Lifelong Learning

Register for these programs: by phone (507-664-3700), in person at FiftyNorth, or by clicking on the title of the class

Please pre-register and check-in for all classes no matter your membership levels. It is also important to check-in at the front desk when you arrive for your class.  We use attendance data for grant applications, insurance reimbursement, space planning and determining whether or not to cancel a class.
Scholarships are available to help defray the cost of classes for those who find the cost a financial hardship.


HOT TOPICS: Trickle-Down Economics

Wednesday, February 13
9:30am to 11:00am

Trickle-down economics is a theory that claims benefits for the wealthy trickle down to everyone else. This economic theory was used to guide our current administration’s tax policies.  How does this theory work and how does it affect different income levels? Has it been successfully used in the past? What other factors contribute to a healthy economy?

Instructor:  Bill Carlson
Capacity:  30
Cost:  $9 nonmbr, $7 mbr, $0 plat-equiv



HOT TOPICS: Global Wild Weather

Wednesday, February 27
9:30am to 11:00am

Why is the weather hitting such extremes – from tornados where they have never have been seen before, extreme drought and wild fires, torrential rains and flooding? What can we expect in the future and how can we deal with this wild weather ?

Instructor:  Alan Anderson
Capacity:  30
Cost:  $9 nonmbr, $7 mbr, $0 plat-equiv



Frontiers In Aging, From Cells To Society

Dates:  Thur, Feb 28; Thur, Mar. 19; Tues, Apr. 2; Tues, Apr 25; Tues, May 7
9:30am to 11:00am
St. Olaf College
Transportation to St. Olaf will be provided.

Whether or not you participate in the course, you are all invited to Viking Theater (Buntrock Commons, St. Olaf College) for a viewing of the following documentary: No transportation is provided for this film viewing.

  • Tuesday, April 23 (Time TBD): The Memory Tapes

By 2030, adults over the age of 65 will make up almost 20% of the total U.S. population. In Minnesota alone, we will see more people turn 65 this decade than in the past four decades combined.
This spring, Professors Jessica Petok (psychology/neuroscience) and Ashley Hodgson (economics) from St. Olaf College will teach an interdisciplinary course to survey what is known about rapid population aging. We will engage students on the topic of aging, considering what is known about the aging mind and brain, and the implications for individuals and societies. Again, FiftyNorth members are invited to take part in this course experience!
Classes will take place at St. Olaf College and up to 30 seniors are invited to participate. You will have access to the same readings and viewing materials as the students and engage with them in lively discussion. This course may challenge your ideas of aging, and give you some insight into how you can influence your own future!
All of the sessions run from 9:30am to 11am. Transportation to St. Olaf will be provided.

  • February 28: Can we “undo” aging, and should we?
  • March 19: Lifestyle factors of healthy aging.
  • April 2: How does technology change the ways we consider aging?
  • April 25: Reactions to “Memory Tapes” Documentary: Consideration of the movie’s key themes (Independence, Communication, Changes in Intimacy, Caregiving, End of Life)
  • May 7: Decision making under uncertainty

Whether or not you participate in the course, you are all invited to Viking Theater (Buntrock Commons, St. Olaf College) for a viewing of the following documentary: No transportation is provided for this film viewing.

  • Tuesday, April 23 (Time TBD): The Memory Tapes

Seven people living through various stages of Alzheimer’s disease are profiled in this documentary.

Instructor:  Professors Jessica Petok (psychology/neuroscience) & Ashley Hodgson (economics)
Capacity:  30
Series Cost: $10 nonmbr, $10 mbr, $0 plat-equiv



Hot Topics:  Workforce Crisis in Eldercare

Wednesday, March 6
9:30am to 11:00am

Because of the rapidly increasing senior population, the need for personal care workers is projected to increase by over 25% in the next three years. Yet 1 in 7 caregiver staff positions in long term care facilities go unfilled. Why does this shortage in workers exist? What can we expect for care options as we age?  What can we do to meet this crisis? Northfield Retirement Community CEO, Kyle Nordine, and Vice President of Long Term Care, Tom Nielsen will share information about the impact of this health care worker shortage and how it might affect our care as we age.

Instructors:  Kyle Nordine and Tom Nielsen
Capacity:  30+
Cost:  $9 nonmbr, $7 mbr, $0 plat-equiv



CPR and First Aid

Monday, March 11
1:00pm to 3:30pm

Students will receive expert training in First Aid and Basic Life Support CPR (adult) including Automatic External Defibrillator (AED). This 2 and half-hour class includes instruction, demonstrations and hands-on activities and culminates in the students earning an American Heart Card. It is appropriate training for Certified Nurse Assistants, healthcare workers, teachers, childcare workers and volunteers. Many health care facilities require this training of their employees.

Instructor: Jon Bolster
Capacity:  6
Cost:  $62 nonmbr, $55 mbr, $0 plat-equiv/instructor



Immigration and Refugees:  Policies, Laws and Actions

Wednesday, March 13
9:30am to 11:00am

What is the difference between immigrants and refugees and what are the policies and laws for dealing with both groups?  What does data show on the impact of these people on our country? Do we have a moral obligation to help people trying to come to our country? Katherine Tegtmeyer Pak, Associate Professor of Political Science and Department Chair for Political Science.  Tegtmeyer Pak teaches both broad international/comparative politics classes (Introduction to International Relations, Immigration and Citizenship) and Asia-focused classes.

Instructor:  Katherine Tegtmeyer Pak
Capacity:  30
Cost:  $9 nonmbr, $7 mbr, $0 plat-equiv



Yoga for Special Populations

Sundays, March 24, 31, April 7, 14, 21, 28
2:00pm to 2:45pm

Heather Sand, certified personal trainer, certified yoga instructor, and certified yoga instructor for special populations will be conducting a 6 week yoga class. Yoga for Special Populations. Yoga is for everyone. In this series we will take an in depth look at creating an open environment for students with special needs or conditions. In this class you will understand the benefits of specific yoga poses for your special need and adaptations to use while practicing yoga.
(6 sessions)
Sessions will focus on Yoga for living with …
Chronic Conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, heart disease and hypertension
Musculoskeletal Limitations (mobility conditions, genetic disorder, illness or injury)
Weight struggles
Mental Health Challenges such as depression, anxiety, PTSD

Instructor:  Heather Sand
Capacity: 12 Participants
Cost:  $54 nonmbr, $42 mbr, $0 plat-equiv



HOT TOPICS: Food Insecurity

Wednesday, March 27
9:30am to 11:00am

Food insecurity is defined as “the state of being without consistent reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food due to a lack of money and other resources at times during the year.” In 2017, an estimated 1 in 8 Americans were food insecure, equating to 40 million Americans including more than 12 million children. What factors contribute to food insecurity? Who is a risk? What resources are currently available and what more needs to be done?

Instructor:  Jeffrey Coultas
Capacity:  24
Cost:  $9 nonmbr, $7 mbr, $0 plat-equiv



If you are interested in teaching a Lifelong Learning class or if you have an idea for a new class offering, please contact Chris Ellison at 664-3707

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