LEWISTON – The Senior College program at USM/Lewiston-Auburn College will offer 11 new courses for the spring semester from April 3 through May 26. Highlights of the schedule include courses on such diverse subjects as Maine’s Civil War history, travel and ethnic foods, Middle East perspectives, the study of psychologist Carl G. Jung, an introduction to stage performance and production, American opera and musical theater, computer skill training, contemporary Maine fiction, scrapbooking and American jazz.

The courses are open to persons age 50 or older and their spouses. The cost is $25 after a mandatory membership fee of $25 valid from September 2005 to May 2006. For those interested in more than two courses, a reduced fee of $10 will apply for each additional course. All classes will be held at L-A College on Westminster Street.

The new courses are:

“Maine in the Civil War”: A four-week course on a variety of topics relating to Maine’s historically recorded contributions to the war between the states, including the roles of the famous 16th and 20th Maine Regiments. The course will be presented on Mondays from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Instructor Dennis Sweetser is a retired chemistry teacher from Edward Little High School and a lifelong student of Civil War history.

“A Month of Sundays”: A four-week course in which participants will have the opportunity to observe a rehearsal and tour the shops and stage of Lewiston’s Public Theatre to see how the scenery is designed and constructed. Included will be a preview performance of the production of “A Month of Sundays.”

The course will be held Tuesdays from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Instructor Chris Schario is the artistic director of the Public Theatre and has been a professional director and actor for more than 30 years, appearing Off Broadway, in regional theater, summer stock, films and television. He has taught acting and directing at several universities as well as the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.

“New Perspectives on the Middle East”: To help understand today’s headline news and rediscover the issues and assumptions regarding Middle East history, the four-week course will examine contemporary articles and documents, analyzing the issues raised as they affect relations with Middle Eastern peoples and nations. Scheduled for Tuesdays from May 2 to 23 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.

Instructor Arthur H. Whitman lived in Istanbul and Beirut for more than 23 years while traveling widely in the Middle East. After 10 years at the American University of Beirut, he served as executive director of the World Affairs Council of Maine and has led a variety of discussions and programs relating to U.S. policy in the Middle East.

“Carl G. Jung: His Life and Work in Psychology”: The course has been designed as an introduction to Jung’s life and his studies as they relate to the functions of the conscious and unconscious mind. Topics will include symbolism, personality styles, dream analysis and the ego, or persona. Participants will have the opportunity to assess their own personalities.

Class size is limited and is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesdays. Instructor Charles Plummer is retired educator, consultant and administrator. He is a frequent presenter at Senior College and last summer presented a course about C.S. Lewis.

“Best Sellers”: Recently published novels by Maine authors will be presented by instructor Laurie St. Pierre. The genres of horror and spy thriller will be read and the writing styles, narrative voices and Maine living discussed. The books, “The Pink Room” by Mark Laflamme and “A Filthy Business” by David Compton, will be featured, and the authors will join in the discussions.

The four-week course will meet on alternate weeks from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. beginning Wednesday, April 5. The fee will cover the cost of the books. St. Pierre owns and operates the Book Burrow and Cafe in Auburn, and is a former writer and reporter.

“Scrapbooking”: A fast growing family history activity, the course will teach the process of sorting and organizing photos to the final stage of completing pages and albums. Each week will bring a different demonstration, and students will learn how to photo-safe their albums using speed tools and design.

The four-week course is scheduled on Wednesdays from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., April 5 to 26. Instructor Maureen Clavet has been a Creative Memories consultant for seven years and has completed more than 50 albums.

“Readers’ Theatre”: Participants with an interest in stage performance will read scripts, learn about state direction and present before a live audience at the end of the course. It is scheduled for eight weeks on Wednesdays from 1 to 3 p.m.

Instructor Hugh Keene, a retired educator, was faculty adviser for dramatics at Edward Little High School and is a member of the Senior College advisory board.

“American Jazz: From Basin St. to 52nd St.”: The course will provide a comprehensive survey of the various schools, influences and musicians associated with jazz, America’s original musical art form. Text material and class notes will be supplemented by multimedia examples of the music. The eight-week course will be presented Wednesday from 6 to 8 p.m.

Instructors Ralph Tuttle, Senior College advisory board member, and Tom Hayward, humanities reference librarian at Bates College, are longtime jazz enthusiasts with extensive collections.

“Armchair Travelers and Ethnic Foods”: Each session of the eight-week course will begin with a photographic travel presentation of a foreign country and will end with the preparation and sampling of a food from that country. Countries being visited include East Africa, Mexico and Switzerland. The course is scheduled for Thursdays from 6 to 8 p.m.

The tour guides will be Barbara Randall, well-known traveler, member of Senior College advisory board and a frequent instructor, and Bethel Shields, chairwoman of the Senior College advisory board, also a frequent world traveler.

“American Opera and Musical Theater”: Instructor John Serrage will bring another musical study course to Senior College. Following up his “History of the Opera” from 2005 will be the new course that covers the history of American opera and the Broadway musical theater. Serrage’s use of video and recorded examples will provide additional enhancements to his presentation.

A retired pediatrician, Serrage has extensive musical background in piano and organ studies and has been a church organist for the past 15 years. The course will be held Fridays from 1 to 3 p.m.

“Computers: Internet Plus”: Recommended for PC owners only, this is a basic course where students will gain additional skills in formatting Word, inserting clip art and using Word Art. Participants will use LAC’s library for reference during class and will learn how to plan trips, do light research on the Web and correspond by e-mail with and without attachments. The course is scheduled for Fridays from 1 to 3 p.m.

Instructor Wayne Hollingworth is retired from the Maine Department of Human Services and has taught computer courses at various educational institutions, including Senior College.

Senior College at USM/L-A is a member of the Maine Senior College Network, an organization of the state’s 14 senior colleges. The system provides a curriculum of learning opportunities for persons 50 years or older. No previous college attendance is required.

An initiative of the Osher Lifelong Learning institute at USM, Senior College is also an affiliate of the Elderhostel Institute Network.

For more information on courses and enrollment, call 753-6510 or visit www.usm.maine.edu/lac.

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