Membership Guide

General Membership Guide

Welcome to the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Emory University (OLLI at Emory)

OLLI at Emory is a community of individuals 50+ years old, who wish to stay mentally alert and physically active through classes and social programs that nourish the mind, body, and soul.

To that end, OLLI at Emory provides educational, cultural, volunteer, and social opportunities designed for members through courses, lectures, seminars, special interest groups, special events, and domestic and international travel.

OLLI educational programming is centered on courses developed and taught by instructors and professionals, who volunteer their time, passion, and knowledge. The atmosphere is supportive and filled with humor, wisdom, diversity, and insight.

OLLI at Emory is a membership-driven organization and part of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute network. For more information about the history of the Osher Institute and OLLI at Emory, visit our website.


OLLI is a member-driven organization. All who take courses at OLLI at Emory must have a current OLLI Membership. Memberships are $50 per year, and you can join directly on OLLI’s website.

Membership Benefits:

As a member of OLLI, you receive these benefits and privileges:

  • Discounts off OLLI Special event fees
  • Participation in Special Interest Groups (i.e., book clubs, discussion groups, lunch groups)
  • Free access to select exhibits and lectures at Emory


Course fees are $10 per session (4-week course $40, 8-week course $80). Sometimes, courses may have additional fees, which will be clearly identified in each course description. Below are examples of what those fees might look like:

  • Administrative fees: Cover costs associated with offsite or other programming not provided within the normal OLLI framework for delivering courses.
  • Instructor fees: On occasions, nominal fees are paid to outside instructors for special courses.
  • Supply fees: Materials and supplemental books are sometimes required for some courses, and students are expected to pay for those materials.


  • The OLLI membership fee is nontransferable and nonrefundable.
  • No refunds for tuition, supply fees, and/or instructor fees will be given after a course begins.
  • OLLI students may transfer to another course, but only within the first week of a term. There is a limit of one class transfer per session or term, and a $10 transfer fee will be assessed.

OLLI Courses

OLLI courses address a mix of disciplines, including history, social sciences, natural sciences, humanities, art, and writing as well as personal enrichment courses. Many courses are repeated with varying frequency. Some courses are consistently popular and are offered each session or term; others may be repeated yearly or less often. Most courses have no prerequisites, none require a degree, and there are no exams or grades. The object is to support learning solely for the pleasure of it.

A word about OLLI instructors

All instructors and their courses are vetted by OLLI staff and membership, via committee, to ensure consistency and quality in content, educational method and delivery. OLLI instructors are often former teachers and professors, and many are retired professionals teaching what they know best.


You may register for an OLLI course during specified registration periods. Some courses have limited seats and/or registration deadlines. All in-person courses are filled on a first-come, first-served basis, and some courses may be canceled due to low enrollment. We encourage you to register early to avoid the risk of a course being filled or canceled.

How to Register

  • Online: We encourage you to register online for all courses, events, and/or presentations at 
  • Memberships: Memberships can be renewed or purchased online at
  • By phone: Call our OLLI office at 404-727-5489.


You will receive an email receipt of your course purchases and an email confirmation of courses for which you’ve registered. If you do not receive an email, please contact the OLLI office at 404-727-5489 or by email at


Unless otherwise noted, in-person courses are held in the Emory Continuing Education Building located at 2635 Century Parkway NE, Suite 300 (3rd floor), Atlanta, GA 30345, near the intersection of I-85 and Clairmont Rd. The OLLI administrative office is also housed there.

Please check the OLLI display monitor located outside the OLLI office for specific classroom number assignments. There are also course titles and times posted outside each classroom.

Materials and Text

If a course requires a book, study aid, or other materials, those items will be indicated in the course description. Instructors will contact students prior to the first class and alert them to any special requirements.

Course Evaluations

Evaluations provide important feedback to OLLI staff and course instructors. During the last week of class, OLLI students are emailed an anonymous, online course evaluation to complete.

Course and/or Class Cancellations

  • A course may be canceled if it fails to meet minimum enrollment numbers as determined by OLLI staff. If that happens, students will be notified the week before a course is scheduled to begin.
  • If an individual class must be cancelled or postponed, students will be notified via email.
  • If Emory University is closed for any reason, OLLI will be closed as well.

