University of Oregon

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute

Continuing and Professional Education

OLLI-UO Offerings Spring 2021 Archive

An archive of Spring 2021 courses and activities is listed below. Current course listings can be found on the Course and Activity Descriptions pages.


One Hundred Years of the UO Art Department

Wednesday, April 7, 2:00–4:00 p.m.


University of Oregon Professor Emeritus and former Chair of the UO Art Department Kenneth O'Connell will present a lecture he originally gave on March 7, 2017 at the UO's White Stag campus building in Portland. Professor O'Connell's talk was well-received and has been updated with new content. In addition to discussing the art department, he will focus on specific art faculty, their work, and teaching at the UO and beyond. 


University of Oregon Professor Emeritus Kenneth O’Connell taught at UO for twenty-eight years and was Chair of the Department of Art for twelve years. He introduced computers in the arts and co-directed the Pacific Northwest Computer Graphics Conference.

O'Connell is known for his sketchbooks and sketchbook workshops. His “Spirit of the Rough Sketch” workshops in Oregon and in Italy have been very popular. His artwork over the past fifty-seven years was on exhibition at the Karin Clarke Gallery in August 2020. It included drawing, painting, photography, printmaking, ceramics, sketchbooks, comics, and two of his short films.

Professor O’Connell received his BS and MFA degrees from the Department of Art in the School of Architecture and Allied Arts at the University of Oregon.

The Transistor: the Device that Changed the World

Tuesdays, April 13 and 27, noon–1:45 p.m.

Transistors, semiconductors, and computer chips have appeared prominently in the news and in global politics of late. China has several initiatives to propel itself into a leadership position manufacturing advanced computer chips, particularly in light of the US-China trade war. Automobile companies are slowing production because the required chips are not available. Some US companies are having difficulty maintaining their leadership position in the technology and manufacturing expertise of these devices. What is going on? Why is chip technology so important?

Our guide is Richard Tauber, global expert in process development, process integration, and process tool development for advanced semiconductor technology and manufacturing. His two-part lecture tells the compelling story of the transistor’s origin and how it evolved to provide the incredible computing power we have available in our consumer devices. What are transistors, semiconductors, and computing chips? Dr. Tauber discusses a few easy to understand technical ideas, but no technical details. We learn about “Moore's Law” and its limitations and discuss the cost of modern computer chip factories (called fabs), explore applications and what the future holds for chip technology, and visit the global landscape to see where the USA stands in this critical technology. There will be ample time for questions and answers.


Richard Tauber has a PhD in metallurgy and materials science and over 50 years of experience in semiconductor technology. He has worked at some of the world’s leading microelectronics companies such as Bell Labs, Xerox, and Applied Materials. Dr. Tauber currently lives in Portland, Oregon.

Astropedology and the Origin of Life

Tuesday, April 13, 3:00–5:00 p.m.


This lecture by UO Department of Earth Sciences Professor Gregory Retallack concerns astropedology: the study of soil formation on other planets and the early Earth. Over the past 3.7 billion years, the atmosphere and surface weathering have changed dramatically due to coevolution with life on land on Earth. Paleosols on Mars and the Moon are also up to 4 billion years old and reveal early mechanisms of soil formation that may have nurtured the origin of life. Prof. Retallack will cover new information coming from NASA, rovers on Mars, and from discovery of well-preserved ancient soils in Western Australia and Greenland.


Gregory Retallack is Australian by birth but has long been a professor at the University of Oregon and director of the Condon Collection of the Museum of Natural and Cultural History of the University of Oregon. His research concerns the history of soil formation deep in geological time, with special attention to major events in the evolution of life on land, such as the advent of land plants, trees, and grasslands. He is author of two popular textbooks and 260 peer-reviewed publications.

A Brief History of the Pixel

Wednesday, April 14, 2:00–4:00 p.m.

Before attending this meeting, members must view the video in Part 1 (see below).


Although "pixel" is a modern word (1965), the use of pixel points of information to convey a visual image can be firmly documented as long as 5500 years ago in Mesopotamia. Pixels are the essential ingredient in mosaics, impressionist painting, film photography, facsimile transmission, half-tone printing in newspapers, and most recently—digital photography, used by both consumers and astrophysicists. The ubiquitous screens we all carry around and by which we entertain ourselves and get significant work done would not exist without the pixel. The technique also has a deep analogy in animal biology.

Join OLLI-UO Central Oregon member John Rhetts as we investigate the history of this picture element and its use in both art and science to create the visual image.

Part 1 of this presentation is a YouTube video presented by Dr. Rhetts. The YouTube video may be accessed here, and the link will also be included in the e-minder on Friday, April 9. Be sure and watch the video before the Zoom meeting on April 14. The login for the Zoom meeting on April 14 will be provided at the end of the YouTube video.

