yasuko fuji
CBS 8

80-year-old grandmother graduates from college

An 80-year-old Japanese American grandmother is finally finishing what she started almost six decades ago. Yasuko Fuji is finally graduating from college. She will be the oldest student to graduate from college this year, according to CBS 8. She’s graduating from San Diego State University with a bachelor’s degree in social sciences.

“How does it feel now to be able to say you did it?” a CBS 8 reporter asked Fuji.

“I feel so great,” Fuji replied.

Yasuko Fuji immigrated from Japan to the United States in the 60s. At that time she was attending San Jose State University but had to drop out because she had to raise a family. Still, she dreamed of one-day finishing college.

yasuki fuji
CBS 8

“My mother inspired me to never give up anything you have put in your mind,” she told CBS 8.

So ten years ago she enlisted in Mesa College. After eight years at the school taking classes here and there, she finally transferred to San Diego State University. It was a process full of challenges but she persevered. The hardest hurdle was with adapting to new technology. It took a while for her to get comfortable with it, but her middle school granddaughter helped along the way.

oldest college graduate
CBS 8

“She was great help and smart. Anyone can do it,” Fuji said. “If I’m from a foreign country, the native people can do it. Never be too late.”

Fuji will walk with her cap and gown across the stage at San Diego State University this weekend. The commencement ceremonies will see Fuji graduate with 10,300 other students.

oldest college graduate
CBS 8

And no one is prouder of Yasuko Fuji’s accomplishment than her family. Her daughter, Yuki Zeiger, told CBS 8 that her mother woke up at 2 am to do her homework and get ready for class. “Truly an inspiration for everyone. If anyone was going to do it, it was going to be her,” Zeiger said.

What a true inspiration indeed. It’s never too late to improve your life. Congratulations to Yasuko Fuji.

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