GW Alumni Valentines 2021

GW Alumni Valentines 2021
February 12, 2021

Love is in the air at GW! We asked alumni to submit stories of how they fell in love at GW. From residence hall romances to classroom courtships, here are some of their stories told in their own words.

Seth and Jennifer SteinSeth Stein, CCAS BA ‘95 & Jennifer Stein CCAS BA ‘97 

“While our initial courtship was anything but a fairytale, the greatest gift GWU has offered me was meeting my wife. We met on a blind date on November 13, 1993 at City Golf (in what was the Old Post Office). At the end of the sorority event, Jen mentioned that a few of her friends were going to a club and she assumed I would not be interested in joining so she wished me a good night. After avoiding me until after winter break, we had two dates that went well thanks to some mutual friends who urged us to give it another shot.  A missed date due to a flat tire (in front of the 7-11 at New Hampshire Ave and 24th Street) and a date that involved a serious bout of food poisoning were not a deterrent.  We finally got back on track and this kid from New Jersey fell in love with my California girl. We moved to San Diego after graduation and got married on Valentine’s Day, 1998 in Maui. After moving around a bit, we returned home to San Diego where we live with our 16 year-old son and a 13 year-old daughter.” -- Seth

Kelvin and Cheryl Hackett

Kelvin Hackett, CCAS BA ‘76 & Cheryl Hackett, CCAS BS ‘75

“In the summer of 1971, Kelvin Hackett and Cheryl Brown met on the first day of The George Washington University’s (GW) Summer Enrichment Program. They were both local graduates from DC Public Schools—Kelvin, an energetic and outgoing graduate from Roosevelt Sr. High School, and Cheryl, a shy and more reserved graduate from Eastern High School. They met during orientation at the Black Student Union and quickly established a steady routine of dating, studying, and enjoying college activities. 

Kelvin and Cheryl continued their romance throughout their tenure at GW and foraged lifetime friendships that remain intact today. In 1975, Cheryl completed a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Medical Technology and started her career at GW Hospital as a Medical Technologist. The following year, Kelvin received a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Finance and started his career in accounting at GW Medical Faculty Associates. On June 4, 1977, the happy couple sealed their union and wed as husband and wife.

Kelvin held various positions as a private contractor and Federal government employee until his retirement from the US Census Bureau in March 2017. Meanwhile, Cheryl held a variety of positions at the hospital until her retirement in November 2011. They have two daughters, who also proudly continued their legacy as GW graduates—Shenice (BA ‘01; Towson University MA ‘04) and Michelle (BA ‘04, magna cum laude; MFS ‘06). They’ve also had other extended family members continue their legacy; most recently, their niece, Tanya, who completed a MS in Engineering (‘19).

Kelvin and Cheryl currently reside in Bowie, Maryland and are blessed with two grandchildren, who live in Virginia. As they look forward to their 44th wedding anniversary this summer, they will reflect on that fateful day that they met 50 years ago on GW campus.” 

Sean and Heather Moran

Sean Moran, CCAS ‘95 & Heather Moran, CCAS ‘95

“We met in Dr. Kerric Harvey’s office in the parsonage of the old church that, at the time, housed the Radio/Television program. It was senior year and Heather was in Dr. Harvey’s office with a few other classmates stressing about getting a job after graduation. I was in the building getting squared away as a departmental teaching assistant. Heather tells me she noticed me right away, but I was oblivious and didn’t really notice her until a few weeks later when I had to keep separating her from her friends during a television production class because they would chat with one another while running studio cameras positioned side by side. We became friends throughout our last semester at GW, taking walks, talking about our shared love of TV and movies and officially started dating the weekend of graduation. Two years later, we were married – and now almost 25 years later we have two sons, Benjamin and Jonah (who have been to many a Colonials basketball game) and we both remain connected to GW. Heather sits on the National Council for the School of Media and Public Affairs and I am an adjunct professor, teaching Web Essentials for SMPA. Our advice on staying together so long?  Always have a TV show you’re excited to watch together.” -- Sean

Aihong Kou and Liangwei Li

Aihong Kou, GWSB MAccy ‘13 & Liangwei Li, SEAS MS ‘13, PhD ‘18

“My husband (Liangwei) and I met for the first time at HOVA, in the graduate housing at GWU, (which is now the boathouse). We were both new graduate school students for the year of 2011. On the first few days when I moved into HOVA, on my way to check the mail room, I heard someone was playing billiards in the playroom. I walked in and saw Liangwei was there. We are both from China, and that leads to a lot of common topics. We then became close friends among a group of young people who also lived in the building and who are now our lifetime friends. We hung out a lot while dealing with busy work at graduate school. Naturally we started dating. We walked each street on campus and we went to each of the restaurants near campus. We love taking walks to the National Mall from campus. We were there for each other’s graduate school graduation. I started working in 2013 and he started a PhD program at GW. We got married in 2016 and our daughter was born in October 2018, 5 months after Liangwei’s PhD graduation. GW witnessed that we met each other, fell in love, got married and had a baby. We now live in California. GW is always a special and precious place in our hearts.” -- Aihong 

