Each semester hundreds of students go to Collin College campuses to learn about mah-jongg, aging gracefully, traveling abroad and the role of grandparents.
These students, however, are not typical college students. They are adults ages 55 and older and are members of Collin College’s Seniors Active in Learning program. The program is designed for seniors who have a desire to continually learn, SAIL Program Manager Sherry Scamardo said.
“No one wants to stop learning when you get out of school; they want to continue on,” Scamardo said.
SAIL courses are noncredit and do not require a degree or prerequisite classes. SAIL course topics include literature, history, art, music, social sciences and games, such as mah-jongg and Bridge.
SAIL instructors are a mix of volunteer professors and current Collin College faculty members.
The SAIL program began in 1996 at Collin College’s Courtyard Center in Plano. Last year the program began offering classes at the Preston Ridge Campus in Frisco and the Collin Higher Education Center in McKinney.
Before opening up the program at the other two campuses, Scamardo said the interest was so high that prospective members were placed on a waiting list.
“We no longer have a waitlist since we offer courses at the other campuses,” she said. “That has really helped SAIL members enroll in the program.”
Enrollment at the Preston Ridge Campus and the Collin Higher Education Center has continued to grow since SAIL classes started at the two campuses last year, Scamardo said.
“There’s so many wonderful things to do with lifelong learning,” she said. “As anyone in that field knows, they’re so thirsty for information.”
Seniors Active in Learning
Collin Higher Education Center
3452 Spur 399, McKinney
4800 Preston Park Blvd., Plano
Preston Ridge Campus
9700 Wade Blvd, Frisco