Lifetime Learners Institute

The Lifetime Learners Institute offers non-credit, short-term educational opportunities for intellectual enrichment and cultural exploration.

Educational sessions and field trips provide a relaxed environment for adults to develop new interests and enjoy opportunities for personal growth and social interaction.

SFSC’s 2016 Lifetime Learners Institute meets Thursdays in Building T, Room 20, at the SFSC Highlands Campus. Session A begins at 9 a.m.; and Session B begins at 11 a.m. Students may register for Lifetime Learners 2016 sessions beginning October 30.

Jan. 14 (CRN 20469)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T – Room 20, Operation S*M*A*S*H (start making Acceptance simpler for Handicap)
Cindy Marshall, Director of Program Development, Ridge Area ARC

Classroom enlistees will suit up for their march toward learning about how to break down barriers with communicating and understanding people with disabilities. Cindy Marshall will lead the S*M*A*S*H Squad onto the battlefield with her 26 years of knowledge about the programs offered at Ridge Area Arc and the people they have served for the past 59 years.

Session B: 11 a.m., Ridge Area ARC (Field Trip)
Participants will drive to Ridge Area ARC next to SFSC

The march will carry on to the Ridge Area Arc main campus on College Drive where the Squad will journey through the halls of Arc to gather intelligence about the training offered at the facility and the Arc Resale Store.

Jan. 21 (CRN 20404)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T – Room 20, Protecting Yourself from Financial Fraud
Jeff Roth, Edward Jones Financial Planner
Neil Hayes, Public Information Officer, crime Prevention Specialist, HCSO

Learn practical information and how to avoid becoming a victim of electronic scams and fraud from a Financial Planner and the Crime Prevention Specialist with the Highlands County Sheriff’s Office.

Session B: 11 a.m., The Accidental Baker: A Cake for Every Crisis
Barbara Miachika, author and Professional Chef

Barbara will share her courageous memoir on how her good marriage gone bad led her to start a culinary career with only her homemaking skills. Her career has taken her to Europe, Italy and Yugoslavia in which she’s accumulated prestigious culinary degrees, as well as, fabulous reviews featured in Bon Appetit Magazine.

Jan. 28 (CRN 20470)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T – Room 20, History of a Florida Packing House
Steve Maxwell and Jennifer Maxwell Charles, Owners, Maxwell Groves

Maxwell Groves is the last orange packing house in Highlands County. Hear the history of one of Avon Park’s hidden gem from its conception in 1936 to its present time.

Session B: A Journey through Avon Park’s History
James Deal, historian, Avon Park Depot Museum
Lunch on your own at the Museum following the session.

Did you know the museum was formerly the Seaboard Coastline Depot that opened in 1926 and became a museum in 1981? Join us as Mr. Deal takes us on a historical journey of Avon Park and the Avon Park Depot Museum. Mr. Deals extensive knowledge of Avon Park makes him one of the City of Charm’s well know historians.


Feb. 4 (CRN 20471)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T – Room 20,Alternative Fruit Trees and Crops to Citrus
David Austin, UF/IFAS Extension, Highlands County Residential Horticulture Agent

Citrus Greening has not only impeded the Citrus Industry but has almost eliminated the feasibility of growing citrus in your own backyard. Florida has great weather for many alternative crops that residents can grow and enjoy. Alternative fruit crops and edible plants will be discussed.

Session B: 11 a.m., Restoration of the Kissimmee River – Everglades Restoration
Bill Graf, Intergovernmental and Outreach Representative

The Kissimmee River Restoration Project will return flow to 40 miles of the river’s historic channel and restore about 40 square miles of river/floodplain ecosystem. The restoration project is a collaborative partnership with South Florida Water Management District and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Its projected completion date is 2019.

Feb. 11 (CRN 20472)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T – Room 20, Healing Waters
Linda McCarthy, Senior Ecologist Lykes Bros.

Linda works to restore local waters and assists on environmental compliance and restoration projects. One of several projects removes nutrient overload from waters on areas before flowing into the Everglades which could potentially damage fragile ecosystems.

