University of North Texas Becomes Home to Newest Osher Lifelong Learning Institute
With funding from The Bernard Osher Foundation, the University of North Texas’ Emeritus College program has become the newest Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. Located in Denton, Texas, UNT’s lifelong learning program was created in 2009 to provide older adults in the Dallas–Fort Worth metropolitan area with an extensive array of educational opportunities, travel programs and social activities. With the addition of UNT’s program to the national Osher Institute network, the Osher Foundation now supports 120 lifelong learning programs on university and college campuses across the country, with at least one grantee in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
UNT’s Osher Institute operates under the auspices of the University President’s Lifelong Learning and Professional Development division. Current UNT president, Neal Smatresk, previously served as president of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where he helped to develop its Osher Institute into a robust and successful program. His wife, Debbie Smatresk, served as the director of the Osher Institute at UNLV for a number of years and is now a volunteer leader with UNT’s program.
Dr. Marilyn Wagner, director of the Osher Institute at UNT, is thrilled to be part of the national Osher network. She is proud of the rapid progress the program has made in just six years. During the past academic year, more than 100 courses were offered in Denton. Additional programming will be launched at UNT’s New College at Frisco in the months ahead. More than a dozen educational trips – both domestic and international – will also be offered in 2017.
“We are confident that the program is poised for continued success during its next stages of growth and service to the community,” said Osher Foundation president, Mary Bitterman. “We are delighted to provide this support to help the University of North Texas enhance and expand the enriching educational services its Osher Lifelong Learning Institute offers to older adults in the Dallas—Fort Worth area.”