Note

Download a brochure and enrollment form (PDF)

All courses will meet at the Waters-Moss Memorial Wildlife Preservation Area, primarily in the Moss Building and occasionally in the Hillcrest Community Center unless otherwise indicated.

Contact Osher@Mizzou

Email Osher@Mizzou.edu or call 573-882-8189.

To register for classes, call 573-882-8189.

Mondays courses

Going Green [8 sessions]

Time
9:30–11 a.m.F

Location
Moss A.

Dates
Sept. 11, 18, 25, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

Description
Learn the latest on local programs and trends relating to personal and business sustainability. Find out what you can do in your home and community to be more sustainable and "green" about energy use, recycling, community conservation and transportation. Local speakers will share their knowledge, guidance and wisdom.

Coordinator
Barbara Buffaloe

  • Sept. 11
    Columbia's First Sustainability Manager

    Barbara Buffaloe, Columbia's sustainability manager, will discuss what it means to be a sustainable community and how Columbia compares to other North American cities. Ranked 3-STAR by STAR Communities, Columbia wants to improve its score during the 2020 reaccreditation. This class will also explore the potential effects of climate change on Columbia and what our community can do to prepare.
    Instructor
    Barbara Buffaloe, the City of Columbia's sustainability manager, is the coordinator for this course. She is responsible for integrating action plans, resource conservation and related sustainability programs and operations to advance a more sustainable, vital and well planned future for Columbia, Mo. She is the co-chair of the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN) Planning Committee. Buffaloe has a BS in environmental design and a MS in environment and behavior from the University of Missouri and has been a LEED Accredited Professional since 2004. She is also a huge fan of breakfast tacos.
  • Sept. 18
    Community Conservation in Columbia

    This class will provide an analysis of the conservation issues that we face in Columbia and what our community can do to combat them.
    Instructor
    As the City of Columbia's community conservationist, Danielle Fox coordinates stewardship projects and partnerships to improve urban lands for people and wildlife. She also administers the Sustain CoMo internship program that pairs natural resources students with mentors on independent projects related to sustainability. Fox also manages the CoMo Wild Yards program. She holds a BS in fisheries and wildlife sciences from the University of Missouri and a MS in ecology from the University of Manitoba, Canada. She has worked with wildlife — from fleas and ticks to wolves and moose — though her favorite species to work with is humans.
  • Sept. 25
    Is This Item Recyclable?

    Is this item recyclable? Why or why not? The latest equipment and facility upgrades are making recyling more convenient and simpler for the consumer. What you heard in the morning newspaper five years ago might no longer be true. Learn which items are recyclable, how to prepare those items for recycling and where they need to placed for collection.
    Instructor
    Ben Kreitner coordinates the city's recycling programs and methods of waste diversion. He also manages the grant applications for the Solid Waste Utility and uses this funding to create or expand waste diversion programs for Columbia. Kreitner has a BS in environmental science from the University of Missouri and a MS in aquatic biogeochemistry from Ball State University.
  • Oct. 2
    Fuel Efficiency

    People want to make an impact in their day to day lives, but how? This lecture, "YMMV (Your Mileage May Vary): Incremental Changes to Reduce Fuel Consumption and Reduce Carbon Emissions," will teach simple techniques that can save time, money and the environment. The hands-on portion will give consumers the confidence they need to handle one of the most basic automotive repairs.
    Instructor
    Ramon Garza is the administrative technician for the Mid-Missouri Solid Waste Management District, providing operational support for the district manager. He has 15 years hands-on experience with automotive maintenance and repair.
  • Oct. 9
    Global Overview of Recycling

    When you place a bottle, can or paper in your recycling bin it begins a long journey from your curb, often crossing the Pacific Ocean twice. Recycling is just one component of waste diversion, but it has become the most complex: Global market fluctuations, technology, research, legislation, trade agreements and culture all have an impact. In "Curb to China: Global Overview of Recycling and the Issues it Faces," participants will explore how recycling works, challenges for certain materials and how culture and regulations affect costs and participation. This class will help participants understand the impact of their recycling decisions.
    Instructor
    Lelande Rehard is the district manager for the Mid-Missouri Solid Waste Management District that distributes and administers grants in eight counties for waste diversion projects. The district also helps regional cities, counties and businesses coordinate on recycling issues. Rehard holds a BA in classics (Greek and Latin) and a MA in public administration from the University of Missouri. Prior to his current position, Rehard spent three years as a fellow for the City of Columbia city manager's office.
  • Oct. 16
    Storm Water in Columbia

