By Riddhiman Das
In 2008, I came to UMKC to study computer science from India to pursue my dreams of working in Information Technology and Computer Science. As a college student, I was very driven and thought that I didn’t have time for many non-school related pursuits (hint: this included dating). In the fall of 2010, the director of student affairs at the UMKC School of Computing and Engineering (SCE) asked me if I wanted to be an ambassador for SCE, which I agreed to.
On January 6, 2011, I went to my first training session for SCE ambassadors and met Jessica Sturgess for the first time. Jessica was a civil engineering major and had been an ambassador for a couple of semesters already. We worked together and hung out several times during the rest of our time at UMKC and both graduated in May 2012.
We both started working in the Kansas City area and didn’t reconnect until May of the following year when we went on our first date. I was 20 minutes late and at the time had no way of easily communicating with her except over Facebook, so I’m glad that she stuck around. At one point early in the dinner, the conversation steered towards serial killers and we spent the entire evening talking about them. Jessica now recalls calling her father after that first date to tell him about our conversation and his advice to her was, “run away, don’t walk.” However, Jessica ignoring her father’s advice, continued to hang out with me and we started dating.
In the fall of 2013, a good friend of mine was getting married and the wedding was on the beautiful island of Nantucket, Massachusetts, and Jessica came along with me as my date and we explored Nantucket together. Nantucket in the fall is really beautiful and we both fell in love with it. In 2015, we’d come back to Nantucket to have our own wedding, officiated by her father.