"Grandma Jo", 87, Earns Diploma From UNC

7:50 AM, May 13, 2013   |    comments
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Chapel Hill, NC -- You're never too old to learn something new.

One member of the Class of 2013 at UNC Chapel Hill knows that well.

In Chapel Hill on Sunday, Joan Miller Hunter, 87, stood to a rousing applause with humility.

She's better known as "Grandma Jo".

When Hunter left UNC in 1947, she was only three credits shy of graduating. At the time, she was six months pregnant with her oldest child and she got sick.

So needing just one more class, her family convinced her this past year to go for it.

"And I passed it. I got an "A-" on the test," said Hunter.

Now living in Arizona, Hunter registered for and completed an online course called "The Study of Elvis".

She said, she had a couple options, but that seemed like the easiest one for her.

And 66 years later with four children, six grandchildren and one great grandchild, she celebrated her achievement with the entire family.

"I haven't spent Mother's Day with her in 33 years. We were the only ones who moved away, so it is very very special," said Hunter's oldest daughter, Joan Sicher.

Hunter said a lot has changed since she was at school. She didn't see many of her classmates on Sunday, but now, she has a whole new set of classmates.

Seven students participated in UNC's first graduation more than three centuries ago. On Sunday, Commencement at Carolina was made up of 6,027 graduates.


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