• Curriculum Committee

  • Our curriculum committee is responsible for putting together all the wonderful courses that are offered each term!  Each sub-committee is responsible for recruiting new facilitators, encouraging development of new courses in their topics, reviewing and making recommendations based on member feedback, attendance at various committee meetings, to name a few!  If you are interested in volunteering your time to this outstanding committee, please contact one of the co-chairs or the sub-committee chair in which you're interested!

  • Sally Walling, Co-chair


  • Pat Smith, Co-chair


  • Dates for Curriculum Committee Meetings 

    Dates for committee meetings can be found on the "OLLI SOUTH MASTER CALENDAR" tab.

  • OLLI South Curriculum Calendars

  • OLLI South 2018-2019 Calendar.doc

  • 2019-2020 Master Calendar OLLI 12_05_18.docx

  • Member Spotlight - Sally Walling

  • From her early years in rural Kansas to her current involvement facilitating OLLI-South classes and co-chairing the Curriculum Committee, there are two intertwined and enduring passions which define Sally Walling: reading and promoting/understanding diversity. As the daughter of a homemaker and a judge, Sally recalls an idyllic childhood wherein she freely explored her environs on her bicycle, hung out in the city park and at the pool, and, especially, wherein she frequented the library, always coming home with stacks of books.

    That love of literature meant there was no uncertainty about choosing English as her major when she went off to the University of Kansas, along with her childhood sweetheart, Larry, whom she married upon graduation. It was during these politically tumultuous college years, from 1965 to 1969, that the nuclei of Sally’s philosophical/political deviation from her “conservative Republican” parents and her brother and sisters began to occur. “I started becoming me at some point during these years,” she reflects.

    But if new perspectives were percolating at that time, they were further catalyzed when she and her husband moved to Puerto Rico for his Navy service. Not only had she been unaware of poverty in her home town (geographic separation of races existed “informally”), but she had never known anyone who was Hispanic. Her social group on base consisted of white American Navy wives. Hence her first job teaching in the Puerto Rican community was a disaster. Her immaturity and lack of Spanish sent her home in tears every day. This was the first and last time she ever quit an obligation or failed a teaching assignment. Thereafter, on the Navy base, and in Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas and Colorado, Sally thrived as a teacher.

    Further, it was in Arkansas, where Sally and Larry lived for nine years, that she underwent two other watershed experiences. First, after introducing herself to her new neighbor, Sally was informed that she didn’t have to worry about living in an integrated neighborhood because there were “no Blacks in town—the last Black was hung.” Shocked and sensitized to the sheltered life in which she had grown up, Sally understood that her own and her husband’s attitudes were opposite to those of her neighbors. She ultimately immersed herself in the “more liberal channels” of the Presbyterian Church in her community and another “eye-opening and awakening” experience ensued. She was selected as a delegate to a national women’s conference which raised her compassion for the plight of women and minorities around the world. “I came back alive, on fire, wanting to change things immediately!” she reflects.

    Sally’s commitment to diversity -- promoting understanding of and tolerance for people of different culture -- has been an overriding passion, one she has embraced in her teaching of middle and high schoolers and one which she demonstrates in her choice of classes to facilitate at OLLI-South. She is chagrined that many people don’t know W.E.B. DuBois or James Baldwin and that she has difficulty finding diversity-relevant books for children. Yet Sally realizes with sad irony that her own role in promoting diversity is juxtaposed to the fact that she herself has no close friends of different races, while teaching in an organization that has no local racial diversity. She wonders how that might be changed or whether that should be a goal.

    Beyond that concern, Sally considers her experience at OLLI-South to be “the most amazing, interesting thing I’ve done in the last 20 years!" And she is proud that her and her husband’s examples of open-mindedness and compassion have impacted her own three children’s life views.

