Member Spotlight: Martha Wood

Martha Wood
Martha Wood
Founding Member, Student, Instructor, Benefactor
Member since 1991
When I retired from Michigan, my husband wanted to golf and bowl, but I wanted to take courses. The classes I found were mostly arts and crafts, and not what I was looking for. So, I was delighted to read in the paper about a program they were starting at UNLV called Excell. I went to the first meeting and signed up for two classes.
Each semester the program grew. We had more people and more classes. I taught two classes on main campus - one on mystery writers, and another on women who made a difference. Later, I became acquainted with the Great Courses DVD series, and I liked them so much, I taught from them on a variety of subjects. So far, I have taught 31 classes for OLLI at UNLV. I usually teach art history, but I have also taught Broadway musicals, best sellers, forensics, medical myths and even geology. I am not a one trick pony! One of my students this year asked if there is anything I can’t teach.
In Michigan, if I met someone new every five years, that was a lot. At OLLI at UNLV, every day I can meet someone new who has very different life experiences and therefore fresh viewpoints. This lets me expand my own consciousness. By offering a wide variety of classes. I learned I can attract different types of students. As I get to know them, I find they ask really different questions.

For 28 years and counting, OLLI at UNLV has given me the chance to explore things that I didn’t learn in school or in my career. OLLI has been so meaningful to me, that I have included OLLI at UNLV in my trust so I can help ensure the program will be here for many years to come so that others can enjoy learning here as I do.
At OLLI I am doing something for myself. Life is a book. Every chapter you go through, something different happens. You never know what’s going to be in that next chapter. I’m fortunate to have had good health so that I can spend time here.