2020 has shown us that basically, anything is possible. Many people’s graduations were held virtually this year due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but one young woman was able to obtain her bachelor’s degree alongside her grandmother, who also received a bachelor’s degree.
22-year-old Melody Ormond graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC) the same day as her grandmother, Pat Ormond, who got her degree in anthropology. Osmond first attended a college class in 1978 and was able to finish her degree 42 years later.
Pat began her studies at Kennesaw State University in Atlanta but dropped out after just one semester to move to Chattanooga, Tennessee and began raising a family — which included Melody’s father.
She took a couple of classes at UTC sporadically but after she retired from being an accountant for several decades, her family encouraged her to go back to school and get her degree.
The two of them took classes at home because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and Pat explained to CNN why she wasn’t a fan of online classes.
“It’s definitely more difficult, and I prefer in-class,” Pat said, “I really enjoyed the discussions and being able to interact with so many people from different backgrounds. Not having those people around made it harder.”
Melody was also shocked to learn that her grandmother was going to be graduating at the same time as her. She told CNN, “I always knew that I was going to graduate from college. I just never knew that my nana was also going to be there.”
Going forward, Pat wants to become an example for people everywhere who is looking to get a degree. Pat said to CNN, “Learning never stops. That’s something that my father instilled in me when I was younger. No matter what you do, learning never stops. Even if it’s auditing a few classes, there’s always that option.”
Lead image via CNN.