RCTC LIFE @ History Center of Olmsted County

September 2016 thru January 2017

“Bob Dylan’s Political World” with Chad Israelson, RCTC Professor
Thursday, September 22, 2016 – 1-2:30 pm
Based upon a book he coauthored (The Political World of Bob Dylan: Freedom and Justice, Power and Sin) Chad Israelson will examine the political significance of Bob Dylan’s musical output. The class will provide historical and cultural context regarding Dylan’s background as well as that over the course of his professional career. Bob Dylan’s Political World will naturally address Dylan’s famous 1960s output, but additionally will cover the span of his career including his conversion to Christianity and other less well known aspects about the singer and songwriter.
Bio: Chad Israelson received his BA from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and his MA from the University of Nebraska. Israelson has taught at RCTC since 1996. He has also taught at UW-La Crosse, Augsburg, and Winona State. Chad won “Teacher of the Year” in 2003, 2011, and 2012. Chad recently coauthored the book “The Political World of Bob Dylan: Freedom and Justice, Power and Sin.”

“The Crusades” with Bill Bakken, Retired RCTC Professor
Thursday, October 6, 2016 – 2-3:30 pm
We will first look at the background for the medieval Christian crusading movement. This background will include events that influenced the call for a crusade and some of the many reasons that the church, European nobility, and common people supported them. Then the first three crusades will be briefly described and their effects, both positive and negative will be considered. By the end of the class, participants should better understand the crusading movement and perhaps be able to decide if they were a positive or negative influence on later history.
Bio: Bill Bakken After retirement from IBM, Bakken attended Minnesota State University-Mankato and received an M.A. in History in 1996. His focus of study was Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-Norman England. He taught a wide selection of history courses at Rochester Community and Technical College as a part-time instructor from 1996 until retirement in 2008. His interests include reading science fiction, adventure, and Biblical History; research and collection of North Dakota Pottery; and snorkeling and underwater photography. Bill is a past member of the RCTC LIFE Board.

“The Wild Zumbro River” with John Weiss, Rochester Post-Bulletin Outdoor Columnist
Thursday, October 20, 2016 – 10-11:30 am
The Zumbro River most of us see is in Rochester is confined by flood control walls or lined with rock. But the river outside Rochester is still wild. Join Post-Bulletin outdoors writer John Weiss for a trip down the river to see what it has to offer, what it looks like in the morning or even at night. And he’ll get you talking about how we use the river, and what its future looks like.
Bio: John Weiss has been the P-B’s outdoors writer since August, 1976. – he retired the end of September. He grew up in Brainerd, attended St. John’s University and worked at a weekly newspaper in the Twin Cities before coming to Rochester in Nov., 1975. He and Debbie, a paraprofessional in Rochester schools, have been married for more than 39 years and have three children: Dr. John Weiss who teaches college physics, Angela who teaches at Lourdes and Dr. Charlie Weiss who teaches college chemistry. He has one grandson, Anthony who he’s hoping to teach to be an angler. Weiss grew up in Brainerd running around Mississippi River bottomlands and fishing Gilbert Lake.

“Nellie Stone Johnson: A Minnesota Original” with Bob Beery PhD
Thursday, November 10, 2016 – 1-2:30 pm
Bob will share one of his all-time heroes, Nellie Stone Johnson — one of the most significant Minnesotans of the Twentieth Century: she was a union organizer, political leader, articulate radical, forceful feminist, effective civil rights leader, small business owner, and determined proponent of the American Dream. She also participated in every aspect of labor on a dairy farm, she was an excellent mechanic, she especially enjoyed hunting and fishing. She was a proud African-American committed to the ideals of equality and justice for all.
Bio: Bob Beery is the retired Curriculum Director of Rochester Public Schools and has been adjunct faculty with several universities.

“Lewis and Clark” with Don Borcherding, RCTC LIFE Board Member
Tuesday, November 29, 2016 – 1-2:30 pm
Captain Clark will take you along with his good friend Captain Lewis from fort Dubois near St. Louis to fort Clatsop at the outlet of the Columbia River at the Pacific Ocean. He will explain how he mapped the route while Lewis explored the surrounding countryside. How lucky were they to make it all the way to the Pacific Ocean?
Bio: Don Borcherding is a licensed Professional Engineer and Surveyor in Minnesota and Iowa. He is a graduate of Iowa State University, retired President of Yaggy Colby Associates, and Past President of the Minnesota Society of Professional Surveyors. Borcherding has spent more than 30 years researching Surveying History and gives frequent presentations as Captain Andrew Talcott. Don is a current RCTC LIFE Board member.

“World War I: Numbers, Types, and Treatments” with Mike LaValle, Retired RCTC Professor
Tuesday, December 6, 2016 – 1-2:30 pm
The total numbers were staggering and often overwhelmed treatment facilities. This will be a non-medical look at types of injuries and newly developed treatments during the war.
Bio: Mike LaValle taught math and statistics at RCTC for 29 years before retiring. LaValle has always been interested in history, geography, and travel. He has visited to many battlefield sites.

“The Story of WW II Fighter Aircraft” with Tom Brinkman, Author, RCTC LIFE Board Member
Tuesday, January 10, 2017 – 2-3:30 pm
A fascinating look at legendary U.S. WWII fighters through the eyes of an aeronautical engineer, but explained for non-engineers. A description and comparison of the history, design rationale, capabilities, characteristics, performance, strengths and limitations of the F4U Corsair, P-51 Mustang, P-47 Thunderbolt, F6F Hellcat and P-38 Lightning. Based on Tom’s book, “An Aeronautical Engineer’s View: The F4U Corsair and its Contemporaries,” and illustrated with large 1:18 scale models of these aircraft.
Bio: Tom Brinkman is a retired engineering manager and program manager with a BS and MS in Aeronautics and Engineering Mechanics, Univ. of Minnesota; and an MS in Electrical Engineering, Univ. Vermont. His book has been carried at the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museums, the U.S. Air Force Museum, the U.S. Marines Museum, and many other museums. He presents at the annual Oshkosh, WI air shows and other
venues. Tom is a Past President of the LIFE Program and a current RCTC LIFE Board member.

“Taking the Lead: Rochester Women and Public Policy, 1970- 1990” with Jane Callahan JD
Thursday, January 26, 2017 – 2-3:30 pm
“Taking the Lead: Rochester Women and Public Policy, 1970 – 1990,” is a book developed and written by members of The League of Women Voters in Rochester in 2013. It tells the stories of 25 women from Olmsted County who became the first women to hold a wide variety of positions in the public sector, paving the way for other women to follow. The personal and professional efforts of the honored women range from local positions, such as the first woman to chair the Olmsted County Board of Commissioners, to state and national positions such as the first woman to become a District Court judge in rural Minnesota or the first woman to serve on the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis or the first woman elected to the Minnesota Senate in her own right. This class will showcase the women of the book with brief stories of their successes.
Bio: Jane Callahan J.D. taught at RCTC for 12 years in the Social Studies department. Jane has a History degree and J.D. degree from the University of Minnesota. Jane is the current Vice-President of the RCTC LIFE Board.
“In a presentation to the National Endowment for the Arts on creativity and aging, Dr. Gene Cohen, M.D., Ph.D., stated that “Community-based cultural programs for older adults appear to be reducing risk factors that drive the need for long-term care.”
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