News

At 97, Allan gets fourth degree

Allan Stewart in 2010 graduating from a Bachelor of Law at Southern Cross University.
Allan Stewart in 2010 graduating from a Bachelor of Law at Southern Cross University.

IN A world of almost seven billion people, 97-year-old Southern Cross University graduate Allan Stewart stands alone.

Not only does Mr Stewart already hold the Guinness World Records title for being the World's Oldest Graduate - a title he earned after graduating with a law degree aged 91 - but today he will surpass it.

Mr Stewart will graduate with a Master of Clinical Science (Complementary Medicine) at the University's Lismore campus - his fourth university degree.

"I think I can hang up my mortar board and academic robes after this one - although I said that after my last degree and then I got bored. I have so much time on my hands these days and I like to keep mentally active," the nonagenarian said.

Mr Stewart's unique achievement has set a phenomenal benchmark in human history.

At the age of 97 years and 58 days the erudite and energetic bachelor will take to the podium to receive his degree and deliver the graduate address.

He will compare being a university student in 2012 with the 1930s, when he completed his first degree, in dentistry.

Mr Stewart lives independently in his own home, walks around his neighbourhood in the Port Stephens area of NSW daily, fishes, swims in the sea, cooks, grows fruit and vegies in his backyard, acts as a carer to a friend, and supports the community as an assistant in the local community technology centre.

He has six children (one deceased), 12 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

"Truly, the man is a living legend and such a tremendous inspiration to those who aspire to age well and pursue lifelong learning," says Dr Sonya Brownie, one of Mr Stewart's supervisors during his two-and-a-half-year masters degree.

However, Mr Stewart is modest: "Oh, it's nothing really… I have just been blessed with good genes," he said.

He attributes his vitality to fitness of mind, body, purpose, spirit and social fitness.

Topics:  guinness world records, southern cross university


Join the Community.

Get your local news, your way.

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Texting driver’s failure to wear seatbelt defended

Texting driver’s sister speaks out.

Texting sister speaks out about previous crash

PHOTOS: Angry cats line up for poop contest

One of the 500 entries in the World’s Most Angry Cat Poopy Face competition.

Yes, this story is all about cats and crap...

Event to raise money for Maleny Music Festival

GOOD CAUSE: Don’t miss the Eltonettes at the Maleny Film Festival fundraiser.

An event this weekend will raise money for the Maleny Music Festival

Latest deals and offers

Clive Palmer won't rule out standing for a Senate seat

AT A press conference following what is likely his final speech in the House of Representatives Clive Palmer has looked back at his time as Member for Fairfax.

Texting driver’s failure to wear seatbelt defended

Texting driver’s sister speaks out.

Texting sister speaks out about previous crash

PHOTOS: Angry cats line up for poop contest

One of the 500 entries in the World’s Most Angry Cat Poopy Face competition.

Yes, this story is all about cats and crap...

Event to raise money for Maleny Music Festival

GOOD CAUSE: Don’t miss the Eltonettes at the Maleny Film Festival fundraiser.

An event this weekend will raise money for the Maleny Music Festival

OPINION: Why I am (almost) sad to see Clive Palmer go

Clive Palmer at the Sunshine Coast Show. Unfortunately the joke's now on us.

Yes I was one of those who actually voted for Clive Palmer

Hodges’ app will unlock sporting potential

TRY THIS: Flaxton man Jeffrey Hodges has published two books and recently released an app.

Flaxton's Jeffrey Hodges has released a free app to help athletes.

Spectacular Crash as Corvette Flips at Drag Races

Corvette flips at 350kmh.

Driver walks away from 350kmh crash in Texas.

Star Wars: Force Awakens told in Emojis

Disney has released an emoji version of The Force Awakens.

To commemorate Star Wars Day, Disney releases emoji version of film on a smart...

NYPD join dance challenge

New York Police respond to NZ dance challenge.

New York's finest accept Kiwi dance challenge.

Demand for acreage lots pushes up property prices

Property values in Cooroy have increased 25%

Property values jump in Cooroy and Peachester.

How a sacked real estate agent made $725k in four months

Agent is now under investigation by the industry watchdog

RBA warns of future apartment oversupply

Toowoomba: Crest Apartments and Burke & Wills, Ruthven Street ( view from Neil Street) Photo Bev Lacey / The Chronicle

RBA says oversupply of apartments poses risk to household finances