Monday Courses

Thank You for Another Great Semester!

We’re thankful you joined us this past fall. These classes or events have already been held, but are kept here to offer you a glimpse of the programming we offer. Each semester’s offerings will vary, so check back soon for next semester’s content.

Ageless Fitness: Foundations of Balance, Strength, and Mobility*

Ageless Fitness is a safe and effective program for seniors to learn how to exercise properly, see results, and have fun while doing so. Our number one goal is to keep our clients above the disability threshold and add quality years to their lives. This is done by taking an in-depth approach to each client’s needs, goals, and limitations. A pre-training assessment is required before any exercise is recommended to ensure the client’s safety. Assessments will test balance, the cardiorespiratory system, musculoskeletal state, neuromuscular response, cognitive response, and mobility. Each exercise session is held in a small group setting. This program is designed for anyone 50 and up, regardless of current state of fitness.

Instructors: Eddie Yates is a certified Functional Aging Specialist who specifically works with folks 55 and up. Joey Sauerland is a certified Parkinson's Wellness Recovery Instructor and studied kinesiology at Miami University.

4 Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays: October 3–October 28; 8–9 a.m. or 10–11 a.m.
Format: In-person
Location: Oxford, Anytime Fitness

*ILR events/classes involving walking/hiking/exercise may be strenuous for some. Please use discretion when registering.

Conspiracy Theories, an American Tradition

When you hear the words “conspiracy theory,” the first phrase that comes to mind might be “lunatic fringe,” yet many scholars believe such theorizing is basic to the way Americans “do politics.” One historian has described them as “a historical and perhaps necessary part of capitalism and democracy.” Conspiracy theories abound today. This class will explore the possibility that this is not some peculiarly modern derangement of our political system but a historical component of the system itself, and that conspiracy theories can provide important windows to the state of American culture at any given time—including the present.

Instructor: Rob Schorman, Professor Emeritus of History, retired in 2019 after two decades as a faculty member and administrator on Miami's Middletown campus. He also serves as a member of the ILR's Curriculum Committee and Tech Team.

5 Mondays: October 3–31; 9–10:15 a.m.
Format: Hybrid
Online or Oxford, M.U. Art Museum, Auditorium

Novels to Uplift Us

Our experiences during the pandemic have reaffirmed our need for human connection and joy. Join our class to enjoy both R. C. Sherriff's The Fortnight in September and Madeleine St. John's The Women in Black, frequently recommended as uplifting stories for readers. The Women in Black tells the story of women who work in a department store while maintaining their dreams of a different life. Hilary Mantel says The Women in Black is “the book I most often give as a gift to cheer people up.” The Fortnight in September is a novel about a family that regularly takes a seaside holiday on the English coast. Rediscovered during the pandemic, this novel is described by Kazuo Ishiguro as “the most uplifting, life-affirming novel I can think of...the beautiful dignity to be found in everyday living has rarely been captured more delicately.”

Instructor: Marianne Cotugno is Professor of English in the departments of English and Languages, Literatures, and Writing.

5 Mondays: October 3–31; 9–10:15 a.m.
Format: Virtual
Location: Online

Miami University Art Museum Up Close

Get up close and personal with art and artifacts on display at the Art Museum through enlightening discussions with the Curator of Exhibitions, Jason E. Shaiman, and other staff members, as well as with the museum's docents.

October 3 Curation 101: A Journey Through the Exhibition Process Jason E. Shaiman, Miami University Curator of Exhibitions. Let’s learn how an exhibition is developed, from concept to installation.

October 10 Caring and Sharing: Collections Stewardship at MUAMLaura Stewart, Miami University Art Museum Collections Manager/Registrar, will share how MUAM acquires and maintains objects as part of its ethical responsibility for properly stewarding and improving its collections.

October 17Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion (DEAI) and the Art MuseumJack Green, Jeffrey Horrell ‘75 & Rodney Rose Director and Chief Curator, will provide ILR attendees with an overview of current trends in DEAI within Art Museums, and how Miami University Art Museum is developing and communicating its own DEAI initiatives.

October 24Docent’s Choice – Miami University Art Museum Docents.

October 31Docent’s Choice – Miami University Art Museum Docents.

Coordinators: Laura Stewart, Collections Manager/Registrar, Miami University Art Museum, and Jason E. Shaiman, Curator of Exhibitions, will be shepherding Miami University Art Museum's well-received “Up Close” ILR Series with the help of the MUAM Docent Corps.

