by Pat Blinn, Member-at-Large, Academy of Lifelong Learning
The Academy of Lifelong Learning, part of Lincoln Land Community College’s Community Education Department, recently held our annual Kickoff gathering to begin yet another year of connection and continued expansion of our knowledge and experience in this ever-changing world!
We welcomed the community to find out about what we do, enjoy some treats and a presentation by our local School District 186 Superintendent, Jennifer Gill, who shared information about what’s going on in the local schools and how we might help. We now have 376 members and each month most enjoy one or more of the 15 regularly scheduled activities ranging from a focus on current affairs (Today’s Topic), taking a walk in the park (Pathfinders), discovering the insides of a local organization (Around Town) or finding a new restaurant while relaxing and connecting with others (Meet, Greet and Eat).
This fall, we are establishing a brand new ALL group called History Hunters whose purpose is to investigate a historical event for analysis and discussion at a group meeting. After a historical topic is selected several months in advance, multiple group members are assigned a book, film or other resource(s) to review. Each designated member then gives a short presentation at the meeting. A general discussion around specific aspects of the event follows led by a facilitator for that meeting. All are welcome. The History Hunters group has selected the following as our initial historical topics over the remainder of 2019: “Cahokia Mounds,” “The Armistice (World War I)” and “The Chicago Bears/Decatur Staleys and the Early NFL.” History Hunters is also welcoming suggestions for local, state, national and international historical events for future investigations.
Another great event to look forward to is our annual Winter Celebration. Work is currently underway to plan this event that is open to the public. The theme of the gathering is “ALL Goes West” and it is scheduled for Friday, Jan. 31, 2020 from 10:30 a.m. – 1p.m. Members and guests are encouraged to come out and join us for lunch, enjoy some entertainment, and learn about the activities being planned by each of the individual programs for the coming year. To register for this free event, call 217-786-2432.
The Tech Talk group developed a special three-part series this fall called Finding Truth in an Age of Alternative Facts. Come join us for the last event called “Who’s Checking the Fact Checkers” to see the kinds of things we are doing to keep us thinking, informed and connected. It involves exploring methods of finding truth on the internet and in other media. The panelists include Chris Krug, publisher, TheCenterSquare.com; Kate Schott, editorial engagement editor, the State Journal-Register; Tia Carol Jones, managing editor, Chicago Defender; Rachel Otwell, multimedia journalist, NPR Illinois & ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network; and John O’Connor, political writer, Associated Press. The event is free and open to the public and will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 20 at the Illinois State Museum, 502 South Spring S. in Springfield from 6-7:30 p.m.
We welcome any and all to join our organization. Give us a try by purchasing a half-year membership for yourself or as a gift for someone you know. Membership will be $35 beginning Jan. 1, 2020 and can be purchased any time after December 1, 2019. Such a perfect holiday gift! Contact the ALL office at LLCC at 217-786-2432 to get more information.