“LEARNING – JUST FOR THE FUN OF IT!” The 2019 Winter/Spring Learning Sessions are listed below in chronologic order by their beginning date for the month of January. Included with class descriptions is biographical information on each instructor. Many are one day sessions but others continue on the same day of the week for two to six weeks.
All learning sessions, except for tours, are held in classrooms on the Charlotte campus of Florida SouthWestern State College at 26300 Airport Road in Punta Gorda. Each classroom has up-to-date audio-visual equipment and there is ample parking with short walks to the “D” building (the only two-story building on campus).
You can register online with your credit card by clicking on the appropriate “Add to Cart” button (FRIENDS member or non-member) or you can call the LLI office at 941-637-3533. Refunds must be requested either by email or in writing through the U.S. mail and will be granted only prior to the first scheduled session.
NOTE: Additional sessions may be added as details are confirmed.
Now make your choices and learn — just for the fun of it!
Registration for Winter Classes will Open December 15, 2018
Wednesday, January 16, 10:00 – 11:50 am (1 session) “Labyrinths in Florida” with Lucy Tobias Ancient walkways of healing and transformation become new Florida adventure with author Lucy Tobias. Discover some of the 98 most intriguing Florida labyrinths and the people whose stories wind through them.
Lucy Tobias is a travel journalist and the author of 50 Great Walks in Florida. She is a former reporter and photographer for the New York Times Regional Group. She lives in Sarasota with her Welsh Corgi, Obi. Her two books will be available for purchase at the class.
Wednesdays, Jan 16, Jan 23, Jan 30, Feb 6, Feb 13, Feb 20, 1:00 – 2:50 pm (6 sessions) “Contemporary Economic Issues: Shifts in the Economic Landscape” with Gene Laber, PhD
This course will address four topics: I. Economic Growth: What is the “Economic Problem”?; Demand Stimulation vs. Supply Constraints; What Determines the Rate of Growth? II. International Trade: It’s Not About Creating Jobs!; Adam Smith Got It Right; Who Wins Trade Wars? III. Monetary Policy: A Shifting Stance: Fed Policy Goals; The Great Expansion; The Quiet Unwinding IV. Labor Market Dynamics: Will Technology Eliminate Most Jobs?; Where Have All the Workers Gone? Dr. Laber is Professor Emeritus at the Univ. of Vermont, where he taught courses in economics and finance for 28 years. He has consulted with numerous corporations, testified as an expert witness in regulatory proceedings and court cases in various states and served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Vermont Municipal Bond Bank.
Thursday, January 17, 10:00 – 11:50 am (1 session) “Local Solutions to our Water Quality Crises” with Coty Keller, PhD
The mess surrounding Lake Okeechobee and the flow of its water is a large part of the problem, but what happens there is beyond our control. So let’s focus on Charlotte County. After all, our pristine lifestyle here is threatened. Here is how each of us can make a difference.
Coty Keller is an active ecologist and Florida Master Naturalist. He is the author of several books on the topic of climate change.
Tuesdays, Jan 22, Jan 29, Feb 5, Feb 12, Feb 19, 10:00 – 11:50 am (5 sessions) “Three Terrific Sports Novels” with Joan Mountford
Sports and games are more than fun pastimes. They’re sources of passion and pride, displays of skill, teamwork, individual excellence, and creators of bonds that may last a lifetime.
Jan 22: John Grisham’s Bleachers examines the role of high school football in a small town. Jan 29 and Feb 5: W.P. Kinsella’sShoeless Joe, which is the basis for the film Field of Dreams, is about fathers, sons and dreams. Feb 12 and Feb 19: Beartown by Fredrik Backman is about a small town with big hockey dreams and the price the town will have to pay to make those dreams come true.
Books should be read before each class. If you wish to come and participate in the discussion of only one of these novels, the LLI office will help you arrange that.
Joan Mountford, a winter resident of Punta Gorda, holds degrees from Tufts University and Simmons College. She lives the rest of the year in New Hampshire where she taught high school English for 35 years and presented workshops annually at state and regional conferences. She teaches at the OLLI of Granite State College and is a columnist for the Concord Monitor, the newspaper of the state capital.
Wednesday, January 23, 10:00 – 11:50 am (1 session) “Sports, Leisure, and Entertainment in Early Punta Gorda” with Theresa Murtha
During the early years in Punta Gorda, while times were tough and work days were long, residents and wealthy tourists enjoyed the sports and games of their times. We will share some of the stories from the late 19th and early 20th centuries that attest to the popularity of such sports as hunting, fishing, golf, yachting, tennis and baseball and how these and other leisure activities helped shaped the culture of Punta Gorda.
Theresa Murtha is the Managing Director of the Punta Gorda History Center. She, her husband Gene, and a group of residents with deep roots in the area, founded the Center to house the vast collection of documents, photographs, maps and books amassed by Vernon Peeples and other history-minded individuals. The Murthas have been in the area since 2001 and developed a close relationship with Mr. Peeples until his death in 2015. Her professional background includes 20 years in publishing, assembling collections for indexing and preservation.
