reporter, tutor, life coach, CART provider, columnist. She teaches, tutors and coaches home-study students, college students, court reporters and professionals. Monette speaks to groups at state, national and international conventions about motivation, technology, expanding skills and Deaf, Oral Deaf, Hard of Hearing.

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., Certified Court Reporter, Certified Reporting Instructor, Certified Program Evaluator, Paralegal, may be reached at: http://www.crrbooks.com/ http://www.catapultdix.com/ and All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: http://www.artcs.com/

03 Jul 2009

Real-Time Rules, Adrenaline, Adventure And Survival, Part III

Real-Time Rules, Adrenaline, Adventure And Survival, Part III

By Monette Benoit
Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Part I and II may be viewed at www.Monettebenoit.com and www.CRRbooks.com

… Even writing this column had challenges. My original June column was pulled with little notice. To continue with my commitment I had to “find a bunny and a hat” (my words). As I worked to juggle work, family, ill parents and (religious) confirmation of a family member this weekend, the article I began a while back resurfaced.

I printed the beginning of this draft from months ago when I began a long-term realtime-rules focus. Then the sign interpreter phoned.

Other little sparks began to ask for my attention. I made a focused decision to make lemonade. I decided to stay in the saddle and shuffled, like many of you, a variety of items to refocus and deliver. Perhaps with our back against the wall or listening to the universe and prayer, we are open and receptive to surviving a new challenge, a new adventure.

As we, court reporters, CART providers, broadcast captioners and students, look out our computer window to the world and read public and private forums, one may become a little stressed. Yet it is a fact that together we move mountains and alone one can focus upon milestones. Realtime rules.

A dear friend with advanced computer and linguistic skills (outside our profession) trolls our horizon from time to time at my request. Originally writing this month’s column, I asked him what he thought about our future. This is only one opinion, but one where he brings a huge skill-set to the table to objectively look into what we currently provide and what other occupations are seeking to provide.

In response to my question to him about court reporters being replaced by machines he recently wrote, “If this technology were even just a little bit reliable, we’d have voicemail-to-email conversion that everybody would use. So if you want to watch an innovation indicator, you, Monette, need to watch the speech-based services being offered by the telcos. So, court reporters won’t be put of a job – anytime soon – or anytime at all.”

Though I personally would have liked a chirpier, happier message, I feel the adrenaline factor for survival.

Realtime rules for you and for our profession with long-term focus, adrenaline and survival. Lemonade anyone?

Monette may be contacted for educational/career advancement and private tutoring/coaching: Tutoring@CRRbooks.com

About the Author:

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, is a JCR Contributing Editor for the National Court Reporters Association, NCRA.

She is the author of multiple books and Test Prep for the Court Reporting & Captioning Industry to include the national and state RPR, RMR, RDR, CSR ‘Written Knowledge Exam’ Textbook, Workbook, Companion Study Guide, ‘The CRRT WKT’ CD Software Program, Advanced SAT, LSAT, GRE, Real-Time Vocabulary Workbook and ‘CATapult’ Your Dictionary CD Software Program series.

Books, CDs, private tutoring, mentoring services and articles may be referenced www.crrbooks.com/

Monette is an experienced consultant, instructor, real-time court reporter, tutor, life coach, CART provider, columnist. She teaches, tutors and coaches home-study students, college students, court reporters and professionals. Monette speaks to groups at state, national and international conventions about motivation, technology, expanding skills and Deaf, Oral Deaf, Hard of Hearing.

Monette Benoit, B.B.A., Certified Court Reporter, Certified Reporting Instructor, Certified Program Evaluator, Paralegal, may be reached at: http://www.crrbooks.com/ http://www.catapultdix.com/ and All American RealTime/Captioning Services, Inc.: http://www.artcs.com/

03 Jun 2009

Yes, Real-Time Rules, Part I

Yes, Real-Time Rules, Part I

By Monette Benoit
Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Each day, as a court reporter, CART provider, instructor, consultant, tutor and coach, I serve people within this great court reporting profession. A typical morning begins as I return phone calls and balance times zones from east to west. Official reporters, students, broadcast captioners, as well as those who want to be a CART provider, request coaching and tutoring. Each one is very specific about what each is seeking.

I have permission from each professional and student to share what I consistently hear when new conversations begin.

“When will I know I’m ready to [fill in blank]?”

“What should I focus on first?”

“I want to realtime someday, but I know I’m not ready now.”

“What if my job is eliminated; they go to voice, tape or electronic recording?”

“How do I keep my job where I’ve worked days, nights, and weekends?”

“How do I pass a speed test when no one in my class is passing tests?”

People get right down to it these days. In my opinion, verbal-steno is a positive trait. When I reply, I will share either, “This is my opinion” or “This is a fact.”

Had I ever listened to “words” individuals shared when I enrolled in a NCRA-approved court reporting program or if I had listened to what others said when I entered the profession or if I had taken to heart what peers have shared, I would be on a (very) different path.

One professional sent an (unsolicited) opinion, which had a powerful impact on my world until I isolated and identified the motivation. I framed that letter when I shifted my awareness to always remember my lesson. Words are powerful, whether they are spoken or written.

My opinion is that passion is essential when sticking to our dreams or our goals. Yes, easier said than done, I know, will be read by a few. Yet I know when passion for a goal is huge, one can deliberately shift fears; this is my opinion.

Thus far, every person has laughed and agreed when I say, “Realtime Rules.” Realtime, with instant accurate translations rates, is what distinguishes us from other professions.

All agree, “Not realtiming? Good luck with that.”

In days of old, court reporters worked in courtrooms, parliament or other officially recorded proceedings, or freelance settings. The career options were pretty simple (my opinion) and respected by those requesting our skills.

Now with changing technology we may arrive, – onsite or remote – at a particular event or job, which had a result different from what was requested. Some of us have experience and hear the words, “Just send us your rates. …”

Yet when individuals need, instant and accurate translation, they contact court reporters. And our profession is experiencing a shortage of professionals with these talents; this is a fact.

Pioneers and leaders paved roadways for people, companies and institutions to expect great results from our work. We are providing and proudly sharing that realtime with a trained reporter will not be summarized or include edited transcripts. When there are realtime requests, court reporters quickly step up to the plate and provide verbatim products.

We know that the college students of yesteryear have changed. Law students, who are now highly competent in text messaging and instant messaging, IMs, excel in sending very fast, brief messages using two thumbs. New lawyers – a new breed (my opinion) – expect instant translation since they are skilled using ‘fast’ technology.

