Vincent Mui ’06 (Visual Arts) and Aimee Babcock-Ellis ’07 (Communication) are among a long list of SUNY New Paltz sweethearts. While they won’t be married in time to participate in the Re●Union vow renewal ceremony on Oct. 18, the recently engaged couple decided to mark their joyous occasion with a special photo shoot at the place where it all started: SUNY New Paltz.
Babcock-Ellis and Mui met for the first time in spring 2005 at an Asian Student Association meeting. Babcock-Ellis was a freshman, and Mui was a junior.
“As a Korean adoptee in an Anglo-American family in a rural area outside of Albany, I was nervous going to a meeting (of the Asian Student Association),” said Babcock-Ellis. “I did not have much experience with Asian-Americans who weren’t adopted. Vincent is from New York City, and went to a high school with a huge Asian-American student population.”
Adds Mui, “I went to a high school where the majority of people were Asian, so I had some culture shock when I went to New Paltz. Aimee said she noticed me in the ASA meeting because she thought I was funny.”
Babcock-Ellis, who went on to earn her Master’s in Library Science from the University of Maryland, worked at the information desk in the Sojourner Truth Library (STL) while she was a student, and Mui would come visit her during her shifts. The couple thought the STL would be the perfect location for their engagement photos, and on July 18, they returned to campus with photographer and fellow SUNY New Paltz alum Hendrick Moy ’03 (Organizational Communication).
After months of planning his proposal and throwing her a few decoys, Mui brought Babcock-Ellis to his favorite bar one afternoon, leading her to believe they were meeting friends for lunch.
“As we walked past the bar’s window, Aimee thought it was odd that there was a string trio set up,” says Mui. But, little did she know, he had booked the trio months in advance. “When we went inside, our friends greeted us, and I told Aimee we should go into the back room where the string trio was, but she didn’t want to go because she thought someone was having a special event. I told her that the string trio was for her, and she didn’t believe me.”
After the string trio played “Call Me Maybe,” Mui proposed, and he and his new fiancée enjoyed a private concert, much to the confusion of the other bar patrons.
Babcock-Ellis now works at the National Institutes of Health in Rockville, Md., as a program specialist. Mui is a graphic designer for a small marketing firm in Virginia.
“I will be forever grateful to STL at New Paltz, as it has shaped my whole career,” says Babcock-Ellis. “The librarians at STL who I worked with encouraged me to apply for scholarships and told me about their graduate school experiences. Because of their guidance, I was able to receive a Spectrum Scholarship from the American Library Association in 2007 and numerous other scholarships in graduate school.”
For more of Moy’s photography, visit hendrickmoyphotography.com.