Susan Waldman posing in front of a planter box

Upon moving to Las Vegas 14 years ago, I contemplated retiring but decided to return to work. After settling in, I received an email about OLLI and attended an open house. The classes I learned about during the event looked really interesting, but having just accepted a job, classes weren't a real option with my schedule. After retiring 3 years later, I went back to OLLI as it was important to me to get involved and to find a more diverse community and meet new friends.

The first class I took was So, What’s News(?) with Mike Cutler. I learned so much about what is happening here in Las Vegas and the world from the guest speakers. In addition to current events, I enjoyed taking film classes where we watched films and analyzed them in discussions with our peers. Taking these first few classes really inspired me, so I began coming to campus three days a week and sought out more and more ways to become involved in this active learning community. After a few years of volunteering, I became the chair of what is now the Educational Programming Committee and enjoyed the opportunity to help select the classes for OLLI. Being an active part of how the program was run helped me to become more connected with so many people who make OLLI what it is. Just being on this team is the best memory I have.

Not only did I find engagement in the classes, but I have made a great number of friends at OLLI. I've gone to the movies with the people that I've met, and made so many acquaintances that are really wonderful to have. It's nice to go into a store and somebody sees you and you smile at somebody and they know you from somewhere. For me that somewhere is always OLLI!

OLLI is more than just the classes that you take, it has become a way of life. I was on campus three classes a day and loved every single one of them. In between classes, I enjoy chatting in the coffee room, discussing what is happening in the world, and getting different views from everybody.

Even though it is different having our online classes, we have such special classes that I still enjoy learning and connecting over Zoom. It's simply a matter of being social and involved in something. I just love it. I can't wait until we get back on campus. I look forward to a new normal where everybody is back together so we can be reassured that OLLI friends are doing well and staying healthy.