This one-hour video presentation covers the period from antiquity to the beginning of the 21st century,  examining how both artists and inventor-scientists have used pixels to convey visual images. The presentation covers the use of both real and virtual pixels, and begins an exploration of how pixels work in human psychology.

Part 2 is a live Zoom meeting on April 14, when Dr. Rhetts moderates a discussion of issues of interest to the video watchers. Members may obtain the Zoom meeting login information at the end of the YouTube video in Part 1 and/or in the Zoom email that will go to members the day before the live discussion on April 14.


John Rhetts is a PhD psychologist and former professor at the University of Minnesota.  He had a private practice in psychology for 25 years in Minnesota. John is a 25-year resident of Bend and has studied the foibles of human decision making for over fifty years. As a long-time amateur photographer, he has taught two courses on editing digital photographs for OLLI-UO Central Oregon.

The United Nations after Seventy-Five Years: From Truman to Biden

Wednesday, April 21, 2:00–4:00 p.m.

NOTE: this presentation is a special afternoon session of the International Relations lecture series


This lecture provides a history of the United Nations from its founding in 1946 to the present, highlighting the development of the U.N., the structure and growth of the organization, and its role in historical and current events. The program will also focus on the strengths and weaknesses of the U.N. in the promotion of peace and the management of conflicts.


OLLI-UO in Eugene/Springfield member Catherine Koller is a retired secondary education teacher of American and European History. She taught at a private high school in New York City for twenty-seven years. She also taught at international schools in Mexico and Asia. She holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in history.

Earth Science and the Environment: Our Community and the Changing Climate

Thursday, April 22, 2:00–4:00 p.m.

Sandi Sturm is the founder of Earth Focus Group, whose mission is to create a world of people who understand the changing climate and how individual actions affect everyone on earth. Using the dramatic slide presentation, “Truth in 10,” developed by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, we view the earth from space and zoom in to review current data on the effects of increasing greenhouse gas emissions in our atmosphere. Can and will we change?

Sandi leads us in discussing ways we can practically contribute to reducing our carbon footprint in the areas of energy, transportation, and food, and ends with some solutions taking place worldwide.

About the Presenter

Sandi Sturm is committed to educating more people about climate change and empowering them to participate in solutions. In 2017, she was trained to become a part of the Climate Reality Leadership Program, former Vice President Al Gore’s “global community of world changers working to solve the climate crisis and build a just and healthy future for the Earth.” She became a mentor in 2019. To help environmental organizations build a larger coalition, Sandi developed a website, Environmental Groups in the US, a database of environmental groups in all 50 states.

To help individuals reach the recommended goal of reducing emissions 50% by 2030 and 100% by 2050, she has written the book, Family Survival Guide for our Changing Climate: 52 Empowering Actions You and Your Family Can Take Now!

Sandi has a special Earth Day offer for a few copies of her book that she will share during her presentation.

Sandi and her husband, Wayne, travel the US full time in their motorhome. Staying in places for two to three months allows them to explore many natural places and the wonderful people who inhabit them. 

About the SERIES

This lecture is part of the Earth Science and the Environment lecture series. The format features guest presenters, followed by a discussion and Q&A session. Content for each lecture is drawn from recent events or developments in Earth science, climate change, and the environment. Key components for each session are 1) advocacy and 2) learning. The series is coordinated by OLLI-UO members Suzanne Butterfield and Marc Rogge.

History at Play Performance: I Now Pronounce You Lucy Stone

Wednesday, April 28, 2:00–4:00 p.m.
Picture of Lucy Stone

NOTE: This special live performance was made possible by the generosity an OLLI-UO in Eugene/Springfield member and was approved by the Eugene/Springfield Program Committee


A Leader of Women’s Suffrage, Lucy Stone, Transports Audiences back in Time!

OLLI-UO in Eugene/Springfield Presents History At Play, LLC’s Critically Acclaimed Solo Performance Celebrating the Centennial of the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution.

In this presentation of I Now Pronounce You Lucy Stone, History At Play Founder and Artistic Director Judith Kalaora is Lucy Stone: the first woman from Massachusetts to earn a college degree, a fierce abolitionist, and women’s rights activist. Challenging discrimination is not easy, but Lucy Stone is never one to take the easy road. Even Susan B. Anthony credited Lucy Stone for her involvement in the tumultuous women’s rights movement. The fight for suffrage is ferocious, so come along for the ride!

This live production (via Zoom) of I Now Pronounce You Lucy Stone is approximately sixty minutes, followed by a real-time audience Q&A session.


