Of the 28 seniors who brought grandchildren to the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh for Grandparents University®, 22 were UWO alums. Many saw this event as an opportunity to share a significant and enlightening chapter of their lives with a younger generation.
Grandparents University is an educational program that brings grandparents and their grandchildren together for two fun-filled days of exploration and learning. This is the second year UW Oshkosh’s Continuing Education program has hosted the event that originated at UW-Madison.
The programming was divided into four majors: animal adventurers, awesome artists, amazing aviators and spectacular scientists.
Ray Grundman ’75, MSN ’79, MPA ‘85, his wife Carol Grundman ’72, of Burlington, and their grandson all enjoyed the spectacular scientists major together.
“It’s a family thing. My wife and I are both alumni, his mom—our daughter—was an alum as well. We’ve got a connection to this school that we’d like to keep going,” Grundman said.
His grandson, Cohen, aspires to be a paleontologist one day. In the science major, they not only got to learn about bones, but also explored the human digestive system and other creepy-crawly animals like snakes, spiders and geckos.
“The instructors are phenomenal,” Carol added. “They can really get on (the kids’) level.”
Bob Guenther ’72, of Wausau, also was excited to return to his alma mater. Guenther was accompanied by his two granddaughters, Mallory and Kaylen, in the awesome artists major. The three of them made several art projects to be displayed in the Reeve Union art gallery.
Mallory and Kaylen loved their time on campus—including an overnight sleepover in the Horizon Village dorm and all-you-can-eat buffet at Blackhawk Commons. It made the girls feel like real college students.
Other Grandparents University majors took off-campus field trips for their learning sessions.
The animal adventurers explored animal anatomy—large and small—with College of Letters and Science Acting Dean and veterinarian Colleen McDermott. They also visited the Menominee Park zoo for a behind-the-scenes tour of zoo-animal care.
The amazing aviators got to partake in flight simulators and other fun aviation activities at the Fox Valley Technical College Spanbauer Aviation Center.
Each participant received a diploma at the official Grandparents University commencement ceremony, featuring Clash the Titan.
“My girls and I had such a good time here,” Guenther said. “They’ve already asked to come back for sophomore year.”