A grandmother in Thailand has proven that learning is a life-long endeavor by earning her first university degree at the tender age of 91.
Kimlan Jinakul wanted to attend university as a young girl but never had the chance, the recent graduate told the BBC in Bangkok. Her opportunity finally arose long after she watched most of her children grow up and complete their education.
Originally from Lampang province in the country’s north, Kimlan was a sharp student and attended one of the best schools in her province, according to the BBC. But soon after her family moved to the capital Bangkok, she got married and abandoned her dreams of getting a degree.
Kimlan encouraged her own sons and daughters to study, the BBC reports, and four out of five of them earned masters degrees. One of them is going on to obtain a PhD in the U.S. Watching their academic successes inspired the nonagenarian to enroll in a degree program at Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University at the age of 72, but her studies were soon derailed by the death of one of her daughters.
“After recovering from the loss and sadness, I pushed myself to finish,” Kimlan told the BBC. She went back to school at the age of 85 to seek a degree in human ecology, which she hoped would teach her how to live better and be happier. “I’m hoping my daughter’s soul would be pleased to see this,” she added. “It’s never too late. My mind is always awake and sharp for learning.”