He had a surprise graduation ceremony at his Shreveport church on November 28 when he was presented with a Baylor diploma, a cap and gown and his official transcript.
"I didn't expect any of it. Of course, I appreciated it. It wore me out all day long," Northen said.
Northen left Baylor because the Great Depression had hit and he needed to work to help his family.
According to Glenn Hilburn, the retired chair of Baylor's religion department, Northen has been participating in a class that can be substituted for the Chemistry 101 class he never took. "He's passed this substitute class with a grade of A-plus without even knowing it," Hilburn said. "It's Life 101. He's mastered that course and mastered it well."