‘On the Move’ sem­i­nars start

The Tribune (NZ) - - NEWS - RICHARD MAYS

‘‘On the Move’’, a free five sem­i­nar pro­gramme from the Univer­sity of the Third Age (U3A) gets un­der way next week.

Over five weeks, the series looks at peo­ple and an­i­mals on the move through a num­ber of dif­fer­ent lenses.

The U3A’s Fred Symes says the sem­i­nars start­ing on Wed­nes­day, May 4 open with lessons from the an­cient Ro­man world with a talk by Massey Univer­sity Clas­sics lec­turer Dr Jonathan Tracy en­ti­tled ‘‘Ro­mans and refugees: Com­mon sense from an­tiq­uity’’.

There are lessons the mod­ern world can learn from the con­se­quences of fail­ing to deal with an in­flux of mi­grat­ing peo­ples.

‘‘It’s quite top­i­cal with what’s go­ing on in the world at the mo­ment,’’ Fred says.

The lec­tures, all hosted by ex­perts, take place on Wed­nes­day af­ter­noons at the All Saints Com­mu­nity Cen­tre on Church St from 2.15 to 4pm.

Fol­low­ing ses­sions in­clude ‘‘The magic of mi­gra­tion’’ by re­tired en­to­mol­o­gist Jim Es­son; ‘‘Mov­ing lit­er­a­ture’’ from se­nior Massey English and Me­dia Stud­ies lec­turer Dr In­grid Hor­rocks, and ‘‘The chal­lenges and ben­e­fits of mi­gra­tion’’ by Massey’s Dr Paul Spoon­ley.

‘‘We are get­ting as many as 120 to 130 – U3A mem­bers and the pub­lic – to these sem­i­nars, with peo­ple com­ing from Whanganui and Levin.’’

The Third Age refers to re­tire­ment age, when many peo­ple have the time to fol­low in­ter­ests or to learn com­pletely new things. A fea­ture of U3A, which was founded in France in 1973, is the shar­ing of knowl­edge, skills and ex­pe­ri­ence among mem­bers through learn­ing groups.

The Manawatu chap­ter of this self-help ‘‘com­mu­nity univer­sity’’ was set up in 2000, and when Fred joined nine years ago, its mem­ber­ship was less than 100. It now ex­ceeds 250.

‘‘With these num­bers we have been able to de­velop more learn­ing groups.’’

There are now 26 of these spe­cial in­ter­est groups that cover top­ics as di­verse as book­bind­ing and clas­sic Bri­tish com­edy, opera and as­tron­omy, all for an an­nual mem­ber­ship of $15.

While the 2.15pm Wed­nes­day sem­i­nars at All Saints are free, cour­tesy of the East­ern & Cen­tral Com­mu­nity Trust, re­fresh­ments are avail­able for a gold coin do­na­tion.

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