See Part II next week.

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

09 Apr 2009

Laney’s Universe; Always An Adventure, CART, Captioning

Laney’s Universe; Always An Adventure, CART, Captioning – 2003
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Each year, for three years, I’ve written about Laney Fox. I am a court reporter, CART provider, instructor, private tutor, coach, who has had the honor of working and laughing with Laney Fox.

We met “in the trenches” when Trinity University requested classroom CART services, communication access realtime translation (voice-to-text) services for Latin. (Many people also refer to serve this classroom CART as ‘captioning’ by captionists.)

Laney entered her class after I had arrived. I am a court reporter, instructor and tutor. I introduced myself on my laptop screen, using my steno machine.

No, I did not know Latin.

The only Spanish I knew (working in criminal court as a court reporter) was: “Guilty or Not Guilty? Have a seat over there.”

Prior to receiving CART, Laney attended all her classes as ‘oral deaf’, reading teachers’, students’ lips.

As a college student, she lived in the dorm for three years, sharing many experiences with me. Her roommates were not deaf.

Some events are comical, as she ‘is’ deaf. Others are typically normal. My favorites? I can’t share, but I’ve had lots of giggles, listening.

When we first met, though, deaf since childhood, Laney had enrolled in a sign language class to ‘better understand’ deaf culture.

She spoke during NCRA’s (National Court Reporters Association) San Antonio convention. Laney was my guest at the NCRF fundraiser when Laurel Eiler, NCRA president, arranged for a hypnotist to entertain guests. Reporters graciously moved away from the center, first row, so Molly Sheridan could interpret. (Laney could not read lips when ‘backs’ were turned to the audience; Laney’s ‘choice’ was an ASL interpreter.)

She’s volunteered to help children, elderly, deaf, HOH (Hard of Hearing), and Laney’s love for animals initially directed her towards pre-med vet studies.

Laney Fox competed in the Miss Deaf Texas Beauty Pageant and was first runner-up.

As I tease her, no dust collects on Laney’s sneakers.

We keep in touch via email, data beepers, friends, interpreters, special events.

We had not seen other in a while, and we met for lunch. When I arrived, Laney was outside, arms extended, gesturing. A mature man was to her left. Two men wearing faded cowboy hats, dusty blue jeans and mud-caked boots, stood near Laney. I parked, sprinted to Laney.

She pointed to the man: “He hit my car!”

I looked to the two men, tilting my head.

Laney said, “I want to know what they’re staring at!”

I roared with laughter; they departed.

The man who ‘hit’ her car was attempting to leave, without stopping. He repeated: “I didn’t do any damage.”

Laney, red-faced, clearly upset, clearly did not share his opinion. I ‘signed’ (ASL) to her, spoke to him.

He did not want to write his name, address.

Finally, I said to the man wearing a hearing aid in each ear: “She’s deaf. Let’s let her parents decide what needs to be done here.”

His reply, “Oh, I didn’t know ‘that’!” He complied with my request. Then he exited, in his car, via the ‘entrance’.

Laney and I rolled our eyes, entered the restaurant, arm-in-arm.

After a wonderful lunch, Laney stood first.

A man approached behind her saying, “excuse me”, several times. Then he exhaled loudly.

I remembered not to roll my eyes, smiled, softly said, “She’s deaf.”

He replied, “Oh, I’m sorry.”

I answered, “That’s okay. It’s not your fault.” Laney and I howled.

I told Laney I was going to put the ‘stupid zone’ comments in this article; she agreed.

At our cars, the waitress ran toward Laney: “Here’s your keys! You won’t get far without these!” She held Laney’s car keys high into the air.

I shook my head, teasingly slapped Laney. As usual, ‘moments’, any occasion, and lunching with Laney is never boring.

I am eagerly looking forward to your graduation party, Laney. I know it won’t be dull or uneventful.

Thank you for sharing with NCRA. Thank you for permitting me to ‘collect’ memories, moments, I can hold close to my heart. I am so proud of you.

And you still owe me money for all the parking meters when you did not bring ‘change’.

It’s truly been a privilege to have provided CART for you and also to have been befriended by you, Laney Fox, my adventurous friend.

Laney’s 2003 update:

“I recently saw Monette. We chatted, dined and laughed. It was wonderful to see her. We had not seen each other for months. But I felt honored that Monette asked me to type up something for her national NCRA JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, column, article. I just dyed/trimmed my hair tonight and I feel ‘new!’

“This past summer I had a volunteer internship at DeafWay (an international conference), which was such an enriching experience! I flew to Washington D.C. and stayed with friends for two weeks.

“I opted to volunteer 40-something hours, which meant that I had to get up at 6 A.M. to get on the subway, to arrive to the location at 7 A.M. I stayed up every night, meeting new people from all over the world! I learned how to communicate with other people who did not speak English. I gestured, motioned and pointed to try to get my points clearly.

“It is amazing on how two people from differing cultures are able to find something in common with each other by conversing for several minutes. I attended multiple panels. I learned such an array of diverse information. I also watched international plays, which gave me opportunities to see their own ‘world’ from their performances. I attended museums. This afforded me a greater knowledge of deaf history.

“However, one of my best experiences at DeafWay is when I volunteered all day to help people to ‘know their way around’. I realized that nearly 10,000 deaf people had come across the world to ‘bond’ with others, and I am proud that I was part of this unique experience.

“Now I am taking 15 hours at Trinity University (and night classes at SAC, San Antonio College, for sign language and I’m learning Spanish!).

“I have remote CART for most of my university classes. I have onsite CART for Greek. Wow, I must have given the CARTers a run for their money when they had to CART for Latin (for my first three years) and now Greek (for my senior year).

“It was a challenge for each of us, Monette and I, to work together as a team for Latin. When I enrolled in Greek, I was fortunate, since the CARTer for my class had already worked with a student in a Greek class. It always helps when the CARTer is familiar with the language!

“I am currently volunteering at the San Antonio Southwest Biomedical Center. I am with the Enrichment Program. We are constantly trying to find ways to improve the quality of the primates’ lives. I aid by observating, building enrichment items and analyzing the data. This volunteer position has been very educational because I am able to determine whether I want to work in this field.

“Last year, I worked in the San Antonio Zoo as an aid to the zookeepers. These volunteering internships are always helpful to me; each allows me to experience their jobs temporarily.

