Academy for Lifelong Learning Recognizes Outstanding Volunteers of the Year
Published on: July 20, 2011
The Academy for Lifelong Learning (ALL) at Lone Star College-Montgomery has honored an outstanding couple, Dale and Lynda Woodruff, with the organization’s 2010-11 Volunteer of the Year award. This is the third year that ALL, an intellectual and personal growth organization for active, older adults, has issued this award.
The Woodruffs have been a part of the ALL organization since 2004. Over the past seven years, Lynda has served as a volunteer class coordinator, an ambassador, the chairman of the spring and fall open house, and since 2008, a member of the ALL Advisory Board.
Dale, while supporting Lynda in her roles, has been ‘instrumental’ in putting together ALL’s dulcimer group, The Lone Star Strummers, which provides musical entertainment at events throughout the area including the Montgomery County Fair. Dale also volunteers with ALL’s technology team as a computer coach.
“We were very surprised with the honor of being named Volunteers of the Year,” said Lynda. “It was a total surprise, as we had no idea that we were even nominated. It’s been an honor for us to have our names placed on a plaque with the previous recipients.”
The Woodruffs, who have been married for more than 50 years, moved to The Woodlands from the Houston area in 2001 after Lynda retired from her administrative position at Cy-Fair Hospital in Cypress. Two years later, Dale retired from his long-running, successful career as an electrical engineer.
“We moved here to retire, and ALL has given us a whole new outlook on life,” said Lynda, who enjoys attending classes about medical issues, the Civil War, and traveling. “I have actually heard people say, ‘ALL saved my life,’ or ‘ALL gave me somewhere to belong.’ This may not be true for every person who joins, but it certainly is a place to start.”
The ALL program offers older, active adults non-credit classes and social activities for continued intellectual and personal growth. For a small, annual membership fee, area residents have access to a variety of lectures, workshops, art, and computer classes, as well as trips to local destinations. Classes are taught or facilitated by a variety of individuals who represent a wide range of expertise and life experiences. These include current and former professors, subject matter experts, guest lecturers, and hobbyists.
Each of the five colleges within the Lone Star College System offer continuing education for their older, active adults through the ALL organization. Course offerings and program events vary with each campus.
“The members are quite often retirees, couples, widows or widowers moving to our area to be near a child and their family,” said Lynda. “It can be difficult to find you own group when coming to a new area, but ALL provides the entertainment, education, and fellowship to help seniors adjust to new situations.”
The Woodruffs have two children, a son who lives in Houston and a daughter who lives in Seattle, along with three grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
“Dale and Lynda are fantastic people—real genuine Texans with a big heart,” said Donna Smith Burns, LSC-Montgomery’s ALL program manager. “It’s people like them that make the ALL program so successful. We strive for a ‘personal’ touch in lifelong learning, and that’s only possible through volunteers like the Woodruffs.”
For an opportunity to learn more about the ALL lectures and classes being offered this fall, LSC-Montgomery is hosting an open house on Saturday, August 20, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., in The Commons (Building A). The public is invited, and entertainment and refreshments will be provided.
For more information about LSC-Montgomery’s Academy for Lifelong Learning or the open house, call 936.273.7446, or visit http://www.LoneStar.edu/all-montgomery
y. LSC-Montgomery is located at 3200 College Park Drive, one-half mile west of Interstate 45, between Conroe and The Woodlands. For more information about the college, call 936.273.7000, or visit www.LoneStar.edu/montgomery.
With more than 69,000 students in credit classes for fall 2010, and a total enrollment of more than 85,000, Lone Star College System is the largest institution of higher education in the Houston area, and the fastest-growing community college system in Texas. Dr. Richard Carpenter is the chancellor of LSCS, which consists of five colleges including LSC-CyFair, LSC-Kingwood, LSC-Montgomery, LSC-North Harris, and LSC-Tomball, six centers, LSC-University Park, LSC-University Center at Montgomery, LSC-University Center at University Park, Lone Star Corporate College, and LSC-Online. To learn more visit LoneStar.edu.