2023 Osher Institutes National Conference
Celebrating the 2023 Osher Institutes National Conference
The 2023 Osher Institutes National Conference held October 16th through 18th in beautiful San Diego, CA was a smashing success! We were fortunate to have pleasant California weather and a program full of wonderful presenters, as well as ample opportunities for networking, learning, and celebrating the mission of lifelong learning. Morning walks and outdoor receptions were highly enjoyable in this fall season.
Osher Institute directors, staff, and member leaders from all over the country attended. Almost all of the 125 Osher Institutes sent two representatives: one staff member and one volunteer leader. The 250 attendees included participants, guests, and speakers.
Programming for 2023 included a keynote presentation from Eunice Nichols, Co-CEO of CoGenerate. In her keynote on The Power of Cogeneration, Eunice spoke about the research showing powerful benefits from connection, role modeling, knowledge transfer, and the honoring of history that daily interaction between the generations can achieve. Many were inspired with ideas for beginning or renewing intergenerational opportunities at their Osher Institutes. Fifteen breakout sessions included workshops and content in collaborations, membership recovery, marketing, inclusiveness, fundraising, curriculum, and both staff and volunteer leadership. Two additional plenary sessions showcased the Woo-Hoos, celebrating the achievements of OLLIs, as well as tips for managing burnout in a world that still presents many challenges to us all.
The Osher NRC purposefully planned many opportunities for participants to network and share their ideas and effective practices through round table groups. Participants reported particularly enjoying the opportunity to meet fellow OLLIs from their regions, as well as share ideas with those OLLIs of a similar membership size. Facilitated table topic discussions and the Idea Jams were also popular, giving participants ample opportunities to have focused discussions and idea sharing. It is our hope that these important conversations and collaborations will extend beyond the conference as participants bring their favorite tips back to their own local Osher Institutes for implementation.
Attendees repeatedly expressed their gratitude to The Bernard Osher Foundation for their generous support of the National Conference. Overall, 2023 provided another great conference; the topics were relevant, the food was fantastic, and it was great to network and hear from others in-person.
The Osher Institutes National Conference is a sesquiannual, multi-day meeting that has been held at intentionally varied locations throughout the country since 2003. The Conference is fully funded by The Bernard Osher Foundation, and organized by the National Resource Center for Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes at Northwestern University in collaboration with leaders throughout the Osher Network of Lifelong Learning Institutes.