“After I graduate, I am planning to take the GRE and to volunteer part-time. I will probably take a couple classes at a community college. I am thinking about taking carpentry! I need to know how to build a birdhouse (or a bathouse?), so I may take the class. I’ll let you know if the birds accept my birdhouse. (smile)

“Now, after all these volunteering experiences, I am planning to apply to the Peace Corps and Americorps for two years. I have always loved volunteering. I would be thrilled if I could head down to Africa for two years, but we’ll see how everything goes. Wish me luck!”

Monette — PS: Two days after I submitted this article to my NCRA JCR editor, I ‘beeped’ Laney to remind her that “Survivor” would be televised one evening prior to its usual schedule. We have been watching Christy Smith, the oral deaf contestant.

Laney responded immediately: “Thanks for letting me know, Monette. I locked myself out of my car … but it is such a wonderful day. Are you taking a break now? Go for a walk. Hugs.”

This young lady often reminds me to stop my ‘busy-world’, to eat properly and to not work so hard. With the Iraq war starting today and the state of events around the world, I believe we all need a person like Laney Fox who can share such pure moments in realtime. And, yes, I did go that walk. Thanks for the reminder, Laney.

Monette may be contacted: Tutoring@CRRbooks.com


Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

22 Aug 2008

Hear’s Laney: 2007 CART and Captioning Update


Hear’s Laney: 2007 CART and Captioning Update
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.


May 2000, my NCRA
JCR, Journal of Court Reporting, column ran Mark Cuss Said to the Nymphs, “The phone rang Friday, 2:30. ‘Would you realtime a class? We need you Monday. It started two months ago. Oh, it’s Latin.’ Monday morning, the university student arrived, looked at me, my equipment near her seat, and stopped. I wrote, ‘My name is Monette. I’ve been asked to help you. Today will be the worst day. We’ll work as a team. I promise I’ll get better.’ I began Latin; Callisto and nymphs were having a metamorphosis over the birth of Arcas, Juno and constellations …”

June 2000, I detailed Laney’s Latin: Hearing Not Required about Laney’s experiences as an oral deaf college student, learning sign language, receiving CART. Born hearing, Laney became deaf at 13 months. She mainstreamed in fourth grade after nine years of oral education. I knew more sign language, deaf culture than she when we met. Oh, how I enjoyed watching Laney’s world expand; her responses receiving CART. I also introduced Laney to deaf in San Antonio, my friends, companions. They loved her!

March 2002, Laney’s Luminous Life profiled Laney becoming Miss Deaf Texas First Runner-Up. I was in Florida, a sign interpreter in San Antonio phoned, reading text messages from deaf onsite, all realtime updates, as Laney competed in Austin. We ooh-ed and ahhh-ed as a team while she competed. Laney portrayed the wife of Deaf Smith, who lived in San Antonio, assisted Sam Houston in his victory with in Battle of San Jacinto, immediately after Alamo battle.

June 2003, Laney: Always An Adventure featured Laney as she graduated, volunteering with DeafWay, the zoo, observing primates and goals become a veterinarian. Each article is listed www.CRRbooks.com per Laney.

‘Hear’ we are, 2007. One Monday morning, here in Texas, there was an email from Laney. I just knew this email would be entertaining.

“Hi, Monette! I often wonder how you are! I’m married to a wonderful man, Tim Smith. I have so much to tell you; we bought a house. I’m learning about remodeling. I learned how to take laminated floor off and how to add them.

I’m working as a teacher, completing my second year! I’m hoping to become a school counselor, but I must teach three years. I will teach another year, then head to Gallaudet University to get an Educational Counseling degree. That may be my second masters! That’s my plan.

I have a Masters in Deaf Education from Lamar University. My husband has a Masters in Modern Language. I’m actually using sign now since I’m a teacher at a school for the deaf.

I met Tim at Camp Summit. Tim oversaw all male unit leaders/counselors. He wanted to learn sign language; I was happy to be his tutor.

I found you, Monette, when I Googled myself. I was surprised to see my name on an ASL university site talking about Deaf Smith. The author discovered I performed a poem on Deaf Smith for my Ms. Deaf Texas talent. This was pretty ironic because I dressed up to be Mrs. Deaf Smith. Now my last name is Fox-Smith. Who would have thought I would have Smith in my name? Then, I came across your articles. I realized how much I missed talking to you!

Here is my update: We married May 26, 2006; we eloped. Monday we decided to marry that Friday. We called our families about date, time. My family drove Friday afternoon to see us married in a courthouse. We loved the stress-free environment!

Let me rewind and give you an update since Trinity University. I graduated May 2003. (Laney and I wrote an update after her graduation.)

A friend encouraged me to go to Camp Summit. I was hired as “unit leader.” I met Tim there. I fell in love, moving to Dallas with him. I looked for a job, worked as a substitute teacher.

I received a job offer from Texas School for the Deaf, TSD (Austin), to work as a teacher aide. I decided this would be a good experience for me, so we began a long-distance relationship.

I lived in Austin with a friend. There I worked with an amazing teacher in the Special Needs Department! I decided I wanted to become a teacher.

I was accepted by Lamar University. I attended Lamar for about one year and a half taking as many courses as I could. I got lucky, received a rare summer internship! I worked at the National Deaf Academy in Mount Dora, Florida! What an amazing experience working with special children for ten weeks.

Tim visited; he fell in love with that town. I received a possible job offer, but there wasn’t any university nearby. Tim wanted to continue teaching. Instead we went back to Austin; I graduated August 2005.

I went back to TSD to work as a teacher! It was a good year for me. I was with Tim, seeing old faces at TSD. I met teacher aids who told me they wanted to become teachers. I told them they could become certified teachers within a year and half! In fact, I encouraged one deaf teacher aide now attending Lamar. We always need more deaf teachers, so that was really cool! To share my story and experience with another and inspire them to go back to school was really rewarding.

Tim and I moved to be close to his work (college instructor). We bought a house.

Tim proposed Christmas Eve. I kinda knew right before he proposed because he got all formal. He was like “when I first met you …” I knew instantly. I couldn’t wait until he finished. I wanted him to finish what he was saying, so I felt I had to pretend I didn’t know what he was doing! I got all nervous! I was sorta in shock. “Wow, he proposed to me …” Of course, the answer was yes. He proposed while hiking at a park. We love the outdoors.

