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Age no deterrent for 83 lifelong learners at AJA

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L-r: AJA Chair Barbara Borkan, Residents’ Council President Ondalee Kline and Executive Director Michael KleinEighty-three seniors proved that, indeed, you’re never too old to learn . . . and to graduate.

The inaugural graduation ceremony marked the one-year culmination of adult learning through the new Allied Academy of Lifelong Learning (AALL).

Classes are taught by community facilitators, volunteers and residents themselves.

Designed to improve body, mind and spirit and to help seniors stay engaged in learning, the program attracted more than 210 residents out of 406 in the program’s first year.

Students attending 50 or more hours received their certificate of completion, and those accruing more than 75 hours of classes graduated “with honors.”

Modeled after a seniors community learning program in Minneapolis, AJA independent and assisted living residents attend classes mostly on site at the Cherry Creek campus, and also by hopping on the Allied bus to lectures and concerts at metro Denver locales.

Areas of study span physical wellness, mind skills, cultural arts and travel, academics, creative arts and cultural and spiritual studies, so seniors get a “liberal arts” sampling of an average of 106 offerings a month.

A few grads had more than 150 hours and a very full calendar. The oldest graduate is 103, and the average age of the first graduating class is 85.

Barbara Borkan, AJA president, said, “ . . . studies document that the benefits of lifelong learning keep our minds sharp, improve memory, increase self-confidence, offer new skills and interests, and help us take better care of ourselves. Your perseverance and desire to keep growing remain an inspiration to your peers, your children and everyone in our community.”

Co-principals, residents Ondalee Kline and Betty Didcoct, invite non-residents  to join AALL.

Information: Connie Moore, activities manager, 720-382-7813.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 31 January 2013 11:36 )  

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