Academy of Lifelong Learning

    Register for Upcoming Programs

    The Washington College Academy of Lifelong Learning (WC-ALL) celebrates over 30 years of offering intellectually stimulating courses and educational programs. Expand your academic horizons and join our community of lifelong learners. We welcome all age groups to enjoy our classes for the joy of learning!

    Our Impact

    While WC-ALL is a non-profit organization, the tradition of giving a financial gift to the College at the end of each year began soon after the organization was founded.  Annual donations from $5,000 to $10,000 endow an annual WC-ALL Scholarship. One or more Washington College undergraduate students receive this scholarship each year.   

    Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to the Washington College Academy of Lifelong Learning. Your support directly funds scholarships and helps us grow and diversify our programs so we can continue to enrich the lives of our community members.

    Make a Gift


    WC-ALL is organized to provide special opportunities for you to enhance your life through learning in a classroom environment, listening in a public lecture setting, traveling in organized one-day and longer trips, and interaction with other like-minded adults in educational and social settings.

    You can participate in any or all activities in a variety of ways.

    • As a Member of WC-ALL, you may register for as many classes as you wish, and receive discounted Member rates at luncheons and special events, all for one semester or yearly fee.
    • As an Instructor, you receive benefits similar to those of Members, as well as recognition at the Annual Meeting and free course registration during your teaching semester.
    • As a Volunteer, you can help WC-ALL in its various functions and add to the comfort and safety of all who participate. Volunteers help to design the curriculum, plan special events, support membership, and work on publicity.

    Become a Member

    We invite you to join the Washington College Academy of Lifelong Learning, a community program for adults of all ages who enjoy intellectually stimulating courses and educational experiences. Join us on campus or online for a variety of classes and events in the liberal arts tradition. Your participation supports undergraduate scholarships for Washington College students.

    Annual membership begins in the fall of each year and includes registration for courses in any of our four terms: Early Fall, Late Fall, Early Spring and Late Spring. Semester membership is also available in January for the Spring Semester.

    Memberships are available for individuals. Members enjoy reduced costs for luncheons and special events.

    Individual / Semester $85.00
    Individual / Annual  $115.00
    Friend+ of WC-ALL / Semester $15.00
    Students, Staff, Faculty of Washington College No fee

    +Friend of WC-ALL receives all email communications and catalogs, as well as discounts on lunches and trips, but is not eligible to attend courses.

    Propose and Teach Courses

    For more information, contact Shane Brill.



    WC-ALL is governed by a Council of directors elected by the membership, with directors serving for a three-year term, for a maximum of two consecutive terms. A senior staff member in the College Administration is also a member of the Council. The election of Council members occurs at WC-ALL’s annual meeting in May.

    Jeff Coomer

    Jeff Coomer
    Jeff Coomer is a Washington College alumnus who retired to Chestertown with his wife, Susan, after a career as the global CIO of a Fortune 500 company. He is a certified Master Naturalist, member of the Chestertown Tree Committee and former member and chair of the town's... Read more...

    Wendy Cronin

    Wendy Cronin

    Wendy Cronin, PhD, is a retired infectious disease epidemiologist. She was Maryland Department of Health principal investigator for the Maryland collaborative site (MDH with Johns Hopkins University TB Research Center) of a national TB research consortium... Read more...

    Ronnie Edelman

    Ronnie Edelman

    Ronnie Edelman originally hailed from New York State, where she attended college and law school.  After working for NYC’s Health Services Administration as a health educator and as a trouble shooter for the Education Task Force in the Mayor’s Office during the Lindsay Administration... Read more...

    Jeff Ferguson

    Jeff Ferguson

    Jeff Ferguson is a retired business executive whose career spanned work in health care services, manufacturing and higher education. Included in his positions were those of CEO of Marriott Senior Living Services, President of Management and Operations... Read more...

    Rich Gillin

    Rich Gillin

    Richard Gillin retired from the Washington College faculty in 2019 after a 47-year tenure that included 12 years as Chairman of the English Department and 21 years as Chairman of the Humanities Program. Read more...

    Sue Groff

    Sue Groff

    Susan (Sue) Groff, Ed.D. is currently a staff member in the finance department at Washington College (WC).  She came to WC with over 30 years of diverse experiences, in higher education, after completing a long career at the University of Delaware (UD).  Sue obtained her... Read more...