Now I work at a charter school. I teach 4th/5th math, 7th math, 8th math, 3rd/6th/7th Language Arts (LA), 10th LA, and 9th LA. It is really nice to work with deaf. I have hearing students, as well.

I am getting more and more involved with the deaf community. My main communication now is usually sign. I talk to Tim with my voice; Tim signs back, which is pretty funny!

People watching get confused who is deaf or hearing! Recently, a cashier thought I was hearing, Tim was deaf. She talked to me, so I would interpret to Tim. I turned to my husband asking him what she said. Tim interpreted for me. It was really funny to see her expression!

I also tutor, teaching sign. One student decided to quit work, return to college to become an interpreter! I told her about CART; she hasn’t seen CART in action yet. But I hope that she will be open-minded about interpreters and CART like you are! It is important to have everyone working together as a family!

Monette: Next we’ll share more with another article and add Erastus Smith, aka, Deaf Smith, huge hero in deaf culture – especially in Texas. We’re family, and Laney is off to the library tonight, Monday, after work, to ensure we have all details correct.

Monette may be contacted: Tutoring@CRRbooks.com

21 Aug 2008

Fingers, Ears, and Heart Wide Open

Fingers, Ears, and Heart Wide Open

By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

 

Court reporters and court reporting instructors are fascinating!

Court reporting students have wonderful stories to share with detailed triumphs and challenges each has overcome. And I believe this is what makes this profession so wonderful.

During the NCRA (National Court Reporters Association) Teachers’ Workshop, I was enjoying dinner in a fine restaurant.My companions shared thoughts and ideas.While Cecilee Wilson spoke,Gayl Hardeman, Laura Taylor and I listened intently.

As we dined and I listened to Cecilee, I knew court reporting students and working court reporters, CART providers and broadcast captioners would want to know this true story.

Each day as I tutor experienced court reporters and court reporting students, I affirm that we are each talented in our unique way. Cecilee Wilson expanded my world and now here I share with you.

Cecilee Wilson, RMR, CRR, is a captioner and CART provider.She is inspirational. Cecilee finished school in Bountiful, Utah, and married her high school sweetheart.Her husband told her about co-workers attending reporting school.They were going to work a little and retire early because of the money.

“Then he said, ‘Bet you can’t do that,’” recalls Cecilee.

Cecilee enrolled. “I didn’t do well; others were better. I’d rather go to the dentist and get teeth drilled without Novocain than go to (court reporting) class.”

She and her husband joined the Air Force. They were stationed in New Jersey. She enrolled in Harris School of Business. Cecilee discharged after her daughter’s birth. They were transferred to England, then Salt Lake. She transferred to Abilene and enrolled in the Stenograph Institute of Texas.

She worked hard, passing a test each week until December, took time off to have her third baby girl, returned in January and passed the RPR in May 1977. Cecilee moved back to Salt Lake City and continued reporting.

She split with her husband after 14 years and five children, including a four-month-old son.On her baby’s six-month birthday, Cecilee’s neighbor asked if she wanted a ride on his Harley.

A car pulled out.“I heard the boom and blacked out.”She remembers saying, “Well, I’m not dead, that’s good.”

She gave herself a physical. “I needed a Band-Aid on my hand. If my feet would get the feeling back, I’d go to work tomorrow.” It was dark. She couldn’t see the bones sticking out of her hand and didn’t know both feet were broken.

Her right hand was pinned and casts were put on both legs.The pins were removed and “my divorce was final the same week.A friend offered to line me up with some guy.”

Cecilee was readmitted with an infection in her arm.“MY friend wanted me to meet him.My blind date consisted of her and her husband bringing him to the hospital.He joked I was a cheap date.We got married in three months.”

Within two years, they had a baby.“Eight kids: five mine, two his and one ours,” she says.

She was out of work nine months with three surgeries and physical therapy. Cecilee recovered “almost all of my hand. I was a reporter again.”

She wanted to caption in 1989 but hit dead ends.

“When my mother died in ’92, I used my inheritance for everything—captioning software, encoder,” she explains.

“I called a station and told them I’d caption pro bono the governor’s state of the state address. The station decided to caption a script, but kept my card. In March, Easter Seals was looking to caption their telethon. The station gave them my card. I captioned 14 hours in two days. Soon I captioned the University of Utah’s football games, which led to Utah Jazz and University of Utah basketball. And I was still working in court.”

During her second Jazz season, the Utah Council for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing phoned.

“They had seen my blurb at the end of games.”

She met with the council.They took her to meet the TV station general managers.Nobody was interested then.Later she was contacted by a general manager who wanted to caption—the next week.

“I was walking out the door for a trip to Hawaii.” She negotiated from her hotel and started the next week. Six months later she took on another station.

She worked all day in court, wrote the 5:30 news from her office, drove home and wrote the 9 and 10 p.m. news or a three-hour game.She finished at 11:45 p.m. one night with a game in overtime and trial the next morning.

“Clearly this was killing me,” says Cecilee. “I had to quit court; the rest is history.”

Cecilee now has six grandchildren, three girls, three boys.

She spends her free time knitting, crocheting, spinning, and quilting.

They raise sheep. “As lawn mowers for pasture; in the spring we shear them. I spin the wool, as time allows. We put some in the freezer. When my kids want to know what the name is of the new lamb, we say, ‘Dinner’. It keeps the in-laws from visiting, especially when they know the Thanksgiving turkey is grown in our yard.”

Her husband, Leroy, has a degree in ceramic art and currently is earning a degree in education. He wants to teach. “He does all the cooking,” she says. “Sometimes he brings me food while I’m captioning.” During a Salt Lake City tornado, she was on-air four hours with no commercials. He brought sodas with a straw and held them for her.

One year, she “thought it would be cool to make an NCRA centennial quilt and donate it to the NCRF auction.”NCRF sent past logos.

“That became the main design.I have quilt frames behind my chair.During commercials, I have a hard time doing nothing for two minutes.I turn around, quilt, drop the needle and caption again.”

As she recounted these details, my Pittsburgh dining companions and I listened. You could’ve heard a pin drop at our table. I slowly sipped my glass of wine, wide-eyed as she spoke.

I asked Cecilee what motivates her.

“The only thing remarkable about me is that I am very unremarkable.People have supported and helped me.I am continually thankful.”

What keeps her smiling?

