Frequently Asked Questions about OLLI.
1. What is OLLI?
OLLI is the acronym for Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. OLLI provides intellectual, social, and cultural enrichment opportunities in a climate that fosters friendship and a mutual sharing of ideas and life experiences. OLLI offers educational courses as well as entertainment through classes, bonus sessions, field trips, socials, special events, and travel. OLLI is a year-round, member-centered, member-led, program catering to mature adults. UA enjoys national status as one of 120 college-affiliated OLLIs across the country that receives funding from The Bernard Osher Foundation. To learn more visit www.osherfoundation.org.
2. Why should I join?
Those who are actively engaged in their communities, and who continue to learn throughout their lives, feel more productive and purposeful, and are healthier and happier. Members share common bonds of intellectual curiosity and the experience of their generation. They are self-motivated learners, eager to share opinions, knowledge, and expertise with humor and mutual respect. OLLI offers opportunities to meet new friends, make contacts, and develop connections.
3. What are the requirements to join?
There are none. Anyone can become a member.
4. Where are the classes held?
Most of our classes are held at the Bryant Conference Center on the UA campus, but for exact locations refer to the current catalog.
5. Where do I park?
If you are attending a class at the Bryant Conference Center, you will need a UA Parking Permit. This permit will enable you to park in the lot across the street from the Bryant conference Center. Parking Registration forms can be downloaded here or picked up and returned during the open house or in the OLLI office at any time. Download a parking map.
6. What does OLLI participation cost?
OLLI is a membership-based organization. Members pay an annual membership fee of $25. This fee allows members to participate in bonus sessions, socials, field trips and travel opportunities. An additional $50 per semester fee is required for course participation. Some programs or events may carry an additional fee due to materials, travel or other cost requirements. Scholarships are available. Many courses have a set capacity and participation is limited to those who register first.
7. Do I have to register every semester?
Yes. Although most courses do not have a registration deadline, please register as early as possible to ensure your seat will be reserved. Many sessions fill quickly.
8. May I bring a guest?
Enthusiasm for our program is contagious. We encourage every member to tell friends about OLLI and invite them to our bonus sessions and open house.
9. How can I offer suggestions for courses?
We want your recommendations. Please include them on your emailed evaluations. All suggestions are then provided to the OLLI at UA Curriculum Committee for review. In the meantime, if you have suggestions for a lecture or instructor, please inform the OLLI office staff.
10. Does OLLI have volunteer opportunities?
It takes a lot of hard work from our volunteers to make OLLI at UA a success. We are constantly seeking volunteers to help with our various committees. Some areas that you can be involved in are curriculum, socials, greeters, photography, social media, membership, instructors, facilitators, fundraising, and marketing. If you would like to participate, please contact the OLLI office.
11. Who are the instructors?
Our instructors include university faculty, both active and retired, community educators and leaders, and our OLLI members.
12. Does the schedule ever change?
Yes, so please be sure we have your correct email address and telephone number on file in the OLLI office. Courses are scheduled months in advance. Due to circumstances beyond our control, class dates, instructors, times, and locations are sometimes subject to change. We will make every effort possible to notify you, in advance, about schedule or instructor changes. In the case of inclement weather, we abide by The University of Alabama weather instructions. If The University of Alabama is closed, OLLI is closed. Please watch your local news for school closings.
13. Can I get a refund?
Annual dues and semester registrations are non-refundable. If there is a class fee and you cancel within fourteen days of the class, you qualify for a refund of that fee. You will need to call registration at 205-348-3000 and officially cancel your attendance.
14. Do I get a name badge?
OLLI members receive a name badge during the open house registration. If you are unable to attend, you will need to pick up your name badge from the OLLI office. OLLI at UA members will also receive a University of Alabama Action Card. Photos for the UA Action Card are made only once a year during the open house. The UA Action Card enables OLLI members to enjoy discounts in the community. For more information on the available discounts see the Bama Perks Vendor list on the www.hr.ua.edu website.
15. How do I join?
Registration may be completed online at www.olli.ua.edu. You may also complete a registration form and mail it to OLLI Registration, Box 870388, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487 or call the registration office at 205-348-3000 Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
16. How may I donate to OLLI?
Your donations are needed. Many individual's finances may limit their participation in lifelong learning activities. Therefore, people like you help with financial gifts. Your tax-deductible donation can not only assist someone in membership but also help with other expenses as well as potential growth. You might even consider underwriting our receptions, lodging, meals, adding to our endowment fund or remembering OLLI in your trust or will. Please help to support OLLI in all of our fundraising initiatives. For information regarding the appropriate philanthropic path for you, please contact the OLLI office.
17. How do I contact OLLI?
For OLLI questions, please call the office at 205-348-6482. For OLLI enrollment, please call registration at 205-348-3000.