Curiosity Is Ageless 


Welcome back to our spring 2022 offerings. First we want to inform you of a change in our program’s name—but not in its mission. Recently we lost a dear friend of the program—whom some of you may remember as a frequent class member—Bill Wasch. It was the vision and generosity of Bill and his wife Susan that made the founding of the Wasch Center for Retired Faculty possible. They saw the Center as a place where retired professors could maintain collegial relationships with each other and the University and remain engaged and productive as scholars and thinkers. In 2009 the Center established the Wesleyan Institute for Lifelong Learning to extend the benefits of continued intellectual stimulation and emotional growth to the wider community. In their own lives, Bill and Susan Wasch exemplified the Institute’s motto that curiosity is ageless: after raising their four children to adulthood, Susan resumed her college education, interrupted by marriage, and earned a BA in art  history at Smith. After a second career devoted to strengthening the ties of Wesleyan’s alumni/ae to the University, Bill began a third career focused on successful aging. To honor their memories and their love of learning for its own sake, WILL now has a new name: the Wesleyan Wasch Center Seminars. So look for references to the Wasch Seminars (for short) in future communications.

We also want to welcome Krishna Winston, director of the Wasch Center for Retired Faculty, as the co-director of the Wasch Seminars. A professor of German Studies, now retired, and a literary translator, she brings to the role a strong belief in the power of ideas and experiences to enlarge our humanity, as well as a particular dedication to enriching the lives of our adult students. Her involvement with the local community—especially in the area of environmental stewardship—will add a new dimension to our planning for the future of the Wasch Seminars.

In our course listing for the spring 2022 session, look for an exciting lineup of offerings. In literature you can encounter a problematic hero in the legendary figure of Roland or develop your skill at non-fiction writing. In science you can learn about early and modern navigation aboard the historic Onrust sailing vessel, anchored at the CT River Museum. If history is your cup of tea, you have a chance to discover the truth behind Japan’s reputation as sealed off from the world, and to gain insight into the origins of American Impressionism. Other courses explore the northern European renaissance in painting or invite you to consider the contributions comedy has made through the ages. A course devoted to the complexities of Melville’s Moby Dick will be followed by another that focuses on the whaling industry, culminating in a trip to Mystic Seaport, where whaling will come alive aboard the Charles Morgan, America’s last surviving  wooden whaling ship. 

In a very special daylong event, we will look at the post-Civil War period known as Reconstruction. This often overlooked era saw the rise and fall of African Americans’ empowerment on many fronts. The Pulitzer-Prize-winning Yale professor David Blight and others will share their insights into this chapter in American history whose lessons we ignore at our peril.

Please alert your friends or family members to these offerings. A gift certificate may be just the unique gift you have been looking for. Register for one or more classes yourself. The staff and instructors of the Wesleyan Wasch Center Seminars look forward to seeing you soon.


With warm regards,

Richard J. Friswell, Co-director

Krishna Winston, Co-director




"The Wesleyan Lifelong Learning program provides convenient and engaging classes on topics that you always wished you had taken in college, but didn't have the time. I have been impressed with the faculty and their commitment to the quality of the program, and look forward to attending more sessions in the future"


"I leave with my head and heart filled with new stories, new realities and new friends."


"Five Star teacher. Judge David Gold's grasp of Constitutional Law is inspiring. His course gives you a compass to navigate current political confusion."


"This was a wonderful experience - and a great value. Elizabeth Bobrick is an excellent teacher, knowledgeable, passionate, humorous, and personable."


"Karl Scheibe's professional experiences greatly enhanced the course and enriched it."


"This opportunity to take classes is terrific, keeps one sharp!"


"Sari Rosenblatt was a wonderful instructor. Great interactive class setting, material was helpful in structuring assignments."


"I really enjoyed the Constable/Turner class taught by Rhea Higgins.  I marveled at her timing and her ability to talk while managing the technology.  She is so knowledgeable about history, art, politics of the time.  I just love her teaching methods."

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