“I think my life is a reflection of love of God and Jesus Christ—God for allowing me trials and giving me strength to overcome them; Jesus Christ for giving me His example and being my savior. That’s really the truth.”

I’ll always remember her gracious big smile and gentle laugh.

Cecilee Wilson is way beyond any comfort zone. Ears, fingers, heart and wise soul, wide open, sharing truly and purely.

—-Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

11 Jul 2008

How’d You Get Here? Part Two

“How’d You Get Here?”
By Monette Benoit

Copyright 2008 by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved

Last month I wrote that, as a tutor and court reporter, I am persistently asked, “How’d you get through it? How’d you get here?”

I e-mailed four questions to leaders: How were you attracted to court reporting? How did you pick your school? What work did you do? What are you doing now? Each has a grand story. We are always a court reporting student – always– expanding our skills, work and goals.

Gayl Hardeman: I was attracted to court reporting because I thought it would be a great summer job between academic years as a school teacher. I picked the only night class around (vo-tech). I graduated by way of Leo Zoffness, a tutor and former New York court reporting instructor. I studied weekends at his house; he made me study tapes, graded my notes. I became a freelancer in 1970. I worked 12 years, and then took off nine years to be a mom. I dabbled in acting and church work. Currently, I provide CART and captioning and have a remote, on-site CART business specializing in litigation realtime for professionals who call for help. I love this profession. It is perfect job for ex-English teacher who minored in business!
Gayl Hardeman, RDR, CCP, FAPR, Pinellas Park, Florida

Gayl’s husband, Michael J. Klutzow, A.S., C.L.V.S., is owner, principal videographer, Rockwater Technical Services, audio, video services, years of experience, professionalism in technology fields.

Lynne Marie Zakrzewski: I wanted to work in the sheriff’s department with my father. He said the department was no place for me and suggested court reporting. He’d seen the reporter in court. He thought it might be a good fit since I hit 95 wpm on a manual typewriter in 7th grade. I also played piano, flute. Selecting a college while not having a car, I looked at the business school because it was closest. Court reporting was on the list! Two years later I received my A.B.A. and began working as a freelance reporter. It was the end of the recession; wanting more work, I found myself at a second freelance firm two and a half years later. The second firm told me I wasn’t “cut out for reporting.” I sat for my certificate of merit that week and passed all four legs in one sitting. I was hired as an official, where I worked for eight years before re-entering the freelance arena. I wanted to be home for my kids; freelancing was on an obvious decline here due to contracting. Wanting to challenge myself, and in an effort to “move forward,” I entered the captioning arena. It is here where I found my true passion and can’t imagine doing anything else. It brings sheer pleasure!
Lynne Marie Zakrzewski, RMR, CRR, CBC, CPE, CSR, Willis, Michigan, President-Elect

Karen Finkelstein: I had gone to college to get a degree in speech therapy/audiology/communicative disorders. By the end of my second year, I wasn’t positive if that was what I wanted to do. I took a year off, traveled with a girlfriend, lived with my aunt and uncle, eventually ended back at mom and dad’s. Mom was the office manager for three orthopedic surgeons; she knew court reporters who reported surgeon’s depositions. Mom rushed home one day, “This is right up your alley! You’ve played piano since you were little, earned excellent grades in English, have good keyboarding skills.” Although I had no idea what reporters really did or what training entailed, I moved to Madison, Wisconsin, and saw an ad in the paper for Madison Business College. I called, signed up for court reporting classes. I fell in love with the machine!

I graduated after two years with an Associate’s Degree. We had class five days per week. I worked in an office every afternoon. I practiced during the evenings and loved writing on the machine. I’d usually pull it out anytime I watched TV. I had an opportunity to be “official reporter” for mock trials at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Law School, UW-Madison. No magic powders, Monette – just hours on the machine!

My first job was for the State of Wisconsin Department of Hearings and Rules. I traveled the state with hearing examiners taking testimony at probation and parole revocation hearings. (Whoever thought I’d be hanging out in county jails and the segregation building of state prison? I dressed conservatively when I walked the cell block! One inmate was so dangerous that he and the hearing examiner were inside the cell while I sat outside bars to record testimony. Oh, hearings at the psychiatric hospital to determine if sex offenders were sufficiently rehabilitated were interesting.) After two years, I moved to Washington, D.C., accepting a freelance position. I loved freelance (except for nasty Federal Energy Regulatory Commission hearings). One week I was in West Virginia doing black lung hearings, and the next week I’d be in Boston taking testimony of M.I.T. professors, then back to Washington for depos on cases involving the Smithsonian to the sinking of a Norwegian tanker ship. Never a dull moment.

Two years later, there was an opening at D.C. Superior Court, where I accepted an officialship. That was a social environment – mingling every day with judges, U.S. attorneys, public defenders, marshals, court clerks. We rotated from judge to judge each month, so I was exposed to civil matters, criminal felonies, misdemeanors, preliminary hearings, and family court in an extremely high-volume courthouse.

I then spent 22 years at the National Captioning Institute, first as staff captioner, then supervisor/trainer, and then as a manager. My last two years, I managed recruitment, screening, and hiring of live captioners. Now I’m Director of Education and School Development for NCRA, sharing my love of the profession. Working with students and schools was always one of my favorite things. Now I get to focus on it full time! I couldn’t be in a more perfect job. Karen Finkelstein, Director, Education and School Development, NCRA, Vienna, Virginia

CART Provider: Nothing remarkable. I graduated from Princeton, utterly without distinction, majoring in Germanic philology. I did not get into the military. (I was rejected due to a refractive error.) I stayed out of the Army draft (I passed over by one number in draft lottery). I had multiple jobs, including flying my father around in the family plane to French West Indies investment properties (we lived in St. Croix then; I happened to speak French), keeping books in a marina, operating a 10-ton IBM computer in an oil refinery, and teaching Latin.

Mom played the cello in a piano trio in which I occasionally participated. The violinist was the late Clayton Muise of New York, court reporter. He suggested I consider court reporter. He received a catalog from the (late) great McMahon College, the only school I ever heard of, so off I went. I then worked as a freelancer in the Boston area and was able to pursue musical interests as well. I’ve been doing educational and conference CART for well over a decade now, along with freelance legal work for twelve years. Not very fascinating. I hope this helps. Anonymity requested.

Monette Benoit: I ended my column last month: “Did you see similarities?
This court reporter is still learning, still loving it. And you?”
The similarities I saw then are here, too.