    by Ellen Sloan

    November 2018

  • Member Spotlight - Pat Smith

  • In a fortuitous melding of innate aptitude, astute observation, family dynamics and contemporaneous opportunity, OLLI-South curriculum committee co-chair Pat Smith forged a career in information technology (IT) which has been both personally rewarding and a testament to her determination to surmount traditional professional barriers, both for herself and for other women.
    Pat’s sensitivity to the career and educational constraints of being female may have begun with an awareness that her own mother’s capabilities and yearnings were frustrated by stay-at-home conventions during her early years raising Pat and her two sisters.  In addition, Pat’s father, an engineer, didn’t actively promote college attendance for girls, nor did he appreciate until later in his working years the gender hurdles his daughters and women in general had to surmount.   Pat notes, though, that her father was ultimately proud of his daughters’ accomplishments — which also exemplified non-traditional female pursuits:  one sister became an electrical engineer and the other became a mortgage banker and ran for Representative in the Texas State House.
    Pat’s first years were begun in Texas, but her family moved several times during her childhood.    Most jolting to her adolescent self was a move in high-school from the hippie, anti-war culture of Los Angeles in 1968 to the very conservative, parochial culture of St. Louis.  Pat surmises that her long-haired counter-culture appearance, as well as her very shy and introspective demeanor, branded her as “weird” by her contemporaries.
    Following her uncomfortable high-school experience in St. Louis, and despite her father’s lack of active encouragement, Pat went off to the University of Missouri to study economics.  This discipline, she says, turned out to be an unexpected, but excellent, background for pursuing a Master’s Degree in library and information science.   Because she had always been analytical and logical in her problem-solving approach, Pat quickly realized that there were better ways to organize, classify and index library data besides using file cards.   She was thus encouraged by her professors to pursue independent studies as an intern within corporations.   “In my career I was always able to see how technology could be applied to do things better,” she observes.  After graduate school Pat struck out on her own and spent ten years helping companies create online indexes (before the PC revolution).   Subsequently, while her husband, a retired ecology professor, stayed home with their two children, Pat worked in IT for several banks in the Miami area, and following that, as Chief Information Officer for a global pharmaceutical company. In that capacity she travelled to 35 countries around the world, always loving the chance to meet so many people of diverse backgrounds.    In her role as CIO Pat recalls that she was always trying to get resources for new, innovative projects and she was also responsible for cyber-security — protection from hacks and viruses, ever-cognizant that it is the CIO who gets fired in the event of a major hack.
    Pat is particularly proud of two aspects of her career, both emanating from her work in Miami:  paving the way for numerous women in the information technology field (“I was a role model for a lot of women there”)  and, during her career’s last seven years,  saving the lives of children in the Miami foster care system by privatizing state system data so that their existence and location could be tracked.   Tragically, disappearance of children, both figuratively and literally,   had happened too often previously.   “In the end, I was able to use technology to save lives,” she observes.   “It was so rewarding to do that.”
    Pat is close to her second husband Fabio Fernandez’ daughter and grandchildren (“I am a devoted Nana”), and she watches with some empathic anxiety as her own daughter traverses the vicissitudes of simultaneous parenting and career. Her daughter is, however, currently able to utilize a contemporary advantage  –  ability to work from a home office and communicate with the nanny via text.   Pat feels that persisting childcare constraints and the incompatible likelihood of travel are responsible for the significant barriers which still exist for working women in the IT field.    
    Pat loves teaching and found her stint as guest speaker in Paul Mauro’s cyber-security class rewarding.  “They were warm and welcoming, with interesting, deep questions,” she enthuses.  “…so different from corporate boards.”  Learning of others’ life journeys is always fascinating to Pat.   “People have such rich histories,” she remarks, “especially older people like those our age in OLLI.”
    --Story by Ellen Sloan
  • Subcommittee (Topic) Chairs and Members

    Alive and Well! (includes Extracurricular activites):  


    • Rae Wiseman/ Mary Morris (Co-Chairs)
    • Wayne Cassell
    • Alan Folkestad
    • Charlie Holt
    • Jared Ingwalson
    • Tony Morgan
    • Jean Selders


    • Susan Foster/Nina Dowd (Co-Chairs)
    • Sheila Jones
    • Pat Paul
    • Susan Polycarpou
    • Renee Romanowski
    • Barb Sears
    • Becky Stout
    • Jerry Wischmeyer


    Political Science & Economics

    • Bill Gernert / Chuck Laskey (Co-chairs)
    • Bill Baird
    • Bayard Breeding
    • Jan Friedlander
    • Brian Gibson
    • Janet Kester
    • Paul Mauro
    • Barb Pond
    • Ira Rifkin
    • Jim Ruden
    • Gary Wyngarden


    • Dave Jonasson / Ron Knox (Co-chairs)
    • Anne Bennett
    • Stuart Gentry
    • Charlie Holt
    • Eric Johnson
    • Ira Rifkin
    • Joseph Snoy


    Visual & Performing Arts

    Support Teams:

  • 2019 Spring Noon Show

This portfolio last updated: 24-Jan-2020 3:12 PM