After 43 years, determined grandma finishes off degree - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

After 43 years, determined grandma finishes off degree

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Georgia Rasmussen. (Source: Family) Georgia Rasmussen. (Source: Family)
Lafayette, LA (KPLC) -

After 43 years, Georgia Rasmussen will finally get to walk across the stage with other graduates of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

Georgia, a mother of three and grandmother of five, was enrolled in the university in the 1970s, when her husband Mike was in the U.S. Navy and he became stationed in San Diego. Georgia and her son moved out to California, leaving her degree incomplete.

At the time, Georgia had earned 129 hours studying elementary education. She says she had always planned to go back and finish her degree, but "life happened."

While living in California, the family shared one car. That, coupled with high tuition costs, put Georgia's college plans on hold.

The family moved to New Orleans after Mike retired from the Navy, and in 1998, they relocated to North Carolina.

While there, all three of the couple's children earned college degrees and began their careers: Michael, 44, became a restaurant manager in North Carolina; Christopher, 39, became an attorney in Chicago; and Karen Foster, 35, became an office manager in North Carolina.

Then, Georgia decided that it was her turn. She had retained 120 hours in her studies at UL Lafayette and needed only 11 credit hours to finish off her degree. Last fall, she re-enrolled.

Georgia will receive a bachelor's degree in General Studies with a concentration in behavior science at the UL Lafayette Spring 2014 Commencement ceremonies, to be held Saturday at 8 a.m. on campus. A schedule of ceremonies is available at http://louisiana.edu/news-events/events/20140206/spring-2014-commencement-schedule.

Commencement ceremonies will also be streamed online at http://new.livestream.com/accounts/4014053/events/2984845.

"It was just something I always wanted to do," Rasmussen said in a news release. "It was quite an experience, but I'm extremely glad I did it."

Georgia's husband Mike earned his degree in computer science from UL Lafayette in 1970.

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