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Italy: 96 y/o grandfather from Palermo becomes oldest university graduate in country04:40

Italy: 96 y/o grandfather from Palermo becomes oldest university graduate in country

Italy, Palermo
July 30, 2020 at 13:02 GMT -00:00 · Published

A 96-year-old grandfather set a record by becoming the oldest person to obtain a university degree in Italy. On Wednesday, Giuseppe Paterno graduated from the Department of Philosophical and Historical Studies at the University of Palermo.

"It's a record, it's an absolute record, yes. It's a very festive day because a recipient of that age that shows so much passion, enthusiasm and determination is an amazing testimony for our university. I would say it's a formidable lesson for all the kids because to arrive with such coolness, with such joy, with such a thirst for knowledge is really something admirable", said Fabrizio Micari, rector at the university.

Paterno's enthusiasm and vitality was palpable throughout the ceremony, for which he was surrounded by family and friends.

"I have to say thanks to all of you, I don't know what else to say, I certainly didn't expect the rector to welcome me, it was a great surprise. I passed the COVID tests and the exams," rejoiced the 96-year-old.

Paterno, born in September 1923, witnessed the rise of fascism in Italy, the second World War and the post-war period. At 31 years old, he obtained a diploma in geometry which allowed him to be hired at the Italian State Railways where he worked until retirement. Hailing from a poor family in rural Sicily, he had began working at a very young age.

He now graduated with a perfect exam score of 110 out of 110.

Italy: 96 y/o grandfather from Palermo becomes oldest university graduate in country04:40
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A 96-year-old grandfather set a record by becoming the oldest person to obtain a university degree in Italy. On Wednesday, Giuseppe Paterno graduated from the Department of Philosophical and Historical Studies at the University of Palermo.

"It's a record, it's an absolute record, yes. It's a very festive day because a recipient of that age that shows so much passion, enthusiasm and determination is an amazing testimony for our university. I would say it's a formidable lesson for all the kids because to arrive with such coolness, with such joy, with such a thirst for knowledge is really something admirable", said Fabrizio Micari, rector at the university.

Paterno's enthusiasm and vitality was palpable throughout the ceremony, for which he was surrounded by family and friends.

"I have to say thanks to all of you, I don't know what else to say, I certainly didn't expect the rector to welcome me, it was a great surprise. I passed the COVID tests and the exams," rejoiced the 96-year-old.

Paterno, born in September 1923, witnessed the rise of fascism in Italy, the second World War and the post-war period. At 31 years old, he obtained a diploma in geometry which allowed him to be hired at the Italian State Railways where he worked until retirement. Hailing from a poor family in rural Sicily, he had began working at a very young age.

He now graduated with a perfect exam score of 110 out of 110.

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