May 4, 2022 —From June 13 to July 22, lifelong students age 50 and up can explore everything from the geopolitics of Finland to the magic of Sri Lanka to Hamilton, the musical, to name only a few of the offerings in CSU Channel Islands (CSUCI)’s Summer Taste of OLLI.

Each summer, OLLI—the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute—offers lifelong learners the opportunity to drop into any or all of at least two dozen different classes over a six-week period for just $15 a class.

OLLI Program Coordinator Michael Trainor explained that Summer Taste of OLLI is designed to give current and new OLLI students the chance to sample all that OLLI has to offer without the commitment of the regular six-week classes.

“This is also a time where we encourage people to try OLLI in hopes they will join us for the Fall session coming a few months later,” Trainor said.

Several CSUCI faculty members will be teaching classes along with faculty from California Lutheran University (CLU) and a variety of experts from the community. Some topics will delve into current events while others allow students to virtually join the first 1920 road trip to our national parks, explore a moment in history, or delve more deeply into religion, genetics or music.

OLLI students will be able to get a thorough look at the mosaic of history and current world events pressing on Finland from Finnish native and Professor of Education and Political Science Tiina Itkonen, Ph.D.

“Examining Geopolitics from the Lens of Finland” will give historical and political context to current events in Finland, which is on the world stage at the moment as it shares an 810-mile border with Russia and its own safety is in question.

“Although Finland is part of the European Union (EU), it has always remained independent, putting it in the unique position of being able to broker major peace deals,” Itkonen said. “But once Putin attacked Ukraine, the masks have come down and the ugly face of war is visible.”

A March poll indicated that up to 62% of Finnish citizens are now in favor of joining NATO, with only 16% opposing the move. This is a significant change from a 2017 poll that showed just 21% in favor.

Other global issues that will be part of Taste of OLLI will involve demystifying viruses—including COVID-19—the rise of cryptocurrency and, beyond the globe, a look at astronomy, cosmology and space exploration in the news.

Subjects of national interest will also be included, such as “Electoral College: Threat to Democracy?” by popular OLLI lecturer Herb Gooch, who is an Emeritus Professor of Political Science at CLU. And subjects specific to state will be offered, such as “Asian American Communities in California” by UCLA Asian American Studies Lecturer Lily Anne Tamai, Ph.D., who previously served as Curator of History at the Japanese American National Museum.

Lighter topics include “Hamilton, the Musical,” about the marriage of history and musicals as well as a closer look at American painter Thomas Cole, to name just a few courses.

This Taste of OLLI marks the first time OLLI classes have been in person since the pandemic began, although some classes will still be offered virtually, or will be half virtual and half in person, called “hyflex.”

In person classes will be held at one of three locations: the John Spoor Broome Library on the CSUCI campus; Studio Channel Islands in downtown Camarillo; or the California Museum of Arts in Thousand Oaks (CMATO).

Registration begins May 31. To register, click on:

The University encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs, events and activities. If you anticipate needing any type of accommodation, or have questions about the physical access provided, please contact the respective area below as soon as possible, but no later than seven (7) business days prior to the event/activity: 

CSUCI Students
Disability Accommodations & Support Services:

CSUCI Employees
Human Resources:

Members of the Public 
Title IX & Inclusion:

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