Friday, March 25, 2016

[404] MTSU Lifelong Learning Program puts war, sports, happiness in classroom in May

MURFREESBORO — Bringing the love of learning to life at any age is the goal of the MTSU College of Liberal Arts’ second Lifelong Learning Program.

The homework-free, exam-free classroom experience for older learners is slated for four Mondays — May 2, 9, 16 and 23 — in the Ingram Building, 2269 Middle Tennessee Blvd. in Murfreesboro. Free parking will be available in the Ingram lot.

Classes in “The Civil War” will take place from 9 to 10:30 a.m. “The History of American Sports” is slated for 10:45 a.m. to noon. “The Philosophy of Happiness” is scheduled for 12:15 to 1:45 p.m.

Professor Emeritus James T. Brooks Jr., who will be teaching one of the sports history sessions, will bring his love of auto racing to the classroom.

“For more than 100 years, motor racing has paralleled and reflected our nation’s love affair with automobiles and with the men and women who take these machines to their limits and beyond in side-by-side speed competition,” said Brooks, whose academic specialty is speech communication.

Brooks will share teaching duties in the sports history class with Fred Colvin, a professor emeritus of history, and Warren Tormey, an English professor who organized the Baseball in Literature and Culture Conference at MTSU from 2006 to 2015 with fellow English professor Ron Kates.

Phil Oliver, a professor of philosophy, will bring multiple perspectives to the “Philosophy of Happiness” course, a distillation of an MTSU course he has taught for several years. He draws from an education philosopher for his beliefs about keeping the brain engaged as we age.

“My favorite pithy statement on the value of lifelong learning is from John Dewey, who said in ‘My Pedagogic Creed,’ ‘I believe that education is a process of living and not a preparation for future living,’” said Oliver. “In other words, it’s forever. It’s never too late to learn. It’s always too soon to stop.”

Dr. Robert Hunt, a history professor, will teach the entire course on the “The Civil War.” Hunt, who has been at MTSU for 25 years, specializes in Civil War and Reconstruction, the antebellum American South, World War I, war memory and the history of war.

The fee for each course is $20. Checks should be made out to “MTSU Lifelong Learning.” To register by mail, send a check to Connie Huddleston, MTSU Box 97, Murfreesboro, Tennessee 37132.

For more information, contact Huddleston, coordinator for the College of Liberal Arts, at 615-494-7628 or

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