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Senior college starts new sessions March 6

By Jessica Bloch, BDN Staff

BANGOR, Maine — The phrase “senior college” may have the words “senior” and “college” in it, but Penobscot Valley Senior College participants want you to know two important things.

First, senior college is open to people of all ages, although the classes are designed for those ages 50 and older. Second, although the classes are noncredit, college-level courses taught by volunteers who are experts in their fields, there are no admission requirements, tests, papers or homework.

“The word ‘college’ can be frightening to some, I think, because of what it implies,” senior college student and retired businesswoman Connie Kelsey of Bangor said recently. “We want people to understand what it’s about.”

The next PVSC sessions begin Friday, March 6, and run until April 4. Classes meet every Friday, with morning courses from 10 a.m. to noon and afternoon classes from 1:10 to 3:10 p.m., although some film classes end at 4:10 p.m.

Classes meet at either the University of Maine campus in Orono or University College of Bangor.

Among the classes this year are “Issues in Psychology,” “Wabanaki History, Culture and Contemporary Issues,” “The Pleasure of Poetry” and “Your Courts, Your Law: An Insider’s View of the Judicial System.”

Instructors range from retired lawyers to former and current professors from local colleges and high schools and practitioners of a wide variety of professions.

Aside from the education benefits, senior college is a way for retirees to stay active.

“It’s a very good social experience,” said Orono resident Stan Freeman, a former UMaine education professor and senior college student. “Seniors don’t want to be left behind. They want to participate.”

Senior college classes are $30 per course and require membership in PVSC, which is $25 for an individual or $40 for two people at the same address. For information, call 262-7927, e-mail seniorcollege@mainecenteronaging.org, or go to www.mainecenteronaging.org.

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