    When it rains, the water that runs along the gutters disappears down the storm drains. Have you ever wondered where the water goes from there? Anything that enters the stormwater system is discharged untreated into the waterways we use for swimming, fishing, hunting and drinking water. This course examines the history of attempts by Congress and the United States Environmental Protection Agency to regulate stormwater discharge, as well as what the city is doing to improve local waterways.
    Instructor
    Mike Heimos is the City of Columbia's stormwater educator. He has worked for the city for the last 13 years, starting with the solid waste division's outreach and education recycling program. He coordinates education and outreach programs for the stormwater utility, trains staff on best management pratices and works with community organizations to help keep Columbia waterways clean and healthy.
  • Oct. 23
    Affordable Comfort is Possible!

    This classroom DIY session will teach students how their houses use energy, where they can save energy and money while still staying comfortable and provide hands-on experience with simple low-cost energy efficiency projects. Interested participants can have their electricity usage analyzed. Columbia Water and Light's energy efficiency programs will also be explained. Participants will also learn how to conduct a simple energy audit, identify potential areas for improvement and try out some of their new skills.
    Instructor
    As the city's energy educator, Eric Hempel develops and and delivers programs to the city's water and electric customers from kindergarteners to Kiwanis and from consumers to contractors. Hempel also provides field exams for the Building Performance Institute that certifies contractors participating in Water and Light's energy efficiency program. Previously, he oversaw the city's affordable housing repair and new construction programs and worked as a remodeler and truck farmer. He has a bachelor's in environmental science from Washington University and a master's in science education from the University of Missouri.
  • Oct. 30
    Home Audits

    In the first part of this session, Eric Hempel will answer questions related to the home energy audits students learned about in the Oct. 23 session. The second part of this session explores the renewable energy resources in Columbia's electrical portfolio and gives a broader perspective on the impact of local energy decisions.
    Instructor
    Eric Hempel

Wealth Strategies in Retirement [8 sessions]

Time
10–11:30 a.m.

Location
Moss B

Dates
Sept. 11, 18, 25, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

Description
In this fast-paced class, students will learn foundational and advanced strategies for retirement. Whether you are looking forward to or already enjoying retirement, these classes will help participants successfully navigate through the many myths and misconceptions retirees face. All course materials will be supplied. Come with a beginner's mind. Course topics include:

  • Basic Tax Reduction Strategies
  • How to Protect Life's Savings From the Threat of Health Care Catastrophe
  • The Four Legal Documents Every Retiree Must Have
  • The Missing Estate Plan: Handling IRAs, 401Ks and Other Retirement Accounts
  • Protecting Your Life's Savings From Investment Mistakes
  • Advanced Investment Strategies
  • Final Class of Q & A

Instructor
Jason Ingram is an original member of the Accelerated Wealth family organization with offices in Columbia and Chesterfield, Mo. Ingram holds a Series 65 license, qualifying him as an investment advisor representative (IAR). He also maintains life and health insurance licenses in numerous states, is a member of the Better Business Bureau advisory board and teaches a class at St. Charles Community College. Ingram's approach is to help clients mitigate risks as they transition from the accumulation phase of their financial lives into the distribution phase, protecting assets with steady and cautious growth. He and his wife, Kimetha, a physician, live in Columbia with their horses; mule; and dog, Romeo. They enjoy travel and visit a new country every year.

Philosophies of War and Peace [8 sessions]

Time
12:30–2 p.m.

Location
Moss B

Dates
Sept. 11, 18, 25, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

Description
This course explores three views of war: political realism, just war philosophy and pacifism. Political realism sanctions wars and any way of conducting them that benefits a nation regardless of the harm inflicted on others. Just war philosophy sanctions some wars and ways of conducting them if they promote — rather than violate — human rights. Pacifism condemns all wars and proposes nonviolent ways of resolving disputes. Participants will discuss the application of these views in recent history. Topics, to be selected by the group at the first class session, may include United States involvement in two world wars; its use of the atom bomb on Hiroshima; the My Lai massacre and involvement in the Vietnam War; the 2003 invasion of Iraq; and tactics, such as torture and drone assassinations, used to fight terrorism. Other possible discussion topics include the justification of nuclear deterrence, nonviolent ways of settling disputes and the possibility of universal world peace.

