OLLI Mural Promotes Cross-generational Immigration Conversations - OLLI at Arizona State University
Celebrating 25 Years of Lifelong Learning - OLLI at University of Alabama in Huntsville
Podcasts - OLLI at University of North Texas
Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter

Greetings from the NRC    Apr 2019 15
Many Osher Institutes have boasted to their community that "OLLI runs on Volunteer Fuel" (or some variation). Officially, there are 25,761 OLLI volunteers, meaning the average volunteer horse-power is about 209 per Institute! Undoubtedly, the resource of volunteers in facilitating, teaching, organizing, and leading Institutes is hugely important.

It happens that National Volunteer Week is April 7-13. It was established by Presidential Proclamation in 1974 and is currently sponsored by the Points of Light Foundation. This week celebrates the impact of volunteer service and the power it holds in building strong, resilient communities. It's also a perfect week to express appreciation to our extraordinary volunteers.
Partnering with the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a), the Osher NRC will participate in a Twitter "Tweet Chat" on Wednesday, April 10 th between 2:00pm and 3:00pm Eastern time. This is part of our national joint project called " engAGED". It includes four partners and the n4a who collectively want to combat loneliness and social isolation in older adults. Of course, we know that lifelong learning and volunteering go hand in hand - both are key elements of Osher Institutes and both bring purpose and health benefits to members. If you are a Tweeter, you might want to check in on April 10 th. Here are the hashtags to find the chat: #NVW and #VolunteerChat.

This newsletter is full of examples of volunteer power that we can celebrate: A milestone anniversary in Huntsville, AL; a volunteer created urban mural in Phoenix, AZ, and a monthly podcast highlighting members and volunteers in Denton, TX. Enjoy these stories and their examples of engagement and the impact of volunteerism while you consider ways to show appreciation to your own active volunteers at home.

Go OLLI Volunteers!

Steve Thaxton, Executive Director

An intergenerational collaboration focusing on migration and storytelling has begun at OLLI at ASU. Thanks to a gift from the CDH Charitable Foundation, OLLI at ASU is able to sponsor ASU students through a scholarship specifically designated for intergenerational projects. One of the scholarship recipients, Kira Olsen-Medina (along with her team, Brittany, Zoe Elisabeth, Zhulin, and Angelica) elected to create a sustainable public art project as part of their Humanities Lab class entitled "Facing Immigration."

The first of the two-part project entailed gathering small groups of OLLI members and international ASU students to exchange migration stories and histories. One OLLI member and one international student were paired together to share their stories, and upon learning each other's history, they introduced each other to a larger group of peers. Afterwards, the group worked with local street artist and OLLI at ASU instructor, Hugo Medina, to design a mural that spoke to their individual and collective migration stories.
The second part of the project was the "community paint day" that occurred on December 2nd of 2018. The finished artwork depicts a young girl holding a cage from which a constellation of monarch butterflies bursts forth. At the other end are the faces of Americans of all ages and creeds whose lives have been touched by migration. The hope is that the downtown Phoenix wall will become a living celebration of intergenerational, multicultural collaborations as the project's plan is to create a new mural annually.
As a result of this powerful experience, many of the OLLI at ASU members were inspired to research their own family immigration stories. Some already knew their stories but were separated from them by several generations. Those members reported feeling a new sense of appreciation for the challenges their ancestors faced after speaking with their younger counterparts, whose immigration stories were far more recent. 
Although the project unearthed some intense emotions among OLLI members and students alike, the overall project was a huge success. "A lot of the people here come from completely different backgrounds but they all have a lot of commonalities in their stories and in the human element of what it means to migrate and the challenges that are faced," said Hugo. "So even though they all have very different stories, they're able to connect on many different levels, which is really beautiful."
Submitted by: Abby Baker, Program Specialist, OLLI at Arizona State University

OLLI at University of Alabama in Huntsville
Celebrating 25 Years of Lifelong Learning
The Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes at the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) is celebrating its 25th Anniversary. 

