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Among continuing education offerings is a trip to Italy

Craig Chamberlain, Education Editor
(217) 333-2894;


CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Members of the community can explore topics as diverse as opera, terrorism, flower gardens and the detective novel in programs to be offered this spring and summer by the Office of Continuing Education at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. One opera program features a 10-day trip in July to Verona, Italy, for an opera festival.

Other topics of interest among the list of personal and professional enrichment programs include daily life in Africa, financial issues in marriage and divorce, and how to market businesses to the elderly. Other programs will offer a behind-the-scenes look at the university’s new Spurlock Museum, and a weeklong opportunity for grandparents and grandchildren to explore Abraham Lincoln, children’s books and the night stars.

The programs include community noncredit and Alumni Scholars programs that are for adults of all ages; and Elderhostel, Senior Scholars, and Senior Issues programs in which adults older than age 55 may participate. Some courses or programs offer Continuing Professional Development Units (CPDUs), which Illinois teachers may be eligible to receive.

The courses are academically oriented noncredit courses taught in an informal atmosphere. There are no prerequisites for participation, no tests and no grades. Instructors are selected primarily from the university faculty.

Prospective students are encouraged to enroll at the earliest opportunity since some classes may fill quickly. Fees range between $35 and $175 (excluding the Verona trip).

Among the community noncredit courses being offered:

orange dot "An Approach to Opera for the Musician and the Non-Musician," an eight-week program that focuses on a production of Hansel and Gretel by Engelbert Humperdinck. Monday evenings starting Jan. 21.

orange dot "The Operas of Puccini and Verdi: Opera Study Abroad With Tom Schleis," a 10-day study-abroad trip to the Verona Opera Festival in Verona, Italy. July 20-29.

orange dot "An Expanding Community of Voices: Redefining the American Detective Novel," a seven-week series focusing on the growing diversity of fictional detectives. Tuesday evenings starting Feb. 4.

orange dot "Principles of Flower Garden Design," a three-week series taught through
hands-on experience. Wednesday evenings starting Feb. 19.

orange dot "The Sociology of Terrorism," a seven-week series providing a broad interdisciplinary perspective on how the social sciences can be applied to better understand the emergence of terrorism as a contemporary phenomenon. Monday evenings starting March 3 (no class March 24, spring break).

orange dot "Everyday Life in Africa," a four-week series in which a Kenyan native will offer participants an inside look at everyday life in Africa. Mondays at 4:30 p.m., starting March 10 (no class March 24, spring break).

orange dot "Bread-Winning Wives: Having a Successful Marriage That is the Partnership You Both Desire," a two-week program designed to provide a better understanding of complex issues, as well as ways to resolve power imbalances and money conflicts. Monday evenings, April 21 and 28.

orange dot "Divorce – During and After: Understand Your Options and Make Wise Financial Decisions," a two-week program dealing with the key financial issues of divorce: budgeting, dividing assets and liabilities, child support issues, and insurance needs. Monday evenings, May 5 and 12.

orange dot "Developing Elder-Friendly Business Environments," a full-day program on marketing strategies for this growing segment of the population, May 16, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

The Alumni Scholars Program is a new collaboration between the Office of Continuing Education and the University of Illinois Alumni Association. Programs are offered to alumni and friends of the university’s three campuses, with special pricing for Alumni Association members.

Among the upcoming Alumni Scholars programs:

orange dot "A Weekend Get-Away, An Exploration of the New Spurlock Museum," a behind-the-scenes look – with museum educators, curators and Illinois faculty – at the making of the museum, complete with interactive presentations and a tour of the galleries. Housing will be at the Robert Allerton Park and Conference Center in Monticello. April 11-13.

orange dot "An Intergenerational Learning Adventure for Grandparents and Grandchildren," a weeklong program that includes a day immersed in the life of Abraham Lincoln at New Salem and Springfield; an exploration of humor in writing with Alice McGinty, author of 34 children’s books; and an exploration of the night skies and the universe with Illinois scientist and teacher James Kaler. August 3-9.

For a complete listing of courses and programs, visit the Web site or call (217) 333-7369.