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A 52-year-old janitor recently made news after he announced that he will be an Ivy League graduate after this coming Sunday.
An immigrant from grief-stricken Yugoslavia, Gac Filipaj arrived in the US for the first time in 1992. After he found out that Columbia University provides a tuition-exemption benefit program for employees, he decided to pursue academics while, at the same time, work as a janitor at the same academic institution.
Deciding to major in classics, Filipaj joined the university’s open-enrollment School of General Studies in 2000. He revealed he attended morning classes and often needed to work until 11 p.m. to balance both; much of his earnings went to his family in former Yugoslavia.
In an interview with CBS New York, Filipaj disclosed his plans to continue his education and pursue a master’s degree.