TU award to recognize Osher Lifelong Learning Institute director
TU Alumni Association to honor Jacqueline Gratz with Spirit of the University Award
TOWSON, Md. (Oct. 09, 2007)—Jacqueline Gratz, director of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Towson University, will receive the TU Alumni Association’s prestigious Spirit of the University Award on October 11, at a Volunteer Recognition Award Ceremony held during Homecoming week. This award honors a graduate or non-graduate who has directly influenced and touched Towson University alumni, students or the university community.
Gratz became director of the Auburn Society, the precursor to the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Towson University, in 2003. Founded in 1999, the Auburn Society offered adults age 50 and over opportunities for continued learning, along with programs and activities for social and cultural enrichment. Under Gratz’ leadership, the Auburn Society thrived and won recognition from the Bernard Osher Foundation in 2006. The Osher Foundation awarded the Auburn Society a $100,000 renewable grant, and the society was renamed the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Towson University.
Gratz has worked tirelessly on planning and implementing the thought-provoking and multi-dimensional curriculum for the Institute's on-campus academic program. In addition, she established partnerships for lectures at the Myerberg Senior Center, Blakehurst Retirement Community as well as the Towson and Cockeysville public libraries. Her enthusiasm and dynamism have been integral to this program’s success. Gratz started with the Auburn Society as a volunteer dedicated to curriculum planning, but her tireless efforts broadened to include increasing membership, providing community outreach for Towson University, and inspiring a core group of volunteers to expand the quality of the program for everyone.