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Calendar of Events

These classes are offered one-time only on the date and time on the schedule. 2019 Spring Semester events.  You can read details on each session below.

Opening Doors to the World: Brazil

Learn more about the artists and the art of Brazil.

About the instructor:  Janice Glowski serves as Otterbein's Museum and Galleries Director. An art historian, she specializes in Asian Art History and museum studies and curatorial practices, which she teaches at the university.

Hanby House Tea

Come enjoy an afternoon learning about the history of tea, proper tea etiquette, and enjoy a tea buffet of savory and sweet delights followed by an historical presentation.

About the instructor:  Pam Allen has served as the manager of the Hanby House Museum in Westerville for over 40 years. She is a retired teacher from the Dublin (OH) school system where she taught ESL classes. She and her husband, Jim, are members of Otterbein’s Lifelong Learning Community.

‘Let’s Talk About the Black Bird’: How Dashiell Hammett’s Maltese Falcon Changed American Popular Culture

(3-week sequence)

 In 1929, The Maltese Falcon was serialized in a pulp magazine called Black Mask (it was later published in novel form in 1930).  The publication changed both the literary and cinematic landscape of America—and had far reaching consequences in popular culture.  It was a watershed moment—it became a kind of dividing line between old school whodunits and a new school of writers whose private eyes both defined and mirrored their time period—and took into account the fears and uncertainties of the 1930s:  corruption in politics, hypocrisy, deceit, and violence.  Dashiell Hammett created realistic characters, who spoke lean, naturalistic dialogue, with sharply observed detail.  Hammett had been a Pinkerton Detective, and his professional method of observation is apparent—as well as his familiarity with the back alleys and mean streets of the world.  His characters’ sense of moral ambiguity and authenticity is palpable.  As Raymond Chandler wrote in 1944 in “The Simple Art of Murder:”  'Dashiell Hammett took murder out of the Venetian vase and dropped it into the alley.’”  That 'Golden Age' of Detective Fiction—where crime often occurred on big estates, in cozy drawing rooms, and featured cerebral, gentleman sleuths, or iterations of Miss Marple—was now officially over.  As Chandler went on to say:  “Hammett gave murder back to the kind of people that commit it for reasons, and not just to provide a corpse….  He put these people down on paper as they were, and he made them talk and think in the language they customarily used for these purposes.”  Yes, you can talk about Hammett and Chandler alongside Hemingway and Fitzgerald, as serious artists!  Fedoras and Femme Fatales became legit literature—leaving the ranks of pulp fiction and entering the world of hardcover respectability—thanks to Dashiell Hammett!  And Hollywood came along for the ride.

About the Instructor:  Candyce Canzoneri was born and reared in Memphis, Tennessee.  She received her B.A.from the University of Mississippi, and her Masters (MFA) from The Ohio State University [first Creative Writing Thesis at OSU].  Her teaching credits include Fiction Writing both at Ohio State (14 years) and The Pontifical College Josephinum.  In addition, she has done Fiction workshops at Thurber House, Otterbein College, Capital University, and for the Institute for the Advancement of Arts in Education.  She served two years as Fiction Editor of The Ohio Journal.  She has been an Adjunct Professor/Senior Lecturer in English and Creative Writing at Otterbein University since 1999.  Candy has been fascinated by disruptive comedy since she attended her first theatre performance at age 10:  a Memphis Little Theatre production of Arsenic and Old Lace.  After which, she saw the Frank Capra film, and continued on down the merry road to total immersion in Screwball Comedy, and has taught classes in the genre at Otterbein.

Using Children's and Young Adult Literature to Talk About Difficult Topics

 In our attempt to protect our children and youth from the realities of the world, we often miss opportunities to process these issues at their level.  One way to engage children and youth with these important topics is to carefully select books to read and discuss with them.  Join us for a critical look at the many books that have the potential to engage and inform children and youth in your life.

About the instructors:  Marlene Lansman Deringer is a 1969 Otterbein graduate with an English major. She is certified to teach English/Language Arts in grades 7-12 and taught for several years in Westerville. Later she began her 26-year career as a faculty member of the Otterbein Education Department. Her Masters and doctoral work at The Ohio State University, culminated in a Ph.D. in 1998, and prepared her to develop the Middle Childhood Licensure program (grades 4-9) at Otterbein and to teach courses in Middle Childhood Education and Adolescent Literature, two of her great passions. In 1995, she initiated a student teaching program at McCurdy School in northern New Mexico and has provided 41 student teachers the opportunity to work in a multicultural school and explore the beauty of the Southwest. Throughout her career, she has encouraged teachers to teach the whole child, not just their subject, a subtle but important difference.  Adolescent Literature has often been the vehicle she has used for connecting academic content with relevant issues important to the development of adolescents.

