NEW MSCN HEADER (With border)
Issue No. 49
May 2014
The MSCN Newsletter
Welcome to Your May Newsletter!

It does seem that we have finally survived what many are seeing as the worst winter in recent memory.  I am enjoying little bursts of color as flowers start to bloom in yards and gardens on the way between my home and office.  A grand sigh of relief!

The newsletter attests to the fact that even while the snow was flying, there was plenty going on at Senior Colleges around the state.  And more great things are in store for Spring and Summer.  Enjoy!



Kali Lightfoot

Executive Director

Maine Senior College Network    


Lewiston-Auburn Invited to
 Private Preview
Lewiston/Auburn Senior College members were invited to a private preview of the exhibit "Ant Farm at the Nexus of Art and Science" at the Lewiston/Auburn College's Atrium Art Gallery before the Grand Opening April 11 to the public.  Artists Colleen Kinsella, Rebecca Goodale and Vivien Russe led the group on the tour and the afternoon was spent discussing the different art pieces. 
Members Bonnie Ross and Carol Seward at the Ant Physiology painting.  Photo by Rachel Morin
Members Linda DeSantis and Ruth Linehan at the large scroll depicting leafcutter ants carrying leaves to their huge layout of underground rooms.  Photo by Rachel Morin
submitted by - Rachel Morin, Lewiston-Auburn 
Bladder Health and Changes:  From Sneezes to Kegels

Cathy Heffernan, CNM, MSN, told an audience of over two dozen women at a recent To Your Health program that bladder control issues are not a normal part of aging. Cathy, a Certified Midwife with a Master's Degree in Nursing, has over 30 years' experience in women's health care.
Western Mountains "To Your Health" committee members
(l to r) Rosabelle Tifft, Judy Whitman, Ellen Crocker and Jan Stowell with speaker Cathy Heffeman (center).

In her talk, Cathy explained what women need to know about their bladders. She discussed risk factors for incontinence or prolapse and different types of remedies that medicine might offer. She emphasized that strength is the foundation for good bladder health. Pelvic muscle exercises, known as "kegels," are resistance exercises for preventive care or problems, and women should follow them regularly for good bladder health. Cathy explained how women can learn to do these exercises, how often they should be done, and how they can help with bladder issues. She also covered other interventions beyond kegels.  As indicated in the evaluations, the program was well received by participants who found it very interesting and educational. An up-to-date reprint covering kegel exercises was available for participants; additional copies of this handout are available in the Adult Ed Office at Telstar High School for interested persons unable to attend.

The program was sponsored by To Your Health of WMSC with the collaboration of Bethel Family Health Center and MSAD#44 Adult Education.
submitted by - Rosabelle Tifft, Western Mountain 
Belfast Senior College 12th Annual Festival of Art


submitted by - Sara Shute, Senior College at Belfast
Gold LEAF Tackles
Dangerous Convictions

Up in Franklin County, senior college members are busy touring local businesses, writing poetry, and studying cultures and religions of the world. As if that weren't enough to keep us out of trouble, a book group is discussing in depth Tom Allen's book Dangerous Convictions. This class is being co-led by GLI President Mary Viruleg and active member Claudia Bell. 
The two presenters have reams of notes and volumes of questions for the group to consider. Mary began the first session by sharing a biographical summary of Tom Allen's career as U.S. Congressman from Maine and some of his other involvements.
This sort of discussion, of course, lays us open to what can be heated debate. For years, Gold LEAF held a regular current events class and followed that up with a "Digest the News" class. It was noted by the Curriculum Committee that some LLIs offer this sort of discussion, including recent offerings in Acadia, and are willing to step into the fray and let members talk about politics in a facilitated format. So far we are happy to report no casualties.
Actually, a number of participants are making comments to the effect that these are exactly the type of conversations that need to be held across the nation, and it is good to see LLIs willing to get the ball rolling. In this past week's class, we conversed about the influence of Ayn Rand on current-day influential legislators and we gained insight into the appeal of her writing, especially on the young. These insights provide a lot of help in understanding the logic that lies behind the use of words like "entitlements". Words that affect us all.

Indeed, how can we expect bipartisanship to pick up again in Congress if we, as citizens, are not willing to speak "across the aisle," as it were? Great concern was expressed about ALEC and its influences, and who knows, but these discussions could even lead to a bit of activism, or at least "digital citizenry" as we bring in our "homework" for an upcoming class. Check in again next month to see if we are all still standing.  


submitted by -  Eileen Kreutz, Gold LEAF

Sunrise Offers Beading Class


 I love necklaces. They remind me of my mother. When Sunrise Senior College offered a beading class,  I immediately signed up hoping that I would be able to restore my mom's broken old bead necklaces, my treasures. At first we had an introduction summer short class where we learned how to make a bracelet. You have to be very patient for this course.  I am a slow learner and with arthritis in my hands, I was not able to finish my bracelet during class.  When an advanced beading class was offered in the fall I took it only because I wanted to finish my first project. Our teacher, Marcy MacMahon, was very inspiring.  She told me I could make a necklace myself,  too.  Not only did I finish my bracelet and necklace, I was also able to restore (or repair) my mom's broken necklaces during winter storms.  Thank you SSC for wonderful courses that made this harsh winter less stressful and even enjoyable.


