ELLISVILLE – It seems as though Cupid has lived at Jones County Junior College since the institution opened its doors nearly a century ago. As the Alumni and Foundation Office prepares for the Centennial Celebrations in the fall, one recurring theme keeps surfacing: a lot of people met their spouse while at Jones.
“Our president, Dr. Jesse and Jennifer Smith are perfect examples! They met and fell in love at Jones and later married,” said VP for Advancement, Caroline Ramagos. “Our planning committee thought it would be a wonderful opportunity for the many who found love at JCJC, to have a special event called, ‘Love Stories of Jones’ as part of our Centennial Celebration for February 2012,”
Through the campus alumni newsletter, Bobcat Bulletin, a request has been made for alumni to submit their love stories to the JCJC Alumni Office’s email, firstname.lastname@example.org. However, to ensure the invitation is extended to as many people as possible, the search has gone public.
“We have about 4,500 people who receive our electronic newsletter but we also know there are some alumni and friends who haven’t signed up to be on the mailing list,” said Ramagos. “They can find the newsletter and sign up on our mailing list, on our web page, www.jcjc.edu/alumni under e-newsletter.”
Many JCJC students seem to have been bitten by the “Love Bug”. A couple who recently fell in love while at Jones, made the news. Anna Tossy, a 2009 biology graduate from Beaumont and TJ Butler, a 2010 marketing management grad from Collins, were recently featured in WDAM-TV’s series, “Unique First Dates,” by Colleen Donovan.
“We received hundreds of letters from people all over the Pine Belt but Anna’s letter about her great boyfriend TJ and how their dating relationship started on their class trip to Spain was really unique,” said Donovan. “This relationship begins with a first date in a foreign country, a romantic place, and Anna said this experience was really dear to them both.”
The two first met at Top of Class 2007 which is an event for valedictorians and salutatorians, sponsored by WDAM-TV and hosted at JCJC. Tossy and Butler also signed up to be a part of the first class of the newly formed Charles Pickering Honors Institute. As students in the Honors College, they shared many of the same classes and were offered the opportunity to travel abroad.
“Going to Spain is not something I would have ever done on my own without the help of the college,” said Butler. “I will always treasure those 12 days because I got to know Anna even more.”
Tossy shared it was not love at first sight for her.
“I was the shy, proper girl who did her homework, who didn’t talk in class and TJ always sat by me in class,” said Tossy. “One time when he was poking me, I turned around and threatened to stab him with my pencil because I had had enough of him bugging me!”
That encounter was the beginning of something that blossomed into a romance lasting three years, so far.
“He really spoiled me in Spain….That trip was something between the two of us that we can relate to and was special that we’ve done,” Anna said.
In addition to the search for love stories, the Alumni Office is also trying to identify all alumni; whether they were part of sports, music, or student government.
“We hope a lot of alumni will return to campus to help us celebrate this significant time in Jones’s history,” said Ramagos.
There will be several celebrations on campus that will include a variety of alumni and friends who participated in different groups and organizations while they attended JCJC over the years. A complete list of activities will be released over the summer. For more information call or email the office at 601-477-4145 or email@example.com.