Connect with us

Education

Woman Earns Her Degree At 89

Ella Washington never abandoned her goal to get an education.

Published

on

On Saturday, 89-year-old Ella Washington walked across the stage at Liberty University’s commencement as the oldest graduate in the Class of 2018, earning an associate degree in interdisciplinary studies.

Washington dropped out of school in sixth grade because she had to work on the family farm in rural North Carolina, but when she got married and had her twelve children, she wanted more for them.

“She has always been a lifelong learner. Her desire for learning and for pursuing an education became a family tradition. She taught all of her children how to read, write, and do math prior to their beginning school, just as her grandmother taught her and her siblings,” Washington’s daughter Ellen Mitchell told WDBJ7.

At 49, Washington earned her GED diploma, and in 2012 she enrolled in Liberty’s online program after a recommendation from Mitchell.

But Washington isn’t stopping at her associate’s, as she is already working towards a bachelor’s degree in history.

“To me, history is a great subject,” Washington said. “Everybody should know their history and learn more about it. A lot of people don’t know much about history. There’s nothing wrong with learning more.”

Up until six years ago, Washington was still working at a variety of jobs to provide for her family. She never stopped taking care of her children even when finding job opportunities was difficult.

Mitchell is inspired by her mother everyday to be her best self for her and her children, “My mother is a remarkable woman. I learned how to be strong because of her example. Now, she has set the bar for her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.”

Washington gave advice to her fellow graduates, “Education will help you make the best life for yourselves and those who come after you.”

Jumpstart a career doing something you are passionate about with one of College Media Network’s courses. Read about our current offerings, schedule and unique virtual learning environment here.

Gigi Foster is a student at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. She's a midfielder on the women's soccer team and is studying ocean sciences.

CMN Reports

Equality2 weeks ago

Colorado Bans Conversion Therapy for LGBTQ Youth

The Centennial State moves forward in progress for the queer community.

by , The Catholic American University
Government2 weeks ago

Illinois Legalizes Recreational Marijuana

The Prairie State advances towards cannabis legalization.

by , The Catholic American University
Government2 weeks ago

New Hampshire Becomes the 21st State to Abolish Capital Punishment

The Granite State makes a huge step towards criminal justice reform.

by , The Catholic American University
Equality2 weeks ago

Maine Bans LGBTQIA+ Conversion Therapy for Minors

The Pine Tree State further progresses in queer rights.

by , The Catholic American University
Election 20203 weeks ago

Elijah Manley: The Youngest Person to Ever Run for U.S. President

Meet the youngest person ever to run for U.S. president.

by , The Catholic American University
Government4 weeks ago

Poll: More than 40% of Americans Embrace Socialism

Socialism is gradually on the rise.

by , The Catholic American University
Government1 month ago

Washington Becomes First State to Have a Public Insurance Option

The Evergreen State is going to compete in the healthcare insurance market.

by , The Catholic American University
Free Speech1 month ago

Serious Controversies Ensew Turning Point USA at University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Controversies ranging from racism to assault plague UNLV.

by , The Catholic American University

Most Read From CMN Writers