As the Derek Chauvin trial begins, our national attention again turns to Minneapolis. Our hearts are with all of our friends, neighbors, and colleagues who continue to experience trauma as a result of racial injustice. We stand with them in demanding real change.

When we look at the world's problems - racial justice, climate change, global health - it's hard to not be overwhelmed. Yet the wise John W. Gardner reminds us, “We are continually faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as insoluble problems.” 

After retirement, many people ask themselves: okay so...what’s next? Retirement provides a sense of freedom and opportunity, but also a sense of anxiety and unease. Switching from a full time career to a retirement life is a tremendous adjustment, as Roger Sheldon (2019-20 UMAC fellow) found when he left a rewarding career as a neonatal physician moving from Oklahoma to Minnesota. Roger was excited about his new life in Minnesota, but also he recognized that he needed to proactively recreate his daily life, to find the fulfillment that he got from his career.

Living with an uncertain future is daunting. In the midst of a global pandemic, each of us is forced to adapt and learn new skills to maintain a sense of connection and stability within our communities. For most of us, this transition requires adaptations to new technologies, such as Zoom, a video conferencing platform.


University of Minnesota Advanced Careers (UMAC) Initiative fellow Rich Harney volunteered in an undergraduate class, Public Affairs; Community Organizing Skills for Public Action. Rich interviewed Rose Adams (CEHD ‘21) about her perspectives on the experience. Here are some excerpts (with slight editing for clarity) from that interview.

Rich: How did having a nontraditional student in class enhance the learning environment?

In her new career, Diane Hageman (UMAC ‘19) is having the time of her life. As the Director of Fund Development at the YMCA of St. Cloud, Diane supports scholarships and programs through fundraising and events. After 35 years in communications and marketing, Diane was ready for a change. She was looking for a new career that builds on her background while engaging in her community. The YMCA role is a perfect fit for her. As Diane describes it, “I have told many of the donors I am meeting that no one should have this much fun at a new job!”


I'm grateful to work on a college campus, to be part of a vibrant learning community where new trails are blazed and life changing breakthroughs are discovered. Stroll through the Scholars Walk at the University of Minnesota and you will understand what I mean. The brilliance of our researchers, scholars, educators, and students inspires awe. I'm proud to be part of a university that is driving discoveries and impact in our local and global communities.


University of Minnesota Advanced Careers can help.

Thinking of leaving your career job but not ready to retire? Or are you yearning for work that is more meaningful, where you can use your skills and experience for the greater good? University of Minnesota Advanced Careers (UMAC) is designed for you.

UMAC is a transformative experience that prepares you for the next phase of life – a gap year for grown-ups.

Benefits of UMAC