Gillian was born in Denver but has lived most of her life in Houston. She is currently entering her senior year in Brown College at Rice University and is studying English and Psychology. She's not sure what exactly she will be doing after graduation, but she hopes at some point to attend the University of Houston to work on a Master's of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. When she's not buried in books, Gillian enjoys music of most forms and sings with the Philharmonics, a co-ed acappella group, performs in musical theater across the Rice campus, and plays at football games in the MOB. Gillian also really really likes ice cream.
Patrick, like Gillian, has lived most of his life in Houston, but was born in Casper, Wyoming. He graduated from Will Rice College at Rice in May of 2007 with a degree in Electrical Engineering and currently works on DSP design at Texas Instruments. He's still attending Rice part-time, as well, working towards his Master's of Electrical Engineering. Patrick plays trumpet in MOB and the Rice jazz band, and recently discovered the joys of singing in musical theater. Patrick likes video games, Thai food, and building furniture (even if he isn't very good at it).
Although they have attended school together intermittently since 1992, Patrick and Gillian did not meet until Gillian's freshman year at Langham Creek High School, where they were both members of the band program. They first started to become good friends the next year, when Patrick was dating one of Gillian's best friends, Katie Matza (see bridal party). They didn't actually start dating until the summer of 2003, after Patrick had graduated from high school, and ended up in a long distance relationship (if twenty miles can be considered long distance) for two years while Patrick was at Rice and Gillian was finishing high school. Luckily, Gillian got into Rice - Patrick can still describe the final exam he was taking (Elec 241) when Gillian called with news of her acceptance letter.
Patrick proposed on December 19th, 2006. Gillian had asked to go and see the Nutcracker for her Christmas present since the only time she could remember seeing it was when she was very small and had a cough, and thusly her only real memory of the show was constantly getting Lifesavers so as to keep her cough down and not disturb the rest of the audience. Before the show, Patrick took her to a nice dinner at a Chinese restaurant a few blocks from the theater. After dinner, they had planned to go see the big downtown Christmas tree, but decided to avoid it once they spotted the sheer number of Houston's homeless napping beneath it in the place of gifts. Instead, they wandered through Tranquility Park, where Patrick dropped a huge surprise on Gillian when he dropped to one knee and proposed. He had planned to propose during the walk back after the show, but the looming threat of rain led him to do so before instead. This had two memorable results - for the show, both had to turn of their cell phones and had a number of very loud voice messages afterwards, and both were so giddy that neither really remembers watching the show. The only unfortunate thing about this evening was that Gillian had yet to finish her last final paper, due the next day, and had to return after a wonderful evening to write 4 more pages on magical realism in the wake of the Dawes Act in the Dakota territories.
- Maid of Honor - Abby Van Wyk. Abby and Gillian met freshman year on fifth floor of Brown and bonded while planning fifth floor lounge, reading Jane Austen, and making celebratory cookies. Abby hails from Chatham, New Jersey and will let you know how amazing it is there. After graduating from Rice next May, Abby will (hopefully) go on to medical school.
- Bridesmaid - Lisa Low. Lisa was Gillian's roommate for the two years she lived on campus and they bonded over late night movies, adventures, and Lord of the Rings. Lisa's really good at writing poetry, and spent a semester abroad in Hong Kong last fall. Lisa and Gillian have taken surprisingly few classes together considering they are both English majors, but perhaps this will right itself in their senior year.
- Bridesmaid - Claire Hein. Claire and Gillian met as cymbal players in the MOB and have continued to be friends through the MOB and the Rice Light Opera Society. Claire graduated from Rice in May with a degree in history and plans to go to Baylor University in the future to get graduate degrees in social work and divinity.
- Bridesmaid - Katie Matza. Katie and Gillian have known each other since they were teensy and have the pictures from first grade Brownies to prove it. Katie is currently working on some major at Centenary College in Shrevesport, Louisiana that requires her to do things like write a graphic novel and visit China.
- Best Man - Ryan Kruse. Ryan is entering his sophomore year at Rice and is working on a degree in mechanical engineering. This summer, he is working at Marathon Oil and getting paid unnecessarily well. He also plays tuba in the MOB and is a television addict. Seriously - play him in Trivial Pursuit, and he'll tell you exactly which episode of "The Simpsons" taught him the answers.
- Groomsman - Kyle Ringgenberg. Patrick has tried to count the number of classes in which he and Kyle were lab partners (the answer: too many!). Kyle and Patrick, along with David Newell, spent most of senior year holed up in a small room in Abercrombie with a bottle of Peach Schnapps, working to build an oscilloscope into an electric toothbrush case. Kyle is currently working on his PhD in electrical engineering at the University of Virginia. Kyle likes music, too - he recently composed and directed a score for a student film at UVA.
- Groomsman - Mike Cordray. Mikey is a bioengineering graduate student at Rice who works in an awesomely scary sounding lab (tissue-welding lasers, FTW!). He and his wife, Lauren, are good friends of Gillian and Patrick through both the MOB and RLOS, and many Saturday evenings find Patrick and Gillian at the Cordray apartment, playing Rock Band or watching episodes of The Muppet Show.
- Groomsman - Eric Johnson. The aptly nicknamed "Evil Eye" is a trumpet player in the MOB with Patrick. They were co-section leaders in the 2007 season, although that ended tragically. Outside of MOB, Eric and Patrick have been seen playing Dungeons and Dragons together, although their characters rarely get along. He studies Political Science at Rice.