OLLI at UAH kicked off its 25th year with a reception at the historic Lowe House, home of UAH president, Dr. Robert Altenkirch, and First Lady, Beth Altenkirch on September 14, 2018. The reception was not only a time to celebrate the 25 th Anniversary, but was also an opportunity to celebrate the founding members and instructors who have supported OLLI at UAH throughout the years. Attendees enjoyed hors d'oeuvres, cake, and beverages as they socialized and discussed OLLI at UAH's history and future. The reception included a small ceremony recognizing OLLI at UAH's past presidents and founding members. Member and volunteer, Sue Chatham, was presented with the inaugural OLLI at UAH Legacy Volunteer Award. This award was established to recognize volunteers who have made significant contributions to the program through their service.  

The celebrations culminated in the 25th Anniversary Speaker Series. OLLI at UAH hosted three, free and open-to-the-public presentations on campus. This three-part series featured several noted Alabama residents who spoke on topics of history, art and pop culture.
  • On October 26, 2018, Dr. Wayne Flynt, Alabama Historian, Author, and Professor Emeritus at Auburn University, presented on Pulitzers and Politics: The Alabama Legacies of Harper Lee and George Wallace, reflecting on how the rich literary and political history of Alabama continues to influence its future.
  • On November 9, Peter Baldaia, Director of Curatorial Affairs for the Huntsville Museum of Art, gave a presentation entitled Behind the Scenes of Louis Comfort Tiffany- Treasures from the Driehaus Museum to give participants an insider perspective on how the Huntsville Museum of Art prepares for an upcoming exhibit.
  • On December 7, Bob Labbe, Pop Music Historian and local radio host, presented on Reelin' in the Years: Pop Music from 1950s - 1990s as he regaled audience members with a walk through musical memory lane.
OLLI at UAH has attracted the attention of seasoned adults in North Alabama and grown rapidly since its inception in 1993. Huntsville was recently named #4 on the Top 25 Places in the U.S. to Retire in 2019 by AOL.com.

Submitted by
: Alissa McKinnon, program manager, OLLI at University of Alabama in Huntsville

OLLI at University of North Texas
In December of 2018, OLLI at UNT launched a new endeavor, Podcasting! Four months later and 14 episodes in, the podcasting program is still going strong! The podcasts provide a deeper look into the professional and personal lives of various OLLI at UNT community members. In 10-20 minute interviews, host Susan Supak showcases her talent for bringing out interesting facts about the members, as well as the men and women who volunteer to teach their courses. In addition, she also relays the latest news and information about OLLI at UNT.
Susan usually posts one podcast episode each week, and is very dedicated to her OLLI and lifelong learning. She previously was the host of the Library Out Loud interview series at Albert Wisner Public Library in Warwick, NY. Since relocating to Texas with her husband, she has become an enthusiastic member, volunteer, and supporter of the Institute. When asked about OLLI at UNT, she remarked "The numerous scientific studies that highlight the connection between lifelong learning and community involvement with maintaining cognitive and mental health make OLLI at UNT the most fun and exciting 'preventive medicine' we could ever want. It's a dose of interesting classes, bright people, and fun activities!".
Susan brings this passion for lifelong learning and OLLI at UNT to her podcast.  The OLLI at UNT website now has all 14 episodes along with additional information on "How to Listen to Podcasts on Your Phone or Tablet". If podcasts are already your thing, and you are looking for more OLLI related content, check out our article: The Role of Podcasts This article has a listing and links to other Osher Institute podcasts. If you've ever left a course and wished the conversation didn't have to end, these podcasts are for you. Happy Listening!
Submitted by: Stephanie Reinke, Director, OLLI at University of North Texas

Osher NRC 2019 Webinar Series
Mark your calendar for the next webinar on July 18, 2018 beginning at 2pm Eastern/1pm Central/noon Mountain/11am Pacific/10am in Alaska and 9am in Hawaii. Register for the webinar here.