The picture attached show my two new creations on top and my mother's two restored necklaces on the bottom.


submitted by - Yelena Kozlova, Sunrise
L-A Food for Thought
Michael Chaney, Executive Director of the Frances Perkins Center, based in Newcastle, and Leah Sprague, founding board member and immediate past chair of the Frances Perkins Center, will be the speakers at the USM Lewiston / Auburn Senior College "Food for Thought" 11:30 luncheon on Friday, May 9. They will give an interesting presentation on Frances Perkins, President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Secretary of Labor and the first woman ever to serve in a presidential cabinet. 
Frances Perkins is acknowledged as the woman behind the New Deal, the woman who created Social Security, the minimum wage, unemployment insurance, the 40-hour work week, the limits on child labor, and the modern middle class.
Learn about how this self-made woman, with roots in the humble Maine farm her ancestors had settled in the 1750's, rose to become America's leading advocate for industrial safety and worker's rights.

Leah Sprague is a founding board member and immediate past chair of the Frances Perkins Center. A graduate of Brown University and Boston University School of Law, Sprague is a retired justice of the Massachusetts Trial Court. Following her move to Maine in 2002, Sprague continues her work in dispute resolution as a member of the Maine Bar. She will discuss
Frances Perkins remarkable achievements, why she was lost to history until recent years and what her legacy means for Americans today.

Michael Chaney is the Executive Director of the Frances Perkins Center, based in Newcastle with administrative offices and a public exhibit on Main Street in Damariscotta. Chaney, a native of Alna, holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Maine-Orono and a Master's in history from the
University of Connecticut. Before returning to Maine in 2010, Chaney's career was in non-profit management and public history in Vermont and New Hampshire, including, from 2001 to 2009, serving as President and CEO of the New Hampshire Political Library, a non-profit educational organization founded to preserve New Hampshire's first-in-the-nation presidential primary. From 2010 until earlier this year, Chaney was the Executive Director of the Yarmouth Historical Society. He will talk about the Frances Perkins Center and its work to fulfill the legacy of Frances Perkins by continuing her work for social justice and economic security and preserving for future generations her nationally significant family homestead.

Senior College, now in its 16th year, presents the monthly 11:30 luncheon program in the Function Room 170 at USM LAC. The cost, which includes lunch, is $7 with advance reservation or $8 at the door. Reservations must be made by noon on Thursday, May 8, by calling 753-6510. Any late callers will be considered "at the door."

submitted by Rachel Morin, Lewiston-Auburn 

 Sunrise Senior Summer Shorts Program 

Sunrise Senior College (SSC) recently announced its upcoming "Summer Shorts" schedule.  The seventeen exciting and diverse workshops are either one or two-day events to accommodate everyone's busy summers.  The classes range from art workshops to piracy and from monkeys to murder mysteries, to name just a few.  SSC members are extremely fortunate to be able to draw upon the talents of so many accomplished presenters, who are willing to donate their time to our all-volunteer organization.  All Summer Shorts workshops are free to senior college members.  In addition, SSC continues its efforts to increase wider community participation in its offerings by opening three of these workshops at no cost to the community. 


submitted by - Jackie Lowe, Sunrise

News From Here and There

Belfast Senior College is progressing well with their efforts to provide online membership and course registration.  They would be happy to share their experience with other senior colleges who might be looking at the same possibility.  Please contact David Beebe at for more information.

Northeast Lifelong Learning Conference is being held on

June 1-3, 2014 at the University of Massachusetts Conference Center, Amherst, MA. Both mental stimulation and an active social life are keys to successful aging, and the theme of the conference is "Learning and Social Engagement." This theme will echo through many of the conference sessions and presentations. The Keynote speaker will be Dr. Susan Krauss Whitbourne, professor of psychology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Dr. Whitbourne's research has focused on adult development and aging, and includes topics ranging from contributors to successful aging to the relationship between physical health and personal identity. Click here for more information. 


Maine Senior Guide is hosting a senior expo on May 7th at Saint Maximillian Kolbe Church in Scarborough.  For more info visit the Maine Senior Guide website.

Like MSCN on Facebook

Facebook logo Now you can "like" Maine Senior College Network on Facebook. We've created an MSCN page on Facebook, so please visit it to share experiences, ideas, photos, and information about upcoming Maine Senior College happenings. We'll also post links to articles about lifelong learning and other topics relevant to senior college members.


Lupin Image: By Theendofforever at en.wikipedia. Later version(s) were uploaded by Ram-Man at en.wikipedia, from Wikimedia Commons
Grandmanan Boats:By Meantimeus (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
In This Issue
Lewiston-Auburn Invited to Private Preview
Bladder Health and Changes
Belfast Senior College 12th Annual Festival of Art
Gold LEAF Tackles Dangerous Convictions
Sunrise Offers Beading Class
L-A Food for Thought
Sunrise Senior Summer Shorts Program
News From Here and There
Like MSCN on Facebook!
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
Coastal Senior College

Downeast Senior College

Gold LEAF Institute

South Coast Senior College

Midcoast Senior College

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute

Penobscot Valley Senior College


Senior College at Belfast

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.

Maine Senior Guide is a comprehensive web resource about all things senior that provides "one stop shopping" for Maine's seniors at 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

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