Diploma earned after 71 years

Ninety-year-old Joyce DeFauw earned her bachelor’s degree at the age of 90!  Joyce started her education at Northern Illinois University in 1951. Three and a half years into her schooling, she met and married her husband and went on to have three children.  Finding herself a young widow with three children after her husband’s untimely death, she later met, and married her second husband.  They went on to have six children in four-years.

Her primary role was to be a mother to nine children. Completing her education was put on hold.  In 2019, with the support of her family, DeFauw re-enrolled at NIU to complete her bachelor’s degree.

She faced many hurdles.  Her past classes would no longer be applied to her degree.  She also walks with a cane and lives one hour from the campus.  She had to get a personal computer to enable her to take online courses.  Then COVID hit.  She had to learn how to communicate with fellow students.

DeFauw may be among the oldest undergraduate students in the country.

To read the full article published by Camden Lazenby, Shaw Media click on the link NIU 90 year old earns degree

Congratulations Joyce DeFauw on this tremendous accomplishment!