LEWISTON — The Senior College program at the University of Southern Maine’s Lewiston-Auburn College will offer 19 courses in the fall semester, September to November.

Now in its 19th year, the upcoming semester will feature new and continuation courses open to everyone age 50 and older and their spouses, the courses are presented by peers, with no entrance requirements, grades or tests. An annual Senior College membership fee of $25, valid from Sept. 1 through Aug. 31, 2017, is required.

The fee is $25 for each course, which includes most books and materials. Members who attend a course will have access to the campus library, the Senior College winter courses and the popular special interest clubs. All classes are held at L-A College, 51 Westminster St., except as noted.

The fall semester course offerings are:

Fundamentals of Tai Chi/Qi Goung: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Mondays, Sept. 19 to Oct. 17. This Chinese martial art is practiced for its health benefits. With its slow movements and energy coordination, this course will help improve balance, stress management and mental calmness. Instructor Ruben Cornelius has more than 10 years of experience leading Tai Chi.

Body Mechanics of Tai Chi: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Mondays, Oct. 24 to Nov. 14. This Tai Chi course, taught by instructor Cornelius in the William CC Chen Yang Style, is for those already familiar with some of the fundamentals.

Poetry Writing Workshop: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Mondays, Sept. 19 to Nov. 14. This workshop, for both new and experienced poets, will cover fundamentals of poetry writing. Participants will write a poem each week with feedback and suggestions provided during the class session. Instructor Bill Frayer is a published poet and experienced in writing workshops.

Introduction to Spanish: 1 to 3 p.m. Mondays, Sept. 19 to Oct. 31. This course will provide further knowledge about speaking skills as used by tourists and travelers for shopping, sightseeing and while dining in restaurants. Instructor Jean Roy taught foreign languages for 29 years at Lewiston High School.

A Month Long Walk Through the Criminal Justice System: 6 to 8 p.m. Mondays, Sept. 19 to Oct. 17. This is an expansion of last year’s course, which covered a day in the life of a criminal defense lawyer. This new course will include presentations about prosecutors, probation officers, judges and investigators. Instructor Leonard Sharon is a practicing attorney.

The Theory of Natural Law and Human Nature: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesdays, Sept. 20 to Nov. 8, at Schooner Estates in Auburn. The course will examine the history of natural law as the basis for claims that acts such as slavery and torture are wrong because they violate the concept of human rights. Instructor Charles Plummer, Ph.D, has taught many courses for Senior College.

Advanced Conversational French: 1 to 3 p.m., six weeks, Tuesdays, Sept. 20 to Oct. 25. This course is for students already well versed in French who want to further improve their speaking skills. Instructor Lorraine Giasson is a retired teacher with a master’s degree in education.

True Womanhood and Women’s Activism in 19th-century America: 1 to 3 p.m. Tuesdays, Sept. 20 to Nov. 8. This course brings together the strong set of ideas of “true womanhood” and how they were shaped by women’s growing activism. Instructor Jean Potuchek, Ph.D, taught sociology and women’s studies at Gettysburg College.

Forests of Lilliput: The Botany of Non-Flowering Plants: 8:30 to 10 a.m. Wednesdays, Sept. 21 to Oct. 19. This course will provide an introduction to non-flowering plants and their biology using specimens focusing on the basics of ecology and physiology of these plants. Instructor Jeff Pengel is a trained geologist and botanist and is a Maine master naturalist.

The Federal Court System: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Wednesdays, Sept. 21 to Nov. 2. This course will explore the Federal Court System, including the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals and the District Courts, to inform the functions of each, and will consider the potential impact resulting from the election in November. Instructor Crystal Ward taught American Government at Lewiston High School.

Africa — Its Geography, Culture, Foods, Music and Dance (course will be taught in French): 1 to 3 p.m. Wednesdays, Sept. 21 to Oct. 12. This course will provide information and understanding into the wide diversity of African life and culture. Instructor Blandine Injonge, a native of the Belgian Congo, settled in Lewiston in 2012, where she is an active volunteer in the community and moderates a French club at the Hillview Resource Center. She will conduct the course in French, not English. 

Improvisation — The Basics: 1 to 3 p.m. Wednesdays, Sept. 21 to Oct. 26. Back by popular demand, this course provides the basic elements of improvisation through games and skits, making the participant a better listener, communicator and responder to various situations. Instructor Dan Marois has an extensive background in public speaking and theater techniques.

Living History — And Then Some: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., six weeks, Thursdays, Sept. 22 to Oct. 27. In a reprisal of their 2014 course, six instructors from the Senior College leadership will each share a specific and meaningful new experience about how wartime conditions affected their lives.

Picasso: His Life and Times: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Thursdays, Sept. 22 to Oct. 27, at Schooner Estates in Auburn. Pablo Picasso changed his painting style several times during his life and that is part of his incredible popularity. This course will examine his life and times and their effects on him. Instructor Kirsten Larsson-Turley has extensive experience as a senior docent at several Maine museums.

Understanding Investments: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Thursdays, Sept. 22 to Nov. 10. This repeat course will provide insight into the foundations of investing, including the stock and bond markets, annuities, mutual funds, retirement healthcare needs and estate planning. Instructor Andrew Saucier is a certified financial advisor with Edward Jones Investments.

Healing: 1 to 3 p.m. Thursdays, Sept. 22 to Nov. 10. Social wounds may cause grievous afflictions which require social healing. This course will examine strikingly different instances in the fortunes of several communities. Instructor Steven Piker Ph.D is a retired anthropologist who teaches at Senior College here and at Portland.

Stories of World War II in Fiction, Film and Fact: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Fridays, Sept. 23 to Nov. 18. This course will focus on the Pearl Harbor attack, Japanese-American internment camps, the preparation for D-Day, and the role of the Tuskegee airmen. Instructor David Bernier is an educator who taught 30 years in Lewiston schools.

Intermediate Online Genealogy: 1 to 3 p.m. Fridays, Sept. 23 to Nov. 18. This course will focus on exploring and maximizing resources available online to enhance the student’s genealogical research. Topics are based on the needs and preferences of intermediate-level students. Instructor Lin Wright has a Master of Arts in American and New England Studies with more than three decades of genealogy study.

Genealogy for Beginners: 1 to 3 p.m. Fridays, Sept. 23 to Nov. 18. Designed for students interested in genealogy but without a knowledge of basic concepts, this course provides an introduction to start forms and record-keeping, and an opportunity to begin the family tree. Instructor Robert Pelletier has taught genealogy and is a long-standing member of the Maine Franco-American Genealogical Society.

Course registration is by mail only, with registrations closing Aug. 3. Registration forms are available at the Senior College office and can be downloaded from the website. Some courses have limited enrollment and early registration is advised.

FMI: 207-753-6610, website at usm.maine.edu/seniorcollege.

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