History At Play, LLC was founded in 2010 by Artistic Director Judith Kalaora in order to create Immersive Living History Experiences and to chronicle the lives of influential and often forgotten women. Kalaora is a professional educator, award-winning playwright, and living historian. She graduated Magna cum Laude from Syracuse University and completed the Globe Education Program at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre of London, England.

Canine Companions and Service Dogs

Tuesday, May 11, 3:00–5:00 p.m.


This presentation will cover the difference between service and therapy dogs, background on the Canine Companions program, how puppies are selected, and who raises those puppies to become service dogs. We will hear how dogs are matched to people, how to recognize a true service dog, and what questions a shop owner can ask a person who brings a dog into a business.


John Longchamps retired from his career working as a Program Manager supporting the United States Department of Defense and relocated from Maryland to Eugene in 2018. Prior to retirement, John raised his first Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) puppy. His second puppy, Blair, was raised here in Eugene (to include occasionally attending OLLI-UO classes). Blair matriculated into professional training last September, and recently began the process of matching with a veteran (to mitigate symptoms of PTSD). In addition to volunteering as a CCI puppy raiser, John enjoys traveling and road biking, and volunteers on a Citizen Review Board that reviews cases of children in foster care.

Carmaleta Aufderheide is self-employed as a certified professional dog trainer in Eugene. After years of providing training services in Lane County, she pursued certification in the treatment of canine separation anxiety and opened Northstar Training Solutions in 2021. In 2016, Carmaleta completed her master’s degree in Conflict and Dispute Resolution from the University of Oregon School of Law. Her graduate school research on the impacts and outcomes of offenders who raise puppies for service dog organizations led to her continued interest in volunteering time within the Oregon Department of Corrections. Inspired by her research and the adult offender puppy raisers, she became a volunteer puppy raiser for Canine Companions for Independence and currently raising her 3rd CCI puppy, Hara III. As an advocate for restorative justice and prison animal programming, she looks forward to resuming her time with the Insight Development Group promoting harm reduction through transformative education in a post COVID-19 time.

From Telos to Anti-Telos: Rock & Pop Choruses, 1964-2021

Wednesday, May 19, 2:00–4:00 p.m.


Reports of the chorus’s death are greatly exaggerated. The chorus has been the dominant feature of rock and pop songs since the mid 1960s, though its role has changed along with popular music’s shifting landscape. In this presentation, UO Professor Drew Nobile  traces the development of a particular type of chorus, which he calls the telos chorus.

Telos choruses begin with a climactic arrival and plateau at a high energetic level, eschewing any internal trajectory and encouraging a significant amount of “rocking out” on the part of the listeners. He will discuss the emergence of telos choruses in the 60s and 70s through their heyday in the dance-obsessed 1980s, to the expansion of the telos idea through the grunge and hip-hop movements in the 90s and 2000s, and ultimately to its subversion in EDM-infused pop of the recently concluded decade. Through examples from Bob Dylan to Nirvana to Taylor Swift, he argues that form in rock and pop is not just a basic template for song design but an inherently expressive feature of the genre.


Drew Nobile is in his sixth year as Assistant Professor of Music Theory at the University of Oregon’s School of Music and Dance, where his research centers on the theory and analysis of popular music.

His first book, Form as Harmony in Rock Music, was published in May 2020 on Oxford University Press’s Studies in Music Theory book series. The book offers the first comprehensive theory of form for the “classic” rock and pop repertoire of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s. Drew’s other research has appeared in Music Theory Spectrum, the Journal of Music Theory, Popular Music, and Music Theory Online.


Toni Morrison’s Sula

Wednesdays, April 14–May 5, 12:00–1:30 p.m.

Registration is required and limited to twelve students. Registrants may choose to enroll in either Ceremony or Sula but may not register for both.


Students in the course will read, analyze, and discuss Sula, by acclaimed novelist Toni Morrison.  The title character of the novel, Sula Peace, grows up in the 1920s Black community of Medallion, perched on top of a rise called the Bottom, highlighting the paradoxes that are at the heart of this novel’s characters and events. Mystery, strangeness, and danger are the world in which Sula and Nel Wright become like sisters, or second selves. Here is a world in which relationships among women weave a narrative like a spider web: complex, attached, and fragile.  As in other Morrison novels, characters and events in Sula feel possible, even when absurd, horrific, or inexplicable.

Students are asked to please acquire the novel ahead of the session and to read a section before the first class meets. After you register, you’ll be given a schedule and study guide for the course. Since the course is only four sessions long, the first session will be more productive if one has some familiarity with the story and characters.    


