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Web preview: 85-year-old student still going strong

Matt Carissimi / Lantern photographer

Ohio State student, 85-year-old Marchane Hawkins, has attended school for 20 years, and does not plan on slowing down any time soon.

Over the course of 20 years, through Program 60, a program that allows Ohio resident senior citizens 60 and older to attend classes for free on a non-credit basis, Hawkins has been able to take dozens of courses.

“I think the most classes I’ve enjoyed were history, particularly black history,” she said. “I’ve learned things about myself and my race that I didn’t know. I’ve learned that we have accomplished so many things, we have accomplished so much.”

Hawkins said she watched her six children graduate high school and several attend college and imagined what it would be like.

“I wanted to see what college was like; I wanted to experience it … plus I worked up there (at OSU),” Hawkins said. “I wanted to give it a try … it’s a good alternative to knitting and being in the house.”

When she was younger, she did not attend college because her parents could not afford it, and it was not something that African-Americans were taught to pursue, she said.

“You were not expected to go to college, you were expected to go to white folks’ kitchens … college was for a different class of people,” she said.


Hawkins’ story will conclude in Tuesday’s publication of The Lantern. 

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