University of Oregon

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute

Continuing and Professional Education

History of OLLI-UO

OLLI in Eugene/Springfield was originally established in 1993 as Learning in Retirement. A sister site was established in Central Oregon in 2003 as the Silver Sage Society. Our anniversary in April 2018 celebrated twenty five years in Eugene/Springfield, and fifteen in Central Oregon. Across those years, over 3,000 individuals participated in OLLI-UO.

In June 2004, the San Francisco-based Bernard Osher Foundation selected the University of Oregon to become the first Northwest institution in the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute network. The Bernard Osher Foundation awarded a million-dollar endowment to the University of Oregon in 2008 to provide annual supplemental funding for the lifelong learning program. The new program name was adopted at this time: Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Oregon, with program sites recognized by their primary geographic location.

Additionally, there is a National Resource Center for Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes, with the mission of connecting, collaborating, consulting and celebrating to help Osher Institutes thrive. There are over 120 Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes on university and college campuses in all fifty states. To find an OLLI program near you, visit the Osher National Resource Center.

Graphic illustrating OLLI-UO historic timeline.
Timeline of OLLI-UO since its beginnings in 1992. Touch or click the graphic for larger view.