NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

February 1, 2013

Port adult education celebrates milestone

By Katie Lovett
Features Editor

---- — Newburyport Adult and Community Education is holding a 10-year anniversary celebration as its winter session of classes gets under way.

While some courses did start last week, students can still register for the current session, said director Vicki Hendrickson.

Sponsored by the Newburyport Public Schools, the adult education program is self-supported with a budget funded by course fees. The classes range in length and time, with several one-night workshops.

Under the winter program, courses are available in exercise, food and wine, writing, drawing, blogging, language, arts and crafts, ballroom dancing, and even SAT prep.

“Writing classes are just going through the roof,” Hendrickson said. With an increased ability for writers to self-publish their works, Hendrickson believes a growing demographic of citizens is hoping for a chance to fulfill one of their goals: to try their hand at writing a book or novel.

“It just has an appeal,” she said.” ... Writers are springing up everywhere.”

While the program officially began in 1990 by holding adult and community classes at the high school, it struggled in its early years due to the absence of a full-time director, Hendrickson said. The course and workshop offerings began to “fizzle out.” Ten years ago, the program relocated back to the high school and began to build up the selection of courses again.

In the last decade, the program has flourished, Hendrickson said. Years ago, many students were seeking to learn how to use a computer as technology became more important in the workforce and everyday life, she said.

Today, students are looking for courses that spark their creativity, or to learn a new hobby.

To learn more about the winter courses offered by Newburyport Adult and Community Education, visit http://www.newburyportadulted.org/ or call 978-465-1257.