NRC OSHER Lifelong Learning Institute

National Resource Center

for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes Newsletter

May 2014
In This Issue
Greetings from Kali
OLLIs -- Toot Your Horns!
Virtual Resource Table
OLLI at UGA Opera Special Interest Group Awards Scholarship
OLLI at George Mason Teacher Appreciation
2014 Southern Regional Lifelong Learning Meeting
Congratulations to UNF OLLI Member
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 Greetings from Kali

The theme of the newsletter this month could be celebrations, which seems appropriate to the month of May, traditionally full of spring festivals and graduations and other happy things.  Here at the National Resource Center we are slowly winding down from the national conference and looking forward to the summer months ahead.

Best regards, Kali


OLLIs -- Toot Your Horns!
Toot your horn! (Or in this case your harmonica.)
Does your OLLI have news that you are proud of and would like to share with the network? The NRC newsletter is looking for articles about those
special happenings that you know will inspire and excite others. So, keep the network newsletter in mind as a place to "toot your horn!" 

If you have a story to share, please send it (with photos if possible) to Fran or Anne at the National Resource Center.

Photos from the 2014 OLLI National Conference

The 2014 National Conference was an enormous success by all reports! Here are a few photos to bring back memories.
(Above) Conference attendees: Deb Klevans (Penn State) , Virginia O'Leary (Auburn), Sarah Benton (Penn State) and Julie Mitchell (Dayton).

(Above) Time for coffee and a chat between workshops. Jack Philips (CSU Channel Islands), Jim Wyrtzen and James Forcier (UC San Diego).
 (Above) Shino John from Rutgers speaks at The Hungry Games: Catching Funds,  a general session with additional presenters Adam Brunner and Donna Satir (Temple), Katy Crapo and Tom Kenyon (Georgia, Athens) and Jeanette Toohey (in photo above) from North Florida. 
 (Above) View of the evening gathering on the sunlit lawns of the Park Hyatt Aviara Hotel
Visit the 2014 National Conference archive page on the national website to see more conference photos, as well as the  2014 Virtual Resource Table and Conference Workshops (with downloadable documents and PowerPoints!)


OLLI at UGA Opera Special Interest Group Awards Scholarships 
On May 8, 2014 the Opera Special Interest Group presented the first OLLI at UGA Opera Scholarships at the Hugh Hodgson School of Music Graduation and Awards Convocation. Six $1000 scholarships were presented to UGA opera students Benjamin Boskoff, Joseph Brent, Marisan Corsino, Avery Draut, Kelsey Fredriksen and Mauro Ronca. At the OLLI at UGA Annual Meeting on May 16th the seventh scholarship was presented to Elizabeth Slaten. 


The funds for these scholarships were raised at two very successful events. The first was an in home Soiree Musicale hosted by Tom and Karen Kenyon with six opera students singing opera arias and musical theater numbers for the enjoyment of 30 invited guests plus three guests of honor from the School of Music. Mauro Ronca accompanied the vocalists. A delicious light supper followed the performance. The second was a pre-reserved Italian Dinner and Opera Musicale hosted by La Dolce Vita in downtown Athens. Ray Zwaagstra was chair of this event which sold all 70 seats in 10 days. After a wonderful Italian dinner nine opera students accompanied by Mauro Ronca entertained the guests. At both events the guests included Opera SIG members, OLLI@UGA members, friends of members and friends of opera from the Athens metro area. Total amount raised was $6,825. 


The Opera SIG was formed in May 2008 by John Rudy and Nancy Songster, with Frederick Burchinal, Director of Opera at UGA serving as student liaison and advisor. Prior to each of the MetOpera Live in HD broadcasts opera students present information about the opera at a luncheon for OLLI at UGA members and their guests. OLLI members attend the student productions and recitals at the university.


September of 2013 the OLLI at UGA Board approved the Opera SIG's proposal to raise funds for Opera Graduate Scholarships. A steering committee was organized for this on-going project: Janet Konecny - Treasurer, Ray Zwaagstra - Opera Dinners, Peg Graham and Jim Marshall - publicity, John Rudy - advisor, John Songster - OLLI financial advisor, Tom and Karen Kenyon - fund raising advisors, Frederick Burchinal and Kathryn Wright - Opera Department advisors, and Nancy Songster - chair.

This is a win-win outreach success!


