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Penn State Love Stories: Love At The SNAP Of A Finger

Each year, Penn State’s chapter of Student Nurses’ Association of Pennsylvania (SNAP) helps nursing students find the niche they’ve been looking for at a school as big as Penn State. From always having a buddy to sit next to in class to being able to attend various social events through the organization, it’s no wonder so many students enjoy being involved in the program. For Amanda Baldwin and Will Watson, enrolling in the same major brought them something even more incredible than they could have imagined.

Baldwin was a sophomore nursing student working SNAP’s 2014 blood drive when Watson first struck up a conversation with her. Though they had never actually met, Watson found the perfect way to approach the situation — he happened to know in advance the two would be on the same canning trip that weekend.

“[Will] played it cool by approaching me and asking about a quiz that needed to be completed for our nursing class,” Baldwin said. “I had no idea that he was even in nursing with me until he approached me that day.”

After chatting for a while, the two “realized” they had been placed on the same canning trip. Watson’s plan had officially worked — the two exchanged numbers so they could arrange rides for the trip. Little did they know the fateful introduction changed their lives forever.

Amanda Baldwin and Will Watson during a Penn State football game, one of the couple's favorite things to go to together.
Amanda Baldwin and Will Watson during a Penn State football game, one of the couple’s favorite things to go to together. (Photo: Amanda Baldwin)

Baldwin and Watson hit it off during the trip, enjoying each other’s company more and more as the weekend went on. The two meshed so well that others couldn’t help but sense the growing chemistry.

My roommate Mallory declared that he definitely liked me,” Baldwin said.

And as trusted friends often are, she was right. Watson asked Baldwin out on a dinner date to Cozy Thai and to watch a movie at his apartment just a few days later. The connection was undeniable, and on the way home from their date, Watson found the perfect moment to take the next step.

“I gave him a hug goodbye and he pulled me back to kiss him as I tried to walk away,” Baldwin said. “From there, we began hanging out on a daily basis, and within a month, we were officially a couple.”

They did everything together. Tailgates, football games, formals, SNAP events, and THON ensured the couple always had something fun to do together. Despite this, their relationship came to a halt when the couple split after dating for their entire sophomore year.

As the saying goes, what’s meant to be will always be. After some time spent apart, shared classes helped Baldwin and Watson reconnect at the start of their junior year.

“Around Thanksgiving time, we decided to go get dinner together after class to catch up because we both missed each other’s friendships,” Baldwin said. “By the time finals came along, we both confessed to how much we had missed each other and wanted to try dating again. We basically picked up where we left off the summer prior and have been together since.”

After graduating last May, both Baldwin and Watson pursued their dreams and began careers as registered nurses. Baldwin secured a job working in the neonatal intensive care unit at Hershey Medical center, while Watson currently resides just an hour away working at Lehigh Valley Health Network in a mixed adult intensive care unit. Though they do not work in the same area, their connection remains stronger than ever.

“We are always making plans for a month or two ahead and I think that helps a lot, having things to look forward to together,” Baldwin said. “We have 21 Pilots tickets for January and can’t wait!” They also created a “Big 10 Bucket List,” which involves seeing Penn State play football at each Big 10 stadium.

When they’re apart, Baldwin and Watson make sure to text, Snapchat, and FaceTime whenever possible. Setting aside bits of time each day helps the couple stay involved in each other’s lives despite the distance.

“It’s always a great time when we get to spend a few days together.”

About the Author

Claire Fountas

Claire Fountas is the student life editor for Onward State, as well as a junior pursuing a double major in journalism and psychology. She lives in a suburb of Chicago and strongly disagrees with anyone who hates the Cubs or the Blackhawks (so, pretty much anyone at Penn State). You can follow her @ClaireFountas or email her at [email protected]

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