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OLLI Senior Seminars for March 2022

OLLI Senior Seminars for March 2022

Spring is just around the corner, and as the weather warms, flowers bloom and leaves return to the trees, OLLI is adding to the vibrance of the season with seven new courses on the March 2022 Senior Seminar schedule.

March courses will take place either in-person or online via Zoom and will explore topics in film, history, political science and technology.

OLLI offers adult learners an open and welcoming learning environment where they can engage with fun, educational and inspiring concepts with people of a similar age. Our courses are led by some of OU’s top professors and typically run for four to six weeks, meeting for two hours at a time.

OLLI courses tend to fill up quickly, and many are known to sell out, so be sure to sign up soon to reserve your spot. For information about course availability, please contact OLLI directly at (405) 325-3488.


March 2022 Senior Seminars

The Economic Cost of Inequality

Mary Carter

Wednesdays | March 2–23

10–11:30 a.m.


It is not just the poor who suffer from inequality. The entire United States economy suffers as well, which means all of us. Since this subject has been brought to the forefront of economic discussions today, this class will look at this issue in greater detail. The class will be based on books and articles exploring the economic effects of wealth and income inequality in America today. A complete list of course resources will be provided at the end of the class to all enrollees in a copy of the PowerPoint. The PowerPoint will include all the charts and graphs used in the presentations.


Gilbert and Sullivan: Their Genius and Genesis — Part 2

Marvin Beck

Mondays | March 7–April 11

10 a.m.–12:30 p.m.


This seminar will explore the final seven G&S Operettas (of their total 14 works), including Princess Ida, The Mikado, Ruddigore, The Yeomen of The Guard, The Gondoliers, Utopia Limited and The Grand Duke. In this course, we will listen to, watch, read, discuss and enjoy the comic operas of Gilbert and Sullivan. Their operettas have become, by far, the most performed theatrical productions for the last 150 years. They introduced innovations in content and form that directly changed the development of popular musical theatre, as well as influenced political discourse in literature, film and television. We will sample definitive Gilbert and Sullivan operettas performed by the very best professional and amateur groups from all over the world (with subtitle captions to capture every word).


Greek Mythology

Ralph Doty

Mondays | March 14–April 4

10–11:30 a.m.


Classical Greece has faded away, but it left its stories behind. We read them in our schools, watch them in films and television shows, and sometimes even play games featuring their characters. What did these stories mean to the Greeks? What do they mean to us, and why are they still vital to our imaginations after 3,000 years? Take this class and find out! Our text will be Edith Hamilton’s Mythology.


Election Eggs: Should We Put Them All in One Basket?

Cal Hobson

Mondays | March 21–April 11

1–3:30 p.m.


One of the most overused cliches in politics is the following: “This year’s elections are the most critical in recent history!” Well, the truth of that commentary is dependent on facts such as the definition of ‘recent’ and, of course, which elections are in play.

As applied to 2022 Oklahoma contests, they are indeed important, but perhaps not critical, due to the dominance of our state’s Republican Party. Current thinking says no Democrat can win a statewide race, and the Elephants will continue to ride herd over the Donkeys in the legislature.

Every election cycle, OLLI offers several pots of political potpourri, some about candidates, others policies, and Spring of 2022 will be no different. With lifelong learning maestro Chris Elliott and Creative Director Sarah Bowen assisting me mightily, I look forward to discussing, cussing and dissecting a number of election contests, ranging from the almighty United States senate race involving incumbent James Lankford to what is shaping up to be a hot-button governor’s race, which has already drawn five challengers for current mansion resident Kevin Stitt, including Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister, formerly a lifelong Republican and recently a brand new Democrat.

Now that’s political theater at its best, and if you enroll in my class, you’ll not only have front row seats, hear from the candidates in person, be exposed to both facts and gossip via my statewide network of pollsters, punsters, fundraisers, lobbyists and, of course, me as I adhere to my lifelong motto of “Often wrong, but never in doubt.”

We’ll provide free coffee as well, so enroll early. This one could be a sellout.


A Short History of American Film

Lance Janda

Tuesdays | March 22–April 26

9:30–11 a.m.


This course will provide a brief overview of American cinema, from its origins in the silent era to the modern day. Specific attention will be paid to films that are significant artistically or culturally and those that provide unique insights into the time periods when they were produced. Short clips from specific films will highlight the major themes of the class, which will cover a broad swathe of Americana, from Birth of a Nation to Blade Runner, and from All Quiet on the Western Front to slasher films and science fiction epics.


Russia and the Romanovs

Melissa K. Stockdale

Thursdays | March 24–April 21

10–11:30 a.m.


This course will explore Imperial Russia through a focus on the Romanov Dynasty, which ruled Russia from 1613 to 1917. We will consider the impact of Romanov rule, look more deeply at particularly outstanding rulers—such as Peter I and Catherine II—and the tragic reign and fate of Nicholas II. We’ll also look at the post-imperial activities of the Romanovs in emigration.


Intermediate iOS

Jeremy Hessman

Thursdays| March 31–April 21

9:30–11 a.m.


This course will give more insight into settings within your Apple device. It will also help users successfully use multiple Apple devices in conjunction with each other. We will cover some additional functionality with iPad and Apple Pencil, as well as smart home tech and more.

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Myk Mahaffey

Michael Mahaffey holds degrees in journalism and psychology. He is a writer and editor with more than a decade of experience writing for print and digital publications, including award-winning coverage of the rodeo industry. In his spare time, he writes fiction, in addition to tinkering with graphic design and photography.