Thursday Seminars

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Migration of Birds in Ohio

Bird Walks Gain an Expert! It gives me great pleasure to announce that Tom Hissong is willing to join our bird seminar and walks. Tom has served as a Nature Director in the Dayton area for over 30 years. His most recent years were at Aullwood Audubon Center. He has earned recognition to the subject of birds and is respected as one of the top names in the State of Ohio. Additionally, participants of the seminar will be learning from an individual who has auditory skills that are second to none.

  • 5 Thursdays, April 5 – May 3
    9:30-11:30 a.m. First session on River Campus (Remaining sessions at various locations)
    Wednesday, May 9 Field Trip to Lake Erie
    Seminar limit: 25
    Advance preparation: suggest only for jump start on course – BIRD WATCHING ROOM at Aullwood and Narrows Reserve”. (Addresses and telephone numbers listed below)
    Aullwood, 1000 Aullwood Drive, Englewood, Ohio 890-7360; Narrow Reserves, 2575 Indian Ripple Road, Dayton, Ohio 425-9591 
    Call to verify hours and time, also check on the availability for someone to assist with bird identification.

Tom Hissong has followed an exciting career path working as an Interpretive Naturalist / Environmental Educator in the Dayton, Ohio area for nearly 41 years. He retired from his position as the Education Manager at the Aullwood Audubon Center and Farm north of Dayton in March of 2017. He is well known throughout the Dayton area for his expertise as an avid ornithology instructor/bird watcher and for his enthusiasm in teaching many children and adult classes on natural history topics each year.

 Both Tom Hissong and John Guenin have augmented their interest in birds during retirement by being actively involved with Audubon measurement of Ohio bird counts. Also, they have participated in specialized tours of birds in the likes of Ecuador, Panama, South Africa, Costa Rica, New Zealand, Columbia South America, and the Galapagos Islands. With the technology growth and the tools for making bird watching more at our finger tips, this seminar will supply help to grow one’s interest in bird watching going forward.


Exploring Aviation History at the National Museum of the USAF

The National Museum of the United States Air Force is the world’s oldest and largest museum of military aviation. This overview seminar goes beyond the aircraft to the stories of the people that made history. This updated seminar will include the recently opened new space, research and development, airlift, and presidential gallery exhibits. The format will include a short classroom presentation followed by a tour of the aircraft galleries.

  • 6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
    9:30-11:30 a.m. at the National Museum of the US Air Force
    Seminar limit: 20

Paul Cooper is a retired Air Force Brigadier General and pilot with 35 years of service. He has combat experience in Vietnam, Desert Storm, and Bosnia and has commanded three different air bases. He is a graduate of both the Industrial College of the Armed Forces and Air War College and has a master’s degree in Aviation History. He is Past President of UDOLLI and serves on the Board of Trustees at the Foundation of the National Museum of the Air Force.


The Reformation Period from Three Perspectives - NEW

The titles “Protestant Reformation” and “Catholic Counter Reformation” implies that the latter only came about because of the former. Also, this implies that the Protestant Reformation was a unified front. This is simply not the case. A Catholic reformation, from the inside, had been long overdue and would have come about regardless of Martin Luther and it is more accurate to say Protestant Reformations, plural. This class will unpack the reformations of Europe by covering the doctrines, politics, and communities of years 1450- 1650 by use of in-class lectures, examinations of primary texts, and classroom discussions.

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
9:30-11:30 a.m. at River Campus

John Parrett is a graduate of Wilmington College who double majored in History and Religion and Philosophy with a minor in business management. He is now working to achieve a Masters of Theology at the University of Dayton. He hopes to one day go on to achieve a PhD in American History. Before coming to UDOLLI John was an instructor for the Wilmington Institute for Lifelong Learning (WILL) program at Wilmington College. Since he started with the WILL program in 2015, his most popular classes have covered the lost books of the Bible, the history of the crusades, and the history of Islam. All of his classes cover religion in a historical context with an eye towards how the topic influences modern events, because John’s teaching philosophy is that history must be used to understand and inform the present if it is to have value in the modern world.  


