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Reaching out to a wide range of interests, the OLLI at UNL Diversity Committee is ready to open the second year of a series titled the Movies that Matter Film Festival.

The series, free to the public, uses the power of documentary films to bring greater understanding of the cultural, social and socioeconomic issues of our time. The documentaries tell the stories of people of diverse ethnicities as they struggle to meet the challenges for equality, social justice and reform.

Scheduled during the upcoming Term 2 of OLLI’s 2018-19 year is a twin-feature, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8, in the Community Room of the new Cornhusker Bank location at 8310 O St.:

- “The Boy Who Started the Syrian War” will feature the tale of Mouawiya Syasneh, who was just 14 in 2011 when he sprayed anti-government slogans on his school wall in Syria, sparking a full-blown civil war.

- That will be followed by “The Great Divide: Sunni vs. Shi’a,” a study of how political differences are primarily at the root of the struggle between Sunni and Shi’a groups.

Following the films will be a panel presentation and a facilitated group discussion. Admission is free, but registration is required due to limited seating; call 402-472-6265 to reserve your seat.

“The films offer thought-provoking, inspiring portrayals of the lives of people from different cultural backgrounds,” says Nancy Comer, who co-chairs the OLLI Diversity Committee with Dick Vautravers.

The film festival is an expanded component of OLLI’s Diversity Committee, formed in 2015, says Comer, an active OLLI member since retiring from Lincoln Public Schools in 2006. The film series will continue with one documentary each in Terms 3 and 4 of OLLI’s 2018-19 year.

Symposium Oct. 27

OLLI also announces a program open to the public, “Seeking a Just World Order: the Quest for Peace and Prosperity,” from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 27, at the UNL East Campus Union, 1705 Arbor Dr. Doors open at 8:30 a.m.

Four scholars and policymakers will discuss the role of the U.S. on the world stage from the end of World War II in 1945 to the current world’s prospects for peace and prosperity. The OLLI/Winter Lecture Series Fall Symposium is a follow-up to the lecture series last winter; registration deadline is Oct. 19.

Dr. David Forsythe, Political Science professor emeritus at UNL, will provide a historical account that describes the values and forces that shaped our post-WWII world. Forsythe retired in 2010 after a 42-year teaching career.

Dr. Rupal Mehta, professor in the Political Science Department at UNL, will discuss security issues in the modern world, and John E. Anderson, a professor of Economics Education at UNL, will address economic issues in today’s world. Anderson is a 42-year educator who has taught at UNL since 1991.

Rounding out the speakers’ lineup will be U.S. Congressman Jeff Fortenberry, Nebraska’s First Congressional District representative since 2005.

The fee is $20 and includes lunch. Call 402-472-6265 to register.

‘Aging Brain’ program Nov. 2

“The Aging Brain: Everyday Solutions to Stay Sharp in Mind and Body” is coming Nov. 2 to Room 303 of the Southeast Community College Continuing Education Center (SCC-CEC), 301 S. 68th St. Pl. The 9 a.m. to noon program is open to the public at a cost of $19 and includes refreshments.

Presentations will include “Active Aging: Engaging the Powers within You,” by Kimberly Barrett, wellness specialist at Ameritas; and “Mind-FULL Eating: Fuel Your Mind and Body for Longevity,” by Amanda Robine, educational coordinator, Wellness and Nutrition, at UNL.

In addition, two mini-sessions, “Dynamic Movement,” and “Refresh and Recharge to Relax,” will be led by Tracie Foreman, health educator and personal trainer for the Aging Partners Health & Fitness Center.

Registration deadline is Friday, Oct. 26; check-in begins at 8:30 a.m. To register, call Southeast Community College Continuing Education at 402-437-2700. Payment is due at registration time. The program is sponsored by OLLI, SCC-CEC and Aging Partners.

Term 2 for OLLI at UNL is Oct. 22 to Dec. 8. To see all courses offered during Term 2, go to

For the most current OLLI updates, see the “OLLI Happenings” page, refreshed every Friday on the OLLI website.


L Magazine editor

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