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The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Penn State is one of 124 nationwide OLLIs serving 170,000+ members — aged 50 and better. The Bernard Osher Foundation created an endowment to fund OLLI at Penn State, and each year a portion of the return on that endowment is given to the University Park and York OLLIs to help cover their operating expenses.

OLLIs are situated in every state and hold an affiliation with a college or university. Each OLLI operates as an independent initiative of its host institution with offerings tailored to its community; however, all OLLIs share a common set of standards to encourage excellence and promote long-term sustainability and success: 

  • Diverse repertoire of noncredit courses and educational activities, specifically designed for people aged 50 and better
  • Significant member opportunities for volunteer engagement and leadership
  • Support from the host institution, including a commitment to provide program space
  • Established mechanisms for evaluating member satisfaction
  • Sound and stable organizational structure