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Kwantlen offers new semester of learning with variety of courses

By Richmond Sentinel

Published 2:11 PST, Fri January 27, 2023

An unsolved murder and a webinar on medical mistakes lead the way as Third Age Learning at Kwantlen (TALK) returns for a new semester.

TALK is a volunteer-run organization that partners with Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) to offer a diverse range of courses ideal for adults aged 50-plus who want to continue learning. Fees are kept low thanks to KPU instructors and community professionals who volunteer their time.

“TALK is a wonderful way to stay connected with others who are lifelong learners. Our courses are on relevant and current topics, and offer time for comments and questions. This semester we offer both in-person and online opportunities to gather together to learn and exchange ideas,” says Jane Diston, chair of TALK.

The season begins on Feb. 1 with a webinar on medical mistakes—one of 10 online courses available. Author and retired coroner Susan McIver will share her research on medical errors and the story of an unsolved murder in her family.

Other online courses explore topics of journalism and misinformation, climate politics, gardening for pollinators, and the war in Ukraine. There are 13 in-person courses this semester—at KPU’s Surrey, Langley, and Richmond campuses—covering topics like fraud awareness, unlearning racism, eating for the planet, and Spain through the eyes of artists.

The semester also includes new Philosophers’ Corner events. In these 12 in-person sessions, a volunteer researches a chosen topic and delivers a 10-minute presentation ahead of a stimulating conversation among attendees. Topics this year include the risks and rewards of social media; the inevitability of wars; the challenge of addiction, capitalism, and water; private health care; and our complex relationship with China. These sessions are held in various locations in Richmond, Surrey, and Langley. The drop-in fee for Philosophers’ Corner is $2 to $5.

Two field trips offer further experiences for TALK participants, including a visit to a coffee training centre in Vancouver on March 15 and a stop at Surrey Libraries’ Cloverdale branch on April 3 to explore the benefits of family history research.

Most TALK courses are up to two hours in length and cost $15, in addition to a $10 annual membership fee. Courses and programs are available from Feb. 1 through May 25. Registration is open now. Visit the TALK webpage to view the schedule and to register.

About Third Age Learning at Kwantlen (TALK)
TALK is a participatory learning experience with no quizzes, grades, or prerequisites. The learning process is lively, full of discussion, controversy, humour, insight, and wisdom. In addition to participating in courses, people can become course facilitators, plan curriculum, identify speakers, prepare newsletters, recruit new members, help organize special events, or join as a member. Learn more about TALK at

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