OLLI at WVU, affiliated with the School of Public Health, is a membership organization that recognizes the unique experiences, capabilities, and wisdom of mature members of the community. OLLI emphasizes the sharing of ideas through peer learning, member participation, and collaborative leadership.
During four terms each year, OLLI offers courses, lectures, seminars and field trips in such areas as music, literature, art, science, politics, nature, history, health, medicine, and economics. Live drama, movies, and special interest groups add to the choices.
Courses are developed and taught by volunteers from the community who are passionate about their topics, avocations, and interests, and love to share their ideas.
Established in Morgantown in 1993 as the Appalachia Lifelong Learners, the program was granted an endowment by the Bernard Osher Foundation and became the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at West Virginia University in 2010. The Charleston satellite was established in 2015. Today, OLLI has more than 800 members between the two programs.
OLLI at WVU is supported by interest from the Osher Endowment, funds from West Virginia University and the WVU School of Public Health, gifts from members and other donors, and member dues and fees.
Governed by a member-elected Board of Directors and managed by a small staff, OLLI values the shared knowledge and talents of our members and volunteers.
Meet Our Staff
Jascenna joined OLLI at WVU in 2016. As a passionate lifelong learner herself, she returned to graduate school in 2011 to pursue a degree in gerontology from the University of Southern California. She also holds an M.F.A. in Theatre Management and previously worked as the marketing director for the Department of Theatre at the University of Northern Iowa for 15 years.
Michelle Klishis is a jack-of-all-trades and certifiable geek. Her degree in biology and work in a microbiology lab gave her absolutely no preparation for becoming a technology consultant, yet here we are. When not in front of a computers, she is likely to be found reading or hiking (Current accomplishment: Hiking all of the state parks and forests in WV).
Diane has enjoyed working at OLLI at WVU, for the last six years now, and meeting all the wonderful and interesting people. Learning about their life experiences, and getting to know them personally, she has made many new friends that she cherishes and looks forward to seeing every day. She is happy to help in any way she can, and strives to be a welcoming face and voice when OLLI members come into the office or call in to ask questions.