ALIR - Academy of Learning in Retirement
Through volunteerism, the Academy of Learning in Retirement (ALIR), believing in lifelong learning, recognizes and utilizes its members' wealth of experience and abilities to achieve educational stimulation in the arts, history, literature, languages, and sciences.
The Academy of Learning in Retirement (ALIR) was established in 1991 as an extension of the University of Texas at San Antonio with Dr. John Lane as its catalyst.
Dr. Lane envisioned an all-volunteer learning academy patterned after an extension of the University of Delaware which offered a wide variety of classes to an over-55 crowd. He recognized that many retirees settle into a pattern of inactivity and lose a sense of purpose. The academy would provide a purpose and satisfy the need for human contact. He presented the concept to UTSA officials who reacted favorably, and plans were set in motion.
In February 1991, ALIR opened its doors at the Institute of Texan Cultures under the aegis of UTSA. Eleven courses were offered to 61 members. Over the years membership grew steadily reaching a peak of about 200 members and approximately 50 classes.
In 2005 ALIR received the news that it would lose its home due to the burgeoning growth of UTSA and its need for downtown space. The search began for a new campus.
North East Independent School District welcomed ALIR to its Community Education Department in the spring of 2006. NEISD publishes ALIR classes in its course catalog. With this new campus, ALIR has plenty of room for growth - current enrollment stands at 500+ members. Sixty-five volunteer instructors teach 71 different classes.
ALIR remains a continuing legacy of Dr. John Lane.