Skip Navigation Links
Front Page
About GNSExpand About GNS
CommunitiesExpand Communities
EducationExpand Education
Links Directory
Medicine & Science
Opinion/ForumExpand Opinion/Forum
Public Safety

Higher Education
University of Houston - Clear Lake
News Release
Tuesday, August 09, 2011

2011-2012 CLASP lecture series to explore diverse topics


HOUSTON — Learn more about everything from Egypt’s revolution to how to apply the warrior mentality of a Navy Seal to everyday life from some of the leaders in their fields during University of Houston-Clear Lake’s 2011-2012 season of the Clear Lake Association of Senior Programs. The outreach program provides education and intellectual stimulation to people of all ages through three different speaker series events that begin in September and run through May 2012.


Created in 2002 by the program’s volunteer chair and UH-Clear Lake Distinguished Alumna Marilyn Lunney, CLASP began as an outreach program to bring free, lifelong learning to area seniors. Since then, CLASP has become one of the university’s most successful outreach initiatives, reaching approximately 2,000 people of all ages each season. 


“We wanted to bring to the community something that would enhance it; something that would stimulate both mind and body,” said Lunney. “We have so many folks from all walks of life join us for the programs, I try to find appealing topics over a broad spectrum.


“Although we started this with seniors in mind, we now invite everyone to be a part of these educational opportunities.”


Offered in three locations, CLASP hosts evening lectures in the “Visions in Our Midst” series at UH-Clear Lake, 2700 Bay Area Blvd., Houston. Daytime sessions are presented at the Clear Lake area’s Freeman Branch Library, 16616 Diana Lane, Houston, and the Melvin Knapp Center, 2424 South Park Ave., Pearland. This year to assist Lunney, who continues to serve as chair, is volunteer co-chair Anne Seaman, who has worked with CLASP almost since the beginning of the association.


“Visions in Our Midst” events, which take place 5:30 – 7 p.m. and are moderated by Sharon and Gordon Christman, Roemehl and John Dewey, Ron Lohec and Jim O’Malley, include the following:


·         Sept. 22 – “The Harris County District Attorney’s Office” presented by District Attorney Patricia Lykos;


·         Oct. 6 – “The Training and Challenges of a Navy Seal: How to Apply the Warrior Mentality to Everyday Life,” by veteran Navy Seal Jack Walston;


·         Oct. 20 – “Tools to Protect the Elderly from Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation,” by UH-Clear Lake Associate Professor of Legal Studies James Benson;


·         Nov. 3 – “Oman Adventures: Cave Exploration in the Land of Sinbad, Frankincense, and the Queen of Sheba,” by Texas A & M Department of Recreation, Park & Tourism Services professor Louise Hose;


·         Dec. 1 – “From the Depths of Hell: How NASA Helped Save 33 Chilean Miners,” by NASA Johnson Space Center Deputy Chief Medical Officer J. D. Polk;


·         Jan. 5, 2012 – “The Space Shuttle in Retrospect” by Space Shuttle Program Manager John Shannon and Chief of the Flight Director’s Office at NASA Johnson Space Center John McCullough;


·         Feb. 2, 2012 – “Lunar Detective Work: Meteorites Reveal the Moon’s Early History and Evolution” by Lunar Planetary Institute Postdoctoral Fellow Julianne Gross;


·         March 1, 2012 – “The Panama Canal Expansion Project” by the Greater Houston Port Bureau President Bill Diehl;


·         April 5, 2012 – “Revolution Egypt: Protests That Removed a President,” by Associate Professor of Sociology Mike McMullen;


·         May 3, 2012 – “Command Briefing of the Army Corp of Engineers and Their Responsibilities” by a representative from the Galveston County Corp of Engineers Office.


Daytime events at the Freeman Branch Library, which run 10:30 a.m. – noon and are moderated by Yvonne and Russell Herring, include the following:


·         Oct. 7, 14, and 21 – “Memories to Memoirs,” presented in three parts, by UH-Clear Lake Associate Vice President of University Advancement Dion McInnis;


·         Nov. 4 – “Moody Gardens of the Future” by Moody Gardens Horticulture Exhibits Manager Donita Brannon;


·         Dec. 2 – “Remember the Fun We Had! Join Us for Game Day” by Glenna Crist;


·         Jan. 6, 2012 – “Finding Reliable Health Information” by MD Anderson Health Education Specialist Jerah Thomas;


·         Feb. 3, 2012 – “Dinosaurs to Diesel: Oil and Its Implications” by UH-Clear Lake Adjunct Instructor in History William Powers;


·         March 2, 2012 – “Cylinder Gardening at Home: Growing Fruits and Vegetables in a Container” by master gardener Louis Mickler;


·         April 6, 2012 – “Armand Bayou Nature Center: Challenge of Preserving the Past and Present and Preparing for the Future” by Armand Bayou Nature Center Executive Director Tom Kartrude;


·         May 4, 2012 – “History of the Four Presidents of the Republic of Texas” by Sons of the Republic of Texas Speaker’s Bureau Chairman Tom Green.


A second daytime series for residents of Pearland, which will run 10 – 11:30 a.m. and be moderated by Ruby Sandars, will be held at the Melvin Knapp Center and includes the following:


·         Sept. 12 – “Refuse to be a Victim” by UH-Clear Lake Police Lt. Allen Hill and Det. Kyle Pirtle;


·         Oct. 10 – “Historic Flags of Texas” by Sons of the Republic of Texas Speaker’s Bureau Chair Tom Green;


·         Nov. 14 – “Memories of a Texas Ranger” by retired Texas Ranger Sgt. Haskell Taylor;


·         Jan. 9, 2012 – “Using the Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research” by Houston Public Library’s Clayton Library Manager Susan Kaufman;


·         Feb. 13, 2012 – “The History of Pearland” by Pearland Historical Society President Mickey Mark;


·         March 12, 2012 – “Protecting Yourself from Identity Theft” by Pearland Police Dept. Community Resources Officer M. Pace;


·         April 9, 2012 – “The Civil War Blockade Runner Acacia” by Brazoria County Historical Museum Director Michael Bailey;


·         May 7, 14 and 21, 2012 – “Memories to Memoirs,” a three-part presentation by UH-Clear Lake Associate Vice President for University Advancement Dion McInnis.


“We are very excited about the diverse and interesting programs that are planned for the 2011-2012 season and expect another successful year of serving our community,” said Mindi Funderburg, coordinator of outreach and communications for UH-Clear Lake’s Office of Alumni and Community Relations.


Admission to all CLASP events is free and is open to community friends of all ages. For more information, contact, call Coordinator of Outreach and Communications Mindi Funderburg, 281-283-2041 or visit  Classes are subject to cancellation or change in schedule.


University of Houston-Clear Lake offers 40 undergraduate and 45 graduate degree programs, including a doctoral program, from its four schools, which include the School of Business, School of Education, School of Human Sciences and Humanities, and School of Science and Computer Engineering. For more UH-Clear Lake news and information, visit UH-Clear Lake’s newsroom,, or follow UH-Clear Lake on Facebook,, and Twitter,

Remembering Jim Guidry

Guidry News Service is headquartered in Midtown Houston.
at 4001 Fannin Street, Suite 4109, Houston, TX. 77004-4077
(409) 763 NEWS(6397)
© 1996, Guidry News Service. Duplication of any part of this website in any manner is prohibited.