St. Joe's Grad Receives Diploma For Christmas

It was a gift Jeanne Schenkel Calhoun '61 wasn't expecting under the Christmas tree.

"Never has any gift, I am aware of, moved her as much as this gift," said Jeanne's daughter, Beth Calhoun.

Beth’s mother graduated from St. Joseph Commercial High School but had never received her original diploma, until this Christmas.

"She didn't discuss it all the time, but she brought it up before that although she graduated, she did not have her actual diploma," shared Beth. 

After making phone calls to the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and the CJ business office, Beth found out that the reason her mother had not received her original diploma initially had been forgiven, so Jeanne was eligible to receive the actual diploma.

Jeanne's original diploma could not be found, so with the help of the Archdiocese and several CJ employees, a new diploma was created.

"It's more beautiful than what I pictured," Beth said when she picked up the diploma on Wednesday, December 23. "The seal, the signature, I can't believe she will finally get to receive this." 

Ann Szabo '72, who helped in the process said, "There is something to be said about caring. Knowing I would do whatever I could for my mother, it's nice to make sure your mom has a wonderful gift."

"It's not all about gifts, but also the time you spend with family," Beth emphasized. "Still, there is something childlike about Christmas and to get a gift from your parents. I bought a gift for my father which I signed from his mom and dad. My mom's diploma was signed from her mom and dad.

"The way that it all came together, this goes back to how we were raised and faith because it was a miracle," Beth added. "We believe many divine forces came together to make this happen."

Photos Courtesy: Beth Calhoun