Woman gets high school diploma 42 years after graduating

Published: Jan. 24, 2023 at 3:56 PM MST
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TENINO, Wash. (KING) – A California woman never got her high school diploma when she graduated four decades ago due to an administrative error.

Jill Hammond said she forgot all about it until a day came when she needed it.

In 1980, Hammond left her school to study abroad in Norway.

She said she was told by her principal that her term abroad would count towards her schooling at home. But she said she came back home to some surprising news.

“He said, ‘Oh, we don’t have a diploma for you,’” Hammond said.

She said she never received it but didn’t go back, and it was never a problem until recently.

According to Hammond said, she tried to sign up for college courses to pursue a new endeavor and the school asked for proof of diploma.

“I looked up who the principal was, and I sent him an email and told him my story. He said, ‘I’d be honored to help you figure this out,’ and I was like ‘Yay,’” she said.

Despite the setback studying abroad made for her, Hammond said she doesn’t regret her choice.

“The whole experience really changed my life,” she said.

Now, Hammond can finally start a new chapter in her education, 42 years later.

“I like to do art, I like to paint. So, I want to do more of that,” she said.