OLLI Courses

While we are sheltering in place and not meeting in person, OLLI SF State is offering short online courses for members and a free Speaker Series open to the public. Please check the catalog often, at the links above, to see new listings.

Mini Courses are Listed Further Below or Visit the Catalog


OLLI SF Offers Online Courses

As we are unable to meet in person for a while, we are beginning to offer some short online courses via the video conferencing application, Zoom. This is rather experimental but we hope you'll join us. Note that for online courses, there is a fee to participate but the membership fee is waived so registration is permitted for members and non-members. See the listings below and check back regularly to see more classes. Also find Zoom instructions below.

Speaker Series - Free Offerings

We are also working to offer a series of complimentary hour-long lectures via Zoom. 


Our second free Speaker Series online lecture is The Crisis Society with Dr. Ali Kashani, from the department of Political Science at SF State University. April 9, 2:00 pm. Please click on the class name above to register so you'll receive login instructions to this online lecture. 


Online Courses

The following courses will be presented live online via the video-conferencing application, Zoom. See instructions further down about accessing Zoom.


Three Tuesdays, April 21 - May 5, 1:00 - 3:00 pm

Broadway's Legendary Composers with Bonnie Weiss

Three Wednesdays, April 22 - May 6, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Tower of Song: The Musical Poetry of Leonard Cohen with Jannie Dresser

Three Fridays, April 24 - May 8, 1:00 - 3:00 pm

The Tempest with Julian Lopez-Morillas


Five Fridays, April 24 - May 22, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

The Fine Art of Spiritual Journaling with Jannie Dresser



Three Mondays, March 30 - April 13, 11:00 - 12:00

Global Lens: Documenting the World (Film)

This course will meet for one hour but you will be given a link to each film to watch ahead of time.

Three Mondays, March 30 - April 13, 12:30 - 2:30

Philosophy in Everyday Life: The Relevance of Reflection, Contemplation and Critical Thought with Ali Kashani


Three Thursdays, April 2 - 16, 10:00 - 12:00

Winding Paths into Inexpressible Darkness: Ancient Mystery Cults


Three Fridays, April 3 - 17, 1:30 - 3:30

Soul Music's Golden Age: The 1960s and early 1970s


Please check the catalog regularly for more offerings.

Using a Credit 

Were you registered for a Spring Class?

If you were registered for a course in the Spring session and did not request a refund, you must go through us to register and apply the credit. Please let us know if you would like to register for one of the courses above.

Members with Course Packages

Because of the cancellation of our Spring Session, 6-course and 12-course packages will be extended by one session so that you still have 5 sessions in which to take classes. If we cancel another session we will assess the situation then. Right now our fingers are crossed that we can reconvene for our Summer Session beginning June 1.

1. Pay directly for your online course - no impact on your course package. Your course package will not be automatically used for these shorter classes as each class in your course package is good for a full-length course and the online offerings are shorter. 

2. Use your course package to cover the cost of the online course. If you prefer to use one of the classes in your course package to take an Online course, let us know and we will register you and subtract a course from your package.


May Mini Courses, May 12 - 21, 2020 - open to non members. (Click to go to catalog)


Doin’ What Comes Natur’lly: The Amazing Irving Berlin with Bonnie Weiss, Tuesday, May 12, 10:45 - 1:15


From Deformed to Reformed Democracy: Diagnosing and Repairing the Forces Disfiguring 21st Century Democracy with David Peritz

May 12 - May 22, 1:30-4:30 - This course meets Tuesdays and Fridays for two weeks. 12 hours total.


Five Decades Since Our First Step: What Do We Know about the Moon? with Andrew Fraknoi, Wednesday, May 13, 10:00 - 12:30


OLLI In Dialogue: Backscratching, Mudwrestling, Gossip and Complimentary Hors D'Oeuvres; a Career in Journalism with Leah Garchik and Lucy Gray, Wednesday, May 13, 1:30 - 3:30 


Judy Chicago: Pioneering Feminist Artist and Educator with Josephine Withers, Thursday, May 14, 10:00 - 12:30


Conspiracy Theories - What Is Objective Truth? with Brooke Biggs, Thursday, May 14, 1:30 - 4:00


Tunisia - An Arab Democracy -  Douglas Kenning, Monday, May 18, 10:30 - 1:00


CANCELLED - Fake News From Wall Street - Leland Faust, Monday, May 18, 2:00 - 4:30


Climate Change in Early Civilizations - Douglas Kenning, Tuesday, May 19, 10:30 - 1:00

OLLI In Dialogue - Politics: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
 with Tim Redmond and Tom Ammiano 

Wednesday, May 20, 2:00 - 4:00


Frida Kahlo: Appearances Can Be Deceiving - Maureen O'Brien DeGeller, Thursday, May 21, 10:30 - 1:00


CANCELLED - Becoming Greta Gerwig - Karen Folger Jacobs, Thursday, May 21, 1:30 - 4:00

ZOOM Video Conferencing - While We're Apart

For some potential class offerings, interest groups and drop-in gatherings, we will use Zoom, an online video-conferencing application. 

The Way It Works:

  • You download the app on your phone, computer or tablet
  • I schedule a meeting and share an invitation (two invitations below)
  • At the designated time you click on the meeting link in the invitation, enter the meeting code and arrive at the meeting. 
  • To hear and be seen in the video conference, you should make sure both your camera and microphone are turned on within the Zoom application - usually on the bottom left of the screen. If either are turned off you will see a red line through the camera icon and/or microphone icon.
  • Use your volume controls on your device to turn up the volume so you can hear. 
  • **NOTE: You can test all of this before a meeting if you want.**


A neighbor on Nextdoor created this video to show how Zoom looks on different devices: https://youtu.be/7Qy90zY66WE





Fee Assistance

The Hal Wanaselja Memorial Fund

Through the generosity of Maryalice Reinmuller, in loving memory of her husband Hal Wanaselja, fee assistance is available for OLLI classes throughout the year through an application process.

See guidelines and application.  

Hal Wanaselja was a life-long learner. His family home was on then-rural, Staten Island, NY where the family property line ran close to the local railroad tracks. He was fascinated by rail travel and it became his vocation and avocation and enabled him to travel the world. The youngest of six children of Estonian immigrants, music, art, education, and living history were part of his heritage. We are grateful for Maryalice's support in honor of Hal's love of OLLI; the classes, teachers, and classmates who challenged him to think, question and laugh. 

Please email olli@sfsu.edu or call 415-817-4342 for more information on how to be considered for fee assistance.

All 2020 Class Sessions and Mini Course Sessions

Winter Session 2020: January 21 - March 2, 2020

Mini Courses: March 10 - 12 (POSTPONED TO MAY)

Spring Session: March 23 - May 1 (CANCELED)

Online Offerings and Speaker Series: March 30 - Until we can meet again in person...

Mini Courses: May 12 - 14 (To be determined whether in person or online)

Summer: June 1 - July 10 (Friday, July 17th will make up for 3rd of July missed) 

Mini Courses: July 21 - 23

Late Summer: August 10 - September 21

Mini Courses: Sept 22 - 24

Fall Session: October 12 - November 20 (Wed., Nov 25th will meet to make up for Nov 11th skipped for Veterans Day)

Mini Courses: December 8 - 10