Instructor
John Kultgen taught philosophy at the University of Missouri for 40 years, as well as a course on war and peace in the Peace Studies Program for 20 years. He has published two books on nuclear weapons and the morality of their use, "In the Valley of the Shadow" and "Abolition of Nuclear Deterrence as a Moral Imperative."

Arts and Science Potpourri [8 sessions]

Time
1:30–3 p.m.

Location
Moss A

Dates
Sept. 11, 18, 25, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

Description
A potpourri of arts and science topics are presented by Mizzou faculty.

Coordinator
Pat Okker, Interim Dean of Arts and Science, University of Missouri

  • Sept. 11
    From Sourpuss to Princess: Rewriting Queen Victoria in the Age of Brexit

    This course will look at various biographies, novels and miniseries that are radically rewriting the life and career of Queen Victoria. Nancy West will also touch on recent critical theories of adaptation and historical fiction.
    Instructor
    Nancy West is a professor of English who specializes in Victorian literature, film studies and British television drama. A contributor to magazines like The Atlantic and The Los Angeles Review of Books, she is currently writing a book about charm.
  • Sept. 18
    Are Lizards Smarter Than Those of Us Who Study Them?

    Historically, studies evaluating the cognitive abilities of vertebrates have focused on mammals and birds, largely due to the preconceived view that organisms more distantly related to humans have more primitive brains and lower cognitive capacities. Manuel Leal will present the results of experiments on cognition in lizards that challenge the traditional view. He will also discuss the potential pitfalls of excluding reptiles when discussing factors promoting the evolution of cognitive abilities.
    Instructor
    Manuel Leal, associate professor, biological sciences, has been studying the natural history of Anolis lizards for more than two decades. The genus is a favorite of evolutionary biologists because of its extraordinary diversity — more than 400 species living in widely varied habitats. Leal's studies explore problems in evolutionary ecology and behavior through lab and field-based approaches. His research challenges long-held views about lizards and other reptiles and has been featured in publications from Nature to the New York Times. He loves that the work he is passionate about sparks the public's interest in science. He often visits elementary and middle schools to share his excitement for natural history, lizards and science.
  • Sept. 25
    Mapping the Imagination and the Geography of Place

    If you were to think of all the places that are important to you or memorable, you would probably remember a combination of unique experiences and locations — a blanket of bluebells next to the creek in the spring, the site of an engagement or child's first steps, the sound of a classroom or crunch of fresh snow underfoot or the comfortable feel of a well-known desk chair. These places, experiences and what they mean to us personally, help shape our understanding of landscapes around us. This session will explore ways that our memory or environmental autobiography influences how we perceive landscapes around us, the prospects of change and our attitudes towards public policy initiatives that inevitably alter these places.
    Instructors
    Michael Urban, an associate professor, has a PhD in geography from the University of Illinois and has taught in the Department of Geography at the University of Missouri since 1998. His research focuses on fluvial geomorphology, anthropogenic landscape change and the application of environmental ethics in environmental management.
    Soren Larsen, an associate professor, earned his doctorate in geography at the University of Kansas in 2002 and has taught in the MU Department of Geography since 2005. For almost 20 years, his research has involved a collaboration with the Cheslatta Carrier Nation in northern British Columbia, Canada, that focuses on indigenous relationships with land and place.
  • Oct. 2
    Harnessing the Power of the Sun

    This class explores the benefits of the sun's energy to humans in the past, present and future. Modern day solar cell technology as a renewable energy source and its place in everyday life will be discussed. Participants will learn about how solar cells work, how they are made and current research at the University of Missouri that is transforming common waste into solar cell components.
    Instructor
    Sheila Baker, an assistant professor of chemistry, completed her doctorate in 2002 from the University of New York at Buffalo and has worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Los Alamos and Oak Ridge National laboratories. She has also served as a senior scientist at a life sciences company and as an independent consultant for Harbach Engineering. In January 2011, she became an associate professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering prior to her move to the Department of Chemistry in 2015. Her current research interests include novel materials and fluids aimed toward sustainable energy applications such as photovoltaics and carbon capture and for environmental sensor technologies.
  • Oct. 9
    Thinking About Probability