Teach Your Teachers Well: Training Your OLLI Instructors
Finding the right instructor for Osher Institute classes can be a difficult task. Finding one that understands the unique educational needs of OLLI students can be even harder. To ease this process, many OLLIs train their peer leaders/instructors on effective methods for teaching adult learners. In this webinar, three Osher Institutes will present the unique methods, classes, and programs they use to train their peer leaders/instructors. Learn about the different ways OLLIs approach instructor training, why they utilize these programs, what makes these programs successful, and how to teach teachers well.
Patricia Berlowe
Coordinator, OLLI @ Yavapai College
Susan Stitham
OLLI Member and Committee Chair , OLLI @ Southern Oregon University
Jeanette Toohey,  Rita Brodnax & Nancy Sticht
OLLI @ University of North Florida

If you have interest in being a presenter or have ideas for future webinars, please contact Kevin Connaughton ([email protected]). 

Spaces and Places of OLLI
University of Wisconsin Milwaukee
The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee was founded in 1982.  At that time, it was known as the UWM Guild for Learning in Retirement.  All current programming, except for Go Explore day trips and international travel, takes place either at the Hefter Center near the UWM main campus or at the School of Continuing Education in downtown Milwaukee. 

The Hefter Center was once the home of Armin Schlesinger, one of the richest families in Wisconsin and then William Brumder, of the Brumder Publishing Company family (at one time the largest German language publisher in the US).  For many years, it was a women's dormitory. After receiving a major gift from the Edith Hefter family, it became the Hefter Conference Center in 1989. The building itself has many beautiful and notable features including five fireplaces, plasterwork ceilings, and a terrace on the east side. Rooms are a 26' x 35' living room; a black walnut paneled dining room; a breakfast nook; a solarium-conservatory with glazed tile walls; a library; and a billiard room.

The School of Continuing Education is on the site of the former Plankinton House Hotel in downtown Milwaukee.  It was replaced by a two-story structure known to Milwaukeeans as the Plankinton Arcade.  In 1924, a five-story addition of offices was constructed above the arcade. The architects were the legendary Chicago firm of Holabird & Roche. UWM purchased the 5th and 6th floors in 1994 from Northwestern Mutual Insurance and opened the University Center for Continuing Education in 1995.  With more than 25,000 square feet of state-of-the-art classroom space and informal meeting areas, the current conference center offers a unique environment for both professional development and personal enrichment.

The Institute currently has nearly 1,900 members and offers over 450 programs each year.  It is a program of the School of Continuing Education-- the largest provider of professional development in southeastern Wisconsin.  SCE charges the Institute a $36,000 annual administrative fee.  In turn, the school provides instructional and office space, as well as registration, marketing and financial services.

UWM is a public university, one of twelve campuses in the University of Wisconsin System and the second largest university in Wisconsin.  Recently, the Carnegie Classification recognized UWM as one of 130 Research I Doctoral Universities in the United States.

"Our members love attending classes at the Hefter Center," said Executive Director Kim Beck. "Its unique location and historic environment make it a special place for lifelong learning. Still, offering educational programming in a historic building presents many challenges.  For that reason, we are fortunate to also have access to the excellent classroom space at the School of Continuing Education."

Want to see your own distinctive "Space or Place" in this newsletter? Please send it to [email protected].

An Advice Column for Osher Institute Staff and Volunteers
dearolliDear Olli
Dear Olli,
We want to have some pens made to distribute at our Open House, but we are running into a snag. We can't find a vendor that is able to use the OLLI logo with the words "Osher Lifelong Learning Institute" inside of the "O." Since the imprint area on pens is so tiny, the text will end up bleeding together, making the text inside the "O" illegible. Is it possible to just use just text on our SWAG without the logo? Can we remove the text from inside the "O"? Any suggestions or examples you have would be appreciated.
Dear Squinting,
The Osher Foundation's branding guidelines offer direction around how Osher Institutes are represented in marketing material such as catalogues, brochures, websites, and the like.  The Foundation's interest is in ensuring that the name of the program is clearly and accurately presented in print and online.  With regard to branded marketing SWAG items like pins, water bottles, pens, tote bags, etc., the Foundation recognizes that a degree of flexibility is often needed to fit the specifications of the piece.
Therefore, if it is not possible for the text to appear legibly inside the "O," on a branded item, it's ok to simply print the name of the program such as "Osher Institute at XYZ University" or the "Osher Lifelong Learning Institute" together with your university's logo.  Please be sure, however, the branding includes the name or logo of your University!  You may also want to consider including your website or phone number for marketing purposes. Here are a few examples from your Osher Institute colleagues to inspire you.