    Charles Lerner

    Charles Lerner

    Charles Lerner has been a full time resident of Chestertown since 2011 although he has been connected with and had a house in Chestertown from the time his son and daughter attended Washington College in the mid 2000s. Read more...

    Stephanie Pessin

    Stephanie Pessin

    Stephanie Pessin, BA, BS, MPT has recently retired from practicing licensed physical therapy for 25 years, during which she treated patients and taught individuals in group classes in rehab facilities, hospitals, outpatient clinics and studios in Baltimore and around the bay area in California. Read more...

    Liz Peterson

    Liz Peterson

    Elizabeth (Liz) Peterson received a BA in Zoology from Drew University in Madison, NJ. She worked as Zoology Lab Operations Manager for two years at Drew University. She moved to Washington, DC and worked in various and increasingly responsible positions...  Read more...

    Pat Poole

    Pat Poole

    Pat grew up in a small East Texas town in the ’60s and ’70s. She went to college at Lamar University and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering. After graduation she went to work for Mobil Oil, which later became ExxonMobil. Read more...

    Linda Robbins

    Linda Robbins
    Linda Robbins moved to Chestertown from Boston and immediately became involved with all the opportunities Chestertown has to offer.  With a background in finance management, she took on the role for Emmanuel... Read more...

    Anna Wolgast

    Anna Wolgast

    Anna Wolgast is an environmental lawyer who served in the U.S. Department of Justice as a Senior Counsel and litigator in the Environmental Enforcement Section of the Environment Division and then as a Deputy Chief in the Environmental Defense Section. Read more...

    Raymond Vergne

    Raymond Vergne
    Raymond Vergne is a retired cardiologist and educator with interests in the humanities.  Previous projects with WC-ALL include Don Quijote de la Mancha, History of the Papacy, Winter of their Discontent (Secession and Disunion, 1860-1861), Music for the Living and the Dead, Angels and... More info...


    Meet Our Instructors

    Our courses are taught by community volunteers and members of the Washington College faculty with expertise in a variety of areas. We're in the process of adding instructor profiles — check back soon for more!

    Join Our Email List

    Learn@Lunch Talks

    Propose a Fall Course

    Submit by July 1

    If you have questions please contact Shane Brill '03 M'11

    Q: When is Showcase?
    A: Showcase is held twice a year, in August and in December, to introduce the course instructors and let the members hear more about the courses being offered that semester. Please watch the main page for the exact date of this semester’s Showcase event.

    Q:  When do classes begin?
    A: Classes generally start in early September and late January, and run for two 6-week sessions each semester. This gives members up to four different sections of classes to choose from with an annual membership. Exact dates for each session will be posted on the main page.

    Q:  What does membership include?
    A: Membership in WC-ALL includes as many courses as you’d like to take for one flat fee, either annual or by semester. Annual memberships begin in the fall, and run through May. Other benefits include discounts on monthly Learn at Lunches and some scheduled day trips, as well as a hard copy course catalog mailed to the member’s home address. Fees are as follows: Individual - $85/semester, $115 annual. Alternately, you can be a “Friend” of WC-ALL for $15/person per semester, which will still give you the discounted lunches and trips, as well as the catalog, but does not include course registration. For more details, please see the Paricipate section of the website.

    Q:  How many classes may I sign up for?
    A:  The membership fee covers as many classes as you’d like to take per semester or session – you are not charged “per class.” We do ask that when registering for courses, you take into consideration travel plans or other absences, and only sign up for courses that you intend to be present for over the term.

    Q:  I can’t remember where my class is being held. Where can I find the locations of the classes?
    A:  Each semester the class location schedule is posted on the main webpage. Please look for the link to the location schedule online. Classes are generally held in Smith, Goldstein and Daly Halls on campus, as well as off-campus locations such as Kent County High School.

    Q:  I’m interested in teaching a course for WC-ALL. How can I get started?
    A:  Course proposals for WC-ALL classes are very welcome from anyone in the community – not just members. Twice a year the Request for Proposals is sent out. The form is available on the website during the proposal period (usually 60 days prior to the due date), or in hard copy by contacting the office.