How’d we get here? Family and friends were the common referral. It was a parent or a friend who suggested court reporting. It was not recruitment or media campaigns – Many are not working for large salaries, sans shoes, from home. That’s how we got here.
We listened to a referral and sought details.

How’d we get through it? By tenaciously working to pursue our goals, passions. We often lived and breathed steno schooling, practicing and learning for two years.

The replies I received are from distinguished leaders who progressed through court reporting school, graduated – and then each excelled throughout multiple venues, embraced, accepted, technology, change. Someone we knew thought we might like this profession.

In Part One, last month, and Part Two, here, we’ve read about determination, hard work, family, music and language talents, love of the machine, and consistent work to improve skills after graduation.

We each arrived separately to now stand together.

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

26 Mar 2008

How’d You Get Here? Part One

How’d You Get Here? Part One
By Monette Benoit

Copyright 2008 by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

Each person is a story. As I tutor and coach court reporters and students, I am continually asked: “How’d you get through it? How’d you get here?” I sent four questions to leaders – freelance reporters, officials, CART providers, captioners: How were you attracted to court reporting? How did you pick your school? What work did you do? What are you doing now?

I continue to learn, affirming: silent people recording history – court reporters – are fascinating individuals. I firmly believe we are all court reporting students – always– as we expand skills and goals.

Below is the first part of the responses I received.

Diane Emery: My dad was a vice detective and appeared in court. I was a Spanish major at US, University of South Florida, trying to earn a living with a Spanish degree. My dad said you should be a court reporter; it is a good career for a woman. I listened to my dad, went to court with him, talked with the official, Betty Lauria. I figured for a two-year program, I couldn’t go wrong. I loved the idea of being able to work anywhere in the world. The school was in my town. I was typing for the official in federal court when I was at 225 (wpm, word per minute) tests. There was an emergency hearing; I was the only person at the courthouse. The judge told me I was ready to be a reporter according to him, so I started working. Meanwhile, the school went out of business.

I worked in London at Old Bailey criminal court. I worked for a Bradenton freelance firm mainly covering administrative hearings. Then one of the attorneys I worked with saw me crying at a bar on a Friday night and asked why I was crying. I told him I had just quit and didn’t know what I was going to do. He told me to open a firm. I had a manual typewriter and one client. I started my agency in 1982. Diane T. Emery, CMRS, FPR, Executive Reporting Service, St. Petersburg, Florida, Serving Florida with five offices

Jeanette Blalock: I worked as a legal secretary in Texas. An attorney talked to me about reporting; his wife was a court reporter. Soon, I was a student. While in school, I wanted to be an official in court. I rushed through school, as I was going broke quickly. I spent all day at school, then another four to five hours each night on my machine, working on speed.

In a need to finish school faster, I followed my mentor, Monette, to Dallas and had her administer the qualifying exams I needed for Texas state testing. (Monette Benoit one of my beloved teachers from the early days of court reporting school. Here I am, almost 20 years later, still following her across the world. You see, good teachers never go away, they just become close friends)

So I finished school. Too broke to hang around for the next certification exam, I moved to Massachusetts, which was then a state with no certification. I flew back to Texas to take my test.

After being certified, I worked for freelance agencies. I loved the flexibility freelance work affords and managed a Corpus Christi firm. I now own my court reporting business in Alaska.

For years, I lived in the Interior of Alaska, in Delta Junction. I would drive 100 miles to Fairbanks for depositions. During summer months, I welcomed the drive. During winter it would fall to 50 or 60 below zero. Depositions don’t cancel in the extreme cold. Often when you reached your deposition, there was not a place to plug in your vehicle. When this happens, you take breaks every couple of hours to head out and start your car; otherwise, your car will not start at the end of the day.

I now live in Kodiak. The weather is better, so people don’t plug in their vehicles. There’s not an abundance of work, so I help Alaska’s reporters. There are fewer than 20 reporters in the state. Reporters tend to be overworked; I also help with scoping and proofreading.

Opportunities for travel can be interesting. Sometimes reporters are flown to remote villages where they sleep in the school or someone’s cabin. In villages, you are treated to Alaskan delicacies, seal soup, black bear and eggs for breakfast.

Court reporting has opened many fields. As a wordsmith, there are opportunities for variance. I have reported depositions, court, conventions, public meetings and I have provided CART (communication access realtime translation). I’ve followed groups around outdoor construction sites 20 below zero, capturing every word and taking breaks to warm my fingers. I even took a job for a couple of years for the Army as a technical editor.

How’d I get here? Through hard work, determination. And I guess this is where I will stay. For all its wackiness, court reporting seems to be just right for me. Jeanette Blalock, Blue Lake Reporting, Kodiak, Alaska

Kathy Robson: When I was in high school, my dad was on jury duty and came home talking about the court reporter and how interesting that job must be. So I checked into it. The community college nearby had a one-year theory program, so I started there. Then I transferred to another community college with a full program: West Valley College, Saratoga, CA. I believed in using “free” education rather than paying for private schooling. And they do a great job there. I graduated with a great deal of hard work and stick-to-it-iveness. You have to eat, breathe and taste that certification in the final year or so.

I worked as a freelancer for 10 years, then founded Cheetah Systems with my husband, Gary Robson. We became involved in producing captioning software, and so now I’ve been captioning for 15 years.

I have captioned the Oklahoma City bombing, earthquakes, floods and 9/11. One day while I was captioning a game, one of my cows gave birth less than 50 feet from my office window.

CART has allowed privileges. Probably I had the most fun when Deanna Baker married Scott Smith. I realtimed their ceremony to the CompuServe reporters group before anyone realtimed on the Internet. I editorialized what was said, writing who was there, what they were wearing, what Deanna and Scott were wearing, how they were acting, etc. Kathy Robson, RPR, CRR, Red Lodge, Montana

CART provider, official reporter who requested (insisted upon) anonymity: Right out of high school, I answered a computer school advertisement. I met the sales rep at a motel and paid a $100 deposit. The ‘school’ was one room with a few computer manuals and no computer(s) in sight. I’d been duped. When my check came back, it was cashed at a liquor store.

I then enrolled in a school that had mortuary science. (The richest dude in the entire area was the undertaker.) On the first day, they showed us cadavers; half of us dropped and lost our deposits.

