SMSU’s GOLD College and Senior classes

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SMSU, 1501 State St, Marshall, MN

GOLD is an acronym for Growth, Opportunity, Learning, Development. GOLD College offers non-credit classes with a variety of topics. Each class is held one day per week for two hours. There are no tests or grades, and it is for people of all educational levels.

Topics may include art, history, computer, current events, music, writing, health, or physical well-being.

Study groups are planned for six weeks, from March 20 through April 28.

Contact the GOLD College office for registration materials and more information:; 507-537-7164.

Arts related Senior classes this session include:


  • Charles Dickens and “Great Expectations,” 9-11 a.m., Dr. James A. Zarzana, instructor. Using this novel, we will study life in Britain during the mid-19th Century, a dynamic era much like our own. The novel’s somber tone comes from its examination of prisoners, the legal system, poverty, and the consequences of debt, revenge, and loveless relationships. Hanging over all are the effects of pride. (Novel and cliff notes available for free download or in your local library)


  • Mini Project Book, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Victoria McKinney, instructor. In this class we will have time to work and visit while we learn new skills for a number of techniques working with paper, markers, pencils, crayons and watercolors. By the end of your session you will have created a personal handmade book or series of small artworks perfect for framing. We will experiment with the zentangle method of creating beautiful art with fun therapeutic benefits.



  • A Survey of Art, Music and Literature from 1750 to Present, 2-4 p.m., Steve Linstrom, instructor. Explore a sampling of painters, sculptors, writers and composers from the mid-1700s to present. We will look at many of the most famous artists of the time and class participants will be encouraged to suggest other artists for us to research and include in the presentations.


  • Exploring Color through Glazing (Acrylic), 2-4 p.m., Allen Ness, instructor. Students will explore color relationships, effects and theory using the glazing techniques of the Renaissance Masters. We will create two (hopefully three) paintings 16×20 (it’s more fun to paint bigger).



  • Preserving Your Heritage, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Carolyn Van Loh, instructor. Everyone has a story just waiting to be told. This class will explore storytelling modes as well as equip students with helpful resources and tools useful in preserving your own heritage. Students will have opportunities to share information pertinent to the day’s topic.


  • Pottery, 2-4 p.m., Pat Hand, instructor. Students will work with clay to create their own unique hand-built pottery forms. These will be dried and fired in a kiln to bisque temperature, then glazed and fired again to the glaze temperature. Working on a potter’s wheel may be an additional option. Limit 15 people-$10 supply costs.



  • Wood Carving ‘Ninja’ Style, 9-11 a.m., Don Fischer, instructor. Learn or expand your woodcarving skills by making a “sort-of-realistic” caricature of a happy little turtle. Wood, paint and tools are provided. This class is available to beginners, as well as experienced woodcarving students.


  • Native American Culture, 2-4 p.m., Michele Sterner (Current SMAC Board representative for Lyon County), instructor. This class will exam the complex history and cultures of Indigenous populations. It will focus on art, literature, language, geography, treaty rights, global contributions, and cultural survival.


More about GOLD College Events:

The spring session of GOLD College at Southwest Minnesota State University will kick off at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 in Charter Hall 201 on campus.

The program will feature SMSU undergraduate students presenting their research projects on a variety of topics.

Registration will be held from 2:15-3 p.m. GOLD College participants will have the opportunity to pick up class schedules and parking permits while enjoying refreshments.

The Kick-Off Program will begin at 3 p.m. with an overview of the GOLD College spring session, followed by the research presentations and an opportunity to meet the study group leaders.

Contact: Jim Tate 1-800-642-0684

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