Expand your mind at Bribie Island U3A

Published 9:00am 1 June 2023

Expand your mind at Bribie Island U3A
Words by Ashleigh Howarth

Discover Shakespeare, try your hand at 21st century board games or learn a language at Bribie Island’s University of the Third Age (U3A).

Founded in 1992, Bribie’s U3A has more than 150 subjects available for mature-aged people looking to learn a new hobby or skill.

U3A is a worldwide self-help organisation promoting learning for personal enjoyment and wellbeing for people who are keen to continue learning and expanding their minds.

There are no academic requirements or exams - just fun activities to help older citizens keep their brains active, learn new skills, maximise their independence and make new friends.

Bribie Island U3A publicity co-ordinator Barry Clark says the courses are taught by people who have a wealth of knowledge.

“Many of the tutors might have been directors of large companies, were at the top of their field, or just know a lot about a particular subject,” Barry says.

“Now that they are retired, they want to share their knowledge with other people who also have a similar interest.

“For example, if we have someone who knows a lot about a particular subject and there are enough people interested, we will offer that course.

“The curriculum is determined by the needs and the preferences of members and the resources available, which includes what tutors are available and what classrooms and equipment is available.

“We are extremely lucky to have this beautiful recreational hall and can offer more than 90 percent of our classes here on site.

“Some courses might also be held at a tutor’s house, the Bribie Community Arts Centre, the Croquet Club or other halls and buildings on the island.”

Barry, who is a lifelong member of U3A and president of the Bribie Island Historical Society, teaches a history class.

Some of the subjects offered include art, computers and information technology, craft, culture, dance, discussion, drama and performances, environment and science, games, genealogy, history and society, language, lifestyle and fitness, literature, music and photography.

Popular and unique classes include 21st century board games, music appreciation, astronomy for amateurs, writing children’s books and trivia quizzes.

For those keen to learn a new language, Bribie Island U3A offer Chinese Mandarin, French, Italian, Indonesian and Spanish.

To see more photos, click through the gallery below. 

History of U3A

The University of the Third Age was established in France in 1973 and has since spread to 64 countries across the world.

It was originally connected to a university, however over the years it has become less academic and more about social get-togethers.

Today, there are 223 U3As in Australia and 37 in Queensland.

Bribie Island U3A was formed in 1992 with only 41 members. Today, there are more than 2000 members.

“We rate among the top U3As in Australia because of our location, classes and number of members,” Barry says.

A new term begins on Monday, June 12.

To find out more about Bribie Island UEA, visit the website


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