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102-year-old law graduate recalls time at UF fondly

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When Maurice W. Goldstein attended the University of Florida College of Law in the 1930s, the school was in one building and tuition was $40 a year, books included. Now 102 years old, he still occasionally attends Jacksonville Bar Association events and can dictate a perfect power of attorney from memory.

In more than 50 years of practice, Goldstein, known as Maury, was well-respected among his peers and received high AV ratings — a widely recognized peer ranking. Upon graduation, he practiced law with longtime friend Sidney Kass, a 1934 UF Law graduate, until they both enlisted in the military to serve in World War II. After returning from the war, Goldstein opened Goldstein & Goldstein and began practicing with his brother Bill, a 1949 UF Law graduate. The siblings retired in 2002 when Maury was 91, because, as he jokes, “all of our clients had died!”

In the 1930s, classes had about 30 students in them, and according to UF Law records, 144 students were enrolled in 1935 when Goldstein graduated. Today, total enrollment is nearly 1,100.

“I loved the law school,” Goldstein said. “The professors were wonderful. Classes started at 8 a.m., and we wore nice, clean clothes every day. The students in the class were all very nice people.”

On being 102, Goldstein attributes his longevity to “staying healthy” and “never smoking.” Having a beautiful wife, he said, keeps him happy, too.