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University of Minnesota Retirees Association.


Be all you can be as a University retiree!!

With the University of Minnesota Retirees Association (UMRA).


Next Luncheon
Annual Election
Health Benefits Update
Senior Education
UMRA Cares
From the Cares Desk, Chemo, April 2015

The Journal of Opinions, Ideas, and Essays (JOIE)
Become a Member

May 26, 2015 Festive Luncheon amd Annual Meeting

Social time: 11:30 am, Luncheon: noon to 12:45 pm,
Election and Business Meeting

Vern Sutton, professor emeritus, U of M School of Music
"Music of the Ziegfeld Follies"

See our meetings page for more information.

May meeting includes annual election

During the business portion of the meeting on May 26, members will elect next year's UMRA leadership. The nominating committee presents the following for your approval. For Officers:
President-elect     Donna Peterson
Secretary               Chip Peterson

Treasurer               Carl Adams

For Board of Directors:

Steve Benson
Gloria Williams

Please look at our candidates" page at for profiles of the candidates for officers and new board members. after election the above members will join in leading the organization with the following continuing officers:  President, 2015-16      Jean Kinsey
Past president             Hal Miller

and board members who are continuing to serve out terms: Roger Clemence, Joanne Eicher, Vern Eidman, Virgil Larson, Jeanne Markell, Sherilyn Goldsmith May, David Naumann, and Kathleen O'Brien.

Board members who are completing their terms in May are: Past President John Adams and board members Vandora Linck and Paul Quie

Please join in the festivities of the May special luncheon and annual meeting to celebrate a successful year and to thank these members for their service and leadership.

— Nominating Committee: John Adams, chair; Hal Miller, Gayle Graham Yates, John Anderson, and Nancy Helmich.


Health benefits update: Results of open enrollment for U retiree health plans

According to Employee Benefits, a total of 2,856 of us who are 65 years of age and over (1,994 retiree only and 862 family) signed up for health coverage under the University's Retiree Health Plan.

By plan option, Health Partners 65+ was the most popular selection, with 972 enrollees (34.0 percent), up 2.0 percent, followed by Blue Cross/Blue/Shield's U of M retiree plan with 822 (28.8 percent), up 2.4 percent. Medica's Group Prime Solution has enrolled 707 (24.8 percent), which is down 3.4 percent. U Care for Seniors has 284 (9.8 percent), up 1.1 percent.

In addition to these numbers, 417 retirees (14.6 percent) signed up for secondary plans first offered for 2014 by each of the carriers. Coverage under these plans featured lower premium, higher out-of-pocket-costs. The numbers included 144 with Health Partners 65+, 138 with Medica, 76 with U Care, 34 with BC/BS, and 25 with the Health Partners National Plan.

— Ted Litman, Umra MRA Resentative to the University of Minnesota Benefits Advisory Committee

REMINDER: Senior Citizen Education Program

The Senior Citizen Education Program (SCEP) is part of a 2012  Minnesota state statute and applies to Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MNSCU). The University of Minnesota has chosen to participate in order to provide senior citizens with higher education opportunities.

If you meet the residency and age requirements of the SCEP, you may audit courses free of charge or take courses for credit at $10 per credit. Whether you audit or earn credits for the course, you must pay any required laboratory or materials fees. To register and for more information go to the senior citizen section of the University's ONE STOP student services page. Back

UMRACares Group

the UMRA Cares committee members stand ready throughout the year to assist and support members who may be facing serious illness or experiencing the death of a loved one. Tthis committee was formed by members who know first-hand how important it is to have support in times of stress or loss. If you or someone you know wants to talk with a member of UMRA Cares, please e-mail them at or call and leave a message at the office phone: 612-626-4403.

Throughout the year, including summer, your UMRACARES committee hopes to provide you with support and resources through emails, programs and on our website on dealing with the death or serious illness of a loved one.  We will keep you posted as we move along and establish these programs.

Grief Support Groups This list, courtesy of Allina Health, has been compiled to help those who may be interested in seeking assistance through grief support goups or individual therapy.

Please n call any member of our committee with questions or comments you may have with regard to dealing with the loss or serious illness of a family member.   Or call us with ideas you would like to offer for the continuing operation of this UMRA program.   

Van Linck           651-490-1385
Earl Nolting        651-633-4333
Harriet Reiss      763-544-8016


From the Cares Desk, Chemo


From the Cares Desk

Chemotherapy: a dreaded word for a medical procedure no one wants but may at some point require. A treatment option that is feared and not well understood by those told they will need "chemo".

There are two references that will be very helpful to a patient:

The Chemo Zone: Your guide to living and flourishing during chemotherapy. Linda Rubietta with Tracy Rubietta, 2011, Beaver Pond Press, Edina, MN.
 This reference is a workbook developed by Linda (patient) with daughter Tracy. Described by the authors as a survival guide; reviewed by a team of medical advisers for accuracy and relevance. Available through or START HERE. An excellent resource.  I have used it.

Chemotherapy and You: support for people with cancer. National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health.  2007 NIH publication # 09-7156. An excellent discussion of Q & A about chemotherapy, side effects and ways to manage them, foods to help with side effects, helpful organizations, and a brief explanation of several medical terms.  Available free from 1-800-422-6237 (1-800-4-CANCER) or Excellent resource. I have read it.

If you or someone you know and love is facing chemotherapy tell them that there are some excellent resources available to help them through the experience.

—Earl Nolting, Cares Committee


Current Links of Interest to Retirees

Invite a retiree to an UMRA lunch

If you know someone who is recently retired or will be soon, invite them to the next luncheon. Prospective members receive a complimentary meal, just so they can check us out! When you make your reservations, call in to tell us that you want to bring a prospective member, and UMRA will trreat them to their first luncheon program.

UMRA members launch unique digital Journal of Opinions, Ideas, and Essays

The University of Minnesota, through the good offices of the Provost and the University Digital Conservancy (UDC) announces a new, unusual, and perhaps unique digital journal, The Journal of Opinions, Ideas and Essays(JOIE).

As the title implies, it is be a vehicle for the publication of a broad variety of high-quality articles on a wide assortment of topics that may not be encouraged by or suitable for publication in conventional, scholarly journals. It will include reviews, short stories, poems, photographic essays, essays on scholarly topics, opinion pieces, and discussions of pedagogical or curricular issues.

JOIE is managed by UMRA (University of Minnesota Retirees Association), and will be accessible to anyone with electronic access to the UDC.

The board of editors invites submissions from any member of the University community, past or present.

You may view the inaugural issue at There you will find representative articles, instructions to authors, and contact information.

We encourage you to submit articles and to read what we hope will become a popular vehicle for intellectual exchange.

— Steve Benson and JOIE Board of Editors Back

UMRA membership

An application/renewal form is available here. Retirees joining UMRA for the first time get a 60% reduction in fees. This "introductory membership" costs is just $10 for a single or $15 for a couple for the first year.

For members who are sure they want to attend every UMRA luncheon, you may pay for the first seven, September through April, in advance with your membership application or renewal. The price is the same, but you don’t have to write a check each time.

No refunds are available and a missed luncheon is considered a donation to UMRA. You still need to make a reservation for each luncheon by phone or email. The price is $112 (7 x $16) for one package.

UMRA has a telephone number, 612-626-4403. Messages are checked and processed on a daily basis. Back

We hope you find this website useful and we invite you to send comments and suggestions to the Webmaster, Dave Naumann, at


Luncheon Audience


Luncheon guests October 2012

Luncheon guests October 2012

Luncheon guests October 2012

Luncheon guests October 2012

Luncheon guests November 2012

March 2012 after-luncheon Workshop