Session B: 11 a.m., The Mason G. Smoak Foundation
Amy Smith, Executive Director

Hear the history of the Mason G. Smoak Foundation and its purpose. The foundation has been active in community partnership grants; scholarships of graduating high school seniors and their flagship program-Youth Leadership Highlands.

Feb. 18 (CRN 20473)

Session A and B: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., Sebring Regional Airport: Wings and Things (Field Trip)
John and Becky Rousch

Discover the mission of the Experimental Aircraft Assn. and the history behind the EAA chapter 1240 Aviation Development Center at Sebring Regional Airport. Experience several aviation-related businesses and examine an array of historic planes. Learn how you could take an “Eagle Flight” and view our beautiful area from 2000 feet up. Enjoy a cookout in the hangar. (potluck side dishes welcomed)


Feb. 25 (CRN 20616)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T – Room 20, The Florida Cracker History
Ray MacIntyre, Past President Florida Cracker Trail Association

Enjoy Florida Cracker History from one of the area’s early family member as he takes us through the times of Spanish Explorers to the present.

Session B: 11 a.m., History of The Florida Cracker Trail Ride
Ray MacIntyre, Past President Florida Cracker Trail Association

The annual Cross-State Ride serves to highlight and preserve the importance of Florida’s role in the introduction of horses and cattle into the New World. This traditional ride commemorates the dedication of the Florida Cracker Trail’s History.

March 3 (CRN 20476)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T- Room 20, Astronomy – The Night Sky for Everyone
Clifford Perkall, President The Astronomical Society of Palm Beach

Have you ever wondered what’s in the night’s sky? Clifford Perkall will uncover astronomy using sky charts, as well as provide discussion on Naked Eye, Binocular and Telescope Astronomy.

Session B: 11 a.m., SFSC – Applied Sciences and Technologies
Dean Kevin Brown, Dean of Applied Sciences and Technologies

Learn about the educational and professional development opportunities within South Florida State College Applied Sciences and Technologies division.


March 10 (CRN 20479)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T- Room 20, Layers of Time: The Blueberry Story
Anne Reynolds, Retired Teacher, Author, Founder of the Blueberry Site

A sixty-one acre Pre-Columbian village site that was settled between AD 1100 – AD 1700, Blueberry is a significant South Central Florida Archaeological Site. Mrs. Reynolds will discuss the history and artifacts left behind by Native Americans that inhabited the site 6,000 years ago.

Session B: 11 a.m., Writing a Novel: The Processes, Pitfalls and Rewards
Anne Reynolds, Retired Teacher, Award Winning Author

A knowledge of English grammar and writing rules are paramount to a successful, readable publication. Inspiration and dedication provide the impetus. We will explore techniques used by authors to write their novels, the decisions they have to make and the satisfaction of having return readers.

March 17: College Closed for Spring Break

March 24 (CRN 20480)

Session A: 8:30 a.m., Lakeridge Winery(Field Trip)

Join us as we venture to the rolling hills of Clermont and stop for a tour of the Lakeridge Winery. We’ll then enjoy lunch at Uncle Kenny’s BBQ (lunch on your own, price not included in registration) and afterwards we’ll walk over to the Citrus Tower (for an additional $4 fee) and experience a 360 degree view at a height of 226 feet. Wear your comfy shoes and get ready to explore.

March 31 (CRN 20481)

Session A: 9 a.m., Building T – Room 20, Citra Pac – Fruit Pearls, Changing the Way the World Eats Citrus
Gregg Harshman, President, CitraPac Inc.

CitraPac® is a specialty manufacturer of unique real-fruit frozen snacks founded by Gregg Harshman in 1999. He changed the way the world eats citrus by developing a criteria set for all technology and product development: Convenience, Taste, Storability and Automation.

Lifetime Learners Closing Luncheon, Hotel Jacaranda, Ward Room

Maximum: 40 attendees

Let’s celebrate together with a luncheon! *Payable to the Jacaranda on the day of -$12.75 per person. Price includes entrée, drink, desert and tip. Lunch on your own price not included in registration.