Meet Osher Institute Staff
Becky Goodman, Director
In 1996, with the assistance of community elders, retired professors, and the Dean of the College of Social Sciences at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa, Rebecca Goodman established an outreach project called the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (formerly the Academy for Lifelong Learning). The aim of the program is to strengthen connections between the university and the community and provide intergenerational courses and workshops for older learners.
Since its inception, the Osher Institute has offered 250 courses and 75 workshops to more than 1,000 participants. As director, Rebecca oversees the daily operations of the program including grant-writing, public relations, curriculum development, fundraising, and member relations. She says, "The Osher Institute is a delightful community of learners -- talented, engaged, and lively. When instructors have an opportunity to teach in the lifelong learning program, they enjoy the experience and say that it's why they went into teaching in the first place--to work with eager, curious students."
The key to our program's success has been a roster of excellent volunteer instructors coupled with an appreciative student body. In Spring 2003, the program received a generous grant from the Bernard Osher Foundation in San Francisco and was renamed in recognition of the generosity of Mr. Osher. Grant funds are being used to expand, adapt, and offer lifelong learning courses such as THE ILLUMINATED LIFE to homebound and well elders in senior residences and other off-campus sites. For more information about the program, please call Becky at (808) 956-8224 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to her work with Osher Institute, Rebecca is a member of an academic team conducting a campus-wide initiative to evaluate and assess undergraduate learning communities and improve undergraduate education at Manoa. Prior to the Osher Institute, Rebecca worked with the Center on Aging at UH Manoa and co-produced an award-winning 13-hour PBS television series and gerontology telecourse, Growing Old in a New Age. And before that, as a reporter in Alaska in the early 80s, Rebecca traveled the state to cover the news and won more than 100 national and state awards in journalism. She later put her educational training in Nutrition and Gerontology to work and served as the Nutrition Program Administrator for the Older Alaskans Commission. She traded Alaska's chill for Hawaii's warmth in midwinter 1990.
Mahalo to our staff of wonderful volunteers, who are invaluable to Osher Institute.
Special thanks to Michael Cheang and Spencer Kimura for their contribution of our website photographs.