LifeLong Learning

The Charleston Academy for Lifelong Learning offers peer-to-peer learning in 3-6 week classes in the Fall and Winter/Spring semesters.  You can attend any classes or facilitate one in the future.

The Winter 2024 classes are summarized below. All classes will be held at The Riley Center for Livable Communities, room 176 Lockwood Drive unless otherwise specified below.


An Introduction to CALL Winter Term offerings will be presented to the CCR membership at the at 2:30 PM on Monday, February 5, at CCR’s new venue, at the Charleston Atlantic Presbytery, 4701 Park Place West, North Charleston, a larger space accommodating the growing CCR membership. Join us to meet the presenters and learn about this term’s courses.

Classes meet once a week for 90 minutes at the College of Charleston’s Riley Center for Livable Communities, Charleston, unless otherwise specified below

Feb. 13 to Mar. 22 

Our classes are peer-to-peer and meet, unless otherwise specified, at the College of Charleston’s Riley Center for Livable Communities, 176 Lockwood Drive, Charleston. Parking is plentiful and free. 

Classes meet weekly and are 90 minutes each (unless otherwise specified).
CALL participants pay $15 per course.
In-person registration is available at CCR’s Monday lectures or via email at  

Tuesday AM – Riley Center (for three weeks, 2/13 to 2/27)
10 to 11:30 AM – Heroes and Inspirational Stories in America’s National Park System
David Kroese:  This course is designed to share fascinating stories and provide information about individuals highlighted in U.S. National Parks.                               

Tuesday PM – Riley Center
(For six weeks, 2/13-3/19)
12:30-2:00 pm – Life in the Universe
Fred Rosenberg, Ph.D.: As a participant, you will be offered a background in the development of the galaxy, stars, planets, and life. You will learn about current and proposed searches for extra-terrestrial life and can then conjecture upon the existence of advanced civilizations.

Tuesday PM – Via ZOOM Only
(For Three Weeks, 2/13 – 2/27)
12:30 to 2 PM – Post-Civil War: Reconstruction to Brown v. Board of Education
Russ Hutchins, EDSp:  This course will look at how Civil Rights changed from Reconstruction in 1865 to the seminal US Supreme Court case of Brown v Board of Education in 1854 through to 1965. Topics will include the KKK, historical black colleges, attitudinal changes toward Civil Rights, and a look at both the Supreme Court and the presidents who served during this period.

Wednesday AM
(for five weeks, 2/14 to 3/13)
10 to 11:30 AM – Physics for the Humanities
John Preston, Ph.D.: The objective of this course is to enhance and deepen our understanding of the natural world in the areas of visual art, music, history and philosophy. Here are the topics for each week of the five-week course, which is both a reprise and an update of a course John Preston previously taught:

1) Physics for (Visual) Art Lovers: a description of color and how we perceive it in nature, paintings, theater lighting, and home lighting.
2) Physics for Music Lovers: a description of sound and music and how it is produced by various instruments, how it is affected by music halls like the Galliard, how we detect distance to a source and the limitations (and future) of hearing aids.
3) Physics for History Buffs: a description of turning points in history that were affected by the knowledge (or ignorance) of physics including Columbus, the Battle of Britain, Midway, German atomic bomb program, and the US nuclear power industry.
4) Physics for Philosophers-Part One: Our place in the Cosmos; a description of how physics has influenced our search for answers to the big questions of How central are we in creation? What are we made of? and Is reality relative? It explores the influence of physics on philosophy including the Greeks, Thomas Aquinas, the enlightenment, the Big Bang and new insights from the Hubble and Webb telescopes.
5) Physics for Philosophers Part Two—What Happened to Reality? An exploration of the world of the very small, how seemingly impossible behaviors are commonplace and how these behaviors require us to reconsider our philosophy of reality. It also provides insights into quantum computing. 

Wednesday PM
(For four weeks, 2/14 – 3/6)
12:30 to 2 PM – Let Me Tell You a Story
Tony Young:  Learn to communicate effectively with stories. Facilitator Tony Young will include the history of stories and why we tell them. We will look at the structure of stories. Joseph Campbell’s “Hero With a Thousand Faces” will be discussed, since virtually all stories can fit into Campbell’s story circle. We will look at specific types of stories: humorous, persuasive, inspirational, etc. We will observe how to tell a story. I will use my own stories as illustrations throughout the course. Students will present their own stories for evaluation and critique and can be coached on their story-telling skills. We will offer to tape their stories on their smartphone, if so desired and allowed by time. This will be covered in 4 (four) sessions of 1.5 hours each, with additional sessions added if necessary.

Thursday PM
(For five weeks, 2/15 – 3/14)
11:30 AM to 1 PM – The Meuse-Argonne Offensive – The Battle that Ended The “Great War”
Bill Cosgrove: “The Meuse-Argonne Offensive” presentation is based on the study of the presenter and visits to the World War I battlefields in France. This talk will focus on the experience of the American Expeditionary Force (AEF) under General John “Black Jack” Pershing, the advent of new weapons such as airplanes, tanks and machine guns, the extensive use of gas, and the tenacity of the American forces as they drove the Germans back forcing them to agree to the November 11, 1918, Armistice. The influence of the battle on our future WW2 leaders will be discussed, but the focus will always be on the experience of the common soldier who led the way to the first great American victory in Europe.

Friday AM (for six weeks, 2/16 – 3/22)
10-11:30 AM – Ripped from the Headlines
Kristal Hudson-Randall: This course provides a safe, trusted, and civil space for thoughtful people to have deep discussions about current events. Attendees will help choose topics relevant to both themselves and the current news.

Friday PM (for four weeks, 2/16 to 3/8)
12 Noon – 1:30 PM – “Confessional” Poetry
Diana Barth: ‘Confessional Poetry’ was a term coined in 1959 in a review of Robert Lowell’s poems called Life Studies.  Those works, direct and colloquial in speech, used intense psychological experiences as their core.  This course will look at the poems of Lowell, Sylvia Plath, Anne Sexton, W.D. Snodgrass, and more, and discuss their impact on the poets who followed them.

To Register for C.A.L.L. Classes:
*Email C.A.L.L. at:
*Register in person at Center for Creative Retirement’s Monday lectures [held at 1 PM and 2:30 PM at the Charleston Atlantic Presbytery at Park Circle, 4701 Park Place West, North Charleston.]

COST: C.A.L.L. students pay $15 per course, payable to the College of Charleston.

One does not need to be a CCR member to take C.A.L.L. courses.

Confirmations will be emailed to all registrants.  *Email us with questions and/or about any registration difficulties.