Older and wiser: Bath Spa University Master's student graduates at 88

Friday, 16 February, 2018

At 88 years old, local resident Jack Ladev├Ęze is Bath Spa University's oldest graduate to receive an MA in Travel and Nature Writing, proving that it is never too late to learn.

Jack, who received his award at the University's Winter graduation ceremony on Wednesday 14 February at the Bath Assembly Rooms, spent two years studying part-time to hone his writing skills while examining the history, context and genres of travel and nature writing.

He said: "As a very experienced traveller I was immediately attracted to studying for an MA in Travel and Nature Writing, and decided that 2016 would be the year to further my learning. When I started the course I explained to my tutors that my only writing experience was as an accountant, preparing a document for a tax counsel to consider, so the learning curve was rather steep but highly enjoyable.

"The course has enabled me to see life from a distinct perspective. I most enjoyed meeting other students whose ages ranged from early twenties, to mid-thirties, forties and over sixty. At eighty-eight I feel as though I was a good addition and brought variety to the group.

"Using a range of styles and formats, together with a reflective diary of my progress, I am pleased to say I have produced a portfolio of twenty of my best items of work including experiences and observations I have made while travelling such as encountering bears, birds, volcanoes and documenting the sounds in nature. I plan to modify my portfolio and add to it to create a book. My next aim will be to have it published.

"To others contemplating a Master's degree, my advice would be 'have a go', it brought out abilities in me of which I was not aware. My tutors were very helpful and the overall studying experience was very stimulating."

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