Thursday, January 24, 10:00 – 11:50 am (1 session) “The Women of the Koreshan Unity Settlement” with Elizabeth Brown
In the late 19th century followers of a charismatic religious leader, Dr. Cyrus Teed, founded a utopian-settlement in Estero, in order to practice their unorthodox beliefs unchallenged. They practiced equality between men and women, and attracted a number of educated, financially comfortable women to the wilderness of the Florida Gulf Coast.
Elizabeth Brown has been a docent and tour guide of the Koreshan Historical Site since 2015. She has introduced special events and historical re-enactments which feature the lives of some of the key women who lived in the settlement. She holds a degree from the Univ. of Conn. and is currently seeking a Master of Arts in Theology from St. Leo Univ.
Monday, January 28, 10:00 – 11:50 am (1 session) “Florida Fossils and How They Got Here” with Bob Fuqua The class will examine how the Florida landmass evolved and the terrestrial and marine animals that inhabited it. The fossilization process, particularly in Florida, will be explained. Attendees will learn which fossils are found in Florida, how to look for them and identification methods. A wide variety of fossils and fossils will be available for students to examine.
Bob Fuqua found his first fossil shark teeth in Western Kansas when he was a small boy. His passion for fossil hunting has continued throughout his life. He holds an engineering degree from Kansas State University and spent over 30 years in intelligence. Upon retiring to Florida Bob is able to able to pursue his study of fossils. He has written two books on fossil shark teeth which will be available for sale.
Mondays, Jan 28, Feb 4, Feb 11, Feb 18, 1:00 – 2:50 pm (4 sessions) “Writing Poetry II” with Dorothy Howe Brooks
In this course we will discuss elements of craft, such as imagery, metaphor, endings, etc., using as examples poems from contemporary poets. Students will have an opportunity to compose a poem, as well as a chance to bring in a poem for critiquing if they wish. Students who have previously taken this class, or have other experience writing poetry, are most welcome to attend.
Dorothy Howe Brooks’ work has appeared or is forthcoming in numerous literary magazines, most recently inTampa Review, Atlanta Review, Poet Lore, Louisiana Literature, Broad River Review, and Chariton Review. Her full length poetry collection, A Fine Dusting of Brightness, was published in 2013 by Aldrich Press and her newest chapbook, Subsoil Plowing, will be released in late 2018 by Finishing Line Press.
Tuesdays, Jan 29, Feb 5, Feb 12, Feb 19, Mar 12, Mar 19, 1:00 – 2:50 pm (6 sessions) “Great Decisions: Lecture” with Don O’Neil
NOTE: 2019 Great Decisions Briefing Book required. Please read Chapter 1 prior to the first session. Books will be available for purchase at the Registration Jan. 15 or in the LLI Office.
Come join us for discussion, films, insight and understanding of international affairs, US foreign policy and how it influences us in America and the world. The topics for 2019: Migration, US-Mexico Relations, Cyber Security, Chinese Trade, Nuclear Diplomacy, Middle East Overview, Rising Populism In Europe, and The State of the State Department.
Don O’Neil is the President of LLI Board of Directors and has facilitated this topic for several years. He is a retired USAF Veteran, a former police officer, and a business owner for 20 years. He has held president and VP positions in the burglar and fire alarm industry for 24 years.
Wednesday, January 30, 10:00 am (1 session) “Tour of WMU Aviation Facility” Note: This tour is limited to only 10 participants. WMU has a satellite Aviation Program on the campus of FSWC on Airport Rd. LLI students have probably noticed the signs at the front gate and on the classroom building. LLI members are being given a unique opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes look at the WMU training facility at Punta Gorda Airport. We will tour the hangar and flight simulator and learn about the latest technology that is available for the young aviation personnel of the future.
Thursdays, Jan 31, Feb 7, Feb 14, Feb 21, 10:00 – 11:50 am (4 sessions) “What People Believe – A Survey of World Religions” with Bob Carlson
We will study the major religions of the world, which will give us a deep, intuitive understanding of how the peoples of the world think, value and how they act. We must not make generalizations, looking at a person through an understanding of their religious beliefs can be like opening a window. Depending on the interests of attendees and time allotted, we will cover the following, plus any others of interest to the class: Atheism and Agnosticism, Baha’i, Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Shintoism, Sikhism.
Bob Carlson has a BA in Bible and religious studies, with a minor in communications, from Asbury University, Wilmore, KY. He did graduate work in journalism, (close to earning an MA) at the University of South Florida. He was the chaplain at Fawcett Memorial Hospital in Port Charlotte for nearly 14 years, sensitively serving patients, their families, physicians and employees of many different faiths. He is currently Assistant Pastor at First United Methodist Church in Punta Gorda.
Wednesday, March 6, 2019, 10:00 am Koreshan Tour & Authentic Period Lunch Enjoy a private walking tour of the Koreshan Historic Site, admission to Koreshan State Park & an authentic Koreshan lunch -including nineteenth century Koreshan recipes cooked on the historic cast iron oven that was used over 100 years ago. Meals vary according to the availability of fresh produce and the dietary needs of the attendees. Lunch will include: fresh baked bread, homemade soup of the day, fresh greens, an entree such as chicken, vegetable side, and a dessert from the period. Transportation is not provided by LLI for this event. Please be advised that the walking tour of the historic site is about a mile on gravel paths so appropriate shoes and clothing recommended.