OLLI UVM Program


A Retired Nurse Explores and Discovers with UVM’s OLLI Program

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-The UVM OLLI Program will travel to Croatia for 10 days in May 2020.

Judy Rivers is a lifelong learner who loves to travel.

That’s why she’s heading to Croatia for 10 days in May with UVM’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI), a community of adult learners who enjoy year-round courses, events, and travel experiences that are diverse, interesting, and affordable.

“I feel a sense of empowerment that I can do this trip,” says Rivers, a retired nurse who has taken courses and traveled with OLLI in years past. “I’m always astonished when I explore new areas around the world. The cultures are so different and the landscapes are incredibly beautiful. There are so many amazing places in the world and traveling is exciting.”

Offerings at the OLLI UVM Program

OLLI UVM Program
<em>Judy Rivers<em>

The OLLI program offers year-round courses and events for adult learners on the UVM campus in Burlington and in eight Vermont communities, including Brattleboro, Central Vermont, Lamoille Valley, Newport/Derby/Stanstead, Rutland, Springfield, St. Albans, and St. Johnsbury.

UVM is one of 124 colleges and universities in the United States that provide lifelong learning opportunities to adults age 50 and over through OLLI. In 2002, UVM received funding from the Bernard Osher Foundation to establish sites around Vermont, the first being in Rutland. Additional funding received in 2010 supported the start of a campus-based OLLI at UVM, and the Osher Foundation awarded another $1 million in 2016 to support the UVM OLLI program.

OLLI offers 250 lectures and courses every year on a variety of topics, including Vermont history, arts and literature, health and wellbeing, nature and environment, science and technology, politics and current events, travel and many others. Vermont’s OLLI membership has grown from an initial membership of 100 in 2003 to more than 1,000 today, with another 2,000 individuals attending lectures on a walk-in basis.

Rivers, who lives in Burlington, has traveled to Montreal, Quebec towns, and Italy with the OLLI program. She’s also planning on taking a variety of OLLI courses at UVM this fall, including “An Apple a Day: A Taste of Autumn’s Sweet Bounty,” “Introducing Islam in a Time of Islamophobia,” and “Saffron: Vermont’s New Gold Rush.”

“Going to classes as an adult makes you a more interesting person,” she says. “I think it’s important to keep learning, to try new things, and to experience other people’s viewpoints.”

Learn more about OLLI at UVM