5 Mondays: October 3–31; 10:45 a.m.–noon
Format: Hybrid
Location: Online or Oxford, M.U. Art Museum, Auditorium

The Butler County Historical Society: Stories of the Past

Sometimes called “the county’s attic,” the Butler County Historical Society holds thousands of artifacts in its collection. It also collects stories of the past—some that accompany artifacts and some that tell the history of Butler County. Join us at the Historical Society to get a behind the scenes look at some fascinating objects and to hear some remarkable stories of Butler County’s past.

October 3Exploring the Historical Society Sara Butler and Kathy Creighton will be joined by Chris Carroll, BCHS board member and member of the Benninghofen family.

October 10Quilted Treasures: Stories in the StitchesMary Royer is a volunteer at the Butler County Historical Society and a member of the American Quilt Study Group.

October 17The Story Behind the Artifact: What is That Thing?Sara Butler and Kathy Creighton

October 24Stories of the 1913 Flood: First Hand AccountsKathy Creighton

October 31Clothing Treasures and the Stories They TellSara Butler

Coordinators: Sara Butler is Professor Emerita of Art. She is the Curator of the Costume Collection at the Butler County Historical Society and is on the boards of BCHS and ILR. Kathy Creighton is the Executive Director of the Butler County Historical Society.

5 Mondays: October 3–31; 10:45 a.m.–noon
Format: In-person
Location: Hamilton, Butler County Historical Society

Three Months in Bethlehem: Rights, Wrongs, and Realities

Drawing on her experience as an international observer in the West Bank, the instructor will provide an overview of the history of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict; the role of religion in that conflict; Israeli, Palestinian, and American politics; and everyday life in the West Bank, using readings, videos, and discussion. Participants who would like to take a deeper dive into these complex issues will have an opportunity to join a March 2023 tour of Israel and Palestine, to be led by the instructor.

Instructor: Susan Brogden is a graduate of Purdue University and Miami University. In early 2018, she spent three months in the West Bank, living and working as an international observer with the Ecumenical Accompaniment Program in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI).

6 Mondays: October 10–November 14; 10:45 a.m.–noon
Format: In-person
Location: Oxford, Lane Library, Havighurst Room
NOTE: Late start date, course extends post-term

Midday Lecture Series

Each Monday the Midday Lecture Series presents a speaker who will discuss a topic of interest and importance. Join us online or in person for this ILR tradition.

October 3Training for FreedomJacqueline Johnson is the University Archivist at Miami University's King Library.

October 10Zero Waste and the Environment: Oxford and BeyondCarla Blackmar is Communications and Exhibition Designer, Hefner Museum, Miami University.

October 17A Cultural History of NoiseMack Hagood is Robert H. and Nancy J. Blayney Associate Professor of Media Studies and Assistant Chair, Department of Media, Journalism, and Film at Miami University.

October 24The Remaking of Cincinnati's Music HallMatthew Zory, Bassist, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, and a freelance photographer.

October 31Octagon House and Round BarnsPaul Allen, Commander, U.S. Navy (Retired). NOTE: This lecture will be held at Oxford Lane Library, Havighurst Room, for our in-person audience.

Coordinator: Charles Ganelin, Professor Emeritus of Spanish

5 Mondays: October 3–31; 12:30–1:45 p.m.
Format: Hybrid
 Online or M.U. Art Museum, Auditorium
NOTE: Last class (10/31) will be held online and at Lane Library, Havighurst Room

Miami Tribe and Miami University: Celebrating 50 Years

Miami University and the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma first connected in 1972 when Chief Forest Olds, having heard about a university in Ohio that shared a name with his tribal nation, unexpectedly arrived on campus during a visit to Cincinnati. What came of that surprise encounter is a now 50-year-long partnership between the two Miamis. Join us to learn more about the Miami Tribe and its relationship with Miami University, as well as the work of the Myaamia Center and the Myaamia Heritage Program.

October 3A History of the Miami Tribe of OklahomaGeorge Ironstrack is a citizen of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma and the Assistant Director of the Myaamia Center at Miami University.

October 10Miami University and the Miami TribeCam Shriver is a historian of early America. His research includes Native Americans and empires in the Great Lakes, and the history of Myaamia land ownership. He teaches in Miami’s history department.

October 17History of Language Revitalization and Current WorkDavid Costa is the Director of the Language Research Office at the Myaamia Center. Jarrid Baldwin is the Myaamia Language Coordinator and an affiliate of the Myaamia Center.

October 24Impact of Language and Cultural RevitalizationSusan Mosley-Howard is Professor and Dean Emerita and a faculty affiliate of the Myaamia Center at Miami University. NOTE: This lecture will be virtual, but presented on-screen for our in-person audience.