Post Oil Civilization - NEW

When the end of the oil age estimated at a mere 50 years from now, we will investigate the predictions of remaining oil, likely scenarios as the last barrels are consumed, and ways to mitigate the impending societal damage. Loss of crude oil as a fuel and feed stock will halt the manufacture of fertilizer, insecticides, and herbicides without which we will not be able to grow or distribute the vast amount of food currently necessary to feed the people of Earth. Our collective life style changes are going to change whether we like it or not.

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
9:30-11:30 a.m. at River Campus

Richard Durrenberg has served in the Air Force for over 30 years, in uniform and as a civilian. He then went into the U.S. Forest Service for 6 years. At Southern Illinois University, he was a part-time instructor, received his B.S. in industrial technology, and a M.A. in education. He was in the field of post oil for 5 years.


Movement as Medicine—Lessons from Modern Science and Ageless Wisdom - NEW

Sitting is the most underrated health problem we face today. In his book, Eat, Move, Sleep, the author writes that as soon as we sit down electrical activity in our legs shuts off. The number of calories we burn drops to one per minute. Enzyme production, which helps break down fat, drops by 90%. Join fellow learners to find out some solutions to the “sitting disease” as, together, we learn to move all 640 muscles in our body and ways we can motivate ourselves to “get off the couch.”

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
9:30-11:30 a.m. at River Campus
Special equipment: Gym shoes and comfortable clothing

Sharon Otto Trekell has practiced Qigong and Tai Chi (Meditative movements) for 25 years. As a young woman she was a dancer and she studied ballet and acrobatics from the age of four until her early 20s. Sharon’s dance and Tai Chi and Qigong background motivated her to step away from her clinical work as a psychotherapist to open the Inner Well Institute in 2000. Her services include teaching movement classes (Tai Chi, Qigong, and Essentrics) as well as offering “hands-on” sessions in SHEN Therapy (a form of acupressure end). Having survived numerous back operations and rheumatoid arthritis, Sharon is a testament to the importance of the ways gentle movement can become our primary medicine.


Talking About Dying Won’t Kill You

Many people are faced with health decisions for themselves or family when a serious medical diagnosis has been made or an unexpected tragic accident has occurred. During this very stressful time, it is easy to feel overwhelmed, confused, and not in control. However, being aware of your end-of-life wishes and sharing them with your family is difficult but so important. Leaving a “legacy of love” for your family is a positive and comforting gift. A good death is something we all hope to have. This seminar explores how to plan your end of life. Leave a “legacy of love” for your family so you can relax and live life to the fullest. Death is always sad, but it doesn’t have to be tragic. A seasoned team of presenters who specialize in end-of-life care will guide you through healthcare documents, end-of-life healthcare choices, organ donation, and funeral planning.

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
12:30-2:30 p.m. at River Campus
Seminar limit: 25

Laureene Bollinger is a retired registered nurse who worked as a bedside nurse for almost 42 years. At the beginning of her career she focused on critical care nursing. For the last ten years of her career she was a hospice/palliative care nurse.


Introduction to Peace Talking - NEW

This seminar offers and encourages peaceful communication aptitudes and attitudes to expand our choices in important conversations. Previous attendees at another venue found the content helpful in conversations with life partners, in job interviews, and with workplace associates. The seminar goal is to assist attendees both as listeners and speakers in recognizing language patterns that may unintentionally imply negative messages. As listening and speaking habits adapt to more peaceful patterns, communication with others can become more constructive and rewarding. The seminar is presented as an informal, but focused, conversation with all attendees invited and encouraged, but not required, to share.

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
12:30-2:30 p.m. at River Campus
Seminar limit: 16
Advance Preparation: Reading or borrowing the optional text is recommended, but not required: The skills and knowledge offered follow the first ten chapters of Marshall Rosenberg’s “Nonviolent Communication – A Language of Life” The attitudes encouraged echo concepts presented in Don Miguel Ruiz’s “The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom” 

Denny Smith is a retired military commander, computer scientist, and former chairman of the Department of Defense. He has also worked in the Computer Institute, Computer Security, and [Information Management for] Intermediate Executives Departments. More recently he’s led and/or co-led a number of seminars on Constructive Communication. 


