When 21-year-old Lindsay Yeager graduated from Capilano University this week, her mom, Sandi Hamson, was there to cheer her on.
Sandi wasn’t watching from the audience though. Rather, she was lined up to cross the stage too.
Both mom and daughter received their legal administrative assistant certificates at a convocation ceremony on Tuesday. Sandi, 51, who has worked in CapU’s School of Legal Studies for more than eight years, started her coursework part-time last year while continuing to hold down her job as a divisional assistant. She completed the program in December. Lindsay, who says she was inspired to enrol in the certificate program after hearing her mom talk about it for years, started full-time in September and finished up this spring.
During the fall semester, the two had classes together and didn’t hide the fact they were related.
“We were very open about it, we sat together, we studied together, it was really fun,” says Lindsay.
Watching from the audience as the pair received their certificates on Tuesday was Sandi’s other daughter, Jordan Yeager, 23, who has her own reason to celebrate this week. On Monday, she donned a cap and gown and graduated from CapU with a certificate in documentary filmmaking.
Over the past school year, Jordan didn’t run into her sister and mom much on campus because their classes were in different buildings, but the three would often carpool in the morning and afternoon to get to and from campus from their Deep Cove home.
“First of all we thought it would be cool that we’d all be coming here every day together, and then when I was able to take classes with Lindsay that was even more fun,” says Sandi.
Having years of work experience under her belt made it easier for Sandi to go back to school as a mature student, she says. But she continued to work, and also has two sons, so life was busy.
“Being a single mom of four and then going home to do homework, it certainly added a bunch of time to my day, so I was glad to be done,” she says.
Sandi plans to stay on in her current job and hopes her educational upgrade will give her a better understanding of the courses her department offers.
Meanwhile, Lindsay has already started a new job at a large law firm in downtown Vancouver. And Jordan, who also holds a bachelor of journalism degree from Concordia University, hopes to use her new filmmaking skills to shed light on social issues.
“I’d like to do post-production type stuff as a job and then continue directing my own projects and eventually be an independent filmmaker,” Jordan says.
The family enjoyed a special dinner at home when Jordan and Lindsay finished their classes and exams.
“We’ve had a celebration and I’m sure we’ll have another one,” says Sandi, noting how fortunate she feels to reach an educational milestone alongside two of her kids. “I’m really excited to be sharing the experience with my daughters.”