NEW MSCN HEADER (With border)
Issue No. 19
September 2011
The MSCN Newsletter

Welcome to your September newsletter!   


hands with books illustrationSeptember traditionally brings "back to school" thoughts, and we know Maine's senior colleges are moving into high gear once again. But, it's still officially summer until September 23! This gives everyone plenty of time to capture summery photos for the MSCN Photo Contest. Soon the autumn leaves will be ready for their closeup. To make it easier to enter the MSCN Photo Contest, we've amended the contest rules and will accept photo prints in addition to digital photo files. Details on how to enter a photo print are included in this newsletter. 


Kyle and I will be representing the Maine Senior College Network at the Life Without Limits Expo in Brunswick on September 20. More information about the Expo is below, and we look forward to seeing Senior College members and potential new members there.


Kudos to Coastal Senior College, which is celebrating it's 10th anniversary with an event on September 15. You are invited -- the information is included in an article from Kay Liss. 


In this issue we also bring you news of an exciting "Forum on the Future" series of lectures that the University of Maine Augusta Senior College is co-sponsoring, and a new class on terrorism offered by Coastal Senior College, along with a poem from a UMASC member. 


Did someone mention poetry? There is still time to enter this year's MSCN Poet Laureate contest, and we have included information on eligibility and how to enter.


We hope you all enjoy the remaining weeks of summer! 




Kali Lightfoot

Executive Director

Maine Senior College Network   

Visit MSCN at the Life Without Limits Expo

trade show booth illustrationMSCN is a co-sponsor and will be exhibiting at the September 20th Life Without Limits Expo in Brunswick at the Cook's Corner Mall. The Expo runs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and it will be a happening place! More than 50 exhibitors will be on hand to demonstrate how you can live life to the fullest.

In addition to information about Maine's Senior College Network, information will be available from additional exhibitors on money management, choosing the right assisted living arrangement, and finding a great support person for your home. Many free health screenings will be available, and various exhibitors (including MSCN) will be holding drawings for prizes and offering giveaways. The Expo is free and open to the public and will be informative and fun!
UMA Senior College Launches
Forum on the Future

Fork in the road illustrationThe Senior College at the University of Maine, Augusta (UMASC), in collaboration with the University, is poised to initiate a series of six lectures featuring some of the top thinkers in the State on the future of Maine. The inspiration for the series is the question, "What kind of world are we leaving to the next generation, and what can we do about it?" Directed primarily to seniors, but also intended to reach community leaders and educators, the series will be open and free to the public and will take place over the coming academic year.  

The series is undertaken with the two assumptions:

1) that Maine's older citizens are actually a potent political and social force for change in Maine, and

2) that the best way to control the future is to create it.

Presenters will address issues concerning the economy, energy and the environment, health care, and education.

Some of the speakers that UMASC will bring to the podium are: Laurie Lachance of the Maine Development Foundation; Habib Dagher, innovative Professor of Engineering at the University of Maine; Yellow Light Breen from the Maine Coalition for Excellence in Education; and Paul Kando, founder of the Midcoast Green Collaborative. The University of Maine at Augusta, with the collaboration of UMASC, will sponsor a presentation by T. R. Reid, health systems expert and author of The Healing of America.

Workshops on the electrical power system and how elders can help facilitate the science and math education of Maine's youth will be part of the series. All events will be held on the University of Maine Augusta campus, and most occur in the afternoon.

Download a pdf at this link for more detailed information on the lectures, and dates of the presentations.

-submitted for University of Maine Augusta Senior College by Charles Acker.
Now It's Even Easier to Enter the MSCN Photo Contest

Photo of Kelsey BrookGorgeous sunsets, panoramic shore views, lush woodlands -- the beauty of nature surrounds us in Maine. If you enjoy capturing this wonderful scenery with your digital camera, it's a snap to enter MSCN's first photography contest. The contest theme is "Outdoor Maine," photos taken of the natural world in our beautiful state.

If you are a member of a Maine Senior College you are eligible to enter. One entry per person, please, and the submitted photo must be previously unpublished.

Now there is a second way to submit your photo entry: photos may be submitted in digital format or as photo prints. If you submit a photo print and wish to have it returned to you, you must enclose a self-addressed stamped envelope.

Please email your digital entry as an attachment to or, mail your photo print to:
Kyle Allen
Maine Senior College Network
University of Southern Maine
PO Box 9300
Portland, ME 04104-9300

Be sure to include your name, where your photo was taken, and tell us which Maine Senior College you belong to. Deadline for entries is November 1, 2011. The photographer of the image judged the top pick will receive a Sony 8" digital photo frame, and the winner will be announced in the December MSCN newsletter.
Sunrise's Summer Shorts Offered Variety & Fun!

sun & sunflower illustrationEach summer Sunrise Senior College presents "Summer Shorts." This program consists primarily of one-day programs with a focus on local history, the arts and artisans, outdoor enjoyment, and fun activities. Summer Shorts programs are free as they are considered a benefit of membership with Sunrise Senior College. The summer programs are particularly enjoyed by the area's many seasonal residents who like learning about the local area. If "out of the area" company is visiting, they are allowed to accompany SSC members for a $5 fee if there is room in the class.

