Since 1962 Greenfield Community College has been the “community’s college.” We pride ourselves on serving our region via educational and work force opportunities, and it is critical that we respond to the evolving needs of the community. By 2030, 1 in 3 residents of Franklin County will be over the age of 65 years old. Now, more than ever, it is imperative that we develop meaningful ways to connect our local seniors to the college. Whether you are looking to engage in life-long learning, serve in a volunteer role, attend co-curricular programs, donate to the college or participate in one of our community education workshops or Senior Symposia, you have come to the right place to get answers to your questions!
We deeply value the perspective and experience you bring to our region and the college. We are in the process of launching new opportunities for seniors and building on past traditions. We want to connect with you! We want to hear your ideas about how we can better serve you. We invite you to share your ideas in our blog (designed by and for seniors in our community). We look forward to partnering with you in the spirit of building on our collective commitment to life-long education and learning.
Judy Raper, Ed.D., Associate Dean of Community Engagement
Some tuition and fees are waived for individuals who are age 60 or over on the first day of class. Cost is dependent on baccalaureate degree status.
Limited discounts for non-credit workshops are approved separately on a case-by-case basis by our Workforce Development & Community Education Department. To receive a discount, you must contact our registration clerk at (413) 775-1661 the day before the first meeting of the workshop to ascertain if there are still seats available.
Based on the number of full-paying students that are registered, if we are able, we will provide you with a 50% discount minus the $10 non-refundable registration fee.
Payment is due prior to the start of the workshop in order to complete your registration and must include proof of eligibility if requesting a senior adult waiver for the first time.
The Senior Symposia program at Greenfield Community College is a collaborative effort between the Office of Workforce Development Community Education and area senior citizens to provide a way for area seniors to continue their education in a format that best suits their unique needs, interests, and resources.
We offer intellectually stimulating topics in single or multi-session formats, held during the daytime hours each Spring and Fall semester in a convenient, accessible location at GCC’s Main Campus for only $10 a person.
The GCC Senior Volunteer program is a new initiative that engages seniors from the Western Massachusetts area in volunteer activities on our campus. This program involves a collaboration with our community partner RSVP (Retired Senior Volunteer Program). Volunteer activities that are available are listed below (some are seasonal). Opportunities will likely expand in the future as the program evolves. Please indicate your interest in participating by filling out the form below. You will be contacted shortly for a conversation, and CORI checks will be required.
We are so appreciative of the overwhelming response we had to the Senior Volunteer Program this fall! We are not currently taking new applications, but please contact Judy Raper at (413) 775-1819 or email@example.com if you would like to get involved at GCC.
Much more goes on with mentoring than the simple transferal of information. We believe that the mentoring relationship can benefit both the mentor and mentee in many dimensions. Skills and experiences you might not normally identify as important in an academic setting might prove most valuable in fostering a successful relationship with a mentee — for example: Do you come from a large family? Have you travelled extensively? Can any volunteer work or community involvement you’ve done help inspire others? Did you face any specific barriers while you were pursuing your education such as being a single parent, financial challenges, learning disabilities, recovery, transportation issues or not knowing what you wanted to study? Overcoming the obstacles that commonly face students of today, can provide wise testimony, inspiration and strategies for success.
Students have expressed to us that they would like to see profiles of mentors who are available so that they can make choices regarding what mentor might be a good match for them. The purpose of this form is to provide an opportunity for a brief description of yourself which will assist everyone participating in this program in the decision-making process. A short paragraph about each of the various aspects of what you’re bringing to the program is what we seek. These descriptions will then be tailored into a profile to be presented to mentees and their advisors / program directors. Additional information you’d like the staff of the program to know that wouldn’t go into your profile can be added to the last item below. For the fall, mentoring will likely be fully remote. So please indicate if you will need to wait until we are back in a face to face environment OR if you are willing to mentor this fall. We are looking to incorporate mentoring into classes where the students face the most obstacles and challenges. Your support of them will be greatly appreciated.
