Join the Stephens faculty and staff in summer 2020 for enlightening sessions designed for alumnae, parents, supporters and friends.

Would you like to hone your memoir, fiction, or songwriting skills, delve into the history and impact of The Golden Girls, or explore women’s health? In the Stephens Lifelong Learning program, faculty and staff will share academic and fun skills in a wide variety of topics!

Tap into the interesting opportunities available this summer through the Zoom online meeting platform, letting you learn from wherever you are. Some courses take place in a single session, while others have a longer schedule. Join for one session, or join them all.

After you register through Eventbrite, you will receive an email with a link to access the sessions, and any information or supplies you need to prepare for the class.

Course fees range from $25-$65.

For questions, contact [email protected] or (573) 876-7110.


Course Offerings


Healthy Living for Women 50 & Beyond

Six sessions led by Dean of Health Sciences Julia Moffitt, Ph.D.; Director of Nursing Noreen Houck, Ph.D.; Assistant Professor Felicia Anunoby, FNP-BC; Assistant Professor Mary Amanda Haskins, Ph.D.

  • Cardiovascular Disease in Women
  • Bone Health
  • Nutritional Strategies for Optimal Cardiovascular and Bone Health
  • Sexuality in Mature Women


Memoir Writing

Led by Amy Banks

Everybody has a story to tell that is unique to them. We want to leave the legacy of our lives for our children and grandchildren, or maybe we just want to tell the doozy of a tale that is our experience. Whether for our journals, families or the possibility of publication, memoir writing is a beautiful way to embrace our life stories. In this class we will learn how to begin bringing our memories to life with structure, storytelling elements and editing techniques.


Creating Characters for the Page & Stage

Led by Associate Professor Kate Berneking Kogut, Ph.D.

Explore methods of creating engaging fictional characters that will keep readers turning the page and audience members in their seats.


Indian Culinary & Food Plating

Led by Assistant Professor Debolina Ghosh, Ph.D.

Having an inborn ability to cook isn’t guaranteed. Studies show that having a good role model in the kitchen is one of the best ways to learn how to cook and bake. The good news is, it’s never too late to start, no matter what your background may be. The most important thing to take with you into the kitchen is a basic understanding of what to do and how to do it. This course is designed to give you just that. You will learn everything from what supplies you need for getting started to reading recipes and planning Indian meals. You will be provided with a basic understanding of what it means to be in the kitchen and sources for additional information to foster your culinary growth.


Flash Nonfiction: Bringing on the Heat in 500 Words or Less

Led by Assistant Professor Ann Breidenbach, Ph.D.

Participants will learn what makes a successful piece of flash nonfiction writing. Then, using writing prompts provided by the instructor and artifacts from their own lives — cherished objects, photographs, journal entries, newspaper clippings — the participants will write personal stories varying in length from 100 words up to 750 words. The instructor will provide ongoing guidance and feedback through the writing process, enabling participants to revise their work with an eye toward sharing with others and/or submission for publication.


Songwriting for Dummies

Led by Tom Andes, Instructor of Music

Instruction in the art of songwriting. Students will learn to use a music writing program (Noteflight), which can be downloaded for free online. Some basic music knowledge is helpful. Each student will write at least one song. Instruction will be geared toward the individual. Other topics explored are: Song Forms, Basic Harmony and Melody Writing.


Writing Compelling Scenes

Led by Shannon Fopeano

In this five-session course, students read and watch some of the most affecting, compelling and memorable scenes from film history, and learn how to identify what makes them so successful. Students will write, re-write and polish their own compelling scenes.


Thank You For Being a Friend: The History & Impact of The Golden Girls

Led by Amy Banks

Do you revel in Rose’s St. Olaf Stories? Picture Sicily, 1922 with Sophia? Are you saucy like Blanche or as cynical as Dorothy? Learn all about the show that made aging chic, taught us that friendship will prevail in our golden years and that cheesecake can solve just about any problem. The Golden Girls lasted 180 half-hour episodes spanning seven seasons. Its legacy lives today as a universally appealing, comforting, hilarious and Corona-quarantine binge-worthy sitcom for the ages. Learn along with professor Amy Banks as she takes you through show creator Susan Harris’s inspired pilot to the award-winning show’s farewell, and the spin-offs it spawned.


Building Worlds: Creating Fictional Kingdoms & Communities

Led by Associate Professor Kate Berneking Kogut, Ph.D.

Explore methods of creating fictional neighborhoods and societies that will breathe life into your characters and their stories.


Careers in Reality TV

Led by Shannon Fopeano

In these five one-hour sessions, students learn about career opportunities in the development, pre-production, production, and post-production of reality television. Shannon has written hundreds of episodes of reality TV — check out her IMDB listing!


Writing for Performance Workshop

Led by Mary Elaine Vansant

Are you interested in honing your playwriting or screenwriting skills over the summer? This workshop will provide students with helpful guidance, examples and writing exercises. Workshop time will focus primarily on reading work aloud for our peers and putting voices to our words.


The Kilroys

Led by Mary Elaine Vansant

Since 2014, The Kilroys list has compiled some of the best plays by non-male playwrights that need more public attention. This workshop will read and discuss four of these plays through a feminist lens while looking at gender in the world of new play development more generally. You’re sure to find something new!

Audience Menu