Opinion

I haven't been to college in 53 years!

I signed up to audit three courses at SUNY-Old Westbury. These courses would be in consecutive order on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Fortunately, I live only 5-10 minutes away from the school. I can dilly-dally around and still get to classes on time. Parking, however, is a bit of a problem.

An auditor must be over 65 years of age, register, get a parking sticker, get the O.K. from the professor to attend his/her class and pay nothing to audit the course. Expect to be the oldest person in the room, even possibly older than the professor giving the course. The courses I have chosen are:

• American Film Genres - Professor Elizabeth Ewen

A study of Hollywood films. We will see a film on Tuesday morning, take notes in the dark and discuss it on Thursday morning. Some of the films to be seen are Goldfinger (Early James Bond - with Sean Connery), Frankenstein, (Read Mary Shelly's book), The Incredible Shrinking Man and Weird Science. The object is to analyze these films and not only to approve or disapprove of them. We should be a student of the Hollywood movies and not just an observer in the audience. After class I discovered that Professor Ewen's father-in-law was a dentist whom I knew.

• Literature of India

My former professor, Dr. Narayan Hegde, is teaching this course. I am his "groupie" as I have taken three prior courses with him. His syllabus states "Through examples of the major epics, classical poetry and drama, the medieval devotional lyrics and samples of modern Indian literature, this course aims at providing the student an opportunity to gain awareness of the values and attitudes that have shaped the culture of the Indian subcontinent." We must be aware of this culture because one of every six persons on this planet is Indian. "Indian literature is a way of knowledge as well as an aesthetic experience."

• Waiting for the Media - Professor John Friedman

This course includes - Film - Feature Stories - Ethics - Libel - Opinions - Reviews - Propaganda - Television - Radio and the Internet. Reading a daily newspaper and staying up on Current Events is essential to this course. I had to explain my senior presence to the young students when asked by the professors. I said I am learning for learning's sake. No grades, no degrees, no future job expectations, just seeking some knowledge. I am sorry I did not pay more attention my first time around in college, in the 1950s. Too many distractions, too many juvenile fantasies and poor concentration were the problems.

My first full day at school was a blast.

Great teachers and an interesting curriculum - how can I go wrong?


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