Gonzaga graduates class of 2013

Author: Ian Cull, KXLY4 Multimedia Journalist, ianc@kxly.com
Published On: May 12 2013 08:13:45 PM PDT
Gonzaga graduates class of 2013
SPOKANE, Wash. -

Sunday's commencement was a new beginning for Gonzaga students and the official end of the 125 year anniversary of the school.

Every one of the 1,306 seniors graduating inside the Spokane Arena had a story. Some will talk about how they succeeded in school, and others about why they chose Gonzaga.

"I have five older sisters. They all went here and graduated from here. My dad works here. Both of my parents graduated from here so I'm really excited," Stephen Hertz said of graduating.

When you graduate from college it may feel like the time flew by, or that too much time had passed.

"My daughter graduated from here, my grand kids graduated from here. When I retired, I said, 'ok it's my turn," 88-year-old Betty Horak said.

Sunday, 70 years after graduating high school, Betty Horak made her dream come true. Horak says no one could afford to go to college during the depression, so Betty worked as an office manager. When she retired she wanted to go to college. Horak then enrolled at GU in 1998.

"I started out taking four courses every semester and then I said, 'hey, I retired from all this work. I'm going to take less."

Sunday  she became the oldest person to ever receive a bachelor's degree from Gonzaga. Her degree is in general studies, and the "super senior citizen" says she has plans after graduation.

"Well I have plenty of things to do. There's always something to do. I've got news for you, you don't have to go to college to learn something, you can learn something from everybody. I can talk to you and I'll learn something," Horak said.

Horak also hopes her story will inspire others. "Everybody can do it, if they just want to."