Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Laurier Association for Lifelong Learning (LALL)

Wondering As We Wander: A Geographical Journey Through Our Physical World
Professor: Jerry Salloum

     Waterloo is very fortunate to have two highly acclaimed universities, University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University. 
     Laurier has a wonderful programme aimed specifically at having adults, especially seniors, continue on a learning path for their entire lives, and they present a whole range of courses covering many disciplines and interests.
    Thus it was that I signed up for the above course this year. It comprised a series of six lectures, each running from 09:30 through 11:20. The fee is a very modest $70.00, well within the reach of most people. The course was completely sold out.
     Our lecturer was Jerry Salloum, a person well versed in earth sciences and a wonderful, engaging fellow who presented the material in a fabulous way so that everyone became immediately engrossed in the course.

Jerry Salloum
     I looked forward to every session with eager anticipation and the fact that all the seats were filled indicates that everyone else did too. I was there simply to learn - no exams, no labs, no pressure. The quest for knowledge was the only prerequisite.

     Here is the programme which Jerry presented:

Lecture 1: Introduction to Learning: Wondering, Transfer and Defamiliarization.
Lecture 2: Wondering about the biggest entity of all - The Cosmos.
Lecture 3: Investigating our closest natural satelite - the moon.
Lecture 4: Journeys to a high altitude world - Mount Everest.
Lecture 5: Secrets uncovered in the ocean floor - sea floor spreading.
Lecture 6: Probing treasures in the earth's largest ice cube - Antarctica.

     We were on the edge of our seats for each session. I learned so much and had my eyes opened to theories, facts and concepts that I had never before considered. 
     Ironically, today, the final session, had the smallest participation of any class, principally due to the fact that we had an overnight winter storm with substantial snowfall, and the temperature when I left home was minus eleven degrees Celcius.
     Here are a few pictures of other members of the class.

     Break time was often spent talking to Jerry.

     Some people wear their hearts on their sleeves, Jerry wears his course on his head!

     And a couple of other participants.

     I will be checking out the next round of courses carefully, but if Jerry's name is attached to any of them, that might just be reason enough to sign up.


  1. You are lucky to have such opportunities. The course does sound interesting. We're off to Antarctica, the Weddell Sea where there there might be tabular icebergs, on Saturday morning for an unexpected short trip.

  2. The Life Long Learning series are very popular up here, both in Thornbury and Owen Sound.

  3. Your LALL looks as if it might be similar to the University of the Third Age (U3A) that we have in UK, David. I've not taken any notice of the organisation until now, but I might well do, having read this post from you. It sounds as if it was your Jerry Salloum who made your experience so special, however.

  4. It is always very nice to learn that where is your interest. If you do some things come to know and learn about it, you also have more respect for it. I think it's great that you have participated in these lectures. Too bad it was the last lecture had so little rise by unexpected big snowfall,