Osher Institute Receives Third Year of Funding; Reaches 400 Members
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Arkansas successfully completed its second year of operation having reached a total of 376 members, and begins its third year of funding exceeding the 400 member mark. The success of year two resulted in funding for year three. The institute is run as part of the university’s Global Campus.
During the second year of funding, a total of 86 different classes, workshops and field trips were conducted, serving a total of 807 participants. During a recent visit of university leaders with representatives from the Bernard Osher Foundation in San Francisco, discussions were held regarding an early start preparing to secure funding for the fourth year of the institute. The institute has set a goal of attaining 500 members and securing a $1 million endowment.
The institute offers courses and events to adults over 50 years of age who come together in a lively learning environment to explore intellectual and cultural topics of interest, share their experiences and talents and make new friends. Courses and events cover topics like global events, the arts, history, health science research and important local and worldwide issues of the day. Workshops and special events are led by current and retired University of Arkansas faculty and community experts.
Campuswide collaboration plays a key role in promoting the institute, as university units are involved in planning and instructing courses and promoting the institute. Those units include the Arkansas Alumni Association; the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences; the Pauline Whitaker Equine Science Center; the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences’ departments of geosciences, journalism and music; the Fulbright College Middle East studies program; the College of Education and Health Professions’ department of curriculum and instruction; the Sam M. Walton College of Business’ Applied Sustainability Center; the Cooperative Extension Service; and Museum Collections.
In addition to University of Arkansas involvement in the successes of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, many local organizations offer meeting venues, instructional expertise, promotional assistance and other resources geared toward increasing membership and offering high quality learning experiences.
The Bernard Osher Foundation, which seeks to improve quality of life through support for higher education and the arts, provides post-secondary scholarship funding to colleges and universities across the nation, with special attention to reentry students. It also benefits programs in integrative medicine in the United States and Sweden. In addition, the foundation supports a growing national lifelong learning network for seasoned adults. Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes exist on the campuses of 121 institutions of higher education from Maine to Hawaii. The foundation strives to open institutes in all 50 U.S. states.
This year’s U of A United Way Campaign begins Oct. 2 and runs through Nov. 3. Renewals and new donations will be accepted online throughout the campaign.
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