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Welcome to UAF-OLLI! > More Info > About OLLI

About OLLI   


Who We Are

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (UAF-OLLI) at the University of Alaska Fairbanks is a program that offers learning opportunities to adults 50 and older in the Fairbanks, North Pole, and neighboring communities. Led by our membership, we offer stimulating non-credit courses and lectures that are stress-free and exciting. Our members come from all backgrounds and education levels, and are invited to join us as we continue to learn life-long!

We are affiliated with the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and operate under UAF Summer Sessions & Lifelong Learning (SS&LL). They offer affordable courses and camps to children and adults, and host travel opportunities seasonally for students and community members alike. You can learn more about them by visiting their website here: Summer Sessions & Lifelong Learning Homepage.

Our History

Although at the start of the new millennium a wide variety of educational, cultural, and recreational opportunities existed in Fairbanks, only a few were specifically directed to the schedules, life styles, and interests of older adults- those over 50. Many people choose to remain in Fairbanks after reitement- people who are still quite active in the community.

Thus, in Spring 2001, UAF Emeritus of Mathematics Professor Barbara Lando and a small group of pillars from the community started a non-profit called Adventures in Lifelong Learning, focused on offering a small selection of courses and social opportunities to older adults. The number of courses and members grew, along with the program thriving, enough where we gained support from the University of Alaska Fairbanks and became Alaska Lifelong Learning under Michelle Bartlett's guidance from UAF SS&LL just two years later. 

The program was approached by the Bernard Osher Foundation in 2006, interested in supporting a lifelong learning program in Alaska and believed what was started was important enough to ensure its future. After receiving funding and endowment in 2008, we were renamed to the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, better known as OLLI to our local community, and dissolved our independent non-profit status. 


The Bernard Osher Foundation

We are one of over 120 other "Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes" around the country, but each one is completely independent. What they have in common are high quality courses and financial support from the Bernard Osher Foundation. They recognize the generosity of benefactor Bernard Osher by using the Osher name. UAF-OLLI is the northern-most program and is the only one in Alaska!

For more information about the history of the Bernard Osher Foundation and lifelong learning institutes in the country, check out this video!

The Legacy of Osher Institutes from ollinrc on Vimeo.



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(907) 474-6607

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute
University of Alaska Fairbanks
PO Box 758100
Fairbanks, AK 99775-8100