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OLLI at Northwestern

About OLLI

Curiosity never retires.

Founded in 1987, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) is a vibrant member-driven program of Northwestern University School of Professional Studies. Members of our cooperative learning community generate an exciting and intellectually challenging curriculum of more than 100 study groups per semester, serving more than 1500 adults on the Evanston and Chicago campuses. Composed of seasoned learners from all walks of life, OLLI members pursue learning for pure pleasure: there are no tests and no grades. OLLI's motto is, "Curiosity Never Retires," and the OLLI experience proves it!

OLLI is committed to the concept that older adults learn best when they are active in their own learning process. Using our method of peer learning, members are enthusiastically engaged in proposing topics, facilitating study groups as coordinators or volunteering to be weekly discussion leaders. Beyond the study groups, members contribute in many ways to strengthen and enrich OLLI, serving on the Advisory Council, becoming a committee team member or volunteering at special events and programs.

While OLLI offers its members intellectual stimulation it also offers pleasurable opportunities to be had beyond the classroom. The OLLI experience is enriched by special guest lectures, One Book One Northwestern, Theater Day, OLLI Eats Out, Holiday parties, and much more.  

Formerly the Institute for Learning in Retirement, the program was renamed the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in 2005 in recognition of generous support from the Bernard Osher Foundation. The Osher Foundation supports a national network of Lifelong Learning Institutes. Northwestern's program is proud to be one of the 121 OLLIs in the U.S. Join our OLLI community for a variety of learning experiences, for the pleasure of learning and the spirit of friendship!

Learn More About OLLI

Information Session

Attend an Information Session

Our "A Taste of OLLI" information sessions are a chance for non-members to learn about the peer-led structure of OLLI, how our study groups work, and events we have throughout the year.  If you are interested in learning more, register for one of our upcoming sessions.


Sign Up for Our Newsletter

OLLI emails out a weekly newsletter with information about current and upcoming events, registration, and other news. We automatically send it to our membership. If you are not a member but would like to receive our newsletter, click on the purple bar below to sign up for our mailing list.  To read a current issue of the newsletter, click here.
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