Lee University offers Encore for older students

Lee University offers Encore for older students

August 22nd, 2012 by Randall Higgins in News

Ellie Pfahl, Lee University's director of community relations, is also the coordinator of the Encore Program. She has been reviewing the program this week with former students who drop in at her office for early registration. Registration includes course descriptions and a student identification.

Photo by Randall Higgins/Times Free Press.

IF YOU GO

What: Fast-track Encore registration.

When: 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday and Monday

Where: Centenary Room, Higginbotham Administration Building, Lee University.

Fee: $25.

CLEVELAND, Tenn. - As Lee University students settle in for a semester of classes, registration is available Thursday and Monday for a different kind of student.

But you must be 60 or older to register for Lee's Encore program.

Encore scholars, for a $25 fee, can take two courses each semester. There may be an additional small fee for books or materials in some specialized courses.

Traditional university courses are one option, either audited or for credit, as they are on most campuses. Then there are the minicourses, designed just for Encore. They meet once a week for five to eight weeks, depending on the class.

"Encore is solely an educational enrichment program," said Ellie Pfahl, university community relations director. "To complete a degree, you must enroll as a traditional student."

This fall's minicourse offerings include three levels of computer for beginners; fitness for the Encore years; classical music's greatest hits; introduction to social media; introduction to basic French; art exploration; themes in the history of the South and a study of the Bible's Book of James; interpreting the Bible's Book of Revelation; memoir writing and surveying advances and controversies in biotechnology.

Patricia Michaels, 70, said being an Encore scholar has its own perks, including interacting with younger students.

"We are students, too," she said. "So we get a student ID card that gets free tickets for musical and sports events, theater productions and the recreation center."

This fall, Michaels is taking a classical music appreciation course and an exercise class.

"There is a nice variety of Encore classes," she said, noting that, in a previous archaeology class, she and fellow Encore students went to a local dig.

Encore classes are usually held during off-peak campus hours so parking is easier to find, Pfahl said.

There are no attendance policies for Encore minicourses, she said, but missing a traditional class for credit still means clearing it with the professor.