Madeline Nygaard and Andy Anderson

Madeline Nygaard, GWSPH BS ‘15 & Andy Anderson, CCAS BA ‘11

“Madeline and Andy first crossed paths in late September 2014. After wandering around campus to reminisce on Alumni Weekend, Andy and his friends made their way to Tonic for brunch. Madeline, a senior at the time, was also with friends at Tonic watching a football game and, of course, enjoying some tots. 

Andy spotted Madeline from across the patio, and with the encouragement of his friends, he decided to approach her. Their initial meeting was brief - but they exchanged phone numbers and made plans for a first date at a restaurant on U Street the following week. Their first date couldn’t have been more perfect. One hour...two hours...three. When they finally called it a night, they both knew a second date would come soon. 

A year later, when it was time for Madeline to start graduate school in Minneapolis, both agreed that a little distance was no reason to break off their relationship. After two years of countless flights back and forth from DC to Minneapolis, they saw their journeys weaving together more each day. A move to Chicago, new jobs, and forming a little family with their cat, Tony, and puppy, George. 

Come 2020, Andy knew he wanted to propose, but with COVID-19, planning was difficult. After a few delivery mishaps, he finally had the ring and just needed to pick the perfect moment. 

As political junkies, Madeline and Andy had been glued to the news for months leading up to the election. On an unseasonably warm November day, Joe Biden was elected president. Andy suggested they head downtown to celebrate the results. Little did Madeline know, Andy had another surprise up his sleeve. As they wandered through Millennium park and admired The Bean, Andy proposed - making for a memorable day full of love and celebration.” 

Joseph D. Edmondson and Barbara McGraw Edmondson

Joseph D. Edmondson Jr, CCAS BA ‘88, LAW JD ‘91 & Barbara McGraw Edmondson, GSEHD Ed.D ‘98

“When I was a freshman at GW, I lived in Thurston Hall (of course). After being written-up for playing ‘molecules’ in an elevator, I had my first real interaction with the Resident Director: Barbara McGraw. She was tough, but fair (I received a warning for my misbehavior). She was also memorably smart, beautiful and delightful. Fast forward four years and I am a first year law student living, again, in Thurston; this time as a Resident Assistant. Barbara, after a short time away from GW, had returned to pursue a doctorate, and once again served as R.D. of Thurston. We became fast friends, and before too long, we fell in love. We were married between my second and third years of law school. The Director of Resident Life, the notorious Ann E. Webster, being not authorized to officiate, we settled for a priest from New Jersey and a minister from Connecticut. As newlyweds, we took up residence in my R.D.'s apartment in Milton Hall (now Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis Hall), which was a spectacular place to live! Thirty years later we recently returned to D.C. as refugees from the suburbs, with three daughters through college and a son about to enter. Barbara is still tough, fair, smart, beautiful and delightful.  And we are still very much in love.  And it all began in Thurston Hall.” -- Joseph 

And more alumni valentines we heard from this year:


Babette Cohn, CCAS BA ‘91  & Jonathan Cohn, CCAS BS ‘87

Elaine Libman, GSEHD BA ‘59 & Gerald Libman, CCAS AA ‘56, BA ‘58 

Hayley Andrews, CCAS AA ‘11, ESIA BA ‘13 & Eugene Gelfgat, ESIA BA ‘13

Jamie Haines, CCAS BA ‘96 & Michael Haines, CCAS BA ‘95

Jamie Maguire,GWSB BBA ‘14, MTA ‘16 & Andrew Maguire, GWSPH BS ‘11, GWSB MTA ‘13

Jack Nassetta, SMPA BA ‘20 & Monica Iskander, SMPA BA ‘20

Laura Tykol Garrison, ESIA BA ‘75 & William Garrison, CCAS BA ‘73

Michael Loveland, CCAS MA ‘15 & Hannah Loveland, CCAS MA ‘15

Samantha McGovern, SMPA BA ‘05, GSPM MPS ‘10 & Justin McGovern, CCAS BA ‘05

Sarah Przybylowicz, CCAS BA ‘14  & Henry Przybylowicz, GWSPH BS ‘14