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Erickson earns A+ for lifelong learning

On-campus classes bring learning to life at Maris Grove, Ann's Choice

Created date

July 31st, 2009
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5810747-2290x2290 copy
At Maris Grove and Ann s Choice, continuing education is a staple of many people s lives, and the teachers and students are oftentimes one and the same. A lifelong teacher Mort Goldberg, who lives at Maris Grove, in Delaware County, has been teaching at the largest continuing education center for the last 12 years. The Academy of Lifelong Learning runs through the University of Delaware and is geared toward continuing education for people over 50. All the teaching is done by fellow retirees, Goldberg says. The center has approximately 2,200 students, and 10% of them teach the courses. Like a traditional college, each semester lasts between 12 and 13 weeks, and the 250 courses range from computer technology to tap dancing. Goldberg never had a hobby in his life, and when retirement approached, he began to worry about what would fill his spare time. He decided to start teaching to prove that there is life after retirement, and he wanted to teach something that brought him joy. He s always been passionate about film, especially old musicals. While he was still working as a research scientist, he d unwind his brain every night by staying up late watching them. Musicals are the great escape, he says. So his classes centered around the musicals he s always loved. Starting in October, Goldberg will offer abridged versions of the classes he s taught at the Academy of Lifelong Learning to his neighbors at Maris Grove in a series of courses entitled Beyond Broadway. I realized I could sustain more interest with programs that are shorter in duration. The classes will run the first three Mondays of October, November, and December and will focus on the history of Broadway and films both musical and nonmusical. He aims to integrate several topics into the series. My courses are for fun and nostalgia, Goldberg says. Lifelong students While Goldberg likes to teach, others like to learn. In fact, some learn best when they re learning together, like Mel and Norma Snyder. That s what makes living at Ann s Choice so perfect for them. Like Maris Grove, the Bucks County Erickson community offers a variety of opportunities for continuing education on campus. The Snyders just finished taking a course at Maris Grove about the life of Abraham Lincoln, and they ve enjoyed others called Shady Ladies of the Bible, offered through Gatz Collge. This popular one-day course was taught by a female rabbi. The courses offered here are very interesting, and they broaden our range of knowledge, Mrs. Snyder says. The couple s need for knowledge extends outside the classroom and has been brought on by life experiences. Mrs. Snyder recently attended a cancer symposium. Being a survivor for the last 12 years, she is interested in fostering awareness and educating herself and others about the disease. Likewise, Mr. Snyder is a government-appointed member of the New Jersey State Board Hearing Aid Committee. He represents the interests of the general public, and both he and his wife also wear hearing aids so the information he learns at conferences benefi ts him and others.