Mindy Hall is a retired social justice educator. She spent her 30-year teaching career in the Bexley City Schools teaching 1st - 3rd grades at Maryland Elementary School and 7th and 8th grade social studies at Bexley Middle School.  During her career she was very involved in the school district’s international/multicultural education professional development program, and served as its director for four years.  She has written and published several pieces about her teaching experiences and practices.

Design Thinking

 The business landscape of central Ohio has changed, drastically, to become a hub of innovation and growth. There are many keys to this success, one of which is Design Thinking. We will discuss Design Thinking as a new and innovative approach to problem solving, process improvement, business growth, etc. It is problem solving in a creative and visual way.

About the instructor:  Eric Lloyd is currently the Director of the MBA Program at Otterbein University. He came from a Change Management role at Bluewolf, a consulting firm located in New York City. He was previously Director of Marketing & Member Relations for American Municipal Power, a non-profit utility company providing electricity to municipalities in 8 states. Additionally, he worked for Varo Engineers in a business development and project management capacity. Prior to the engineering and utilities industry, Eric spent several years as a strategic business consultant for Nationwide Insurance. Early in his career, Eric worked as an electrical engineer in automation and material handling for River Consulting and Prater Engineering. Eric received his Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Ohio University in 1996 and his MBA from Otterbein University in 2002. Eric lives in Granville with his wife, Amy, their 5-year old son, Gabriel, and soon-to-be second son, Abram, who is expected in October.

  Global Warming Is THE Scientific and Survival Issue for
the Rest of Our Lives!

(3-week sequence)

It is my belief from having lectured on global warming in my Otterbein Chemistry classes for over 35 years that this problem provides the greatest threat to the whole human race of any problem we will likely ever face. This topic has become a big issue in the world as most now understand some of the extent of this huge and accelerating global problem. This 3-session presentation includes one in which we will first view the movie, “An Inconvenient Truth”. In the movie we will be hearing and visually seeing many of the issues involving “Global Warming” which has since often been incorrectly labeled “Climate Change”. There will be some chance to ask questions after viewing the video which will set the stage for the following two 1.5-hour sessions. They will be lecture/questions/problem-solving programs to try to clarify the scientific, economic, political and environmental issues related to our intensifying earth-warming problem. The programs are designed to inform each of us in understandable language just what is going on with our world and our public policies. We will use a little science for sure, but no complicated formulas or math. You are invited to construct questions you have regarding the global warming issue and bring them to the presentations and/or send them to rplace@otterbein.edu.

We will examine the issues of why carbon dioxide (CO2) is a global warming gas, but the most important global warming gas is actually water (H2O). Any vapor molecule with 3 or more atoms is potentially a global warming gas. All the H2O molecules in the air at any one time cumulatively absorb more energy than all the CO2 because there is about 40 times as much H2O in the air as CO2. CO2 and H2O are the chief reasons why the average air temperature on the earth is now 58o F. Without the development of these gaseous molecules, the average air temperature would be about 30oF and no current sophisticate life forms (including humans) on the earth could survive. Global Warming is the most difficult problem we need to solve because CO2’s higher amounts have triggered higher air temperatures which trigger higher liquid water temperatures (oceans) which put vast amounts of additional water vapor into the air which causes the air to warm faster which will cause the liquid water to heat up and evaporate faster and on and on with disastrous consequences for life forms on the earth. The sobering fact is that for every 1oC rise in liquid H2O temperature, a huge 7% of additional water molecules enter the air to accelerate the warming process. A 3 degree rise will cause a life-threatening 21% rise in gaseous water. This additional water then absorbs additional radiant energy, further raising temperatures. This is the main reason why global warming scientists have to regularly increase their projected temperature increases for future times because most models do not account for this increase in H2O in the air.

About the Instructor:  Bob Place taught Chemistry at Otterbein for 40 years, retiring in 2007. He taught a large junior/senior Integrative Studies course titled, “Chemistry Affects Your Life” for his last 25 years and became aware of the huge problem of Global Warming during this entire time. He obtained his bachelor’s degree from Albion College and his Ph.D. degree from the Univ. of California at Berkeley. He came directly to Otterbein “College” and taught Physical Chemistry, General Chemistry and Nursing Chemistry. He also served on Administrative Council for 30 years, was President of Faculty Council for 20 years, and chaired the Science and Math Division for 18 years. He has been married to Mary for 54 years and their daughter, Lissa, is a chiropractor in Atlanta.

Putin in the Context of Russian and Soviet History

Vladimir Putin, who has served as president of Russia for over fourteen years since the collapse of the Soviet Union in December 1991, has rightly been defined as an enigma, and it will be many years before the truly accurate account of his presidency will be written. We can gain some insight into his rise to power, his approach to the presidency, and his relationship with the United States, however, by putting him in the larger context of Soviet, and equally important, Tsarist, history. For Putin is not just a reflection of his background in the KGB, as often is argued, but rather a reflection of Russia’s larger past. In 1991, when the flag of the USSR was lowered from the Kremlin, the 300 year history of Russia and the Soviet Union came to an end. That was a traumatic moment for Putin. The breakup of the Soviet Union, i.e., of the Russian Empire, was for him “the greatest political tragedy of the 20th century.” His embodiment of the Russian and Soviet past is thus one key to understanding his unusual success as president of Russia and his relationship with each American president from Bill Clinton, through G. W. Bush, to Barack Obama, and Donald Trump.

