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January 2010

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Vol. 2009-2010 No.6

February to focus on living, aging well

It’s a marriage made in heaven, a presentation about aging well to people who are doing just that. Gerontology expert Lesa Lorenzen-Huber will offer “Ten Simple Things You Can Do to Live and Age Well” when the Retirees Association meets at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 10, in the Peterson Room of the IU Foundation.

Lesa will talk about the latest research in aging. “You know you have to eat well and exercise every day, but recent research suggests some important things that you may not be doing to age as well as you possibly can,” she says. “We will talk about this research and ways to incorporate these findings into your everyday life.”

Lesa is gerontology curriculum coordinator at IU’s Center on Aging and Aged and a clinical assistant professor of applied health science in the School of HPER. The recipient of numerous teaching awards, she teaches courses on creativity and aging, physical activity and aging, and gerontology and geriatric education for health-care professionals. Her research covers such subjects as strategies for improving memory, online learning for seniors, and influencing engagement of older adults in volunteer activities.

When the Indiana University Retirees Association hosts the annual meeting of the Big Ten Retirees Associations in Bloomington in August, Lesa will speak on “Creativity and Aging.” She is much in demand as a speaker and offers frequent Mini University courses.

Co-author of online courses in gerontology, Lesa earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her M.S. and Ph.D. at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her dissertation was titled “Self-Perceived Creativity in the Later Years.”

No matter what else you have scheduled in February, this is one meeting you won’t want to miss.

United we stand: Rah for the IURA!

Retirees don’t give just 100 percent. They exceed great expectations. That was the good news longtime United Way chairs Harriet Pfister and Wain Martin reported at the Jan. 13 meeting.

Not only did retirees meet their United Way goal of $70,000 — they exceeded it by more than 25 percent. So far, Harriet reported, 160 retiree donors have pledged $87,981, with 51 Vanguards (including nine new ones) pledging $1,000 or more.

Harriet credited retirees with recognizing that “the community has increasing needs” and responding with open hearts and checkbooks. Wain led the assembly in a rousing cheer. President Sandy Churchill expressed our appreciation for the outstanding leadership of the three-member committee, which also includes Doris Burton.

IU Retirees Association: it’s official

By vote of the membership in a special called meeting Jan. 13, the IU Association of Retired Faculty and Staff became the IU Retirees Association. Past president Bob Ensman presented the proposed change to the bylaws. He explained that, because a Web site is being developed and brochures are soon to be printed, the name change was a priority.

The membership also adopted some other changes that, in Bob’s words, “more clearly reflect current operational procedures and definitions.” Bob chaired the bylaws committee, which also included Bob Dodd and Don Weaver.

For an electronic copy of the revised bylaws, please e-mail Bob at

By whatever name, we’re growing!

Counting every name in the 2009-2010 directory compiled by database manager Gerald Marker and comparing it with the previous year’s directory, we are pleased to report that the Retirees Association has 380 members, a 16 percent increase over 2008-2009.

Giving when living in uncertain times

On March 3 at 3 p.m. John T. Keith, assistant vice president for gift planning at the IU Foundation, will offer a session on charitable giving in times of uncertainty. The meeting will be in the Peterson Room at Showalter House. The Retirees Association does not meet officially in March, but this session is a response to member requests for objective, non-commercial financial planning information.

“This presentation will not in any way resemble a solicitation to support Indiana University or any other specific charitable organization,” John emphasizes. “Rather, the focus will be on ways to give to any charity in a way that connects your philanthropic priorities to your financial, tax, and estate planning.”

John, a graduate of IU’s Maurer School of Law, has worked at the IUF since 1997. Please let him know by phone (856-4237) or e-mail ( if you plan to attend.

Put these dates on your calendar

In addition to February’s meeting, two Retirees Association events remain in the academic year:

April 14 – IU basketball coach Tom Crean
May 12 – annual potluck dinner, with Jacobs School of Music Professor Glenn Gass on historical rock ‘n’ roll

Aikman advises retirees on how to keep up with changing technology

John Harrell came up with the title for the Jan. 13 Retirees Association meeting: 8-track People in an iPod World. But it was Chuck Aikman, manager of online services at UITS, who offered retirees information about ways to use the newest technology tools for their own enjoyment and enlightenment. He offered definitions and links — onramps, if you will — to interesting places along the information highway.