Delia Fisher received her BA and MA in English and Secondary Education from California State University, Fullerton, in 1967-68. She taught in the California secondary school system until 1972, when she moved to the Illinois Valley in Southern Oregon, there learning to grow vegetables, raise goats, and be a mom to her two daughters. 

In 1981, she returned to teaching at Rogue Community College in Grants Pass. She came to Eugene in 1984 to teach at the University of Oregon in the Departments of English and Multi-Cultural Affairs. She enrolled in the PhD program at UO in 1989, studying American literature and women writers, completing her PhD in 1997.   

In the years following, she and her husband (also a literature professor) moved to Alabama to teach at Auburn University. In 2001, they accepted teaching positions at Westfield State University in Westfield, MA. She taught a wide variety of classes there until she was asked to coordinate the English Education program, teaching classes and mentoring students who sought teaching certification. 

In 2010, she retired and came home to Eugene. In retirement, Delia has taught the course Women, Myth and Culture for OLLI-UO during the winter terms of 2018 and 2019. In winter 2020, she taught A Journey of Their Own: Women Writers’ Quest for Authentic Heroism.

England, The 1960s, and the Triumph of The Beatles

Tuesdays, April 6–May 11, 9:30–11:30 a.m.


The Beatles led a revolution in the 1960s that changed everything, transcending their initial success as a pop band to become one of the most compelling voices against the  status quo. Unlike a music survey, this Great Courses series focuses on the unknown history of the band, giving the cultural backstory of how the group emerged as a worldwide phenomenon. With the advantages that only hindsight can afford, Great Courses lecturer Professor Michael Sheldon reconstructs this incredible period in history to discover how England shaped the Beatles—and how, in turn, the Beatles shaped England and the world.

Discussion and supplemental materials for these sessions are supplied by member-facilitators, augmented by lessons from the Great Courses professor.


April 6: The Magical Mystery of the Beatles; Fateful Intersections in Liverpool. Facilitator: Terry Schwab

April 13: Finding the Beat in the Beatles; Nowhere Men: The Dark Side of the Beatles. Facilitator: Terry Schwab

April 20: Beatles for Sale: Brian Epstein’s Genius; The Cold War, JFK, and the Beatles. Facilitator: Judy Hurlburt

April 27: The Beatles Conquer America; The Englishness of a Hard Day’s Night. Facilitator: Terry Schwab

May 4: Help! The Beatles at the Top in 1965; Crossroads: The Beatles in 1966. Facilitator: Terry Schwab

May 11: The Summer of Sgt. Pepper’s; Hello, Goodbye: The End of the 1960s. Facilitator: Terry Schwab


Michael Shelden is a professor of English at Indiana State University, where he has won the top award for excellence in scholarship, the Theodore Dreiser Distinguished Research/Creativity Award, three times. He earned his PhD in English from Indiana University. He has published several biographies and his books have been on the New York Times Best Sellers list.


Terry Schwab

Social Commentary: Satire through the Ages

Thursdays, April 29–May 13, 10:00–11:30 a.m.
Registration is closed.

Registration is required and will start April 8.


Satire can be found as far back as ancient Egypt, but it really gained recognition in the 16th century. A main feature of satire is irony, and writers have employed parody, farce, exaggeration, and juxtaposition as frequent tools in their satirical arsenal. Although satire is usually meant to be humorous, its greater purpose is often as social criticism, using wit to call attention to various societal issues. Frequent targets may include politics, economy, religion, class, race, sex, celebrity, and other realms of power. Through an exploration of the classifications or modes of satire, we will explore excerpts from literature, essays, cartoons, and media like memes and television shows in our quest to gain a better understanding of how satire works, who it endeavors to target, and why it is so effective.


Ann Sargent is a former college textbook editor and high school English teacher and has been teaching at the community college level for 13 years, currently as a writing instructor at Central Oregon Community College. She previously taught OLLI courses in American literature at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, and is a favorite return presenter of OLLI-UO Central Oregon members.

Tours, Field Trips, and Special Events

New Member Welcome

Thursday, April 29, 2:00–3:00 p.m.

We invite our newer OLLI-UO members (those who have joined since March 2020)—or those who have not been to a New Member Welcome—to connect with us on Thursday, April 29, at 2:00 p.m. The Welcome is a great way to get to know fellow new members and leaders of all three sites. We share experiences and helpful hints on how to best maximize your OLLI-UO experience. We ask that you register by Tuesday, April 27. We look forward to getting to know you!

Second Friday Coffee Hour

Second Fridays, 10:00–11:00 a.m.


Wake up with OLLI-UO each second Friday of the month! Join fellow members from all three program sites for coffee, tea, and conversation.


Elizabeth Polidan, Central Oregon Membership Chair


Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Oregon