Do you consider yourself a lifelong learner? Are you curious about starting a new hobby or learning some practical skills in a fun, casual environment?
Anne Arundel Community College (AACC) is a gem of a resource, and it is right in our backyard. Maybe you’ve heard about AACC as an option for college-bound teens and adults looking to earn their Associate’s degrees. Still, there are also non-credit options for students of all ages to explore a new skill, try a new cuisine, or even create a new kind of girls’ night or date night.
AACC’s non-credit offerings are broken into three categories: Career and Professional Training, Basic Education, and Personal Enrichment. Career Training programs are for those working towards a specific career or certification like plumbing, casino operation, or child care. Basic Education offerings include GED prep, English language learning, and basic skills classes.
However, when I get my AACC catalog in the mail each semester, I flip right to the Personal Enrichment section. These classes include Crafts and Sewing, Jewelry, Hands-On Cooking, Wine and Beverage, Financial Planning, Parenting and Family Life, World Languages, Fitness, and Writing.
I have taken classes on Feng Shui, yoga, massage, bracelet-making, blogging, and cooking macarons, French breads, and bagels. In my experience, the instructors are genuinely interested in sharing their craft with others. While each of their teaching styles is unique, all the instructors I’ve met are patient, kind, and willing to be a resource for students outside of the class.
Many classes are offered on weekends or evenings, allowing parents to get out of the house and try something new. Many hands-on courses are offered on the Arnold campus, but since the pandemic, many courses are also offered online.
Classes can be as short as a single session of a few hours or may span an entire semester with regular weekly meetings. Cost varies depending on the course length, and discounts are available for students over 60. Classes are open to anyone over 16, so registering with a teen could be an opportunity for quality time exploring a new skill together, like learning a foreign language or cooking.
Check out AACC’s non-credit website to view class offerings and register for classes, or you can call 410-777-2325 with any questions. The fall semester began on Sept. 1, but classes start and end on a rolling basis, so check out the schedule today.
Here are some of my top picks for this semester.
- WMI-336 So Simple Sewing: Learn (or relearn how to use a sewing machine. Sew two projects in class. Oct 17-24, Tuesdays, 6:30–8:30 pm, In-person Arnold campus
- CAW-500 Bartending at Home: Learn to make cocktails and nontraditional martinis for party guests in this online class. Oct 6-Dec 31, Online video class
- CAW-330 Cooking Basics: Instant Pot Cooking: Learn from an HCAT chef how easy recipes are with this cookware and how to include these recipes in your daily repertoire. Oct. 6, Friday, 6:30–9:30 pm, In-person Arnold campus
- FLR-348 Seasonal Flowers: Create floral arrangements using seasonal flowers and other seasonal botanical materials. Nov. 21, Tuesday, 6-9 pm, In-person Arnold campus
- (*Why not make this a Girls/Moms Night Out with happy hour before?)
- RPR-316 Basic Home Repair: Carpentry: Learn the basics of home carpentry and hand tool safety. Practice using hand tools to cut wood, install molding, and hang shelving and cabinets. Oct. 8, Sunday, 9:30–11:30 am, In-person Arnold campus
- CAW-328 The Whiskies of Scotland: Learn the art and science of Scottish whiskies. Explore history, regional variations, and production processes. (Must be 21+ to enroll.) Oct. 6, Friday, 7–9 pm, In-person Arnold campus (*Great choice for a date night with dinner beforehand.)