Health & Safety
- Life Path • A private, non-profit corporation, Area Agency on Aging, and Aging Services Access Point, serving all of Franklin County and Athol, Petersham, Royalston and Phillipston, Massachusetts. Some programs are available in Hampden, Hampshire, and Berkshire counties.
- Triad Franklin County Sherriff’s Office • A crime prevention and wellness initiative aimed at protecting the safety and welfare of senior citizens.
- Brown Bag Program Food For Elders • The Foodbank of Western Massachusetts (413-247-9783) provides groceries for income eligible seniors.
- Stavros Center for Independent Living • Agency assisting elders and people with multiple disabilities to live their lives to their fullest potential.
- Prescribe the Y • 12 week-doctor referred wellness program to evaluate physical needs and goals. YMCA in Greenfield.
- Aging Services Access Points • One-stop entry points for all the services and benefits available to seniors in Massachusetts. Some services are given to all seniors at no charge; other services are available only to those seniors who meet program eligibility requirements. ASAPs provide information and referrals to senior services, elder care advisors, protective services, elder-at-risk services to help seniors live safely/independently at home, case management, nutrition services, and on-line resources. ASAPs also manage the state-based Massachusetts Home Care Program and work with Area Agencies on Aging, or AAAs, to ensure that all seniors have access to all essential services. In Massachusetts, many senior agencies, such as those in Boston, are combined ASAPs/AAAs.
Judy Raper, Associate Dean for Community Engagement
Judy has worked in higher education for 32 years, and has served in various roles the last 13 years at GCC. She began volunteering with older adults at a young age and has now joined that demographic herself! She received a BS in Elementary Education at Indiana University in 1986. Her Masters and Doctoral Degrees were earned at the University of Vermont in Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration, and Leadership and Policy Studies in 1988 and 1999 respectively.
Denise Favro Schwartz
Denise Favro Schwartz has a lifelong interest in discovering beauty in the natural world and attempting to understand and document the place of humans in it. Her career path includes serving as communications manager, College of Education, University of Massachusetts Amherst; marketing director and general manager, Fairfield Mall, Chicopee; executive director, Greenfield Business Association; freelance writer; marketing director, School for International Training, Brattleboro, Vermont.
Kristin Cole is the Interim Associate Director of Workforce Development & Community Education at Greenfield Community College. She is responsible for managing GCC’s Workforce Development Unit, which offers critical learning opportunities to businesses and individuals seeking employment and credentials to obtain and/or maintain employment.
Daniel Cantor Yalowitz, Ed.D.
Daniel Cantor Yalowitz, Ed.D., is an intercultural and developmental psychologist. After a long academic career in higher education as faculty and administrator, he now consults and trains in conflict transformation, intercultural communication, and multiple, social, and emotional intelligences around the US and the world. Daniel is an avid photographer, gardener, kayaker, and community builder. He loves to play, laugh, write, and sing.
Henry Leuchtman lives in Greenfield with his wife, Pat. Prior to retirement, he worked in IT for 35 years and taught computer science and geography as adjunct faculty at GCC in the past. More recently, he has “graduated” to taking courses at GCC as a student, which he enjoys greatly. He is very interested in fostering a stronger relationship between the college and the older adult community in this region.
Chad Fuller is a community builder with 20 years in the democratic schools (8th graduate Sudbury Valley School), intentional communities (served on the board for Fellowship of Intentional Communities) and presence with the start of the Neighbor to Neighbor (Beacon Hill) movements. He currently consults municipalities, non-profits, leadership teams, businesses, community land trusts and grass roots organizations in fostering natural helping networks and social support systems. His graduate level training is in Organization and Community Development with an additional 10 years in each of the health and mental health care fields.
Janet L. Castleman, PhD
Janet Castleman has her doctorate in developmental psychology and spent her career working in higher education. Prior to her retirement in 2018, she served as Dean of the School of Continuing Education at Providence College for approximately ten years. She devoted her professional life to helping adults complete college, and remains passionate about the transformative power of education.
Wendy Iseman, MSW
Wendy Iseman, MSW, is a retired social worker, health educator and development director with 35 years of experience in non-profit management, fundraising and program development. She has extensive experience working with older adults in health education, volunteer management, and Senior College program planning.