Monday, June 03, 2002

Some Good News

Earning a degree at age 66

        The information given was: “There is no end to learning. You need to go back to school.”

        Sounds like advice from a teacher to a student or a parent to a child.

        No. It is advice from a 41-year-old son to his 66-year-old mother.

        Irene Herndon of Hyde Park took the advice from her son, Rolland Randolph, owner of the Samone Restaurant in Walnut Hills.

        On June 7, she will receive her associate's degree in criminal justice. “I just told her that life is for the living and not to stop learning because she was in her 60s,” Mr. Randolph said.

        Mrs. Herndon said she didn't take her son's advice seriously at first.

        “But he told me he was smart and that he got it from me,” Mrs. Herndon said. “That really impressed me. Of course, I had other excuses like I am too old and don't have the money.”

        Mrs. Herndon, a former U.S. Postal Service worker, was convinced by counselors at the University of Cincinnati that she could go back to school.

        “They assured me that the money could be found and that I could do it,” she said. “It was rough in the beginning. After all, I hadn't been a classroom in 40 years.”

        Mrs. Herndon said the advice was the best she ever received.

        “At the time, all I did was go to parties and have fun,” she said. “I think my son wanted me to settle down and act my age.”

        Her goal is to work as a juvenile counselor.

        “If I could turn at least one at-risk child around, I will be satisfied,” she said. “Of course I would like to change the life of a hundred of them, but just one would be a good start.”

        • • •

        Caring for people has a special meaning to Doretha Thurman, a 28-year veteran of Shriners Burns Hospital, Avondale. She has been presented the 2002 Spirit of Caring Award for her outstanding service as an employee at the hospital.

        Mrs. Thurman has worked in the hospital's nutrition department since 1974 as a team leader.

        “She takes great delight in making sure that the child's nutritional needs, food preferences and individual expectations are totally satisfied,” director of Nutritional Services Michele Gottschlich said.

        • • •

        The Redwood Rehabilitation Center's School Age Services in Fort Mitchell has received accreditation from the National School-Age Care Alliance.

        “We are very excited to be the first after-school program for children with special needs in the entire country to be NSACA accredited,” said Nancy House, the agency's director of children's services.

        The accreditation means the agency meets 36 specific practices in human relationships, environments, activities, safety, health, nutrition and program management.

        Allen Howard's “Some Good News” column runs Sunday-Friday. If you have suggestions about outstanding achievements or people who are uplifting to the Tristate, let him know at 768-8362, at or by fax at 768-8340.


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