Have a question for Olli? Please send it in care of Kevin Connaughton ([email protected]). 

Educational Travel Ideas from the OLLI Network
The OLLI Traveler OlliTraveler
OLLI at University of Utah
Paris: A Moveable Feast
In Midnight in Paris, Owen Wilson plays Gil, a Hollywood screenwriter, who travels back in time to Paris in the Roaring '20s. Go Learn wants to take you back to the swinging days (and nights!) of Paris's booming art and literary scene. Alongside the U's Jeremy Rosen of the Department of English, we'll discover the story of American expatriate writers in Paris; walking in Hemingway's footsteps and visiting his favorite cafés, seeing the art that inspired Gertrude Stein's experimental poems, and gazing across the bridges where Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald fell in and out of love. Throughout, we'll explore Paris's stunning architecture and urban vistas, unique neighborhoods, legendary museums, and of course the magnificent cuisine of the world's most beautiful city. We'll return to iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower, Museum d'Orsay, and Luxembourg Gardens, wander fashionable districts like the trendy Montmartre and the artsy Marais, and graze at some of the vast and beautiful array of wine, cheese, and pastry vendors in Paris's spectacular food markets. With each day, we'll enrich our knowledge of Parisian history and literature from the bohemian café culture and American expatriate artist scene of the Roaring Twenties, as we gobble up this Moveable Feast! Learn more about this trip to Paris.
Dates: May 19 - 25, 2019

University of Cambridge
Lifelong Learning Summer School
This residential summer school will give lifelong learners the extraordinary opportunity to experience something of Cambridge student life in the context of a program specifically designed for adult learners from around the world. Girton College is one of the larger constituent colleges of the University of Cambridge, and its beautiful buildings, excellent facilities, including a gym and indoor swimming pool, and spacious grounds are located just outside the city center. Ultimately Girton is a wonderful place in which to meet other lifelong learners in comfortable surroundings and as part of a friendly community.  Choose to attend the full two-week program, or opt to attend for just one week (Sunday 18 August - Saturday 24 August, or Sunday 25 August - Saturday 31 August). Learn more about the courses offered, social program, accommodation and meals, fees and how to apply .
Dates: August 2019

OLLI at California State University San Bernardino
Inside Vietnam
Discover the beauty of reborn Vietnam on this intimate small group adventure. You'll travel the entire country from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City, stopping en route to discover Halong Bay, Hue, the seaside retreat of Nha Trang, French-flavored Dalat, and much more. Enjoy many personal interactions with the people of Vietnam, from a home-hosted family dinner to A Day in the Life of a local village. An overnight sailboat cruise in Halong Bay is an experience that's only possible in a small group like ours. From the cities to the seaside to the highlands, let Vietnam's warmth and beauty amaze you.  Learn more about this trip to Vietnam .
Date: November 2020

Quick Tips for Helping Operate an Osher Institute
didyouknowQuick Tip - Support professional development for lifelong learning staff and volunteers!
Consider professional development opportunities at the Southern Regional Conference for Learning and Retirement to be held at the University of North Carolina in Wilmington, NC July 29-31. This is a great educational conference to attend for best practice on a wide range of subject areas applicable to lifelong learning professionals.
Visit the SRCLR website for more information and to register.

  Career Openings in the OLLI Network
jobboardJob Board
Grant Program Director - OLLI

Academic Support Coordinator

Senior Program Coordinator - Osher Lifelong Learning Institute
University of Miami

Is there a staff opening at your Osher Institute? Please send it to us at  [email protected]