 Submitted by - Nancy Songster, OLLI at University of Georgia, Athens 


Teacher Appreciation Reception and Student Scholarship Ceremony held at OLLI at George Mason University  

Since its establishment in 1991, OLLI-Mason has recognized the George Mason University faculty, OLLI members and outside experts who dedicate precious time and talent to teach classes at OLLI. This year, OLLI recognized 20 outstanding Mason students who will share $16,000 in scholarship monies provided through donations from members of OLLI. 


George Mason University President Angel Cabrera, the keynote speaker, said "I can't be more grateful to OLLI" for the money it awards Mason students each year to boost access to quality education, a primary goal of this administration. Mason Provost Peter Stearns extolled the strong bonds between OLLI and Mason as consistent with the University's 2014-24 Strategic Plan to increase the university's community engagement. 


Stearns, a long-standing supporter and frequent OLLI-Mason instructor, was awarded an honorary lifelong OLLI membership at the event, a tribute to all he has done for the Institute. He commended university professors for teaching at OLLI because it "benefits us as an institution," not only in terms of scholarship monies coming back to Mason students, but also as a platform for "alternative and stimulating" teaching opportunities. Dr. Brian Platt, chair of Mason's Department of History and Art History agreed, describing OLLI teaching experience as "terrific" where classrooms are "packed with extremely attentive students with many thoughtful and stimulating questions." 

Photos above: Over 100 teachers, students, Mason dignitaries and OLLI members gathered at George Mason University Center for the Arts for an afternoon of accolades and awards as OLLI-Mason celebrated its annual "Teacher Appreciation Reception and Student Scholarship Ceremony."

A highlight of the afternoon was hearing from Mason scholarship winners about their aspirations and plans for spending award monies. Tanisha Paige, a 31-year-old undergraduate in the College of Health and Human Services, looks forward to taking a sign language immersion course this summer that she could not afford without the award. Paige expressed her "wholehearted appreciation" to OLLI for helping her reach her educational goals. Jamaican-born Karelle Samuda will use her award to help defer the cost of Mason tuition. She is a PhD candidate in the School of Public Policy financing her tuition as a graduate research assistant. 


This is the best of the Mason nation: two campuses coming together for their mutual benefit. Mason teachers enriching OLLI students with classes; OLLI students generously giving to Mason scholarships. At OLLI we like to say, 'Giving is the OLLI way!' Special thanks are given to Burke Florist for generously donating flowers and loaning plants and votives for the reception.


Submitted by - Jennifer Disano, OLLI at George Mason University


2014 Southern Regional Lifelong Learning Meeting:
Asheville, North Carolina July 30- August 1, 2014

Congratulations to UNF OLLI Member Richard Lundgren!


Richard was featured in the Spring 2014 issue of "Pastelagram", the journal of the Pastel Society of America. The article highlighted Richard's professional achievements and provided insights about his creative processes. Learn more about the artist and his work by visiting his website.   

Submitted by -  Jeanette Toohey, OLLI at Florida State

Jottings heading

Jottings by courtesy of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

  •  Making the Right Moves: Promoting Smart Growth and Active Aging in Communities 
    • A recent article entitled "Making the Right Moves: Promoting Smart Growth and Active Aging in Communities," was recently published in the Journal of Aging and Public Policy. The article describes U.S. EPA's award program for excellence in smart growth and active aging. The policy changes undertaken by the award winning communities have short-and long-term benefits that are important for persons of all ages, including our elders and persons of all abilities. If you would like a copy please send an email to  
Call for Abstracts 
  • American Society on Aging Conference
    • The Call for Proposals to present at ASA's 2015 Aging in America Conference is now open! Showcase your innovative research and ideas and be a part of a forward-thinking community of professionals who care about the quality of life for older adults. Deadline for submissions is June 30, 2014.  The conference will be held in Chicago from March 23-27, 2015. 
  • Society for Human Ecology Conference: Ecological Responsibility and Human Imagination: Saving the Past~Shaping the Future.  (Location: Bar Harbor, Maine. Dates: October 22 to 25, 2014.)
    • Call for Participation - Preliminary proposals for Symposia, Paper Sessions and Workshops are invited immediately. Suggestions from all areas of human ecology - theory, education, research and practice - are welcomed. Hosted by College of the Atlantic - an independent educational institution fully dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of human ecology, offering the B.A. and M. Phil in Human Ecology. Take part in a diverse international and interdisciplinary gathering. Contribute to a wide range of formal and informal exchanges in a relaxed atmosphere. Enjoy beautiful Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park at the peak of fall foliage in northern New England.
      Program suggestions can be mailed to: Conference Committee, SHE XX, c/o College of the Atlantic, 105 Eden Street, Bar Harbor, ME 04609, USA or via email x
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