Touring the Baltimore County Materials Recovery Facility - OLLI at Towson University
A Somber Anniversary to Recognize - OLLI at Yavapai College
2020 Southern Regional Conference for Learning in Retirement - OLLI at Emory University
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Greetings from the NRC    Feb 2020 15
The semester is off to a roaring start throughout the Osher Institute Network. Innovative courses, adventurous tours and trips, and robust discussions are going on all over the country - and throughout the globe for those who program international excursions.
This issue of the Osher National Newsletter again documents the creativity and curiosity of OLLI members. From some "trash talk" in Baltimore, MD to a new home for OLLI in Sarasota, FL, and to a significant and somber anniversary remembrance in Prescott, AZ, our colleagues show us there are few boundaries to lifelong learning.
For those of you who crave learning more about the growing movement of lifelong learning institutes, there's an annual conference open to anyone (OLLI or non-affiliated) coming up this summer. The Southern Regional Conference for Learning in Retirement (SRCLR) will be held in Atlanta in July. Consider joining our host OLLI colleagues from Emory University, Kennesaw State University, and the University of Georgia for the 2020 conference. The details are below.
Finally, February is a good month to express the love you have for lifelong learning.  How much do your Osher peers, instructors, and staff contribute to the quality of your intellectual and social life? Take the time to offer them some physical or verbal Valentines of appreciation this month!

Sending virtual Valentines from the Osher NRC,

Steve Thaxton, Executive Director

Last year, members of the  Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Towson University (TU) formed a Green Team. These members are dedicated to initiating sustainable changes within the Osher community and are working to raise awareness of environmental issues.
Last fall, members of the Green Team and other Osher at TU members attended a tour of the  Baltimore County Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in Cockeysville, MD. The MRF is a facility that receives, sorts, and prepares recyclable materials to be sold. The processed recyclables are marketed after sorting, allowing Baltimore County to retain the value of these materials and maximize the financial benefit of the recycling program. Baltimore County has moved to a  single stream recycling process. This means that all recyclable items can be placed in the same bin, as the equipment is able to sort through paper, plastic, metal, and glass items.
The MRF is likely exactly as you would imagine it to be: large and loud. To ensure safety while touring the facility, members were each given hard hats, safety glasses, and a map of the route. They were also fitted with personal audio devices so they would be able to hear the guide through a headset while taking the tour.
Within the facility are 86 conveyor belts, six sorting screens, three optical sorters, and two balers. Workers, who are current inmates from the Baltimore County Detention Center, are stationed throughout the MRF to locate materials missed by the automated equipment. Throughout the tour of this vast facility, Osher members were provided with an abundance of information from our guides.
Here are five notable things that the group learned while on the tour:
  1. Do not include "tanglers" in your recycling bins. Tanglers are long or stretchy items such as plastic bags, clothing, linens, rope, or cords.
  2. Each piece of recycling is processed from start to finish in approximately 3 minutes.
  3. Aluminum cans yield the highest profit from the sale of recycled items, more than both plastic and paper.
  4. Very small items are difficult to sort through the MRF as they are not always captured in the sorting process. The guide, Richard Keller, recommends that if the item is small enough to hold liquid in your carry on, then you should not be placing it in your recycling bin.
  5. The Baltimore County MRF processes between 30 and 35 tons of waste per hour.
Submitted by : Shelby Jones, Membership Coordinator, OLLI at Towson University

OLLI at Yavapai College
A Somber Anniversary to Recognize
The year 2020 is notable for many reasons. But one is for an anniversary that is painful to remember and yet essential for humanity to thoughtfully observe. In 1945, the liberation of World War II's Concentration Camps along with the beginning of the world's fuller understanding of the horrors of the Nazi's "Final Solution" began to unfold. As American tanks plowed down gates and locks were shot off metal doors, thousands were saved after millions were murdered.

One of those saved was seventeen-year-old Esther Roth, who 75 years later is now an Osher Institute member and resident near OLLI at Yavapai College in Prescott, AZ. Beginning on the anniversary week and over four Friday mornings, Esther brings her remarkable story of bravery, resilience, and forgiveness to Osher members and the broader Prescott community in a special free course series, "Memories of a Holocaust Survivor". 
Esther Roth Basch's young life took her on an harrowing path from a Carpathian Mountain Village to Auschwitz. She met her husband Joseph, a fellow survivor and they traveled to Palestine, participating in the formation of Israel before immigrating to the US in 1958. And now, she shares that life story in a way to help others understand the horrors of war and the human capacity for compassion. "Joseph and I said maybe it's a good thing to have something for our children and grandchildren...I cannot forget the horror...but I can forgive. If I hold a grudge, I only hurt myself." Esther reflected. 