Jewish Humor – The Comedians, Their Stories, and Their Comedies - NEW

Richard Prigozen and Franklin Lewis will team up to present an insightful investigation  into Jewish humor by exploring the lives and comedy of our best loved and most famous comedians like Groucho Marx, Milton Berle, Jack Benny, George Burns, Woody Allen, Jerry Seinfeld, etc. You will get to see video clips of their TV appearances, stand-up routines, and sit-coms. The seminar will start by exploring the fertile birth places of the Jewish comedy culture (where many got their start) by looking at such venerated institutions as the “borscht belt”, vaudeville, Yiddish theater, and early TV. From these beginnings we will move right through to the comics and their comedy of today. At least one full session will showcase the funny ladies of Jewish humor from Fanny Brice, to Joan Rivers, to Sarah Silverman.

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
12:30-2:30 p.m. at River Campus

Richard Prigozen and Franklin Lewis have both moderated music seminars in the past. Franklin has moderated the history of classical music and Richard has moderated Classical Guitar and The Grateful Dead. This will be a departure for both. Franklin and Richard are both long standing and active members of the UDOLLI community.


Judaism 101

This seminar will function as an introduction to the basic concepts and workings of Judaism, including calendar, life cycle, and history.

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
12:30-2:30 p.m. at River Campus
Recommended text: Jewish Literacy by Joseph Telushkin ($19.77 on or ($20.16 on Kindle $1.99

Rabbi Karen Bodney-Halasz joined Temple Israel’s staff in 2003 and currently serves as the congregation’s first female senior Rabbi. She delights in the array of responsibilities: leading services, preaching, officiating at lifecycle events, coordinating retreats, counseling, and providing pastoral care. Her passions for social justice and collaborative interfaith programming have led to involvement with Leaders for Equality and Action in Dayton (L.E.A.D), Reform Ohio – a collaboration of Reform Rabbis advocating social justice through legislation in Ohio, and a Dayton Interfaith Lunch and Learn. In April of 2015, she led 20 congregants on a week-long humanitarian trip to aid the Cuban Jewish community. Originally from Overland Park, Kansas, Rabbi Bodney-Halasz attended Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois where she received her undergraduate degree in Comparative Literary Studies with a focus on Hebrew Literature and Culture. She received her Master of Arts in Hebrew Letters at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR) and was ordained as a rabbi in 2007. Her rabbinic thesis was titled: “Breaking Ground: Biblical Archaeology and the Reform Rabbinate.” 


“Time and Place” – Julia Patterson’s “A Fine Garden” - NEW

Do you enjoy gardening and history? Then join us at Carillon Historical Park to continue to rediscover Julia Patterson’s “A Fine Garden” at the Patterson Homestead. During the sum- mer of 2017, UDOLLI students worked to recreate a working 1850s kitchen and herb garden with over 50 different kinds of plants. This “Time and Place” garden will continue to explore Dayton’s rich history and enable you to experience it up close and personal. Other historic garden sites such as Monticello, Colonial Williamsburg, and Adena will give us insight as to the older varieties of herbs, flowers, and vegetables that were common at the time. Former First Lady of Ohio, Mrs. Hope Taft, will share her experiences regarding the Ohio Governor’s Residence and Heritage Garden she created. Help us discover the meaning and value of this unique garden. The first seminar, on March 15th, will meet at the Kettering Family Education Center located at Carillon Park, 1000 Carillon Boulevard (across from the UD River Campus). The remaining sessions March 22th – May 3rd, will be held at the Patterson Homestead, 1815 Brown Street. Parking is free at both locations.

8 Thursdays, March 15 – May 3
3:00-5:00 p.m. at Carillon Park and the Patterson Homestead

Mike Schumacher retired from Wright-Patterson AFB after serving 36 years as a lab researcher and environmental manager for the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL). He has served as a Greene County Master Gardener, recreating historic heirloom gardens at the Mercer Smith House (circa 1799) in Fairborn and at the Patterson Homestead. He also helped create the WPAFB Medical Center Diabetic Clinic Gardens which were awarded an International Master Gardener Excellence Award. He has visited and studied several historic gardens including Adena, Colonial Williamsburg, Monticello, Mt. Vernon, and Conner Prairie. He is the co-founder of the Little Miami Watershed Network, an Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist, and a member of Dayton History at Carillon Historical Park. He was honored in July 2017 by the Warren County Soil and Water Conservation District as the Conservationist of the Year.


