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JCC Graduate Receives Diploma at Age 91

Grad MarjorieGrad Marjorie








(l-r) Deborah M. Elliott, college registrar, Carole A. McCoy, president, and alumna Marjorie L. (Parker) Clark

Receiving your college diploma proves to be a sense of accomplishment at any age! That was the sentiment of Jefferson Community College (JCC) 91-year old graduate Marjorie L. (Parker) Clark, formerly of East Rodman, when she touched her diploma for the first time on August 26, 2016. Clark completed her associate in science degree in mathematics and science at Jefferson 37 years ago, graduating with the Class of 1983, but just received her diploma.   

In 1979 when Clark started college at Jefferson she was a 56-year old adult student. “I thought attending college was an impossibility at my age,” says Clark. “Students accepted me being older and they had many nice things to say like I was an inspiration to them.”

Shortly after graduating from Jefferson, Clark moved to Gananoque, Ontario, Canada where she currently resides. With the recent discovery of an empty diploma cover by one of her six children, daughter Marjorie “Cheryl” Parker Gmitter, and the ball was set in motion.   

 The value of earning a college degree to Clark is “a sense of accomplishment. I enjoyed learning and JCC helped me in every way (with) self-confidence, more at ease with people and self-worth.”

According to her family, she is the pinnacle of their inspiration. “She paved the path for the love of education and that education is so important,” said granddaughter Amy L. Parker ’04, who was born the year Clark completed her degree at JCC.

Six children, twelve grandchildren, and twenty-six great grandchildren later, Clark grew a “Jefferson Family.” Eleven of her family members attended JCC with six earning degrees from the College.

Clark says, “I am pleased and humbled that I was able to come back. My diploma’s not just a keepsake, it shows I did something with my life.”