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Osher Lifelong Learning Institute to Recognize Volunteers

Date 7-10-06

Contact Jana Bryant 601.266.4497

Hattiesburg—Volunteer facilitators at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at the University of Southern Mississippi will be recognized at a “Celebration of OLLI Talent” at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, July 12, at the Peck House Asbury Annex located at 3601 Pearl St. in Hattiesburg.

The event will also showcase the artwork that OLLI members have created through the institute’s art classes in addition to providing interested persons a look at some of the institute’s offerings, said event coordinator Don Hegwood. Persons interested in finding out more about the OLLI are invited to attend.

”There’s no other organization in this region that provides these kinds of activities for senior citizens that contributes to their quality of life and helps make them more healthy contributors to the community,” said Hegwood, a three-year member of the OLLI and a retired university professor.

Nearly 20 volunteers who are members of the institute will be recognized for their contributions to two projects over the past year.

Ten members were trainers for a project that placed computers in five nursing/independent living homes in Hattiesburg, Collins and Lumberton and provided training to residents who had never used a computer. “The project was quite successful,” said Hegwood. “One grandmother learned to use e-mail so she could communicate with her grandson in Iraq.”

In another project, the OLLI was one of 19 institutions nationwide over the past few months to participate in “The Elderquest in Today’s Movies and Novels” project. During weekly sessions, participants examined a book or movie that highlighted issues faced by older persons.

“There are so few older people who are depicted as heroes in film and novels. These classes helped our members relate to the challenge of growing older,” said Sue Pace, OLLI director.

With a membership of 400, the OLLI is a member-driven, member-governed and member–taught organization, said Pace. “This is not a service organization. It is unique in its concept of peer teaching and learning.”

The institute offers a variety of ongoing classes, seminars and field trips to members. For more information about membership and course offerings, call 601.266.4186.


July 10, 2006 10:16 AM

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