October 31Myaamia Student ExperienceKara Strass is a citizen of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma and Director of Miami Tribe Relations for the Myaamia Center. NOTE: This lecture will be held at Oxford Lane Library, Havighurst Room, for our in-person audience.

Coordinators: Kara Strass, (mahkoonsihkwa), a citizen of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma, is the Director of Miami Tribe Relations at the Myaamia Center. Additionally, Kara serves as an advisor to the Myaamia students who attend Miami University as part of the Myaamia Heritage Program. Andrew Sawyer joined the Myaamia Center in 2021 as the Education Outreach Specialist. Prior to joining the Myaamia Center he worked as a museum manager and as a college instructor.

5 Mondays: October 3–31; 2:15–3:30 pm
Format: Hybrid
Location: Online or Oxford, M.U. Art Museum, Auditorium
NOTE: Last class (10/31) will be held online and at Lane Library, Havighurst Room

Have You Checked Your Personality Lately?

Are you the same person you think you are? Are you the same person you were 40 years ago? You can find out by trying a few short and fun personality quizzes. We will examine Myers-Briggs and the Enneagram in some depth. Lastly, we will do 4-5 exercises in class, including the Sherwin-Williams color test and the CANOE test. Sharing your results is optional; these exercises are purely for fun and self-discovery.

Instructor: Douglas Stowell has been a Furman University OLLI instructor in Greenville, SC, since 2015 and in OLLIs across the U.S. since 2018. His background is in corporate market research and public opinion polling. He opened Market Resource Associates in 2008 and continues conducting global consumer and political issues surveys to this day.

1 Monday: October 10; 2:15–3:45 p.m.
Format: Virtual
Location: Online

Nantucket Baskets: An American Heritage

Created on lightships near the island, Nantucket baskets are unique in design and technique. A simple basket takes 20 hours and numerous steps to make. We’ll look at various styles and techniques for weaving before turning to the origin of Nantucket baskets. We will finish by looking step by step at the techniques and styles for weaving Nantucket baskets. This includes expanding on original designs and searching for alternatives to the traditional scrimshaw and ivory decorations. Join us for “Lost Wax Bronze Casting,” offered on October 31, to learn about an alternative to scrimshaw decorations.

Instructor: Stephen Goettsch learned Nantucket basketry through Miami's CraftSummer in 1997-2001 and has been making and selling his baskets for more than two decades.

3 Mondays: October 10–24; 2:15–3:30 p.m.
Format: Virtual
Location: Online
NOTE: Late start date

Lost Wax Bronze Casting: Playing with Fire

Bronze casting, like a Remington bronze cowboy, is a fading art. Searching for a scrimshaw replacement for the instructor’s Nantucket baskets led to bronze casting—playing with fire. Focusing mostly on small pieces to replace the scrimshaw, he reproduced ancient artifacts requiring fine detail and various patina techniques. Casting involves encasing a wax figure in investment material, then filling the investment with 2,000º bronze. Once cool, the investment can be broken open and the piece cleaned. The patina, the final step, often takes multiple trials and techniques to achieve the finished look.

Instructor: Stephen Goettsch started bronze casting through Miami's CraftSummer in 2000 and has been casting each summer ever since. Used mostly for Nantucket basket decorations, most of his bronze works are small, with the obsessive-compulsive attention to detail usually reserved for jewelry.

1 Monday: October 31; 2:15–3:30 p.m.
Format: Virtual
Location: Online

Bourbon Savvy: Exploring America's Native Spirit

Come explore the world of bourbon and discover why it is the quintessential American spirit. We will discuss its standards of identity, history, and varied styles. You will also learn suggestions on ways to hone your palate, track your preferences, and read labels to make more informed purchasing decisions, as well as how to host tastings at your home. Finally, you will develop a customized weekend itinerary to visit the Kentucky Bourbon Trail with your friends or family.

Class Text (optional): Bernie Lubbers, Bourbon Whiskey: Our Native Spirit, 3rd ed., Blue River Press, 2016, ISBN-10: ‎9781681570037

Instructor: Ryan Wyrick is a Kentucky Colonel, Certified Bourbon Steward, and the founder of the Hamilton Bourbon Guild (HBG). He recently earned the University of Louisville's Graduate Distilled Spirits Business Certificate.

3 Mondays: October 3–17; 5:30–6:30 p.m.
Format: In-person
Location: Hamilton, Billy Yanks
Supply Fee: $75.00, paid on the first day of class