Phone:(703) 503-3384


Print a condensed .pdf copy of this newsletter, two web pages per sheet of paper.

OLLI Teacher Appreciation Event, Country Club of Fairfax, April 28
(More photos available at this link.)

May 5, 2017

Editor of the Week: John Nash

Table of Contents

Alerts & Notices

– Remember voting for candidates for the OLLI Board of Directors begins today, May 5, and ends May 19 at noon. Candidate campaign statements may be viewed here.

– Space is still available for the bus trip to the Cold War Museum, May 12 from 10:30 to 5:00. This event is open to nonmembers, so bring a friend. Register for special event 979.

– The OLLI summer catalog for 2017 is now available for viewing on line at this link.
Noted milestone: OLLI’s contributions to worthy causes at Mason have now surpassed a quarter-million dollars over the past two decades. See here for details.

Back to Top of Page

Mason Academic Scholarships Awarded at Teacher Appreciation Event

By Jennifer Disano, Executive Director

April 28th marked OLLI’s 26th annual teacher appreciation event. This year, we celebrated our program success with a generous gift from Friends of OLLI in the form of student scholarships. Friends of OLLI donates money each year to the Mason departments that support our programs so the departments, in turn, can award academic scholarships to their students. We thank the hundreds of OLLI members who contribute to Friends of OLLI each year to award deserving students and strengthen ties with our Mason community. You are the ones who made the Mason academic scholarships possible!

Below are listed the award categories, recipients, and departments of those recognized for the 2016-2017 academic year, followed by the photographs of those present at the event. (Photos by Paul and Susan Van Hemel. More photos available at this link.)

OLLI Mason Pathways to Advancement Scholarship
– Daniel Howe, Volgenau School of Engineering
OLLI Mason Special Project Grant
– Dr. John Zenelis, Dean, Mason Libraries
OLLI Director’s Discretionary Awards
– Julie Elizabeth Pramis, Department of English
– Houman Seyson, Department of Philosophy
– Erin Mahaffey, Department of Religious Studies
– Stephen Lippi, Department of Psychology
– James “Jimmy” Williams, Department of Global Affairs
– Andrea Mendoza, Department of Global Affairs
– Sarah Edmonston, Department of Global Affairs
– Caitlyn Kelly, Department of Modern & Classical Languages
– Rachel Orga, Department of Modern & Classical Languages
– Nikolai Lipnicky, Department of Modern & Classical Languages
Kathryn Brooks Scholarships
– Shuwen Li, Department of Economics
– David Lucas, Department of Economics
– Lauren Ammerman, Department of History and Art History
– Heather Longfellow, Department of History and Art History
– Zachary Greenfield, Department of History and Art History
– Regina Bechtel, Department of History and Art History
– Austin Hofeman, Schar School of Policy & Government
Shirley Fox Scholarships
– Amy Dezember, Department of Criminology, Law, & Society
– Margaret McClure, Department of Criminology, Law, & Society
– Lena N. Ali, School of Nursing
– Taplin H. Arant, Department
of Rehabilitation Science
– Zeina Alkhalaf, Department of Global & Community Health

Abe and Lilyan Spero Scholarships
– Alyssa Thostesen, School of Dance
– Meagan Arnold, Department of Film & Video Studies
– Amanda Bowen, Department of Film & Video Studies
– Rosane Castro, School of Music
– Faith Ellen Lam, School of Music

Back to Top of Page

OLLI Teachers Recognized
By Kathryn Russell, Chair, Program Planning CommitteeAt the teacher appreciation breakfast on April 28, we had the opportunity to honor an exceptional group of people: our OLLI teachers. Where would OLLI be without them? Their dedication and generosity in sharing their time and expertise is nothing short of extraordinary, and many teach multiple terms during the year.Some of these teachers come from our own OLLI membership, some from the surrounding community, and some from Mason. One speaker from each of these groups shared their teaching experiences at OLLI.
Kathie West, a long-time OLLI member, described many of her theater classes at all three sites.
Kay Menchel, representing instructors from the community, spoke of her love of teaching British literature courses and her appreciation of OLLI students.
Dr. Rick Davis, dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts at Mason and currently executive director of the Hylton Performing Arts Center, recounted some fond memories of his many years of teaching courses at OLLI.We were delighted to have the chance to recognize all our dedicated teachers, who spend countless hours developing courses that foster our intellectual growth. (Photos by Susan Van Hemel. More photos available at this link.)

