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Lifelong learning

Partnership with KU Osher brings courses to Tallgrass Creek

Created date

April 23rd, 2013

Have you wanted to use your free time in retirement to learn more about art, history, or another subject that s always intrigued you, but you put off taking a course because it was too expensive or inconvenient? Those aren t concerns for the active retirees living at Tallgrass Creek. Lifelong learning is easy at the Overland Park, Kans., community thanks to a partnership with KU Osher. For just $10 a semester, residents can enroll in courses on a variety of topics like Native American art, the history of medicine, or the music of Rogers and Hammerstein all offered at Tallgrass Creek. KU Osher instructor David Wilson, a television industry veteran who has worked in production and management, taught the latest class, The Golden Age of TV. Wilson holds bachelor s and master s degrees in radio, TV, and film and has taught college courses in mass media. I grew up in the suburbs of New York City and witnessed firsthand the golden age of TV that began in the late 1940s, Wilson says. The goal of this course is to have a good time helping people appreciate and value the impact that television has had on our society over the last 70-plus years.

A walk down memory lane

Wilson says he guides residents on a journey through the history of television by playing clips from old programs and commercials, sharing memorabilia, and discussing the impact TV has had on our lives and our culture. Resident Dorcas Doering chairs Tallgrass Creek s lifelong learning committee, which helps to arrange the on-site KU Osher classes. Dorcas took the Golden Age of TV course along with 80 of her fellow friends and neighbors. She says the course began with a review of influential newscasters like Walter Cronkite. Next, the class learned about the variety shows and musical programs that were popular during the 1950s and 1960s. So far, one of Dorcas s favorite parts of the course is a series of bloopers from live television programs that David showed on the big screen. Upcoming classes in the course will cover subjects like Westerns, children s programs, live television, and the early TV networks. Tallgrass Creek hosts two classes each spring semester, one during the summer, and two in the fall semester. Dorcas says the committee has not yet selected the courses for the upcoming summer and fall semesters, but they are considering art-focused classes, a course about globalization, and a class about the history of Kansas that has historically been a popular pick among Tallgrass Creek residents. I ve taken tons of KU Osher classes, Dorcas says. They are generally very well-received by residents.