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104-year-old man finishes doctoral thesis during the pandemic

Lucio Chiquito

wilhen salazar | Twitter | Fair Use

Dolors Massot - published on 01/07/21

Better late than never! This committed student used his time wisely in lockdown.

It’s incredible but true! A 104-year-old Colombian engineer has just completed his doctoral thesis at the University of Manchester (UK). His name is Lucio Chiquito.

According to what Chiquito explained to CNN in Spanish, he took advantage of the pandemic lockdown to finish off an investigation that has taken him more than 30 years. His goal was to find a methodology to calculate the maximum flow of a river.

Lucio Chiquito likes to quote as his motto, “He who loses the morning, loses the day; and he who loses the day, loses his whole life.”

Mr. Chiquito lives in Medellín and, although he was widowed five years ago, he lives surrounded by the affection of his family. He refers to his Catholic faith, which is expressed in his joyful and lively attitude.

In the backyard of his house, where he takes walks, he has a beautiful statue of the Virgin Mary. At times he sits in front of it to rest and pray.

When others quit

Thirty years ago, he says, “I wrote to the University and said I was 73 years old and had graduated with a master’s degree in science and technology. I asked them if I could apply for a doctorate, and they said, ‘Sure.’”

Finally, on September 23, Lucio Chiquito handed in his thesis. He’s a true example of industriousness and resilience in the midst of a pandemic.

Now Mr. Chiquito is waiting for the panel to be convened so that he can defend his thesis. This man who graduated from the School of Mining Engineering in 1941 will become one of the oldest people in history to earn his doctorate.

His relatives, meanwhile, have shared on social media how proud they are of his feat. Someone asked on Twitter if the story was real, to which a relative of Lucio Chiquito replied, “It is. He’s a relative of mine. A brilliant engineer, and an exemplary person in every sense of the word.”


ERMELINDA ANDRADE

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This woman started elementary school … at the age of 105!


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