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April 30, 2004 - Image 56

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2004-04-30

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The 30-Year Plan

Ar .

For Gloria Ruskin, the longer the road to college graduation,
the more meaningful it became.


Staff Writer

hirty years after starting college, Gloria
Ruskin was not going to miss receiving
her diploma — even if it meant her com-
mencement ceremony was to be held in
her own living room.
"Ever since I left college in 1973 to work full-time
while my husband David went to law school, I
wanted to return and get my degree," said Ruskin of
.West Bloomfield. Putting off plans when her daugh-
ters — Rachel, now 27, and Julie, now 25 — were
young, she finally enrolled in classes at Oakland
University in Rochester in 1997, at age 43.
Going to school part time and working part time,
she took off only one semester — she and her par-
ents helped staff the March of the Living teen trip
to Poalnd and Israel. "Seven years and 124 credits
later, I finished my undergraduate studies in human
resources, with a minor in labor relations," Ruskin
But she hit an obstacle when her graduation date
last year was announced to be on Shabbat —
Saturday, Dec. 20. "I would not attend for that rea-
son," said Ruskin, a Conservative Jew. "I was very
disappointed and approached my professor, Mike
Long, who at the time was chair of the Human
Resources Department. He assured me.I would have

New Arrivals

April 21
David and Minerva (Luttrell)
Rubenstein, formerly of Franklin of
Guadalajara, Mexico, announce with
great excitement the birth of their
daughter, Lara Ruth. Grandparents are
Shirley and Leon Rubenstein of Oak
Park and Felix and Gloria Luttrell of La
Chorrera, Panama. Lara is named in lov-
ing memory of paternal grandmothers
Ruth Anstandig and Ruth Rubenstein

some type of graduation. He offered to come
to the house, a restaurant, his office — any-
thing I would like."
Ruskin decided on a post-graduation-day
celebration at home. It included Professor
Long and another favorite teacher, Maria
Cseh, and their spouses.
Shortly after they arrived, Ruskin was sur-
prised to see the professors leave the room.
When they returned, each had donned their
caps, gowns and doctoral hoods and were
marching to their own hummed-version of
Gloria Ruskin with her Oakland University diploma
Pomp and Circumstance. Each relayed words
heard at the "official" ceremony and Ruskin
Gloria Ruskin said. Rachel and Julie, ironically, had
was handed the same diploma she would have
chosen not to attend their own college graduations.
received on graduation day. "We had everything but
Having begun college the same year as her moth-
the bagpipers — a tradition for Oakland University
er, Julie Ruskin saw Gloria as "the perfect dugma
graduation ceremonies in the School of Education
ishit (personal example). It was even fun sometimes
and Human Services," Professor Long said
to see who got the higher GPA," She said. "She
"However we were able to personalize the ceremony
graduated magna cum laude. I was really proud of
by saying a few words about Gloria."
her for having so much courage to go back to some-
Surrounded by friends and family — including
thing that was that important to her."
Ruskin's mother-in-law, Lillian Ruskin of Southfield,
David Ruskin said he was struck by his wife's
and sister and niece Marla and Casey Weiss of West
great determination and perseverance — doing
Bloomfield — Ruskin was especially thrilled at the
homework when no other contemporary was."
presence of her parents, Dorothy and Alex Kuhn of
Continuing to work in her husband's office,
Southfield, with the evening also a celebration of the
Gloria now has business cards, which read: Human
first time her father had been out since undergoing
Resource Assistant Manager ... "and a nice raise in
heart surgery a month earlier.
pay," she said. ❑
"Most importantly, my daughters were there,"


April 3
Amy (Garon) and Joel Rosenfeld of
Bloomfield Hills are thrilled to
announce the birth of their daughter,
Raquel Serah. Very proud grandparents
are Bernice Garon of West Bloomfield,
Fred Garon of West Bloomfield, Toni
and Jacques Rosenfeld of Bloomfield
Hills. Raquel Serah is named in loving
memory of her paternal great-aunts,
both named Rachel, and her maternal
great-grandmother and great-aunt, both
named Sarah.

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March 23
Lisa (Friedman) and Randy LaBelle
of Bloomfield are thrilled to
announce the birth of their son,
Charlie Dean LaBelle (Yosef).
Welcoming Charlie home with hugs
and kisses is big brother Julian.
Excited grandparents are Harriet
Friedman and Joan and Fred
LaBelle, all of West Bloomfield, and
great-grandpa Harold Helfer of
Miami and Farmington Hills.
Charlie Dean is named in loving
memory of grandmother Harriet's

late husband Dennis Grodin and
Randy's great-grandfather Joseph

Mardi 11
Mitchell and Tracey (Kaufman)
Grossbach of San Francisco are delighted
to announce the birth of their daughter,
Sadie Frances Grossbach (Freydel
Malkah). Sadie is welcomed by her big
brother Ethan as well as her Detroit-area
maternal grandparents, Jerome Kaufman
and Suzanne and Gene Curtis, and her
New York-based paternal grandparents

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