Organic Chemistry: Alumni Couple Shares Their Story
Kellie: I am currently working for a urogynecologist and plastic surgeon in Frisco, Texas and Chris is in his third and final year of Emergency Medicine residency in Jacksonville, Florida. We will be settling in the DFW area once Chris has completed his residency this summer.
We met at Plaza hospital in my final year of PA school and Chris’s third year of medical school. For a month we rotated in the same inpatient department as peers and soon found out we both attended Texas Tech University for college and had many mutual friends. I remember thinking there was no way he could be handsome, smart and a future doctor. That combination just doesn’t exist. He was very reserved and quiet for most of our time there, but I always took the opportunity to say good morning every day and wave to him in the halls whenever I would pass by. When the month ended we lost touch due to our demanding curriculums and life in general. We ran into each other by happenstance one weekend with mutual friends on West 7th but when the night was done he seemed to disappear just as he had months earlier. Apparently he was an elusive fella. A few months later, the weekend of my PA school graduation, Chris reached out to me (finally!) and said we needed to celebrate me completing my hard earned Master’s degree. We met for a drink the night of graduation (on West 7th of course) and as they would say in the movies “the rest is history.” We’ve been inseparable ever since. To this day every time we drive by UNTHSC or Plaza we always wave a thank you for bringing us together when we otherwise would have missed each other. I always joke that we lived parallel lives before we met (both born in San Antonio, both attended Texas Tech, had many mutual friends, and spent 2 years at UNTHSC before we actually crossed paths). He has elevated and brightened my life in every way. He challenges me on both a professional and personal level for which, I am eternally grateful.
UNTHSC was my first choice for PA school after I interviewed back in 2012 because of the amenities the campus had to offer and the overall praise the program received from current students. I knew from a very young age that I wanted to be in medicine. Even as a young girl whenever someone was hurt or needed help I always wanted to be there to watch or offer a lending hand. I chose to be a physician assistant because I felt this particular profession offered the perfect compromise between having a demanding medical career and a balanced personal life.
Chris: Kellie and I met on my very first rotation as a third year medical student. We were both starting internal medicine at Plaza hospital. I am more of the quiet type and I remember being mesmerized (and somewhat intimidated) by the blonde beauty in the front row of morning report who always seemed to know the answer to every question. I remember thinking she must have been a fourth year med student doing an audition rotation as she seemed to be on top of her game. I soon found out she was a PA student at UNT. Not only that but she also graduated from my Alma mater Texas Tech around the same time as me. We bonded over our similar origins but I was shy and she was pretty so while we had a great time those few short weeks we parted ways after the block was over. It wasn’t until several months later when a college friend and I were out on a weekend night that we ran into a group of PA students at Chimy’s on west 7th street. I recognized a few of them and my friend and I walked up to say hi. As luck would have it Kellie was there and I found out that she and my college friend had known each other for several years. We all spent the rest of the night hanging out and catching up. Shortly after this encounter PA graduation was coming up. I was sitting at home studying for board exams when I checked Facebook and saw Kellie was out at the same place we had reconnected, Chimy’s. I thought what the heck and messaged her saying we should celebrate her graduation. To my surprise I got a pretty quick response inviting me out with her friends to do just that. The weather was pretty awful and I almost didn’t go but I couldn’t pass up one more chance to see that smart and beautiful PA student one more time. I went…and the rest is history.
Kellie has been an amazing inspiration and cheerleader for me over these last few years. I am currently in Jacksonville, FL in my third year of Emergency Medicine residency and though the distance can be tough I could not have gotten this far without her. I come back to DFW a few times a year and whenever I am back we make a point to drive by Plaza and smile thinking about where it all started. I am grateful to UNT for not only giving me my degree that allows me to train in the most awesome specialty in medicine but also for allowing me to meet the most amazing woman I have ever met (sorry Mom). Kellie and I are proud alumni of UNTHSC and are happy that we can give back in some small way by donating to the alumni plaza, perhaps inspiring future graduates to pursue personal satisfaction not only in their careers and education but through their personal relationships as well!
Now we have something tangible (a love brick) that we can always come back to and something that will keep our love grounded forever. Thanks UNTHSC!