Bill and I were introduced to HASP through two HASP members whom we met when we were taking a walk in the Central Park area and stopped to sit at the fire dock to enjoy Lake Macatawa. My husband and I were new to the area and met a HASP couple on the fire dock. Both were Hope graduates and enthusiastic members and supporters of HASP. Within the next few days, a copy of the HASP spring curriculum appeared in our mailbox. When we saw all the opportunities to learn new and different things, we were convinced HASP membership was what we wanted in our retirement lives….to add to life-long learning! Many of the classes are presented by our talented membership and Hope College faculty. You can pick and choose to fit your schedule… Classes have become even further accessible, now being offered in the comfort of your home or your home away from home in the winter months via Zoom or you can still learn in person in our beautiful new classrooms. Many of us have become computer geeks! Life-long learning continues…
I especially enjoy and learn from my in-class experiences with the Hope College students. HASP members are invited by Hope professors to join in various classes to interact with the students by sharing their various life experiences. Members really like this experience, and we are never at a loss for volunteers for these classes. HASP has a liaison within our Service Committee who is in contact with Professors at Hope each semester. Several HASP members and I had a great experience working with the senior nursing students in Hope’s BSN program in enacting and writing the script for healthcare simulation scenarios.
I have been a member of HASP for twelve years and during that time have had the opportunity to meet interesting, inspiring, versatile, and dedicated people. I have had the opportunity to continue my leadership experience by serving as President for two years at which time HASP officially formed its official alliance with Hope College engaging with the department of Alumni Engagement. I was fortunate to be a member of the Finance Committee involved with the funding of our new space (come and see it!!). I currently serve on the Service Committee, Chair the Library Committee (The HASP library was made possible by book donations from our membership.), and I serve as office help at the reception desk of our HASP office.
Aside from our ongoing educational curriculum, we have “educational” fun which is made possible by our Special Events Committee who plan various off-site experiences from one to three-day trips. Some memorable special events trips with HASP friends that I will never forget were our three-day trip down the Mississippi River on a riverboat (which my husband organized), crossing to Mackinac Island for the closing of the Grand Hotel in October and, to Louisville, Kentucky to experience the site of the Kentucky Derby where our Special Events Committee arranged an” educational hour” on betting sheets and tips for betting on the right horse!
I am grateful to be associated with HASP and its commitment to life-long learning and to serving its members. The administrative staff has helped us work within boundaries due to Covid and we have survived by adapting to new ways of doing things to continue to move HASP forward. Each year brings new members with new ideas and talents. HASP is not stagnant, but adaptable to the needs of its members and our changing world.