    Every citizen should take a critical thinking course from a philosophy department, as the material has many practical applications in personal and professional life. Philosophy teaches rules of reasoning and argumentation. Human intuition is poor at assessing reasons and arguments involving chance and risk, as André Ariew will demonstrate in this class. His example involves assessing medical diagnoses that involve risky procedures with uncertain outcomes. By showing participants a rule of reasoning, introduced by a philosopher in the 18th century, Ariew aims to provide an easy way to override faulty intuitions about chances to help attain clarity in a common and stressful medical situation.
    Instructor
    André Ariew is an associate professor of philosophy who joined Mizzou in 2006, coming from the University of Rhode Island. He specializes in the nature of scientific reasoning. From 1998 to 2004, he was an associate at the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard. From 2004-2005, he was a visiting professor at the Department of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge in Cambridge, UK.
  • Oct. 16
    Don't Check Those Text Messages: Observations on Forward Flow in Music and in Poetry

    Composers and poets carefully control how artwork flows in performance. This class will focus on how various units interact and counterpoint one another to affect rhythm and meter. In poetry, these units include words, syllables, feet and stanzas. In music, they include phrase, motive and harmonic progression. Equipped with the idea of "unit counterpoint," class members will explore the existence of analogical contrapuntal practices in music and poetry.
    Instructor
    Neil Minturn, an associate professor in music, received his BA from Reed College and his PhD from Yale University. He has taught music theory at the University of Missouri since 1997. Previously, Minturn taught at the Eastman School of Music from 1989 to 1997. He also taught briefly at the University of British Columbia and Hudson Correctional Facility in New York State, where he taught college algebra and history of jazz. He is the author of "The Music of Sergei Prokofiev" (Yale University Press) and "The Last Waltz of The Band" (Pendragon Press).
  • Oct. 23
    Girls, Boys; Women, Men: The Role of Gender in Friendships and Romantic Relationships

    Adults treat girls and boys differently from birth. Unsurprisingly, important gender differences develop in how males and females interact with others. This session explores these gender differences in terms of youths' friendships and adults' romantic relationships. Specifically, youth tend to interact with friends of the same gender where they may learn styles of communicating that may clash when adolescents and adults start forming romantic relationships. Special attention will be paid to how males and females talk about problems.
    Instructor
    Amanda Rose is a professor of psychological sciences at the University of Missouri. Her research focuses on gender and close relationships, especially in adolescence and adulthood. Rose received her doctorate from the University of Illinois in 1999 and has been a faculty member at MU ever since. Rose's research has been funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. Her research honors include the Early Scientific Achievement Award from the Society of Research in Child Development and fellow status in the American Psychological Association and the American Psychological Society. Her teaching awards include the William T. Kemper Fellowship from the University of Missouri.
  • Oct. 30
    Current Politics in Historical Perspective

    This session will consider two issues: How American history looks different now that we are viewing it through the prism of our current moment of unanticipated political instability and volatility and how the past might help us understand the present.
    Instructor
    Jay Sexton is a professor and the Kinder Institute Chair in History. He writes on United States and world history since 1750.

Osher Sings! [8 sessions]

Time
3–4 p.m.,

Location
Hillcrest D

Dates
Sept. 11, 18, 25, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

Description
Try something new and unique at Osher@Mizzou! Join the Osher Sings Chorus led by MU students in music education. Perhaps you were a member of your high school mixed chorus and would like to reexperience what it's like to create vocal sounds with others; maybe you just love to sing. Come sing for the joy of singing; no experience needed. Michael Porter, an active member of Osher who loves ensemble singing, created the course. He hopes to round up some sopranos, altos, basses and a few more tenors to create a bona fide adult mixed chorus. Come join in the fun.

Instructor
Mike Porter, a retired communication professor from the University of Missouri, writes, "I am not a professional piano player, although the Water Mitty [in me] wishes that I were. I have played pianos in some great spots: hotel lobbies, garages in Wisconsin, MU Alumni Center, presidents' homes, conventions, conferences; I've led sing-alongs at retirement centers, and played for the MURA [Missouri University Retirees Association] gatherings."