Learning in Retirement with Nina Scott: Five College Learning in Retirement to hold a preview of its spring programs on Sunday

  • Katy van Geel and Nina Scott will moderate a Five College Learning in Retirement course next spring focused on food and memory. The course is one of 17 to be offered as part of the 5CLIR program. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Published: 11/18/2021 12:24:14 PM

One really good feature of the Five College Learning in Retirement (5CLIR) program is the opportunity to listen to moderators of upcoming courses explain what exactly they plan to cover in their courses, making it easier to decide if this course is for me or not.

This preview event used to take place at Smith or Mount Holyoke colleges, where prospective attendees could circulate among tables behind which were seated moderators with some of their teaching materials; it was easy to ask questions of those whose courses interested you, and it was also nice to get some refreshments and talk with other LIR members.

The pandemic has changed all that and the organization has had to pivot to figure out a new format on Zoom. This year, a preview of the spring programs will take place on Zoom this Sunday from 2-4 p.m.

It actually works quite well, though you have to bring your own coffee and refreshments. The big advantage of Zoom is that you don’t have to drive in bad weather and interested folks who are not in our immediate geographic area can also join. (At the moment we have two who live in Tulsa, Oklahoma.)

We have 17 seminars listed for the Spring 2022 semester; they run mornings (9:30-11:30) or afternoons (1:30-3:30) on Monday-Wednesday and Thursday mornings. Here is a list:

■Monday AM: Beat Poets and Writers; The Sayings of Jesus

■Monday PM: Plastic: Saint or Sinner; The Golden Age of the Arabs (8th-11th centuries); Writing to Remember

■Tuesday AM: Shakespeare’s Competitors; Food Matters

■Tuesday PM: West Virginia: State of Contrasts; Rethinking American History

■Wednesday AM: The Roosevelts’ (both Teddy and FDR) Inner Circle; Children’s Books, Adult Viewpoints

■Wednesday PM: Revisiting the American Civil War; Building a Word-Press Site; Writing to Remember

■Thursday AM: Seamus Haney; Museums: A World of Wonders; Writing to Remember

At the preview, the moderators have four minutes to describe their seminar; later, attendees can question the moderators and also join in breakout rooms to confer with other participants.

You can register for the preview by going to the organization’s webpage: 5clir.org, scrolling down the page, and registering for the 2022 Spring Preview.

Katy van Geel and I will be doing our sixth food-related seminar, focused on food and memory. What did you eat as a kid that you still like today? Katy and I both loved canned spaghetti as kids, but that passion faded a long time ago. What dish related to specific memories of yours do you want to share with other seminar members? Sharing recipes is always a given in our courses.

My husband Jim, who is offering the seminar on West Virginia, was born there. His father was an orthopedic surgeon who often treated coal miners for injuries. The state has a fascinating past, and its politics today are much in the news, what with Sen. Joe Manchin fully milking his position as a crucial Democratic senator. You may also remember Robert Byrd, one of the canniest politicians who was a senator for 51 years, the longest-serving term of any senator in Congress, as well as an avid and excellent fiddle player.

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