Prince George's County great-grandmother receives college degree at 79

Lucy Capers (ABC7 photo)

All her life Lucy Capers has had a love of learning. "I always had a desire to know things," the Upper Marlboro resident told ABC7 News. Capers grew up poor in segregated Alabama and at a time, she says, when educational opportunities were hard to come by.

At 18 years old she got married then settled in Maryland where she raised three children and worked for the federal government. It wasn't until after retirement that Capers decided to pursue college.

Partly for herself, partly for her family. She reasoned, "Maybe if I finish this will be more amazing to them. You know, and they would say, 'If Grandma could do it, we could do it!'" What the great-grandmother of 13 did was earn two associate's degrees from Prince George's Community College; but she didn't stop there.

Five years ago she enrolled in an online program at the University of Maryland University College where she recently received a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Studies. On May 14, at 79 years old, Capers became the second member of her family to graduate from college.

Her longtime neighbor and friend Francis Upson remarked, "How many people at that age will go back to school? Very few." Capers' sister Linda Minger who completed a master's degree at the age of 49 expressed, "Anyone can accomplish anything if they put the work into it. It doesn't matter whether you do it in two years or 10, as long as you work towards it."

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