Age no barrier to 72-year-old uni student

TWO weeks ago my dear friend Dot King sat her final university exam and at the age of 72, I think she is amazing and I'm proud of her.

With a lot of encouragement from me, who started my journalism degree at the age of 56, Dot took on a Bachelor of Human Science degree majoring in psychology.

After six years of wanting to pull the plug often and endless pages of reading she finally made it through, and I asked her why she did it and how it changed her.

"What else did I have to do with my time," she said with a smile.

"Personally it has completely changed me as I had suffered depression and anxiety for a while and the course triggered a lot of buttons.

"I had to face issues from the past that I saw as problems and now I can deal with them."

When you take on a challenge such as this it's good to know you have support from family and friends, and Dot's husband Ron has been a staunch supporter from the beginning.

"It's been a long journey for both of us and things have changed but I'm very proud of her," Ron said.

"She's studied and put in the hard yards and got the result she wanted.

"I took over doing the housework while she got into her study, but now she's finished I can get back to being a husband and not a housewife," Ron said with a twinkle in his eye.

Dot had a good reason for completing the psychology degree as she has written a book on cognitive behavioural therapy activities and felt the degree would give the book more clarification.

"Because I drew on life experience, I thought it would give people confidence that I know what I'm talking about," Dot said.

"My book is directed at teachers, psychologists, social workers and parents working with young children and teens.

"It includes lots of stories and characters that everyone can relate to, and is interactive."

When you write a book, getting published is every writer's dream and Dot is excited about her post university life.

"It's been a long time coming but my book is with a publisher now and I'm looking forward to seeing it in print.

"Then I guess the next step is for me to get out and sell it."

Dot and Ron encourage anyone who is thinking about going to university to do so because it's not beyond anyone's capability.

"Provided you put in the time and effort it's a unique experience. It doesn't matter how old you are," Dot said.

Dot King has finished her final exam in a Bachelor of Human Science Degree majoring in psychology at the age of 72.
Dot King has finished her final exam in a Bachelor of Human Science Degree majoring in psychology at the age of 72. Valerie Horton