In May this year, working in conjunction with the Learning and Skills Council and Coventry City Library, Warwick's Centre for Lifelong Learning staged four events for Adult Learners' Week. Three of the four events qualified as part of the national Bite Size campaign.
An Early Music Easy Listening event was staged in the West Orchards Shopping Centre in Coventry. Students from the Warwick Open Studies Music course drew an admiring crowd varying in age from six months to eighty years old. Audience members said that they had enjoyed the music and admired the instruments used by the students, including violins, cellos, viola da gamba, crumhorns, curtals and cornamuse as well as an array of recorders.
A quieter group met in Coventry library for the session 'Think Happy Be Happy'. Alex Linley, from the Department of Psychology attracted a crowd of nearly 50. Extra sessions were arranged to cope with the demand. Many who attended said that they wanted to discover that elusive secret of happiness. Some indicated that they would like to follow up the session with one of Alex's courses. Alex was thrilled with the turn out.
Europe under the Spotlight, with the former MEP Christine Oddy, was attended by twenty people in the reading room at Coventry Library. Christine gave a brief guide to the E.U., answering questions raised by the students. Students learned that more laws are passed in Brussels than in Britain and that the expansion of the E.U. will affect all of our lives. The attendees expressed mixed feelings about Europe but all felt that the session had been exciting and worthwhile.
The fourth event was hosted by the Coventry Museum of British Road Transport. Martin Bennett spoke to twenty avid rail enthusiasts about the Stratford and Moreton railway, Warwickshire's first railway. Martin explained that the railway was horse drawn with the animals working to pull heavy carriages.
The Centre for Lifelong Learning is certain that the events have raised the profile of adult learning opportunities. Kay Rainsley, Administrative Co-ordinator for Open Studies, said: "The students' appetites were whetted and the tutors were able to demonstrate that which they hold dear. We can look forward to welcoming some new students into our study programmes next year."