Valerie Donlon, President of the University of the Third Age in Nunawading, talks about the myriad of Educational, Lifestyle and Physical Fitness classes available to retired and semi-retired seniors at U3A in Victoria.
Valerie Donlon, President, U3A Nunawading
I’m Valerie Donlon. I am the President of U3A Nunawading and we’re at the community centre here in Nunawading, Springvale Road.
We run between 200 and 250 classes every week. On a typical day, we would have language classes, exercises classes, humanities, histories - quite a range. We often say you can do anything from latin to line dancing at U3A.
U3A is a name that a lot of people aren’t familiar with until they start to think about retirement because we don’t advertise; it tends to be word of mouth and U3A actually stands for University of the Third Age. There are no entry requirements to join U3A. It’s really an enthusiasm to do something post-retirement, generally. So, you know, it’s not academically selective. You just sign up for whatever you like.
I’ve been a member here at U3A Nunawading for six years. I joined as soon as I left work because I have friends who are members and they were obviously having a good time. So, I came over and enrolled once I had finished work.
Often, when people come to U3A, they feel as though they’re just coming to learn a particular skill or attend an exercise class but they find that, through attending a regular class and meeting with the same people every week, they develop friendships and become part of a community.
If you’re approaching retirement or already retired and thinking ‘what am I going to do to keep my brain active?’, consider U3A. Drop into a U3A and have a chat to them. There’s always somebody there to talk about what we do. So, there’ll be a class for everybody.