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RMU Student Proposes to Girlfriend After Commencement

Friday, June 6, 2014

engagement1One RMU student received more than a diploma at this year’s commencement. While getting dressed on Saturday, May 10, Mallory Periard thought her cap and gown were the only unique things she’d put on that day. By the end of the day, however, she was showing off her new engagement ring.

Last summer Adam Tokarski, Periard’s now fiancé, decided to propose at commencement because the two of them shared so much at Robert Morris.  

“We spent four and a half years at RMU and that was most of our relationship, so I figured, ‘why not do it there,’” said Tokarski. “I also remember Mallory telling me she wanted her grandmother, who lives in Kentucky to be there when she got engaged. Since she was going to be at commencement it worked perfectly,” he says.

Following the ceremony, Tokarski led his hopefully soon-to-be fiancé outside the Sewall Center to take pictures with family and friends. After taking a group picture with their fellow graduates Tokarski got everyone’s attention, dropped to one knee and pulled out a ring box. Periard immediately said yes and started crying.

engagement2“The night before, I had given Adam a congratulations card for graduation,” says Periard. “Then he said to me ‘you’ll get your present tomorrow’ and I thought he was just getting me flowers. I didn’t think anything of it.”

Tokarski’s sister, Rachel, a photographer, captured the moment and posted the pictures on her blog.

“She’s a wedding photographer but she’s never shot a proposal and she’s always wanted to. So I figured it’d be perfect for her first one to be mine” says Tokarski.  

Periard, of Irwin, Pa, in Westmoreland County, played on the Division I field hockey team, was a member of the Student Nurses’ Association of Pennsylvania, a peer mentor and lab assistant for the school of nursing, and was part of the Dedicated Education Unit for her medical surgical I and II rotations at UPMC Passavant and Mercy.

Tokarski played on the Division III ACHA men’s ice hockey team, was a founding father of Alpha Chi Rho fraternity, and founded the RMU chapter of the Engineers for a Sustainable World.

The couple is from Irwin, Pa in Westmoreland County and had been dating for six and a half years prior to walking across the stage together. Periard received her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing and plans to work in the ER or trauma field while Tokarski gained his Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering and works as a full-time engineer at IceQube Inc. in Greensburg, Pa.

* Photos courtesy of Rachel Tokarski