Member Conduct

OLLI members are expected to respect the learning environment and embrace the concept of a civil community. Additionally, for all OLLI classes, we ask our students to:

  • Be on time.
  • Mute or turn off your cell phones and other electronic devices.
  • Attend only courses for which you have registered.
  • Only register for courses you can regularly attend (because of limited, in-person seating).
  • Formally withdraw from a course if you are unable to attend by contacting the OLLI office at 404-727-5489.

Ways to stay informed

OLLI Website

The OLLI website,, is the place to reference first for answers to your OLLI-related questions.

Email Messages

Members should ensure that OLLI has a reliable email address for you. We also suggest that the web address ( be included in your address books or contacts on your personal computer or other devices to help prevent SPAM blocking.

If you need any help at all or have an important question or issue, you can contact our OLLI staff directly any time.

OLLI Newsletter

The OLLI Newsletter is our primary means of communicating important and timely information to OLLI members. It’s available via email and on the OLLI website. If you have questions or ideas to include, send them directly to OLLI Newsletter staff.

Cultivating New Friendships Within OLLI

Socializing is a key component of OLLI at Emory’s program. New members who want to enlarge their circle of friends through OLLI membership should take advantage of social events and special interest groups especially. Also, here are a few additional tips for socializing at OLLI:

  • Be proactive and introduce yourself to classmates before class begins, in the lobby area, or in the OLLI lounge.
  • Wear your name badge so we all know who you are. (Contact the OLLI office if you misplace your badge.)
  • If you are a veteran OLLI member, reach out to others, especially brand new OLLI members, and make them feel welcome.
  • Volunteer involvement is a great way to meet new people, too.

Volunteering with OLLI

  • As a member-run organization, OLLI would not exist without volunteers. Volunteers participate in all aspects of OLLI’s operations, including course development, social opportunities, travel, marketing, and special events.
  • Volunteers keep OLLI’s costs down, too. Volunteers do the lion’s share of the work of running the program, which helps OLLI avoid the need to hire additional staff.
  • No prior experience is necessary to volunteer. Our membership runs deep with professional experience and vast and varied hobbies and interests that often translate to exactly what OLLI needs.
  • If OLLI training is necessary at any point, we will offer it to volunteers.
  • OLLI knows your time is valuable. When volunteering, you determine your availability to ensure the best OLLI/personal life balance.

How to Volunteer

  • Please do not wait to be asked! Rather, have a look at volunteer opportunities online and note the committee chairs and their responsibilities to determine if they resonate with you. All that’s left is for you to contact the OLLI office at 404-727-5489 or reach out directly to a committee chair to indicate interest. They will be delighted to hear from you. 

Qualities OLLI Volunteers Embody

  • Promptness: Always show up on time and be ready to go.
  • Dependability: Attend committee meetings when scheduled or let your committee chair know about any unavoidable absences. Same with actual events, including meet-ups, travel, etc.
  • Initiative: Share your ideas OLLI thrives on new perspectives!
  • Responsibility: No matter how small or large the job may seem; it is essential to OLLI!

Donations – Keeping OLLI Financially Fit

OLLI donations by members represent an important aspect and requirement of the Osher Foundation endowment. The Osher Foundation expects to see at least 10% of the current membership donate to OLLI at Emory. As a member-led organization, it is important to have members invested in the overall interests and successes of the OLLI program:

  • Your tax-deductible donations to OLLI will go a long way in supporting scholarships, courses, and special events.
  • OLLI conducts an Annual Fund Campaign, and you may also make a donation when you register for courses by indicating your donation on OLLI’s registration form.
  • Members can give online at, and donations by check are accepted when made payable to OLLI Emory University. (Mail to OLLI, 2635 Century Parkway NE, Suite 300, Atlanta, GA 30345.
  • When donating to Emory, always specify the funds recipient as the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Emory.
  • OLLI is forever grateful for member donations.

Thank you for being an OLLI member

OLLI at Emory Newsletter

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