Rise of Modern America 1890- 1945 - NEW

By 1890, urban, industrial society, and modern America were poised to dominate the nation. Over the next fifty-five years modernity challenged every aspect of traditional society, transformed the economy, realigned politics, and made the United States the dominant world power.

6 Thursdays, March 15- April 19
3:00-5:00 p.m. at River Campus

Patrick F. Palermo, a full professor in the Department of History at UD, retired as Professor Emeritus and Distinguished Service Professor. He was recognized as Professor of the Year for his scholarship, for his innovative pedagogy, and for his teaching excellence. Among his recognitions, he was chosen for the Lackner Award for his service to the University and the community, and has an endowment in his name that funds student research combining international topics with service.


The Story of Christianity Part 3

With a solid basis on which to stand from Parts I and II, we will now explore the fractioning of Christianity into various sects. Information on six of the major divisions of Christianity will be provided. Then we move on to study the effects of the French Revolution and the Churches’ moves into the modern age in which we live, as well as the men and women who were/are noteworthy. Participants are encouraged to choose a book from their own tradition as a supplement to the history presented (suggested titles will be provided at  the first session). NO book is required for this course; you may just listen and learn. It is hoped that you will ask questions and offer what information you might have as the  course proceeds.

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
3:00 – 5:00 p.m. at River Campus

Carolann Cannon received a Master of Arts degree in theological studies from the University of Dayton in 1986 and is certified as both a catechist and a catechetical leader by the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. Her seminars with UDOLLI have included Scripture, Christology, the Papacy and the Bishops of Rome, Barbarians, and the so-called Dark Ages, as well as the Crusades.


Making Your Own Greeting Cards - NEW

Learn to make beautiful handcrafted greeting cards using paper crafting techniques such as rubber stamping, stenciling, embossing, die-cutting, use of common household items, and printed scrapbooking papers. Each participant will complete at least 2 cards in each session. All tools and materials will be provided.

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
3:00 – 5:00 p.m. at River Campus
Seminar limit: 20
Seminar fee: $20.00
Additional Resources: All tools and materials will be provided. Students will be given a list at the first class of additional things that they could bring to class so they don’t have to share. These are common paper crafting tools such as scissors, a ruler, a bone folder, and adhesives. Classroom sets will be available during class. 

Bobbye Goetz is a paper-crafter enthusiast. She teaches paper-crafting and stamping classes and holds a retreat each summer for making fun paper crafts and cards. She has won first and second place ribbons at the Ohio State Fair in the Creative Arts Division for her greeting cards and other paper projects. Bobbye has a M.S. degree in Education.


Shakespeare Takes On the Movies – And the Movies Take on Shakespeare - NEW

Starting with a quick look at Shakespeare on silent film, we will proceed to examine what “the talkies” have made of The Bard, done to The Sweet Swan of Avon, or improved on in “the only Shake-scene in a country [sic]” in films based on three plays: a comedy (Twelfth Night), a tragedy (Macbeth) and a history (Henry V). As should be de rigueur at all movie sessions, you are encouraged to bring popcorn or other sustenance and the beverage of your choice to ingest and imbibe as you view. In the rare event that a film runs longer than our two-hour time slot, please take your break on the run—just as you would at the cinema! Oh, there will an optional buzzer-based Shakespeare trivia contest during the last half of the last session, so, as the song goes, “Brush up Your Shakespeare!”

6 Thursdays, March 15 – April 19
3:00 – 5:00 p.m. at River Campus
Recommended text only: A copy of each play studied (such as the complete works with notes or the side-by-side versions with contemporary English found online free in Spark notes, etc.; free downloads to e-readers).

Tom Clark is a UD grad. He especially enjoyed his undergrad forays into Shakespeare with teachers Suzanne Palumbo, Joe Pici, and Robert O’Donnell. Tom taught film studies at Carroll High School and at Wright State University early in his career.