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Encore Transitions 2019

Back by popular demand! LearningLife's annual Encore Transitions series is now open for registration!  Early registration is recommended as seating is limited.






Approach Learning on Your Own Terms

Cultivate your mind and approach learning on your own terms! Intellectually challenging and personally enriching, LearningLife’s innovative portfolio of short courses, seminars, and one-day immersions features a range of topics and approaches to learning. Taught by University faculty, and scholars and professionals from the community, the program offers rich, meaningful experiences that highlight the intellectual resources of the University for those who seek knowledge, personal development, and academic and civic engagement.

LearningLife also is home to Encore Transitions, a series of courses designed to help you imagine and prepare for a vibrant post-career life, and Headliners, a lively current event discussion series that highlights the recent work of University scholars and researchers.

Courses, Seminars, Immersions

Encore Transitions: Launching Your Future

Start Date: May 31 | Encore Transitions
Instructors: Sally Brown, Chris Farrell, Barbara Hoese, and Robyne Robinson
This day-long course includes: A Purposeful Quest (Barbara Hoese), Finding Meaning, Money, and Happiness in the Second Half of Life (Chris Farrell), The Best Age: Framing, Naming, and Embracing Our Years (Sally Brown), Reset: Mental Programming for the Next Chapter (Robyne Robinson), and the Encore Transitions resource fair. The course is part of the Encore Transitions series, though you need not take the series to enroll.

Female Tastemakers: Women of Wine

Start Date: June 4, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Leslee Miller
Did you know that for much of history, allowing women to make wine was forbidden in most parts of the world? Fast forward to the present day and you will find that women hold nearly every position integral to the fast-growing wine industry. This course explores a variety of wines created by some of the most famous women in winemaking, including Argentina’s Susana Balbo who was recently recognized as one of the ten most influential women in the wine world.

Deductive Logic: The Best Stories of Sherlock Holmes

Start Date: June 13, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Tim Johnson
Much has been written about the world’s most famous consulting detective, and this course will look at the characters, times, and world of both Sherlock Holmes and Doctor John H. Watson as expressed through a selection of the original stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The selected stories will be read in tandem with essays that make the case as to why one tale or another is to be considered Conan Doyle’s finest. The final session includes a visit to the University’s renowned Sherlock Holmes Collection and a tour of the exhibition “Dark Places, Wicked Companions, and Strange Experiences.”

The Normandy Invasion: A 75th Anniversary Retrospective - Section 2

Start Date: June 19, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: John Kim Munholland
Perhaps one of the most dramatic events of World War II came with the Allied invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944, when approximately 156,000 US, British, and Canadian forces landed on five separate beaches along France’s Normandy coast and forever changed the course of the war. As the world marks the 75th anniversary of D-Day, this retrospective taught by Professor Emeritus John Kim Munholland provides details of how the historic invasion was achieved.

Design Thinking

Start Date: June 20, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Virajita Singh
The emerging field of “Design Thinking” takes design concepts from professional realms such as architecture, film, fashion, and design, and applies them to broader society. The process, which focuses on deep listening, holistic thinking, creativity, collaboration, experimentation, and “user” experience and engagement, is used in a variety of fields as well as by individuals working toward expansive or specific goals. In this course, you’ll use the systematic steps of Design Thinking to advance your creative vision.

An Artful Life: Drawing for Beginners

Start Date: June 24, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Laura Stack
Heighten your visual awareness by using keen observational skills that help you draw what is seen rather than its symbol. A variety of techniques and media will be introduced to encourage experimentation and help you find your natural drawing style. You’ll learn different ways of observing and representing objects and people through quick gesture sketches and long-study drawings. Projects will focus on a variety of subject matter and introduce drawing concepts sequentially—each new concept and technique building on the previous.

Positive Psychology: The Science of Well-Being

Start Date: July 9, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Amy Gunty
Would you like to become more adept at activities that researchers believe increase life satisfaction, purpose, and meaning? Would you like to live your life more fully? This course delves into the tenets of Positive Psychology, which focuses not on human deficits and problems but rather human strengths, resilience, and well-being. Gather some optimistic steam and come learn about the research behind this bold approach to looking at the variances of the human condition. 

