Still time to register for noncredit lifelong learning classes, trips

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Registration still open for Academy of Lifelong Learning fall classes and trips

KALAMAZOO—It's not too late to sign up for many of the moderately priced fall classes and trips being offered by the Western Michigan University Academy of Lifelong Learning.

Upcoming noncredit courses cover a wide range of topics, from how to treat trauma, understanding the energy landscape and nature in the Galapagos Islands to tips for making long-term care decisions, policies used to end the Great Recession and ballet moves that improve balance and posture.

In addition, several fall trips have been scheduled and a special excursion to Cuba has already been announced for Feb. 11-19 , 2014.

That trip is being planned in cooperation with Road Scholar, a longtime leader in lifelong learning. Participants will not only visit well-known sites, they'll also meet with Cubans from various walks of life and be able to discuss the country as it is today as well as explore local landmarks that are significant to Cuba's cultural heritage.

This fall semester, Academy of Lifelong Learning activities began Sept. 4 and will continue through Nov. 20. Adults of all ages are invited to enroll in trips and course offerings, most of which start later this month, or in October or November. Those who join the academy receive a discount on fees.

Scheduled fall trips

  • Tuesday, Oct. 1—Art Prize, travel to several venues by charter coach during this international art competition in downtown Grand Rapids, Mich., and avoid traffic as well as parking hassles; $85 members, $95 nonmembers; register by Monday, Sept. 16.
  • Wednesday through Friday, Oct. 9-11—A Fall Getaway to Amish Country, spend a relaxing three days in Nappanee, Ind., learning about Amish culture, visiting area sites and enjoying the fall colors; $375 members, $425 nonmembers; register by Monday, Sept. 23.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 29—A Day in Lansing, tour the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum as well as the State Capitol; $60 members, $70 nonmembers; registration by Monday, Oct. 14.
  • Thursday, Nov. 7—American Sampler, experience various aspects of Americana by visiting the Arab American National Museum and Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Mich.; $112 members, $122 nonmembers; register by Wednesday, Oct. 23.

About the academy

Academy of Lifelong Learning classes meet once per week, run from one to five weeks, and are held on the WMU campus as well as in the Kalamazoo-Portage area. There are no tests and no grading. The cost is $10 per session for academy members and $15 per session for nonmembers.

Class registrations are accepted through the first day of each individual class, but trip registrations are required much earlier. In all cases, those planning to participate in an activity should check the academy website to make sure that enrollment isn't already full or that a cancellation hasn't occurred.

Academy membership is open to any adult with a passion for learning. The membership fee is $35 per person for one year or $90 for three years. Members receive numerous benefits, including paying a reduced rate for courses and trips, not having to pay an enrollment fee to join WMU's West Hills Athletic Center, and receiving discounts at WMU's theatres and bookstore shops.

In addition to the regular classes offered by the Academy, member-led discussion and activity groups called Study Interest Groups are encouraged. These groups are offered at no cost to members only.

For more information or to register for an upcoming offering, visit wmich.edu/offcampus/lifelong or call Joyce Dekau, program coordinator, at (269) 387-4200.