About the Instructor:  Betsy MacLean is a Professor Emeritus of History. She taught American political and cultural history, as well as a history of the Soviet Union, for 23 years at Otterbein. In early 2017, she presented a talk on “James Madison and the Constitution” for LLC, and this past March, a course on “The Sixties Rebellion.” America in the late 19th and 20th centuries was the focus of her teaching before retiring in 2008, and it has remained the concentration of her research and writing since then. She is now working on a study of three intellectual presidents: Jefferson, Wilson, and Obama, each having served near the beginning of a new century. The primary question raised by her study: how have attitudes toward intellectual leadership changed from the early days of the nation until today --- and why?

Wetlands and Westerville Improving the Quality of Water and
the Quality of Life in a Growing Suburb

Mark Dilley will share some history, lessons learned and success stories surrounding the City of Westerville’s efforts to protect, enhance and restore wetlands in our community. He will discuss the benefits of wetlands and illustrate these benefits through some project examples from Boyer Nature Preserve, Heritage Park, and Highlands Park.

About the Instructor:  Mark Dilley is a Professional Wetland Scientist at Mad Scientist Associates and an environmental consultant.

Psychology of Human and Animal Interaction:
Dog Cognition & Service Dogs

(Two sessions)

Humans have lived and worked in tandem with their dog companions since earliest recorded history. This class explores human psychology as a function of human and animal interaction. We will be considering how humans and dogs live and work in a variety of environments alongside each other. In our first meeting, we will explore the current research on Animal Cognition and examine how this work informs our partnership with dogs in a variety of work settings. We will examine the unique capabilities and characteristics associated with a variety of canine occupations, including military, police and customs dogs. In our second meeting, we will focus specifically on service and therapy dogs. We will discuss the types of services that companion dogs provide and the impact that these dogs have on the lives of their human companions. We will wrap-up our session with a visit from Canine Companions.

About the instructor:  Dr. Cindy Laurie-Rose came to Otterbein University twenty-seven years ago after earning a PhD in Experimental Psychology from the University of Cincinnati. Dr. Laurie-Rose has published articles in various fields of psychology, including psychophysics, human factors, developmental psychology and neuropsychology. Most recently she has been working with children in the schools and doing research on “educational ergonomics”. She teaches courses on Perception, Physiological Psychology and Research Methods. Recently she has developed a course on Canine Ergonomics—a course that examines the relationship between working dogs and human companions.

Spring Book Discussion Group

Watch for the book selection to be made in early 2019.

 About the discussion group leaders:  Nancy Smith is a graduate of Otterbein University, Class of 1972, and a 1973 graduate of Drexel University School of Library Science. She was employed by the Westerville Public Library from 1964 until her retirement. She has served on the Council of the Friends of the Otterbein Courtright Memorial Library since 2007.

Lois Szudy is a graduate of Miami University, Class of 1975, a 1976 graduate of the Indiana University School of Library Science, and a 1999 graduate of the Otterbein College Master of Arts in Education program. She was employed at Ohio Wesleyan University for 13 years and served as the Library Director at Otterbein College/University from 1990 to her retirement in 2015. She was a founding member of the Friends of the Otterbein Courtright Memorial Library in 1996 and continues to serve on the Friends Council in her retirement. She is currently working again for the Otterbein Courtright Memorial Library part-time in the Technical Services Department.

Theatre Talk-Back

 Details for this June event will be available in early 2019.

About the presenter:  The Otterbein Theatre staff will share behind the scenes details for Summer Theatre productions.

 Schnormeier Gardens

Join us for a tour of the Schnormeier Gardens in Gambier, Ohio.  The exquisite Asian style gardens, waterfalls, unique sculptures, beautiful vistas, and more are located on 75 acres of rolling hills in Central Ohio.

About our host:  Martha Owens is instrumental in arranging for our docent-led tour of the Gardens. She is a member of Otterbein’s Lifelong Learning Community and presented a course in our 2017-18 LLC season titled “Move Better…Feel Better…Live Better!”

Locations of Events

Events are located at these venues, check the schedule for particular rooms.

  • The Point, 60 Collegeview Dr., Westerville, OH  43081
  • Center for Equine Science, 600 N. Spring Rd., Westerville 43082
  • Cowan Hall, 30 S. Grove St., Westerville 43081
  • Courtright Memorial Library, 140 W. Main St., Westerville 43081    


Call the Otterbein box office at 614-823-1109 for tickets.  Mention you are a member of the Lifelong Learning Community or Emeriti/retired staff for discounts.

Call the Westerville Symphony office 614-899-9000 for tickets, $17.50 each for Lifelong Learning Community members.