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 123 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. Any adult may become a member by paying the annual membership fee.
4. Where are the classes held?
In Tuscaloosa, most of our classes are held at the Bryant Conference Center on the UA campus. Class locations are listed in the current course catalog.
5. Where do I park?
If you are attending a class at the Bryant Conference Center or on UA campus, you will need to purchase an UA Parking Permit from OLLI. This permit will enable you to park in the Capstone deck and connecting lot across the street from the Bryant Conference Center. Parking Registration forms can be picked up and returned during the open house or in the OLLI office at any time.
6. What does OLLI participation cost?
OLLI is a membership-based organization. Members pay an annual membership fee of $50. This fee allows members to participate in bonus sessions, socials, field trips and travel opportunities. To participate in courses, there is a $50 semester course package fee for each term you take classes. Some programs, trips 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. If a class if full, call the OLLI Office to be put on a Wait List.
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 Programs that are Open to the Public and Open Houses. For a complete listing see our website OLLI opportunities Open to the Public.
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 that chapters' Curriculum Committee for review. In the meantime, if you have suggestions for a lecture or instructor, please contact 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. If you are interested in teaching, contact the OLLI staff.
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 membership fee and semester course package fees 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. To cancel, call registration services at 205-348-3000.
14. Do I get a name badge?
OLLI members may receive a name badge during the open house, the first week of classes (where available) or pick up your badge in the OLLI Office.
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 will 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 registration, please call Registration Services at 205-348-3000.