Spring engagements bloom on campus

By Hannah Jolly, For The Miami Student

Spring has sprung and so have engagement proposals on Miami’s campus. For many Miami University seniors, thoughts of their future are on the mind, along with whom they want to spend it with.

Many of these newly engaged Miami seniors will be Miami Mergers. A Miami saying is, “When two hearts beat as one and both attended Miami, it’s a Miami Merger.”

Maddie Ermlich, a fifth-year senior at Miami, will be married before most graduates land their first job. Her fiancé, Thomas Lawson, proposed to her on September 15 of 2015, and the two will be married within the next six months.

Lawson is an air force cadet of Miami’s ROTC Program and will be off to basic training a week after graduation. The two plan to get married in a small, courthouse wedding either before he leaves for basic training or in November when he returns. Later, they plan to have a larger ceremony with all of their family members.

Ermlich is not feeling the fear that typically comes to many students around graduation.

“It makes graduating less scary knowing I’ll have Thomas as my partner in life, and I’ll always have him even though he’ll be gone for a while,” said Ermlich.

Ermlich and Lawson are tying the knot earlier than the average American. According to Today’s Bride, the median age in the U.S. to get engaged is 26 years old, and the average age of a student finishing their senior year of college is 22.

Ermlich is 23 years old and Lawson is 22, so they are ahead of the national average. The couple has been dating for five years. Due to their long courtship, Ermlich said that she partially anticipated the proposal.

The couple was on vacation with Lawson’s family in Disney World in September. While in line to get a picture with Cruella Deville, Ermlich’s favorite character, Lawson got down on one knee and popped the question.

“The whole crowd was cheering ‘Say yes!’ I don’t remember the cheering though. I started crying and was so silly. It was all so surreal,” Ermlich said.

Lawson, her fiancé, felt an array of emotions, including anticipation, leading up to the proposal.

“That was the longest line at Disney that I’ve ever waited in,” Lawson said.

According to a Facebook Data Sciences study, about 28 percent of married graduates attended the same college as their spouse. According to Miami University’s data, 14 percent of Miami alumni are married to another alum.

Not only are Ermlich and Lawson Miami Mergers, they are also high school sweethearts. The couple even attended the same preschool.

The same Facebook Data Science Study found that there was a significant correlation by how religious the school is and the rate of married college-graduates. With 23 campus ministries and area churches, Oxford, Ohio is very accommodating for religious students.

There is also a high correlation between military involvement and young marriage ages, as well. According to the Department of Defense Demographics Report, 43 percent of active duty members are 25 or younger. Sixty percent of people in the
Army are married.

With many Miami seniors sporting diamond rings and kissing under the Upham Arch at midnight, love is in the air on campus and Miami is ready to ring in spring.