Back to Top of Page

Summer Registration Begins Soon

By Alice Slayton Clark, Communications, Associate Registrar

Get ready for summer…and OLLI spring priority registration, May 16-21. And just to help you remember those dates, an advertisement promoting OLLI will be displayed on the Mason marquee prior to these dates. When driving down Braddock Road, look for the OLLI announcement rotating periodically on the marquee.

Mason provides free space on the marquee to announce each OLLI term registration. “We appreciate Mason’s support in giving OLLI the opportunity of using a very visible medium to promote OLLI,” said Jennifer Disano, OLLI executive director.

Watch for OLLI’s ad on the Mason marquee during these two weeks in May and tell your friends to do the same. This just may be the incentive someone needs to join OLLI. Summer is coming and so is another great selection of OLLI classes for all of us to enjoy!

Back to Top of Page

Theater Lovers’ Group to See Private Lives

By Norma Jean Reck, Theater Lovers’ Group

Everyone is welcome to join the Theater Lovers’ Group to see Private Lives on Sunday, May 14, at the 2:00 matinee at the Reston Community Center. Private Lives is a long-lived, award-winning comedy of manners, written by Noel Coward in 1930. The Reston Community Players are performing Private Lives as part of their 50th birthday celebration.

A once-married couple accidentally meet at the same hotel while they are honeymooning with their new spouses. What follows for them after being reunited is a gleeful comedy of alternating passions of love and anger, as well as a dance of affiliations with their spouses. You’ll have to join us to see how it ends. Newsweek called it ‘A brilliant comedy–a very funny play.’

The cost is $15/person. Optional dinner at Clydes after the performance.

To sign up and for more information, please email Norma at

Back to Top of Page

Reston Book Club Meeting

By Nancy Scheeler, Reston Book Club Member

The Reston Book Club will have its final meeting of the spring term on Thursday, May 11, 2017 at 2:15 at the United Christian Parish Church in Reston. The book selection is Amsterdam, by Ian McEwan, the 1998 Booker Prize winner. Amsterdam, which takes place in London and the Lake District, begins with the funeral of artist Molly Lane. Three of the funeral guests share certain attributes: each has a very high opinion of himself, each was at some time Molly’s lover, and each regards the dead woman’s husband with a mixture of amusement and contempt. During the course of the book, two of the guests become mortal enemies bent on exacting revenge. The consequences of their decisions, and a pact made between them, lead to Amsterdam where the novel’s denouement plays out.

Ask Uncle Olli

By Uncle Olli, Etiquette Consultant, Driving Consultant, and everything in between

Uncle Olli has lived long enough that people often ask him various questions, including ones in the matter of etiquette. He is approachable (to take nothing away from Miss Ollie Ettakit) and welcomes your queries: ask Uncle Olli at He is embarrassed by nothing!

Question: Announcements are no longer read at the beginning of each class, and class decorum seems to have declined. Am I being too fussy?

Uncle OLLI: Absolutely not, and thank you for noticing. Miss Ollie Etiquette complained to me the other day that we sometimes forget our manners in class. I reminded her we need to re-emphasize the Three Rules of OLLI…Plus One. These are:

1. Wear your name tag;
2. Sign in to each class you’re taking;
3. Put trash in
trash cans;
4. And the important Plus One (the Gordon Canyock Rule) – Put your phone on vibrate!

Remember, next week is Wear Your Name Tag Week. With 1,200 members and three campuses (‘campi’? I bow to the Latin Scholars), no one – not even Jennifer Disano – knows everyone’s name. And memory is not so sharp as it was decades ago. Wear your name tag so we can talk to you like the old friend you are. I know members’ names until the moment I must introduce them ‒ then my mind goes blank. I end up suddenly needing more coffee. If you lost your name tag, the front office prints out replacements every Friday on request and can give you a plastic holder to put it in.

Next week: Sign In. We even provide the pencil!

Poet’s Corner

Courtesy of the Poetry Workshop

Time in the Garden

we mulch



all trace
and decay

but surely
as the

we can’t
our fate

our breath
to wind

-Susan Bennett

Back to Top of Page

Arts & Music at George Mason

Performances, May 5 through May 15
By Shelly Gersten, OLLI E-News Staff WriterFor tickets for either Center for the Arts (CFA) or Hylton, call 1-888-945-2468, buy tickets online through the event calendar (see links below), or visit the venue’s box office. For more information, see the CFA ticket page or the Hylton ticket purchase page.

At the Fairfax Campus Venues.

Fairfax Symphony Orchestra
Sat, May 13, 8:00
Pre-performance discussion: John Ginder of WETA and conductor Christopher Zimmerman
Admission: $65, $53, $39.