In court reporting school, teachers told us about a rich court reporter in a mansion with sweeping staircases and a pool house. The day I graduated from court reporting school, we moved towing a U-haul with my spouse, and children (in cloth diapers). We drove by that mansion of this rich court reporter we always heard about while we were in school. I drove out of my way to see that house. We discovered that house was in a typical government housing tract built after WW II. Reporters in other cities confirmed similar mansion stories they heard when they were court reporting students.

Monette: The last professional is a pillar in our court reporting history. Oh, I begged to have permission to share that story. Trust me, I did.

Each person has a unique story how we got here – how we became involved in the court reporting profession. Did you see the similarities­? I never would have guessed. But they’re here. This court reporter is still learning, still loving it. And you? Next month I share more.

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

10 Mar 2008

"My Solitary Travels" by Monette Benoit

My Solitary Travels
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

My Solitary Travels

Sitting alone in my solitary spot,
I am at peace for awhile
where I can dream of sailing in my yacht
while my spirit travels and smiles.

I leave not the spot in my body,
but alas where few can see.
I fly and soar in my mind
and land far away where I can be me.

While flying, always return do I,
for I am but a woman
who yearns to fly
and to not yet die.

Monette Benoit: I dedicate my poem to my sister-in-law. Cynthy Ellinger Walters died 2-12-04; her Memorial was on Valentine’s Day.

After her diagnosis with pancreatic, liver cancer, I volunteered to step into a role to ‘listen’ and to ‘ask hard questions’ as she faced new challenges. For two-and-a-half years, Cynthy lived with intense medical care and memories of a trip gifted by the Make A Wish Foundation. She demonstrated dignity as a pillar of strength to her family, Michael, Jared, Noelle, and to me, as her world changed.

Cynthy Walters taught me how brave one can be to face each new day and dark night.
She did not want to die, astounding her ‘team’ and Hospice with her deep inner strength.
I bow my head; heaven is brighter since Cynthy’s arrival.

Monette, the Court Reporting Whisperer, may be reached: Monette@ARTCS.com and Monette@CRRbooks.com

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal

Tutor, Motivational Management & Career Coach,
Multiple-Title Author of Books & Test Prep for the Court Reporting and CART Captioning Industry
Realtime Court Reporter, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com
Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

* Educational/Career Advancement; Private Tutoring/Customized Coaching

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RMR, RDR, or a state court reporting exam?

“Get ‘ER Done In Just One” – as evidenced by the many students and professionals who study Court Reporter Reference Books to pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test. Testimonials are listed online, www.CRRbooks.com.

** Pedagogically sound covering a wealth of material with facts, tips, and comprehensive information.

The “Complete NCRA RPR, RDR, and CSR Test Prep Textbook, 6th Edition” has greatly expanded testing tips, testing focus, NCRA COPE Ethics specific details, grammar sections, plus — legal, Latin, court, English, grammar, vocabularly, medical, and computer chapters. www.CRRbooks.com

The “Test Prep Set” includes four volumes – each listed on www.CRRbooks.com

Monette will help you to pass your test and to exceed schooling and career goals. http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=61

Did You Know: You can accelerate your career with private tutoring and career coaching? Court reporting veteran Monette Benoit can help you achieve your goals.

Tutoring and career coaching topics include:
• Motivational skills to keep you moving forward,
• Time-management skills,
• Process learning for more effective retention,
• Development of skills to author your book, your blog, and how to publish,
• Communication skills, daily interaction improvement skills, and much more.

Who comes to Monette for tutoring and career coaching?
• Professionals who want to achieve their goals, create new possibilities, advance their career, author their book, and to develop the dream within,
• Veteran and novice court reporters, CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) providers, and broadcast captioners brushing up on their skills for test-taking requirements,
• In-class students who feel they’re “stuck” and falling behind, or aren’t ready for the required tests,
• Students and veterans who struggle with focus, goal-setting, time-management or other life skills that might be interfering in their upward success,
• At-home students who want to ensure they’re on track for their exams and for their career goals,
• Veteran court reporters, CART Captioners expanding their career options in related fields,
• Students and veterans alike who find they’re struggling with key areas of daily practice,
• Students or veterans who have begun to question their career or whether they’re on the “right track” …

Check out: Reach Your Goals with Tutoring and Career Coaching
http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29

Monette Benoit, the Court Reporting Whisperer, can help you achieve at much high levels.

Where do you want to go? ** What have you ‘really’ wanted to do with your career, and ultimately, your life?

* No two are alike. Specific custom-designed guidance efficiently assists you!

About Monette Benoit:
As a 25+ year court reporter, CART Captioner, author of NCRA test prep material, and an instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and the 225 homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands the challenges many adults now face in our industry and schooling.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART Captioners, students, and instructors.

She has also helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has greatly assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to privately reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is a blog containing information for busy professionals, students, and individuals who are fearless and seek to create their success each day. Reach up. Bring it. Bring it. * Bring it today!

26 Feb 2008

“You’re Processing; You’re NOT STUCK” – Court Reporting Students and Reporters

“You’re Processing; You’re NOT STUCK” – Court Reporting Students and Reporters
By Monette Benoit

Copyright by Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

The first email to Monette@CATapultdix.com began as an information-specific request.

I replied to Janet Tilley and offered ‘up’ a firm opinion, which I have ‘owned’ for many years. Her response was so sincere, I asked Janet to permit me to share with you. In my heart, I know students, court reporters, captioners, CART providers and instructors will find what they ‘need to know’ below.

Janet: “I am currently a court reporting student. I am stuck at 170 wpm and am looking for something to help me identify ‘hesitations’. I am enrolled in Chattanooga State’s Realtime Program and starting my fifth semester. I am currently stuck trying to attain 170 wpm.

“Would your products be of assistance to a student? I ordered the ‘CATapult Your Dictionary’ CD Software Program today, and I am looking forward to using it! A reporter returned from the NCRA National Convention this summer and told me about your products. She was very excited about using them and thought the CATapult CD would be helpful for me.”

I read her email and replied, … As a court reporter, private tutor/coach and instructor, may I suggest you avoid the “I’m stuck” thinking. I teach and share when I speak to individuals and to groups that ‘the brain needs to absorb’ what we have ‘in-put’ (a new steno language) ‘as’ we develop skills to work ‘a’ new machine.

“In short, the two new tasks need time to work together, to flow, together, as one. I compare it to: ‘Your mind is like a sponge,’ Teaching 101. You will absorb the tasks needed, as you ‘process.’