Read more about Esther's story in Sedona.biz or Newsday. For more information on the course series, contact Tricia Berlow, Director of OLLI at Yavapai College in Prescott.

OLLI at Emory University
2020 Southern Regional Conference for Learning in Retirement
The 2020 Southern Regional Conference for Learning in Retirement (SRCLR) will be in Atlanta this year. This conference is presented annually through a partnership among southern US OLLIs and Lifelong Learning Institutes (LLIs). Each year, a different university hosts the conference. This year it will be presented by Emory University between July 27th and 29th, 2020. The conference is open to the staff and volunteer leaders of LLIs from across the country.
The SRCLR will include presentations on topics related to curriculum development, marketing, registration systems, volunteer management, staff development, membership retention, community engagement, fundraising, and many other areas. According to the organizers, "We are planning an extraordinary learning experience where you are sure to engage, connect, and grow. It will also be a great time to network with others passionate about lifelong learning and senior advocacy." Lifelong learning institutes throughout the southern region and beyond will be gathering to build partnerships and learn best practices from each other, and explore new dimensions of lifelong learning.
Currently, SRCLR's "Call for Sessions" is open. If you wish to share your knowledge, experience, and expertise with other staff and volunteers from a wide variety of lifelong learning organizations as a presenter; the conference is seeking proposals in several areas. Please see the submission form for topics and guidelines . Additionally, early bird registration is now open. For any other information, including travel and accommodations, visit the conference website.

Submitted by : Jeffery Alejandro, Program Manager, OLLI at Emory University

2020 Osher Institutes National Conference
Announcing the Keynote Speaker
Jonathan Rausch
The Happiness U-Curve: Why Life Turns Around in Middle Age
Midlife crisis, like the Seinfeld show, is often literally about nothing. Yet it seems unshakable for those experiencing it. Society treats it as a joke or a cliché, yet it is natural, normal, and lays groundwork for surprising happiness and wisdom in later adulthood. Drawing on cutting-edge psychology, neuroscience, and even economics, while also tapping his own experiences and those of dozens of interviewees, Jonathan Rauch - author of the major Atlantic magazine cover article "The Real Roots of Midlife Crisis" and the engaging book, "The Happiness Curve" - explains why even chimps get midlife malaise, and how humans can cope with it far better than we do. Rauch emphasizes, that older adults are healthier, happier, and have more to give than ever before, and they and society are already starting to invent new ways to contribute. The old black-and-white distinction between work and retirement is giving way to the mixed pursuits of "encore adulthood."
Jonathan Rauch
Senior Fellow, the Brookings Institution
Contributing Editor, The Atlantic
Author, The Happiness Curve: Why Life Gets Better After 50

Spaces and Places of OLLI SpacesAndPlaces
A New Home for OLLI at Ringling College
Not unlike other successful Lifelong Learning Institutes (LLI), OLLI at Ringling College began its life as something else. The Lifelong Learning Academy (LLA) became part of the world-renowned Ringling College of Art and Design in 2015, with another LLI, Pierian Spring Academy joining in 2016. The new organization became known as the Lifelong Learning Academy at Ringling College under the institution's Continuing Studies program. Part of the plan for this new unit of the College was a wonderful new - and permanent - home. In 2018, LLA received the Osher distinction, becoming part of this prestigious community of lifelong learners.

In September 2019, OLLI at Ringling College moved into its new home, co-located with the Sarasota Art Museum of Ringling College at the recently opened Ringling College Museum Campus. The primary building is in the historic Sarasota High School, originally built in 1926 and renovated as an adaptive-reuse project. With nods to its history and state-of-the-art capabilities, the building has more than 15,000 square feet of offices, classrooms, arts studios, and an auditorium.

All instructional spaces are modernized for contemporary learning but retain the historic charm, high ceilings, and light-filled interiors of the past. The building is owned by the School Board, which leases it to the College. After many years of dormancy, the community is delighted to see the building, which holds memories for so many, revitalized. An extensive capital campaign for renovations and repairs was needed for the entire campus. Nearly $30 million in funding was raised for the project. This extraordinary facility also accommodates non-credit Studio and Digital Arts programming, including ceramics.

Janna Overstreet, Director of OLLI at Ringling College, notes, "After 20 years of renting space and being in temporary quarters, it is so gratifying to be in a place we can call home. Our students are really enjoying the state-of-the-art classrooms, large hallways, and the courtyard. This spring, the Bistro will open, which will make the experience even more enjoyable for those taking classes through OLLI at Ringling College. We are so grateful to the donors who embraced the idea of creating a community-service campus by housing lifelong learning in the same building as the new Sarasota Art Museum of Ringling College."

