“What does Lifelong Learning mean to you?”
This was the question I posed to several people. Some of the answers I received are:
“Learning doesn’t stop when you graduate from high school or college.”
“Going back to school after taking time off.”
“Taking a class as an adult.”
“You’re never too old to learn something new.”
While the answers are not the same, there is one similarity among them. The concept of taking the initiative to learn something new. This doesn’t necessarily apply only to adults of a certain age. It applies to anyone.
Sydney Roach, a student at Westminster College, said, “When I think of lifelong learning, I think of the constant pursuit of knowledge and how we can always improve ourselves. I don’t think there is such a thing as being “perfect.” You can always improve upon a skill.”
I’ve recently returned to college as an undergraduate student after taking several decades off, though I am still unsure if that was my intent. I had been taking trumpet lessons from the trumpet professor at Westminster and I casually asked him how difficult he thought it would be for someone my age to go back to school for a music degree.
I’m not sure if I ever got an answer, but within a few short weeks, I had filled out the application, figured out how to find decades-old SAT scores, ordered my transcripts from my high school and the college I attended for a short while in the late 1980s and found myself preparing for a music audition. The following fall, I was back in college full time at 49. I was about 30 years older than 99% of the undergraduate population.
Zoe Sorrell, adjunct instructor of flute at Westminster College, said, ” I took a ballet class alongside 5-year-olds when I was 19.”
Heather Johnson, adjunct instructor of French horn at Westminster, said that she is always curious and tries to follow where that curiosity takes her and it doesn’t need to be in a formal setting, like a classroom.
There are numerous classes that are offered on a wide variety of topics at community colleges, local businesses and libraries. There are conferences and seminars on multitudes of topics. There are educational games and websites as well as software designed with the sole purpose of educating the willing learner on all sorts of subjects. There are countless videos online designed to teach an array of topics from learning how to play the guitar to building a cabin.
If you have a lust for learning, you just need to run a search on your topic of choice and you will likely find several options.