Gareth Andrews, Australian Football League legend, media commentator, businessman and co-founder of Life Again, asks ‘Have you done your best work yet?’.

It’s an interesting question.  It’s a question that many people thinking of retirement may not have ever thought about.

What are you going to do in ‘retirement’?

Retirement can be a chance to study or learn new skills.

Lorna Prendergast was awarded a Master of Ageing at age 90.  Her late husband had Parkinson’s Disease but he, and others in his nursing home, responded positively to music.  Her thesis: ‘whether music was a form of temporary relief for people affected by dementia’. Most of her course was done online – something she had to learn, but quickly mastered.

Thirst for learning, large  sketched capital A on graph paper with white pencil beside and open orange paged book to the right of the sketch
Photo: Kelly Sikkema

The late Allan Stewart was also inspiring. He was once knowns at the world’s oldest graduate. Allan, obviously, thought that he had ‘not done his best work yet’ – he returned to university twice ‘because I had ample time’.  He also believed in ‘mental exercise as a health measure’.

Australia’s oldest PhD graduate in history yet is David Bottomley. He was planning his next project – but just don’t mention retirement:  ‘I don’t even know how to spell the word’, he chuckled.

Person with black fingernail polish using a metal ruler and pencil to write Learn Something on a blank page
Photo: Kelly Sikkema

Ever wanted to attend some university lectures?  Steven Schragis is the founder of One Day University (ODU)

‘My wife and I took my daughter to start college 12 years ago – and the school in upstate NY had arranged for about a dozen professors to give interesting short lectures about what they teach. The parents loved it…including my wife and I. Everyone there was 50+ and thinking “I wish I was the one going to college! This is much more fun than going to an office…’

Laneway Learning consists of short one -off classes of 75 minutes duration. The classes are held in pop up venues.

Lecturer at Laneway Learning, Stephen Peterson, said he first heard about the classes via a friend.  It was not long before Stephen was presenting classes himself!

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