This summer, from June to the end of August, SSC presented nearly 20 programs during Summer Shorts. Six months went into the program's planning by the Summer Shorts and Special Events Committee. Committee members were: Joan Miller, chairperson; Benita Gaddis, Ruth Thurston, Gretchen Cherry, Don McKinnon, Arlene Hutnik, and Joanne Jacob. Gail Peters was an ex officio member, and Etta Abrahams played a huge role by preparing the brochure and giving helpful hints to the committee members about how to make the program a success.

There were many offers from presenters to do programs this summer, which accounts for such a successful season. Summer Shorts kicked off with a "Walk Down Main Street" with Nancy Begley narrating the long ago happenings in the historic village of Lubec. The season ended with a geologic tour of the Roque Bluffs area, led by Dr. Richard Gilman.  

Following is a list of the presenters and the wide variety of expertise they exhibited. Bill Plaskon presented a slide show discussing Renata Chlumska's kayak and bicycle trip around the perimeter of the United States on the 5th anniversary of her trip. Some of us had the good fortune to meet her five years ago when she arrived in Jonesport, Lubec, and Eastport, the eastern-most point in the US!

Etta Abrahams taught how to safely shop on the Internet; Charlotte McKinnon helped members brush up on their Bridge game. Jeremy Gabrielson showed attendees little-known places to travel in the area. Robert Hammond discussed the history of shipbuilding in the Milbridge area. Al Saffer talked about the seafaring Lord Nelson and the battles he won and lost, ultimately losing his life at the battle of Trafalgar. Students were even carried off to Egypt (as armchair travelers) when Gail Peters and Joanne Jacob, dressed in native garb, presented a wonderful view of their Egyptian travels. Jerry Metz also launched an armchair travel session to Cuba when he entertained attendees with lively, little-known information about the Cubans and their island home. And, Charlie Cameron also took a group of armchair travelers back to England and enlightened them about Henry the Eighth and the dissolution of the monasteries. Local travel included the Downeast Sunrise Trail along the old rail road bed from Bangor to Calais, complete with Charlie Corliss describing the trail's building, and there was a tour of the Downeast Marine Institute on Beals Island.
A note about Senior Health: Deb Ekhart of the Washington County Cooperative Extension discussed healthy living for seniors. Also, Gretchen Cherry continued her walking program from the spring semester so seniors could stay active, utilizing the Elm Street School Gymnasium for perambulating.

Cynthia Huntington's Tunk Mountain Art Gallery was opened to our group, and a group of artists explained their work in this creative setting near Cherryfield. Jane Weil hosted a trip to the Schoodic International Sculpture Symposium near Prospect Harbor, where we were able to observe sculptors at work, creating pieces that will be placed in many of our communities.

On a final note, there was a special event this summer. Twenty-four SSC members took a bus trip to the Maine Coastal Botanical Gardens in Boothbay. They spent the day touring the grounds, enjoying flowers in bloom, taking in the scenery and relaxing in each other's company.  As always, summer went by too quickly, but a good time was had by all.  

- submitted by Joan Miller and Gail Peters for Sunrise Senior College in Machias.
Coastal Senior College Celebrates Its 10th Year!

Illustration of two people and the number 10Coastal Senior College (CSC) in Rockland  will celebrate its 10th anniversary on Thursday, September 15, from 4 to 6  p.m. at Thomaston Academy, its original home.

CSC began in the summer of 2001 when a steering committee was formed through the University of Maine at Thomaston (now located in Rockland). The first classes began in the spring of 2002 for CSC's 141 members. CSC now has 350 members and offers about 20 eight-week courses in the spring and fall as well as some shorter courses in the winter. Classrooms are located in Camden, Rockland, Damariscotta, Waldoboro, Thomaston and Boothbay.

The celebration will feature live music, refreshments, slides and presentations by founders, including David Bailey of Newcastle. Thomaston Academy is on Route 1 in Thomaston. Call 1-800-286-1594 for more information and to make a reservation.

- submitted for Coastal Senior College by Kay Liss
Coastal Senior College Offers Course on Terrorism

Coastal Senior College instructor Tom McCarthy

Coastal Senior College instructor Tom McCarthy

Former employees of the U.S. State Department or the CIA seem to be drawn to the Camden area. Such was the case for Tom McCarthy who heard about the Camden Conference and its mission to foster discourse on world issues. As a  long-term employee of the Secret Service and the State Department, the Camden Conference offerings dovetailed with Tom's interests and inspired him to to return to New England when he retired. He has only been in the Camden area for a short time, but has already become a regular with the Midcoast Forum on Foreign Relations.

