ST. LOUIS – Irene Garrison celebrates her brand-new French degree just weeks before her 85th birthday.

This Polish and Russian immigrant was born in Shanghai. She started her studies in 1966, but took a break to raise a family. Irene promised her father that she would complete her college education.

More than 50 years later, she did just that with a French degree from the University of Missouri – St. Louis. She crossed the stage in December 2022.

Irene and her husband Arnold spoke about being a non-traditional student, the critical role of family support, and her new future with a foreign-language degree.

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