90-year-old woman makes history as BYU’s oldest graduate

Oneita Sumsion, age 90, has proven that it’s never too late to graduate.

Going down in history as the oldest graduate in Brigham Young University’s history, Sumsion now has her Bachelor of Arts in journalism. It’s an accomplishment that has been decades in the making.

According to The Daily Universe, Sumsion was only one class away from graduation when she left school to serve a mission with her husband in England. Over the years, Sumsion would serve four more missions in many locations: Nauvoo, the Provo MTC, the Springville History Center, and again in England.

She also put her education to good use, working as a journalist for Deseret News, the Daily Herald, and the Springville Herald, which would ultimately count as her remaining credit and get her to the point of graduation. Her granddaughter and an academic advisor were also instrumental in helping her receive her degree.

Since she graduated in June 2020, the pandemic prevented Sumsion from walking, but other students did notice her on campus.

“The kids looked at me like I was nuts; they asked me if I was graduating and I told them yes. Here I was, at 90 years old, graduating with the kids,” Sumsion told The Daily Universe.

Pictured in cap and gown, Sumsion’s smile says it all when it comes to what this accomplishment means to her.

“I was thrilled. I had always been thinking about going back and graduating regularly,” she said.

Read the full story at The Daily Universe.

Featured image: The Daily Universe Facebook screenshot

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