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August 12, 2019 : Program for lifelong learners offers free classes

by Sarah Shy


Ohio University Lancaster offers an opportunity for lifelong learners through its 60+ program to enroll in undergraduate course tuition free.


Bill Meyer is one such student who chose to participate in the program. Meyer chose an English course.


“I enrolled in an American Literature class at OHIO Lancaster because it was nearby, easy to enroll, cost was free, and it introduced me to the talented and inspiring Professor, Dr. Matt Wanat.” Meyer said.


Since the start of his course, Meyer has been receiving stimulating lectures, and having invigorating and intellectual conversations within the class. Much of the conversations consist of various written works by renowned writers like Mark Twain, Emily Dickinson, Rebecca Harding Davis, and many others.


“I look forward to our class twice weekly.  The ninety-minutes fly by. I leave the classroom feeling exhilarated with new brain cells firing and the realization that only at OHIO Lancaster could I have had this experience.” Meyer said.


The courses available are taken for either credit or noncredit, and as long as space is available, individuals can participate in a variety of classes. If a course has extra fees associated with it, (i.e. art supplies) the individual will be responsible to pay those small fees. The only courses that are not available to participate in, are those that are offered online.


Enrolling in this program is very easy for individuals to do. The first step is to fill out an application found here  and then to take the application and copy of photo ID to Maryann Lape at room 320 in Brasee Hall. If it is more convenient for the individual, they can fax or email their material to her instead. Lape will then get approval from the course professor. Once approval has been made, the individual will move onto the new course once it starts.


“The for-credit option is available for lower income students (sixty years or older) as long as they attend less than full-time and meet the other income requirements.” Said Andy Ellinger, marketing manager and journalism faculty member for Ohio University Lancaster.


If the individual sixty years or older wants to earn credit for the courses they plan to attend, the academic load must be less than full-time, which would be under 12 credit hours. Also, the household income must be less than two hundred percent of the federal poverty guideline, which is approximately $32,000 for a family of two or $23,000 for one person.


“Enrolling for my class was a breeze thanks to the admin staff. As I adjusted to the routine of classwork—reading assignments, small group discussions, getting comfortable with my bright and benevolent classmates whom are one-third my age—I realized that I thoroughly enjoyed myself, in a classroom no less.” Meyer said.


Meyer suggests ome older people get caught up in their routines, repetitively going through the motions that for some, goes unnoticed. Many are happy in their routines, others find it stifling and need something new and invigorating to wake them up.


Meyer said it best with his following comment, “As you age your world can shrink. Family reminds you that you’re repeating the same old stories. You’ve become addicted to the endless news cycle, weather forecasts, and ballgames. They consume what’s left of your time.”


Meyer recommends others enroll in the sixty plus program at Ohio University Lancaster, “I recommend it! I am enjoying myself and have a few new stories to tell the family.”


For more information about Sixty Plus, contact Administrative Coordinator Maryann Lape at