82-year-old Mae Beale, a recent college graduate, defies societal norms and demonstrates that pursuing education knows no age boundaries. Celebrating her 82nd birthday, Beale received her Business Management degree from the University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC), a remarkable and fulfilling birthday gift.
Before her academic journey, Beale had an extensive career as a licensed practical nurse (LPN) in Washington, D.C., serving at prominent healthcare and government agencies. Her experience, particularly in event planning at the Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, sparked a career change.
In 1994, at 54, Beale enrolled at Howard Community College, displaying a determination to embrace education despite her age. Slow and steady, she earned her associate degree in Business Management, later establishing her event planning business, In Grand Style, to complement her theoretical knowledge with practical experience.
Despite community activism and volunteering commitments spanning over four decades, Beale prioritized her education, taking one class at a time to absorb information thoroughly. Her dedication paid off, graduating with honors and making the Dean’s List several times.
Even after completing her degree in 2020, Beale remained active in her community, contributing to local businesses and organizations. Her commitment was acknowledged through awards like the Howard County Women’s Hall of Fame induction and the Associated Black Charities’ 2016 Women on the Move Award.
Beale’s advice to others is to explore possibilities, disregard external opinions, and lean on loved ones for support. Despite her husband’s passing, her son remains a steadfast supporter.
In defying stereotypes and showcasing the limitless nature of personal growth, Mae Beale’s story serves as an inspiration, emphasizing that belief is the key to achievement, regardless of age.
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