Seniors Active in Learning at Collin College feeds seniors’ hunger for continued knowledge


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
Courtyard Center
4800 Preston Park Blvd., Plano
Preston Ridge Campus
9700 Wade Blvd, Frisco

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Lindsey Juarez
Lindsey has been involved in newspapers in some form since high school. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Texas at Arlington in 2014 with a degree in Journalism. While attending UTA, she worked for The Shorthorn, the university's award-winning student newspaper. She was hired as Community Impact Newspaper's first Frisco reporter in 2014. Less than a year later, she took over as the editor of the Frisco edition. Since then, she has covered a variety of topics and issues important to the community, including the city's affordable housing shortage, the state's controversial A-F school accountability system and the city's "Bury the Lines" efforts.
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