Tom will be teaching an upcoming class for Coastal Senior College entitled "Terrorism: A Personal Perspective."  Starting in 1995, he traveled around the world for the State Department, including to Iraq and Afghanistan, lecturing and providing training to host countries' security forces, focusing on combating terrorism.

One of the things Tom is most concerned about is how information on terrorism threats in the United States is coordinated with the various agencies involved.

"A lot of the reaction to 9/11 was sort of knee-jerk," he said. "The Department of Homeland Security was created, and that has to deal with the CIA and the FBI. The system still has a lot of rough edges. The problem is that human nature is not inclined to share things."

Tom said that much of the emphasis of his class will be on the global context of terrorism today. "The Internet is such an important part of terrorist groups now, how they can communicate their message. But on the positive side, technology also offers groups like those that have risen up in the so-called "Arab Spring" to organize and communicate."

Another aspect of world-wide terrorism that is much debated now is whether to use counterinsurgency, which is more like nation-building, or counter-terrorism, which is focused on military action, McCarthy pointed out. 

McCarthy indicated he didn't think we should have gone into the Iraq War, but since we made the mistake, we have an obligation to see it through, as we do in Afghanistan. One of the biggest mistakes we made in Iraq was the attitude we had, which was generally "arrogant," Tom said, especially in our managing of the war under Paul Bremer and then the extreme culmination of that arrogance, the atrocities of Abu Ghraib.

"One of the things we train the local security forces in is human rights," he explained. "Often I would be confronted with the hypocrisy of this when an Iraqi would then ask me about Abu Ghraib. Ethical behavior always wins in the long haul, no matter what." He said the way in which American forces are being trained now in Afghanistan, with more emphasis on learning something about the culture and even the language, has been a big improvement. "It's always important to hear the other point of view. Underneath our cultural differences, we see that we are all the same -- we all want to be treated with dignity, and we all care about the well-being of our families and loved ones."

Tom hopes that by learning more about Muslim countries, Americans who equate Muslims with terrorism will see that, as with any violent movement, it is only a handful of people who cause the trouble. The problem is it only takes a couple of terrorists with some dangerous weapons to create havoc.
Tom McCarthy's class will be held on Wednesdays, September 21 through October 12, from 1 to 3 pm at the University College in Rockland. To sign up for this course or one of 13 others offered at Coastal Senior College, call 800-286-1594 or visit the website at
- Submitted for Coastal Senior College in Rockland by Kay Liss.
You Could Be The Next MSCN Poet Laureate!

illustration of beatnik poetDo you write poetry? Are you a member of a Maine senior college? Then you could be the 2011 MSCN Poet Laureate!

It's easy to enter -- just submit a piece of your unpublished work (one poem per person, please) to: MSCN, Attention: Kyle Allen, P.O. Box 9300, Portland, ME 04104, or email your poem to Kyle at Be sure to include your name, contact information, and note at which Maine Senior College you are a member.
The deadline for submissions is November 1, 2011. The winner will be announced and their poem will be included in the December MSCN Newsletter, and the 2011 MSCN Poet Laureate will receive an Amazon Kindle e-book reader.
The Poet's Corner

Jack was a good bird


A careless step,

and you were broken beyond hope.

Still alive, I held you in my palm,

feeling  the warmth of your tiny body;

and then I took your life and wept.

In my mind you are on my shoulder still

Your plumage is brilliant.

- by Jonathan Lepoff, University of Maine Augusta Senior College
In This Issue
Visit MSCN at the Life Without Limits Expo
UMASC Launches Forum on the Future
Enter the MSCN Photography Contest!
Sunrise's Summer Shorts
Coastal Senior College Celebrates Its 10th Year!
Coastal Senior College Offers Course on Terrorism
You Could Be The 2011 MSCN Poet Laureate?
The Poet's Corner
Don't forget to go to the Maine Senior College Network website to find out what is happening around the state!

Maine Senior College Network 
Maine Senior College Network

Acadia Senior College

Augusta Senior College
Bridgton Senior College

Coastal Senior College

Downeast Senior College

Gold LEAF Institute


Lewiston-Auburn Senior College

Midcoast Senior College

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute

Penobscot Valley Senior College


Senior College UMaine Hutchinson Center

St. John Valley Senior College

Sunrise Senior College 
Western Mountains Senior College

York County Senior College
The Maine Senior College Network Display Boards are available to any senior college that would like to borrow them. For more information, check out the link below.

About Us
Maine Senior College Network
P.O. Box 9300
Portland, Maine 04104-9300
(207)780-4317 (fax)
Kali Lightfoot
Executive Director
Anne Cardale
Director of Communication 
Director of Conferences

Kyle Allen
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Deadline:  Third week of each month for the following month's edition