Speakers to share facts about Haiti's rich history and culture

Free presentation is part of the OLLI Lecture Series at Penn State York
Osher Lifelong Learning York mark with lagfe O and York mark

OLLI's Lecture Series online continues with a presentation about Haiti on Wednesday, April 5.  Wynn Walent, executive director of Locally Haiti and Kieran Murphy, an associate professor at the University of Colorado are the speakers.

Credit: Courtesy of OLLI at Penn state York

YORK, Pa. — Haiti is the poorest country in the Caribbean and among the poorest countries in the world with 60% of the population living in poverty, according to National Geographic. 

Despite this statistic, Haiti has a rich history and culture. Learn more about Haiti’s past and current political and economic struggles and how they shape the country today during, “Haiti Past, Present, and Future: A Look at the Political, Economic, and Cultural Life of Haiti," a free online presentation sponsored by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) Lecture Series set for 5:30-6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 5.

Wynn Walent and Kieran Murphy are the presenters. Walent is the executive director of Locally Haiti (formerly known as the Colorado Haiti Project) which, invests locally led initiatives in Petit Trou De Nippes, Haiti. Programs are integrated across the sectors of education, agriculture, community health, and girls’ empowerment. Murphy, who specializes in Haiti and has done extensive research, is an associate professor of French and Italian at the University of Colorado.

The program is open to all Penn State faculty, staff and students, as well as the York County community, but registration is required. This is OLLI’s seventh lecture in the series, which focuses on timely topics of interest.

Registration is required for the program.  Please register here.

The OLLI Lecture Series was an idea of OLLI members Beth Gill-MacDonald and Sharon Christ. 

"Our goal is to have one presentation each quarter and to choose topics that may not have been relevant when planning the current semester, since semester production works six to nine months in advance,” said Jennifer Geubtner-May, director of OLLI at Penn State York. She also noted that the free series is a way to introduce people to OLLI.

To choose a topic, Christ, Geubtner-May, and MacDonald brainstorm current events that they believe OLLI members, as well as the York County community, would like to know more about from an expert in that field. The presentation on Russia and Ukraine was planned prior to the war breaking out.

OLLI at Penn State York

OLLI at Penn State York boasts more than 750 members who have a desire to stay active and never stop learning. OLLI came to Penn State York in 2007, thanks to the efforts of three women — Olive Padden and the late Charmaine Kissinger and Gussie Petron — and their thirst for knowledge and mental stimulation.

The idea of offering courses of interest during the day for adult learners without the stress of tests, requirements and official textbooks appealed to the trio, and thanks to their leadership, OLLI began offering courses in April 2008. Since that time, OLLI at Penn State York has continued to grow with a variety of daytime courses, bus trips, travel trips, walking tours and other exciting activities.

Annual membership in OLLI is $50 and members pay $8 for a single-session course; $16 for a two-session course, and so on. Nonmembers pay $20 for a single-session course; $40 for a two-session course, etc. Some courses are not open to nonmembers and prices vary based on the length of the course.

OLLI is a nonprofit, mostly volunteer-driven organization, established to enrich the lives of mature adults living in York County. OLLI at Penn State York is one of more than 124 lifelong learning institutes across the nation that is supported by a grant from the Bernard Osher Foundation. The grant was made available locally through Penn State, which has OLLI sites at its University Park and York campuses.

For more information about OLLI, call 717-771-4015 or visit the OLLI York website. The free presentation is made possible by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Penn State York as part of the OLLI Lecture Series.