“If you’re stuck, ‘stuck’ delays the ‘process,’ in my opinion. When you are processing, time is refocused.”

Janet replied: “Hallelujah and Praise the Lord! That is probably the single most encouraging, sensible piece of advice I have gotten since starting court reporting school. I have always felt my brain and fingers were trying to learn to work together in a totally new way that involved learning a new language, new computer system, keyboard, and putting the two together in a nanosecond! Logically, this would take the brain and motor impulses time to learn and coordinate.

I have heard the ‘stuck’ warnings and stories, and I bought into them. Viewing myself as ‘stuck’ rendered me aimless and helpless, in a mental sense.

‘Processing,’ on the other hand, is a productive place to be. And the truth is, no matter how few speeds gains I have made over the last three months, I have improved in many areas, and my theory has become easier for me. I also seem to have a better understanding of the whole ‘realtime picture’. Thank you for your time and advice. I feel so fortunate to be entering a career so full of caring and helpful people.

Also, I just realized you wrote the wonderful article, ‘Try Harder; Each Time You Try Harder’ in the NCRA January JCR. Your sister-in-law, Wenny, (Tong Sing Jewelry) is an inspiration! I don’t know how she does it every day with a smile, but God bless her!

After I read the article, I thought about trying harder and not being content to plateau. It made me realize how easy it would be to finish school, get comfortable with a system and just stay there.

I realized that to continually try harder and to become better, I need to be on top of industry and technological changes. I need to be willing to continue to learn and change with the industry and customer demands. It makes me feel good to think that even after I am out of school, I will still learn. And process!

I received my CATapult CD. It looks great!!! I think this is going to be exactly the practice aid I have been dreaming of! I love the common words drill! I look forward to getting into the ‘meat and potatoes’ of CATapult CD today. Once again, thank you so much for your advice and encouragement! You are an angel!”

I asked Janet to share her world. “Let’s see, I am 35 years old, and I began my first Realtime Theory semester, August 2003. I attended college when I was younger. I became interested in court reporting in 1994. I fell into a job that I loved, but it offered no opportunity for promotion or change. I became burned out and bored after a few years. During this time I had gotten married.

My husband worked with two men, each married to a reporter. He would tell me about what the wives of these men were doing. So that got me thinking, and before long, we developed a plan that allowed me to quit my job and go to school. It was hard to leave my job. The people were like family, money and benefits were good; but I did it and haven’t looked back! What initially interested me in court reporting was the writer; how could anyone make words by those blank, black keys??? I love to read; I love words. I love hard crosswords, word games. When I learned more about the writer and theory itself, I thought, ‘This is the ultimate puzzle!’ As I learned about the career, the more intrigued I became.

I wanted a job that would allow me to work in different settings, with different people and would always challenge me. This was it!

What really sealed it for me though, was that I could provide other services with court reporting skills. I had been at a job that required a definite set of skills; I couldn’t take those skills and move into another area. With court reporting, I had the option of providing CART or captioning, should I need a change. I have long said that I would love to be a professional student and providing CART would kind of be like that, plus a paycheck! I plan to freelance when I finish school. I would like to get into CART, but that would be on down the road. I like the flexibility of freelancing and varied work settings. I also believe freelancing will offer me the greatest opportunities and challenges to become the best ‘realtimer’ I can be.

I had the privilege of working at a court reporting firm here in Chattanooga, Angel & Associates Court Reporters, the first year I was in court reporting school. I viewed the ‘other side’ of the career. That experience was invaluable! I learned about the daily requirements and job demands, the good and the not so good. I am very grateful for my time there; it has made me even more determined and more resolved to stick to my practice schedule and to keep pressing forward.

My husband is the most supportive, encouraging man in the world. I could never have done this without his help. He has assumed household responsibilities; he’s very understanding during my times of frustration. We have no children, so that does make it a lot easier. However, we have a parrot, the center of the household and our lives, two finches who disregard us until feeding time, and a cat who stays outside during the waking hours of our birds, but comes in at night to sleep on her personal heated mattress (me). I hope this is helpful! Thanks, Monette!”

Yes, Janet, “this is helpful.” You have just ‘helped’ many, many court reporters, students and instructors. You have ‘gifted’ your processing and your world into the universe; I thank you.

An update of Janet’s ‘processing’ and graduation into the court reporting profession – under 12 months from this ‘processing and sharing‘ – may be read in Monette’s Musings: “Still Processing And Snowglobes.”

—– Monette, named the Court Reporting Whisperer by students, may be reached:  Monette.purplebooks@CRRbooks.com

Purple Books – Court Reporter Reference Books & CDs: www.CRRbooks.com   * Advance skills, pass NCRA and State exams the 1st time

Monette Benoit, B. B.A., CCR, CRI, CPE, Paralegal, CART Captioner, Instructor, Consultant, Columnist

Since 1990: Multiple Title Author of Books & Purple Books Test Prep for the Court Reporting, CART Captioning Profession

An American RealTime/Captioning Services, LLC: www.ARTCS.com        Blog: Monette’s Musings, www.monettebenoit.com

Have you failed NCRA’s RPR, RDR, or a State exam?  More than once?   Purple Books “Done in One” has a 98% successful pass rate on exams with sets as evidenced by thousands of students and professionals who pass their RPR, CSR, and RDR exams on the first test.   Testimonials: www.CRRbooks.com.

Reach Your Goals:  http://crrbooks.com/index.php?cPath=29  Where do you want to go? Specific custom-designed guidance will efficiently assist you!

About Monette Benoit:    As a 30+ year court reporter, CART captioner, author of NCRA and State test-prep material, instructor, public speaker, Monette Benoit has taught multiple theories, academics, all speed classes, and 225-homeroom within NCRA-approved schools and a community college. She understands challenges many adults face in our industry.

In 1993, she began to CART caption to a large screen for a Deaf mass, San Antonio, Texas.  Wonderful opportunities then presented from Big D, Little D, Oral Deaf, HOH consumers -each with special moments.

Monette Benoit has worked with thousands of professionals, court reporters, CART captioners, students, instructors. She has helped to create new court reporting training programs, worked with federal grants, and assisted instructors in developing curriculum for both in-class and at-home students.

Her one-on-one tutoring, private coaching, has assisted thousands of students, novice and experienced professionals to reach the next level.

Monette’s Musings is an informative, motivational, and funny blog for busy professionals and students who seek to create their success and who seek to enjoy this special path.

23 Apr 2005