A 90-year-old woman has graduated with a master's degree in interdisciplinary studies from the University of North Texas, becoming the university's oldest graduate.
The alumna in question, Minnie Payne, originally from South Carolina, wanted to continue learning after earning her bachelor's degree in general studies when she was 73 years old.
After working in a mill, spending several years as a stay-at-home mother, and several more as a substitute teacher, Ms. Payne wanted to return to school at age 68, after her retirement, according to the university. He writes in a press release.
In particular, I took courses in journalism.
“I've always worked with words,” she explains. I've always loved writing, so I went back to school almost immediately [après ma retraite] “to improve.”
After receiving her undergraduate degree in 2006, at the age of 73, she worked as an editor for several publications, including those in Dallas and Houston.
When she wanted to continue her studies in journalism at the master’s level, she preferred to turn to interdisciplinary studies, preferring to take as many distance courses as possible.
Minnie Payne says she didn't always find it easy to be an unusual student given her age.
“I really had to study and have sleepless nights, but I did it,” she says.
The graduate believes that it was natural for her to return to school, even at this age.
“I knew I was becoming a better person for myself and my family, all by doing something I loved and being constructive,” she says. Every day I try to do something to improve my life and the lives of the people around me.
Her accomplishment makes her the oldest person to graduate from the University of North Texas.
“The perseverance she has shown in completing her degree at the age of 90 is admirable,” says the university’s Vice Provost for Graduate Studies, Billy Roessler. “She had a goal and she succeeded.”
Despite earning her master's degree, Payne has no plans to stop and plans to continue learning “one way or another.”
“Total coffee aficionado. Travel buff. Music ninja. Bacon nerd. Beeraholic.”