Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Guide to the University of the Third Age records
View entire collection guide What's This?
Search this collection
Collection Overview
Table of contents What's This?
These records document the establishment of the University of the Third Age at the University of San Diego. Established in 1978, the USD University of the Third Age is a program for 55+ individuals to continue with lifelong education.
The idea for an educational program for retired individuals, the University of the Third Age, was initially conceived by Pierre Vellas, a professor at the University of Toulouse, France, in 1972. Vellas saw the growing number of elderly individuals in France and believed that bringing them into the university environment among undergraduates, with intellectual stimulation and physical exercise, would slow the negative effects of aging. Vellas' program involved volunteer participation by undergraduate students; physical exercise through walking, jogging, swimming, and calisthenics; and lectures, roundtables, and field trips covering a broad range of topics. Vellas' program had such success that by 1978 the program was copied in 32 campuses throughout France and internationally in Switzerland, Belgium, Poland and Canada.
These records are open for research.