Past Programs

Past UMRA Forums

November 23, 2021 - 12:00pm

UMRA is pleased to welcome Garry Jenkins, JD, dean and William S. Pattee Professor of Law at the University of Minnesota Law School, to our UMRA Forum on Tuesday, November 23, to speak about the challenges and future of legal education.

November 9, 2021 - 9:00am

Study abroad programs are only one part of the larger picture of the robust international education program at the University of Minnesota. Meredith McQuaid, associate vice president and dean of International Programs, will join us for UMRA A.M. on Tuesday, November 9, to provide an overview of the U’s Global Programs & Strategy Alliance, and explain why she believes international education should be relevant to the University as a whole.

Lee Frelich, PhD
October 26, 2021 - 12:00pm

Minnesota is one of the most interesting places on the planet because three biomes come together here: boreal forest, temperate forest, and grasslands. However, this confluence of biomes also means that our forests are highly susceptible to changing climate. Lee Frelich, PhD, director of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Forest Ecology, will explain why when he joins us as our guest speaker for UMRA's October Forum.


October 12, 2021 - 9:00am

UMRA is pleased to welcome Regent Emeritus Rick Beeson as our guest speaker for UMRA A.M. on October 12. He will speak on the current state of the University, including the U’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and share his reflections on his time as a member and chair of the Board of Regents. 

Dean, Medical School; VP of Health Sciences
September 28, 2021 - 12:00pm

Jakub Tolar, MD, PhD, will share with us the story of how the faculty, staff, and students at the University of Minnesota Medical School responded to the coronavirus pandemic in an unprecedented effort of adaptation, collaboration, and service.

September 14, 2021 - 9:00am

What does it take to navigate constructive relationships between the University and the sovereign nations whose histories go deep in the lands that are now the state of Minnesota? We’ll find out when we meet the University’s first senior director of American Indian Tribal Nations Relations. 

Como Lakeside Pavilion
August 17, 2021 - 11:30am

You are invited to an in-person, outdoor summer social and lunch at Como Lakeside Pavilion, 1360 Lexington Parkway N, St Paul. 

Lunch will be provided by Dock & Paddle restaurant at Como Lakeside Pavilion. There are five sandwich or main course salad options; all include a nonalcoholic beverage.  The fee per person is $20.

The Pavilion is a covered, open-air, dining venue overlooking Lake Como. Please dress appropriately for the weather. Free parking is available in two adjacent lots, both with access off Lexington Parkway.

Questions may be directed to Bill Donohue at

For the safety of all, this event will be for UMRA members and their guests who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by August 17. 

Register by August 10.

June 14, 2021 - 11:00am

The UMRA Forum will return in September. Please check back later for program dates, times, and details.

Photo of an early summer beauty in the Lyndale Park Rose Garden in Minneapolis by Frank Busta, UMRA Photo Club member.

June 8, 2021 - 9:00am

Misinformation about the integrity of the 2020 elections has become a pretext for changes in numerous states to erode the protections of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Join us for this special summer webinar on June 8 with John Gordon, executive director of the ACLU of Minnesota, to learn what’s at stake and what is being done to protect the voting rights of Minnesotans.  


Past Living Well Workshops

November 16, 2021 - 11:00am

Our strategic advantage as humans has been our ability to learn and innovate. Neuroscientist and Professor Emeritus Alice Larson, our guest speaker for UMRA’s November 16 Living Well Workshop via Zoom, will discuss how people of all ages can enhance their creative powers and why this is important, especially in challenging times. 

2022 Benefit Enrollment Guide, brochure cover
October 19, 2021 - 11:00am

Are you prepared for Open Enrollment? This year’s health insurance workshop will begin with a presentation by representatives from the international insurance broker and consulting firm Willis Towers Watson, followed by an overview of next year’s U of M retiree health plans by representatives from the Office of Human Resources.

September 21, 2021 - 11:00am

Humphrey School Senior Fellow Jay Kiedrowski will be joined by Professor and President Emeritus Robert Bruininks for this special forum to discuss the proposed amendments to the Minneapolis city charter that will be on the ballot in November.

July 20, 2021 - 4:30pm

UMRA’s late-afternoon workshop on July 20 will be a free wine tasting with U of M research winemaker and enologist Drew Horton. He will speak with us about how to properly taste wine, what it takes to breed wine grapes in Minnesota, and what U of M grapes are being used to make the best local wines today.

May 3, 2021 - 11:00am

How are your hands holding up as you age? Our May workshop presenter, Ann Van Heest, MD, is one of the U’s top hand experts. She will talk about what happens to the complex anatomy of our hands as we age.

April 20, 2021 - 11:00am

Join National Park Ranger Sharon Stiteler, aka the “Birdchick,” to learn about opportunities for birding and wildlife viewing along the Mississippi National River and Recreational Area and the huge, mysterious groups of crows circling over the river gorge between Minneapolis and St. Paul.

March 16, 2021 - 11:00am

Are you getting ready to downsize? Unsure what to do with all the files from your office? Planning to spring clean during the pandemic? Our March 16 workshop presenter, Erik Moore, head archivist for the University of Minnesota, will help us to assess the potential value of what we’ve stored away.

March 2, 2021 - 11:00am

RESCHEDULED. A weakening voice can impact one’s ability to thrive in later years. The good news is, there are things we can do to build and maintain our vocal strength, as we will learn in this workshop with Peter Watson, PhD, from the U of M Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences. 

January 19, 2021 - 11:00am

Our Living Well Workshop for January, the month when people traditionally head back to the gym, will focus on building physical fitness and activity into our lives, an especially challenging task in a pandemic winter. 

November 17, 2020 - 11:00am

With people living longer than ever before, the post-retirement stage of life can be almost as long as the working years. In this workshop, Lucy Rose Fischer, author of I’m New at Being Old, and her husband, Mark Fischer, will show how these years can be the best time of our lives.