    Founded in 1992, the Washington College Academy of Lifelong Learning was created by a small group of Kent County residents who worked for more than a year studying other similar college-affiliated institutions.  WC-ALL was patterned after the Institute for Learning in Retirement (ILR) as established by Elderhostel (now known as Road Scholar) and is governed by its members, taught by its peers, and operates within the academic institutional guidelines provided by its sponsor, Washington College.

    The format established during the first years has remained surprisingly intact: a governing council, twice-annual catalogs, a Showcase to launch each semester, classes emphasizing serious academic content, and a Learn-at-Lunch series to provide one-time special events.

    Joan Ellenhorn - 1992-1996
    Jane Hukill - 1997/98 and 1998/99
    Ben Ribaudo - 1999/2000
    Ted Chase - 2000/01
    Dick Hawkins - 2001/02 and 2002/03
    Dick Lance - 2003/04 and 2004/05
    Juli Dulmage - 2005/06
    Jim Sood - 2006/07 and 2007/08
    Ginny Barker - 2008/09 and 2009/10
    John Christie - 2010/11, 2011/12 and 2012/13
    Bill Low - 2013/14 and 2014/15
    Betty Spence - 2015/16 and 2016/17
    David White - 2017/18

    David White -2018/2019
    Jan Elvin - 2019/2020 and 2020/2021
    Anna Wolgast - 2021/22 and 2022/23
    Jeff Coomer - 2023/24

    Sue Urda - 1995-1998
    Anne Singer - 1998 - 2011
    Susan McRae - 2011 - 2012
    Meghan Siudzinski - 2012- 2013
    Sue Calloway - 2013 - 2022
    Sandy Brown - 2022-2023
    Shane Brill - 2023-

    Mrs. Lillian Baltzersen
    Rev. & Mrs. Henry Breul
    Mr. & Mrs. Robert Bryan
    Ms. Judith Cameron
    Mr. & Mrs. William Catherwood
    Ms. Ermine Christian
    Miss Margaretta Cowenhoven
    Mrs. Sybil Curtin
    Mrs. Mary Booth Davis
    Mr. Richard Davis
    Mrs. Jo Doherty
    Mr. & Mrs. Frank Draper
    Dr. Joan Ellenhorn
    Mr. & Mrs. Etore Grassi
    Mr. & Mrs. William Gullett
    Mrs. Frances Hilleary
    Ms. Mariana Hitchner
    Rev. & Mrs. Robert Hollett
    Ms. Ann W. Hoon
    Mr. & Mrs. Robert Hukill
    Mrs. Clare Ingersoll
    Mrs. Maureen Jacoby
    Mrs. Frederick Keer
    Ms. Harriette Kratzner
    Mr. & Mrs. Karl Lemp
    Ms. Anne Logan
    Ms. Ann H. McLain
    Dr. & Mrs. Ralph Meng
    Mrs. Patricia Mercer
    Mrs. Irma Miller
    Mrs. Tibor Nagey
    Mrs. Eleanor Peterson
    Mrs. Dorothy Plummer
    Mr. & Mrs. Ray Reidinger
    Mr. & Mrs. Henry Riddle
    Mr. Lyell Ritchie
    Dr. & Mrs. Peter Rodman
    Mrs. Anita Rudnick
    Mr. & Mrs. Frank Rush
    Ms. Hazel Saunders
    Mr. & Mrs. Warren Schlenker
    Mr. Thomas Scuderi
    Mr. James A. Simpson
    Ms. Carolyn Smith
    Mr. & Mrs. Don Smith
    Mrs. Jean M. Smith
    Mr. Joseph Stevens Jr.
    Mr. & Mrs. Chandler Swallow
    Mr. & Mrs. Yasuo Takahashi
    Mr. & Mrs. Tony Toriello
    Mr. & Mrs. Jim Urda
    Mr. Joseph Vaughan
    Mrs. Nelson Vaughan
    Ms. Martha Werle
    Ms. Betty Whiteley
    Mr. & Mrs. George Winner
    Mr. & Mrs. Gibson Winter
    Mrs. Joan Wise

    We award scholarships every Fall.  Past recipients include:
    • Katharine Esposito
    • Zeynap Okyay
    • Andrew Fellows
    • Leann Standridge


    • Mark Stewart


    • Lori Wysong
    • Molly Gorney
    • Aubrey Robinson

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