april  2024

Spring Semester - April 2024 Newsletter

Photo credit: Doug Chamberlin

Spring Semester is Blooming!

Senior College has just completed our second week of an exciting Spring session, with 187 registered students and a diverse offering of 15 classes at 6 welcoming venues around Belfast, plus Zoom.

There is still room to register in the April 26th one-day workshop, “Introduction to Self-Publishing Your Book” at Penobscot Shores.

Instructor Appreciation Luncheon at St. Margaret's on March 7, 2024. Photo credit: Misty Mallar

Message from Our President


On March 7, Senior College hosted a luncheon to thank our instructors – past and present. Thirty-five people attended and shared experiences and tips. In speaking to the group, I mentioned the challenges that Senior College has faced: the disruption from Covid, which put our classes online, and the closing of the Hutchinson Center, which radically changed our model. Nonetheless, throughout these dramatic changes, we did not lose our instructors, the mainstay of Senior College. Their enthusiasm, knowledge, and commitment are what drives our organization, and we are totally indebted to their generosity as volunteer instructors.

Our instructors come from a variety of disciplines and professions. We have instructors who have been engineers, professors, government officials, lawyers, ministers, business leaders, public school teachers, musicians, artists, and poets. We have instructors who draw on their pasts and some who are exploring new areas of interest. They all agree that teaching in Senior College is fun and fascinating because they’re learning along with their students. Working together, instructors and students delve into areas of knowledge or acquire new skills.

I encourage you to consider teaching (or maybe a better term is leading) a class for Senior College. Whether you want to share a passion you already have or want to explore a new interest, we welcome your participation. The deadline for Fall Senior College course proposals is June 28. The proposal form is online here. If you want to discuss your ideas, please email, and a member of the Curriculum Committee will contact you.

In the meantime, we are excited about our Spring Semester courses. To the 18 Senior College instructors who have volunteered to lead the Spring classes, I say thank you!

Mayo Bulloch
President, Belfast Senior College

Instructor Appreciation Luncheon at St. Margaret's on March 7, 2024. Photo credit: Denise Pendleton

Meet Our People


At our instructor thank-you lunch, we asked instructors to share their tips and tricks for teaching - as well as what’s been good about teaching at Senior College.

Our discussion reflected the collective wealth of knowledge, teaching wisdom, and life experience our teachers bring. Their appreciation for their students and the Senior College experience was evident in many comments about our enthusiastic community of lifelong learners! We asked our instructors, What did you most like about teaching? Here is a sampling of their answers.

  • Great camaraderie, curiosity and enthusiasm
  • Meeting new & interesting people - from all parts of Waldo County
  • Students are very enthusiastic about the subjects and enjoy laughing - it helps learning and memory!
  • I utilize the classes to spread ideas and info into the community AND to get useful feedback.
  • It challenges me to learn subject matter that I might have forgotten. Keeps me on my toes.
  • I get to teach according to my own interests - "hopefully" shared by SC members!
  • Enthusiastic seniors who are here because they want to be - and bring their own backgrounds, knowledge and experience to the classes!
  • I had a 98 year old man in one of my drawing classes - learning never stops no matter how old you get.
  • Leaving class better than I entered. Learning from my students.
  • Ability to use Zoom
  • Many students are as knowledgeable as you, with great life insights.

Senior College by the Numbers


Last month, we asked where all of you are from: Waldo County, another county in Maine, or (humorously) “from away.” Your nearly 70 responses and comments show some interesting diversity. Some folks also shared their perspectives on the concept of being “from away.” The overwhelming theme of all your comments was our shared love of Maine, “native” or not!

  • Nearly 25% of respondents are from Maine.
  • 52 of you are not from Maine - but have come from 13 other states.
  • Of those reporting they’re from Maine, 7 people hail from Waldo County, and 10 from other Maine counties.

Here is a small sampling of the comments (see all comments in the complete survey results):

  • I’m a New Englander but lived in California and abroad for 42 years before retiring to Belfast. We made the right move !
  • A good move. Ohio simply didn’t see the value of people over 50 continuing to learn. It was tough going.
  • Best decision we ever made was to raise our children in Maine!
  • I moved to Waldo County over 40 years ago and plan to move nowhere else unless it get more crowded.
  • I grew up in Aroostook County, Maine. It feels like another state, looks like a different place, and maintains the traditions and values of the people who settled the region 200 years ago.
  • So appreciative and grateful to live 15 minutes from where I grew up and to be surrounded by faces and accents from away. It makes everything better. Truly!
  • I am a Mainer, born and raised in this beautiful coastal community. I returned to Waldo County to raise a family and to work. And now have a daughter and two amazing grandchildren in Belfast. I am very proud of this area of Waldo County and delighted the Senior College provides such stimulating, engaging opportunities for continued learning and meeting people in this area.

We're Listening


Senior College started in 2001, and has been going strong with our amazing volunteer instructors, volunteers and members ever since. Some of our members have been with us from the very beginning.

Tell us: What year did you start taking Senior College classes? (Take a guess if you’re not sure.)

Please click here to answer this month's poll. Your answers are anonymous and you should only fill out the form once. We will let you know what we found out in our next newsletter.



  • We are very excited to share that Senior College has a NEW LOGO, and it really “takes the cake”! COMING SOON!

  • Watch for more info coming about our member/guest gathering to be held later this spring.

  • Summer classes are being planned. Stay tuned for the summer schedule.

  • Check our web page and future newsletters for more information.

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