IU retirees can avail themselves of UITS expertise in a number of ways, Chuck said:

An easy way to find people or programs at IU, Chuck suggested, is to add, to your Favorites.

Chuck defined some common if mystifying terms. Most new media, he said, quoting Wikipedia (itself an example of a new medium), are digital, manipulatable, compressible, networkable, dense, and interactive. Compare new media to old media: books, films, magazines, or TV.

Social networking is a way to get together with people who have similar interests. People don’t have to meet in person; they can meet online. Many retirees know couples (including at least one in the Retirees Association membership) who met online through a social networking site.

Web 2.0 is, Chuck said, “the participatory Web,” with a high degree of interactivity. Examples include:

Podcasting, Chuck explained, is a method of distributing multimedia files (music videos, for example, or audio programs) over the Internet, for playback on your personal computer or mobile device. IU generates many podcasts, and Chuck suggested adding to your Favorites Remember, too, that many university entities, notably WTIU and WFIU, have podcasts available on their own sites.

Have you always wanted to tweet but didn’t know how? Twitter, Chuck explained, is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that enables users to send and read messages known as tweets. Tweets are text-based posts of up to 140 characters displayed on the author’s profile page and delivered to the author’s subscribers, who are known as followers. You can get feeds through, or you can start your own account at

More than 55 people gathered for the program, and they deluged Chuck with questions about Facebook, including “Is there a Facebook for dummies?” Chuck responded that, indeed, there is and that the information would be available in this very newsletter. The link Chuck thinks is “very useful for giving an effective overview of various technologies” is http://www.commoncraft. com/videos#technology. It allows you to view simple, introductory online videos, each about two or three minutes in length and presented “in plain English,” on such subjects as blogs, online photo sharing, social networking, and Twitter.

As of December, 321 million people were on Facebook, Chuck, said, and UITS has its own Facebook site.

If you would like a pdf containing all Chuck’s slides, e-mail the Retirees Association at

Vince Mabert introduced the speaker, who told the assembled group that he felt a kinship as the grandchild of two IU retirees. Chuck’s grandmother was the renowned Helen Clouse, who worked at the Jacobs School of Music until shortly before her death at age 100. His grandfather, Arthur Clouse, retired from the chemistry faculty in 1980, and Chuck reports that he “was personally touched” when two retirees spoke to him after the program about his grandfather. Members adjourned to enjoy conversation and cookies provided by Marge Belisle, Joyce Mabert, and Eileen Schellhammer.

Speaking of interactive media...

You now can send comments or questions to the IURA, Look for a Web address in the next (March) issue.

Emeriti House programs cover gamut

Emeriti House will present its seventh annual juried art exhibit during April. The organizing committee welcomes submissions in photography, jewelry, pottery, woodworking, and other graphic and fine arts from retired faculty and staff, their spouses and partners.

Works are to be submitted for jurying before March 6, and the opening reception is April 2. If you would like further information about the exhibit, please contact John Woodcock ( or 812-339-2741).

Programs at the Emeriti Center, at 1015 E. Atwater, one block east of the Atwater Garage, cover a variety of topics and are open to all interested retirees. Some future events include:

Feb. 17 – 3 p.m., Shodo Spring and Rhonda Baird, members of “Transition Bloomington,” will speak
Feb. 18 – 3 p.m., John Woodcock, professor emeritus of English, will conduct a life-writing session (also on March 25)
Feb. 24 – 3 p.m., Peter Bailey, professor emeritus of history at the University of Manitoba, will present “A Night at the Victorian Music Hall”
March 3 - 3 p.m., Robert Port, professor emeritus of linguistics, will comment on Steven Mithen’s The Singing Neanderthals: The Origins of Music, Language, Mind and Body
March 10 – 3 p.m., Tony Neff, professor emeritus of anatomy and cell biology, will speak on organ regeneration
March 24 – 3 p.m., Vince Mabert, professor emeritus of operations management, Kelley School of Business, will talk about the logistics of a traveling circus