Fresno State releases course schedule for those age 50-plus

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  • Fresno State releases course schedule for those age 50-plus

Fresno State releases course schedule for those age 50-plus

Adults age 50 and better are invited to participate in spring semester classes, lectures, field trips and hands-on activities as part of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Fresno State. OLLI provides non-credit, university-level learning opportunities for older adults on the Fresno State campus.

The curriculum includes five general lecture sessions, including a special lecture on April 11 by Dr. Bill Thomas, a Harvard-educated physician who was named by the Wall Street Journal as one of America’s top 10 innovators. Thomas travels the nation leading efforts to educate society that later life is about growth and development, not decline. Thomas’ talk will challenge assumptions about aging.

The spring offering, sponsored by the Central Valley Community Foundation, also includes 25 short courses, a book club, eight field trips and five hands-on experiences. A $40 membership fee includes attendance at and parking for all general sessions, and eligibility to attend courses, field trips and hands-on experiences for nominal additional fees.

General session topics include retired Fresno Bee editor Jim Boren reflecting on a 40-plus year career in journalism, a talk by Central Valley Community Foundation CEO Ashley Swearingen on transforming a region and Fresno State professors discussing the art and science of mathematics and exploring the word “utopia” as a verb.

Course offerings span a wide range of interests. Spring semester courses include: former Fresno Bee arts reporter Donald Munro discussing the local art scene, a former CIA agent discussing the Islamic world from seventh century to present and the music, culture and architecture of Ireland featuring Irish folk band Pipe on the Hob. Field trips will visit the World Ag Expo, Fresno Chaffee Zoo and Paso Robles for wine tasting. Some of the hands-on experiences include cupcake decorating and coffee cupping classes.

OLLI connects the community with curious fellow learners and engaging instructors, including Fresno State and other area faculty, authors and artists. There are no tests, grades or exams — just a chance to dive into learning and recapture the thrill of intellectual growth and camaraderie.

For more information about OLLI courses or to become a member, visit or call 559.278.0008. OLLI is supported by the Bernard Osher Foundation. The foundation has launched programs at 120 universities and colleges throughout the United States. For more information about the program, or to sign up or receive a catalog, visit, email or call 559.278.0008.

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