Back to Top of Page

Mason Student & Faculty Performances.

(see for additional student recitals)

Dance Innovations
Fri, May 5, and Sat, May 6, 8:00
Harris Theatre
Admission: Adults, $15; seniors, $10.
Scholarship Benefit Concert: Soloists with the Mason Orchestra
Sun, May 7, 7:00
Concert Hall
Admission: Adults, $20; seniors, $15.
Post-show dessert reception: $15 (RSVP to Alice Magelssen-Green at
703-993-1593 or
Dance Performance Studio
Tue, May 9, 6:00 and 8:00
DeLaski – Room A301
Admission: $7.Dr. Linda Monson’s Piano Studio Recital
Fri, May 12, 7:00
Harris Theatre
Admission: Free.Music Department Honors Recital
Sat, May 13, 8:00
Harris Theatre
Admission: Free.

At the Hylton Center (Manassas Campus).

Gallery Exhibit: Gilbert and Sullivan Memorabilia
Through May 27

The Gallery is open to the public Tue-Sat, 10:00-6:00; Thu, 10:00-8:00; and two hours before performances.
For more information, visit
Admission: Free.

Virginia National Ballet: Snow White
Fri, May 5, 7:00
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $35; children, $17.
Mariachi Los Camperos
Sat, May 6, 8:00
Pre-performance discussion: Member of the company
Merchant Hall
Admission: $50, $43, $30.InTune Music Studios: Spring Recital
Sun, May 7, 1:00 and 4:00
Gregory Theater
Admission: Adults, $10; seniors and children, $5.Youth Orchestras of Prince William: Let it Bloom!
Sun, May 7, 3:00
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $20; seniors, $12.
Northern Virginia Ballet: Cinderella
Fri, May 12, 7:00
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $28; seniors, $18.Manassas Symphony Orchestra: Symphonic Exuberance
Sat, May 13, 7:30
Merchant Hall
Admission: Adults, $20; seniors, $16.

For further details on any of the above events, please see the CFA event calendar and the Hylton Center event calendar.

Back to Top of Page

Meetings & Clubs

The following list covering the next two weeks is extracted for your convenience from the master online calendar maintained by the office, with direct web links added when available. The list is accurate as of mid-week but to check anytime for the latest information, please view the latest forecast of upcoming events on our website (News/OLLI Calendar). Note: All OLLI members are welcome at, and encouraged to attend, meetings of the Board of Directors, committees and resource groups, kickoff coffees, etc. (bolded below).

Sat May 6 10:30am Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Wed May 10 1:30pm
Tallwood Book Club–Annex
Bridge Club–TA-3
Spanish Club–TA-2
Thu May 11 2:15pm Reston Book Club–UCP Church Reston
Fri May 12 9:15am
Recorder Consort–TA-3
Craft and Conversation–Annex
Photography Club–TA-1
Classic Literature Club–TA-2
Homer, etc.–Annex
Sat May 13 10:30am Tai Chi Club–TA-3
Mon May 15 10:00am What’s in the Daily News, cont’d–TA-1
Tue May 16 9:30am Annex Art–Annex
Wed May 17 10:00am
Bridge Club–TA-3
Mah Jongg Club–TA-2
Tom Crooker Investment Forum–TA-1
Fri May 19 9:15am
Recorder Consort–TA-3
Craft and Conversation–Annex
Homer, etc.–Annex
Dr. Who Club–TA-1

Back to Top of Page

About OLLI E-News

OLLI E-News was created by Rod Zumbro, who served as its editor from 2005 to 2013.

Editorial Staff
Chief Editor: Paul Van Hemel
Technical Editor: Irene Osterman
Associate Editor: Sheri Siesseger
Weekly Editorial Team: Jean Boltz, John Nash, Sheri Siesseger, Leslie Vandivere,
Paul Van Hemel

Proofreaders: Rebecca Jann, Lorna Moran, Susan Van Hemel, Polly Johnsen
Backup Chief Editor: Alice Slayton Clark

Submissions. Members are encouraged to submit letters to the editor, letters to Ms. Ollie Ettakit (on etiquette matters), OLLI-related news items, articles, and photos. Submit material to:
Deadline – 6:00 Tuesday for that week’s issue, (6:00 Monday for letters to the editor); early submissions are greatly appreciated. Please limit articles to about 250 words.
Note: You can view past issues of OLLI E-News on the DocStore. To search the content of issues, use Search Our Site or put your search term in Google followed by “” without the quotes.

Back to Top of Page