Ancient Wisdom/Modern Science

Start Date: July 10, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: John B. Miller
The tenets of complexity theory (or complexity science) are actually echoes of ancient wisdom. It was near 500 BCE when Lao-tzu founded Taoism, Gautama Buddha founded Buddhism, and Heraclitus founded a school of thought that lives on today as “process philosophy.” These contemporaries all considered the impermanence of worldly things and the mysterious creative fount from which they arise. In this course, we’ll examine ancient traditions and modern science for their unique insights and for the many ways in which they echo and synergize one another. As we discuss paradox, the beauty of language, and “aha moments,” we’ll also delve into how to live life—both fully and well—in a complex and interconnected world.

Acrylic Painting Primer

Start Date: July 15, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Laura Stack
This immersion is an introduction to the fundamentals of painting with acrylic. As contemporary and historical artists and paintings are introduced for reference and inspiration, you’ll explore abstraction, painting from observation, brushwork, value, color mixing, composition, and a variety of techniques—to encourage both experimentation and the discovery of your natural painting style.

Self-Publishing: A Comprehensive Overview

Start Date: July 15, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Patti Frazee
So, you’ve written a book. Maybe you’ve even penned your acknowledgements, secured copyright permissions, and pondered the title page. But face it: the nuts and bolts involved in graduating from writer to published author can be daunting. From publishing workflow, copyright, and ISBNs to book printing, distribution, and marketing, this course provides a comprehensive overview of the self-publishing world.

Art Cities of Italy:  Florence, Rome, Venice

Start Date: September 10, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Allan Kohl
This survey of the history of Italian art begins in the Quattrocento (1400s) and closes with the rise of Italian modernism and some of its distinctive stylistic movements that led into the 20th century. The focus will be on the Italian art cities of Florence, Rome, and Venice, and all explorations will include brief “visits” to major museums and cultural institutions as a means to highlight the treasures that await visitors—be they in person or virtual.

The Power to Overcome: Memoirs of Survival

Start Date: September 12, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Toni McNaron
Historically, memoirs were written primarily by people of privilege and notoriety, predominantly white men, but in the early 21st century, the genre has been adopted (and adapted) by people whose lives are quite different from those earlier writers. The difference: a traditionally "polite" form of writing has become psychologically framed and politically astute. Taught by Professor Emerita Toni McNaron, this course will discuss three such “modern” memoirs.  

Writing About the Past: Become a Popular-History Storyteller

Start Date: September 16, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Jack El-Hai
History is riding a wave of high interest, with many publications seeking factual historical stories and Oscar-winning movies focusing on tales of the past. With long experience as an author of articles, essays, books, and podcasts on history-related topics, author Jack El-Hai will lead this fast-paced journey into the process of writing about history for general audiences.

Minnesota Mycology: Study, Forage, Savor

Start Date: September 19, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Beth Jones, Ian Silver-Ramp, Courtney Tchida, Kathy Yerich
Hen of the Woods, Chicken of the Woods: what’s the difference? With more than 5,000 species of mushrooms found in the region, identifying species can be challenging. Led by mycology enthusiast Kathy Yerich, this course allows you to first learn about, then forage for, and finally savor the mushrooms of Minnesota. The course includes an introductory classroom session, a Saturday foray, and a closing soirée featuring small plates made from locally sourced wild and cultivated mushrooms, cooking tips, and a visit from a gourmet mushroom cultivator who will discuss the ins and outs of the ever-expanding local mushroom industry. Space is limited.

Minnesota Mycology: Small Plate Soirée

Start Date: September 25, 2019 | Short Course
Instructor: Beth Jones, Ian Silver-Ramp, Courtney Tchida, Kathy Yerich
What is this? Can I eat it? According to mycology enthusiast Kathy Yerich, these are the most commonly asked questions about mushrooms. Join us at the Campus Club to sample and learn about some of the more than 5,000 species found in our region. In addition to offering tips on how to use mushrooms in your own kitchen, the soirée will include a visit from a gourmet mushroom cultivator who will discuss the ins and outs of the ever-expanding local mushroom industry. Reservations must be made by September 18.


There are four ways to register.

1. Online by selecting the course title

2. By phone if you're paying by credit card: 612-624-4000 

3. By faxing the completed form to 612-624-5359

4. Via mail by sending the completed form to:

CCAPS Registration Center
353 Ruttan Hall, 1994 Buford Avenue
Saint Paul, MN 55108

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