For more than 60 years,
a publication centered on life in Mississippi.
Today is September 16, 2021

It’s amazing what you can learn on a pontoon boat

By Dallas Gorbett

It’s amazing what you can learn on a pontoon boat

Have you ever gone birding on a pontoon boat with a bunch of your friends on the Pascagoula River? Join a community of adults 50 and above who are having fun discovering new interests in art, history, science, and many other wide-ranging subjects.

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at The University of Southern Mississippi is a welcoming place for seniors to develop new and lasting friendships and to be part of an open, inclusive and thriving community.

OLLI offers noncredit courses with no assignments or grades to “seasoned” adults regardless of their educational background. Just because you spent your career in finance, physics or forestry doesn’t mean gardening, genealogy and gallivanting across the state (or beyond!) are off-limits.

The curriculum is as broad and diverse as its members. History, literature, science, health, exercise, art, current affairs, computer skills, religious history, cooking, bridge lessons and, yes, ukulele lessons are among the many offerings. There are field trips and longer travel excursions to cement friendships.

Classes are presented in a mixture of in-person (following the Southern Miss pandemic protocols for safety) and online — a community at your fingertips if you can’t attend in-person. The new digital technologies have made it possible for anyone to be an active member. (We even have out-of-state members.) Live classes are held at both the Hattiesburg and Long Beach Southern Miss campuses.

There are Special Interest Groups (SIGS) for members who want to dig deeper into a subject or activity that excites them. They include life story and poetry writing, book clubs, bridge and poker players (chips, not cash), photography, current events and ukulele. They’re free to paid members.

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute has 124 branches nationwide with thousands of members. Southern Miss hosts the only OLLI in Mississippi.

 

For more information, email olli@usm.edu or call at 601-264-2780 or 228-214-3277. Check out the full range of offerings at www.usm.edu/lifelong-learning. The faculty and instructors are current and retired teachers, professors and experts in their fields.

 

In celebration of OLLI’s 30th anniversary at Southern Miss, the new member’s fee has been reduced to $30 this year only. The usual annual fee is $50 in Hattiesburg and $40 in Long Beach. Dallas Gorbett, a transplanted Yankee, moved to Hattiesburg in 2007 and joined OLLI — a life-improving experience — shortly after that.

 

Dallas Gorbett, a transplanted Yankee, moved to Hattiesburg in 2007 and joined OLLI — a life-improving experience — shortly after that.

Site designed by Marketing Alliance, Inc.