Clark College’s Mature Learning program celebrates anniversary - The Reflector: Senior Lifestyle


Clark College’s Mature Learning program celebrates anniversary

Program re-imagines next 40 years; event planned for March 25

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Posted: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 9:00 am

Clark College’s Mature Learning Program is celebrating 41 years of bringing classes and lifelong learning opportunities to Southwest Washington’s seniors this month.

To observe this occasion, the program is presenting a half-day symposium on Tues., March 25 to re-imagine what the next four decades will look like. The event will feature guest lecturers and favorite Mature Learning instructors in “mini-lectures” as they ask the question “what’s next?” on topics ranging from world politics to brain research.

To lead off the symposium, Mature Learning instructor David Benedicktus and students from the WSUV Creative Media & Digital Culture department will present a keynote lecture, “What’s Next in Brain Research: How Technology Will Transform Us” at 9:15 a.m. Brain research and technology are the subjects of Vancouver’s community-wide reading program, #nextchapter, and of its current book choice, Now You See It: How Technology and Brain Science Will Transform Schools and Business for the 21st Century by Cathy M. Davidson.

The half-day event will be held at Clark College at Columbia Tech Center (18700 SE Mill Plain Blvd., Vancouver) from 9 a.m.-noon. There is a $10 registration fee to attend and registration is available online at or by calling (360) 992-2939.

“Last year Mature Learning celebrated its fortieth anniversary and we looked back at our ‘glorious past,’” said Mature Learning Program Manager Tracy Reilly Kelly. “Now it is time to ponder the future, and what’s next in issues ranging from the personal to the political. Digital technology is not just for the young – it offers a transformation that is very positive for the education, health and the daily lives of persons of any age. Our goal is to integrate examples of this during this content-rich morning program.”

The anniversary event will also include the following mini-lectures:

• “What’s Next in Your Life” with Bill Ritchie

• “What’s Next to Reinvigorate Your Diet” with Tracy Reilly Kelly

• “What’s Next in Afghanistan” with Ishtiaq Khan

• “Prelude to Prelude to the Civil War” with Douglas Tracy

Started in 1972 by retired Clark professor Dr. Alfred Apsler, Clark College’s Mature Learning program has been recognized by the American Association of Community Colleges for its pioneering status in the development of lifelong learning programs for older Americans. Today, the program offers almost 30 non-credit courses each quarter at three campus locations to more than 500 Southwest Washington residents age 55 or older. Course topics include fitness, art, writing, computers, science, history, creative writing, and health. Students also travel by coach to opera, theater, symphonies, art galleries, ballet and lectures in the Portland/Vancouver metro area.

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