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Western Mountains Senior College
Serving the greater Bethel area since 2002, the Western Mountains Senior College (WMSC) is a member organization whose mission is “ to support lifelong learners in their quest for new knowledge and experience by providing a variety of programs and activities.” The college is inclusive, serving primarily the over-50 population (with an Associate Membership for younger folks).
Our members hail from a wide geographic area. Not only that – if you’re a member locally, you are automatically a member of the statewide network and are encouraged to take courses at any other of the statewide colleges. A majority of classes are held at Telstar High School, but we also enjoy other community venues for classes.
WMSC offers a wide variety of regular classes, from Great Decisions, a course with directed readings and discussion about American foreign policy, to drawing and other humanities and cultural classes. Our teachers come from the wide pool of talented people in the Bethel area: retired teachers and professors, skillful craftsmen, avid readers and writers and all manner of other gifted contributors. Many of our offerings are a shared learning experience, where there is no “expert” at the front of the class; rather, all participants share their knowledge of a topic and explore new directions in their learning. Testing is not part of our classes. Some classes have reading assignments to enhance the learning experience, but there are no quizzes. We are adult learners and participate in WMSC classes and activities for the sheer joy of learning; our quality of learning is in our own hands.
Current costs are $25 annually for membership and $20 each for most courses (less for single or short-term events) and we extend a generous, no-questions-asked sponsorship and scholarship opportunity for those who have difficulty paying fees. As a service to our community, WMSC offers two long-standing programs regularly each term, free to the public: Down Home Maine and To Your Health. We also enjoy member-only activities.
There is no admissions application or screening process. We offer a large variety of opportunities, and we welcome anyone to participate as interest and ability dictate. You may become a member at any time. Our print Course Bulletin is sent to all members before the fall, winter and spring terms; it contains complete information on upcoming courses and how to register. Our blog has fresh, weekly postings of upcoming events and photos of recent events – it’s a great way to get a feel for what we do! You may download a registration form from the blog (wmscollege.blogspot.com). For more information, contact the WMSC Chair, Irene Kuchta (firstname.lastname@example.org, 207-364-3137).