Janitor graduated from the university…
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Janitor graduated from the university where he works and made his dream come true

July 29, 2022 • By Mark Bennett

Getting a degree is an important goal for many students, young or old. Sometimes we tend to underestimate the value of a higher education and we tend to believe that once a certain age is reached, it is near-impossible to go back to studying. This is what Mr. Darlivan Caetano, 64, one of the janitors of a University in the city of Serra, Espírito Santo, Brazil, thought for a long time.

Coming from a humble family of seven children, Darlivan faced numerous challenges in his youth that prevented him from pursuing a higher level of education. But life always gives us a second chance, and he has been able to shoot for his dream. Here is his story:

Growing up in poverty, Darlivan encountered a lot of difficulties along his path in ife, especially when he was young. "I was homeless, I was sick and I had hit rock bottom," he said.

However, his problems didn't stop Darlivan from dreaming. Recovering from the traumas he had suffered, in 2007 he started working as a janitor at the university in his city. And it was here that he found motivation to resume his studies. In 2011 he returned to an adult education classroom to complete his high school diploma. After completing this level, he received encouragement from students and colleagues to enter into higher education.

"I was encouraged by many people who told me to go on to university. For me it was a very distant goal, working at school is very hectic, but I managed to complete my studies. I never neglected my work. I was very hesitant at entering the lectures filled with young students. Once everyone was in the classroom and had settled down, time flew by and I took advantage of the short break to read the literature. When I look back at it, I see the extraordinary success I achieved and this is something that many can reflect on. it gives a one a desire to keep going and to achieve even more," he explained.

Darlivan graduated in 2017 at the age of 59. He was the first of his seven siblings and his seven children to complete a higher education. He now has three post-graduate degrees, runs a virtual consultancy office and still works as a janitor at the university. At the moment, his goal is to pass the qualification exam in order to be able to devote himself professionally to jurisprudence and law. "My plan is to continue studying, specializing and ensuring a better life for my family. My dream is to bring happiness and stability to my grandchildren, great-grandchildren and my brothers and sisters," he concluded.

A story with a happy ending, which can be a source of encouragement for all those who feel defeated and think they have have reached the end. Look to Darlivan and take his example to heart: he got his chance and seized it - anyone can do the same.


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