When this program came into the Osher Network in 2018, it was serving nearly 3,000 individuals. It continues to convert to a membership model, with more than 2,000 members and another 1,200-plus engaged outside of membership. Today, OLLI serves more than 3,200 individuals. Growth in membership with the new facility is expected, but will not stop this OLLI from offering courses at four additional locations in the community. OLLI at Ringling College currently offers more than 300 courses in each of its four terms annually, in addition to lecture series, special events, a travel program, and a film series.

Want to see your own distinctive "Space or Place" in this newsletter? Please send it to oshernrc@northwestern.edu.

An Advice Column for Osher Institute Staff and Volunteers
dearolliDear Olli
Dear Olli,
As an OLLI member and volunteer, I am seeking new and better ways to increase the social scene at my OLLI. The social connections I have made at my OLLI have enriched my life! I'm hoping you have some suggestions for increasing the social opportunities for others.
~OLLI Member
Dear OLLI Member,
As you have found, all Osher programs offer important opportunities for social and intellectual engagement of older adults in a supportive environment. Although every OLLI is different, and Institute resources can be limited, there are a few things you can do. Of course, the most popular is the non-classroom community space. This could be a lounge, a particular cafeteria on campus, or even just chairs in an open space. As it is said in the film "Field of Dreams", "If you build it, they will come". If a community space isn't possible, OLLI organized social events provide interaction. This could be lunches, fundraisers, parties, outings, or special interest groups; many OLLIs build social events into their programming. Even something as simple as name tags can help increase social engagement. Using name tags when on campus, and for social events and day trips provides an easy way for people to introduce and meet each other. Finally, don't forget social media, the members are looking! Seeing pictures of past social activities and getting notice on future ones works well in this space. Use social media to share "conversation starters" that members can bring back to the Institute. I hope this helps in creating and sharing in those social opportunities!  

Have a question for Olli? Please send it in care of Kevin Connaughton (kevin.connaughton@northwestern.edu). 

Educational Travel Ideas from the OLLI Network
The OLLI Traveler OlliTraveler
OLLI at University of California Berkeley
Inland Sea of Japan, Kyoto to South Korea
Experience the timeless splendor of Japan and South Korea on this unique, custom-designed itinerary, featuring three nights in Kyoto and a seven-night cruise across the full length of the serene Inland Sea of Japan from Himeji, including historic ports of Japan such as Miyajima, Sakaiminato and Moji and Ulsan, South KoreaLearn more about this trip to Japan.
Dates: May 19-30, 2020

OLLI at University of Pittsburgh
Amsterdam, the Dutch Golden Age and the Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Tulp
A customized learn and travel trip, features include: a daily morning lecture with Dr. Jeff Aziz, R ijksmuseum, Hermitage Gallery, Hortus Botanicus, Rembrandt House, Madame Tussad's, Museum Boerhaave, Volendam and free time on your own to explore!  Learn More about this trip to Amsterdam.
Dates : May 2-10, 2020

OLLI at University of North Florida
Paradise in St. Augustine: Anastasia State Park
Explore more than 1,600 acres of unspoiled beaches, tidal marshes, maritime hammocks and ancient sand dunes. Ranger Billy McNaught leads you on an educational trek that encompasses commentary about the area, its history, wildlife and vegetation as well as dunes ecology and coquina pits. You may encounter pelicans diving for their lunch or dolphins playing a game of catch with a fish along the Salt Run. Meet the park's mascot and have the opportunity to relax and enjoy its beauty. Debrief over a hot dog roast and potluck lunch in the pavilion. Cameras welcome. Transportation is on your own.  Learn more about this ed-venture to St. Augustine .
Date: March 9, 2020

Quick Tips for Helping Operate an Osher Institute
didyouknowQuick Tip - OLLI New Year's Resolutions

The picture here speaks for itself, as these resolutions from the OLLI at Granite State College can apply to us all as we strive to make Osher Institutes sustainable and welcoming with a strong spirit of volunteerism! 

  Career Openings in the OLLI Network
jobboardJob Board
Director, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute
Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Coordinator - Tulsa

OLLI Administrative Assistant, Palm Desert Campus

OLLI Marketing Assistant, Palm Desert Campus
California State University, San Bernardino

Is there a staff opening at your Osher Institute? Please send it to us at  oshernrc@northwestern.edu