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Parents of graduating triplets race to take it all in

Tiplets (from left) Seth, Lauren and Jordan Muchnick

Click here for low-resolution video from UD’s 155th Commencement. 

Click here for high-resolution video from UD’s 155th Commencement.

Click here for Commencement 2004 photo album.

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About UD’s 155th Commencement

Graduation numbers

Academic regalia

Why a mace?

Signs of the times

Commencements past
4:39 p.m., May 29, 2004--The family of Judy and Steve Muchnick of Ft. Washington, Pa., should have considered wearing sneakers to Saturday’s Commencement. After all, they did their own version of the 50-yard dash in their effort to attend ceremonies for each of their triplets, who graduated together from the University May 29.

Lauren Beth and Jordan Blake Muchnick received bachelor of science degrees in business administration from the Lerner College of Business and Economics, in the fields of management and operations management, respectively; Seth Ryan Muchnick received a bachelor of science degree in food and agribusiness management from the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Lauren and Jordan also minored in management information systems (MIS).

Earlier this month, Judy Muchnick looked at the Commencement schedule and knew she had a dilemma. Lauren and Jordan’s convocation was scheduled for 11 a.m., Saturday, at the Bob Carpenter Center; Seth’s convocation was at 11:30 a.m. at the Carpenter Sports Building.

Muchnick said she immediately called University President David Roselle and asked for his assistance. “He couldn’t have been more sympathetic,” Muchnick recalled. “He said he would do whatever he could to help us get to both convocations.”

Roselle’s solution was to obtain box seats for Judy and Steve Muchnick and 15 extended family members so that they could quickly get in and out of the ceremonies. And, even more importantly, he saw to it that Lauren and Jordan’s names were announced first at their convocation, while Seth’s name was called last at his.

Even Steve’s 83-year-old parents, Sydney and Lucille Muchnick, were game to hop in the car and go on the mad dash from event to event.

“I’m only getting to do this once,” Judy Muchnick, who has no other children, said. “It was very important for me to be able to participate in every aspect of the day.”

It’s a bit ironic that all the Muchnick triplets ended up at UD. “Although we’re a close family, I did not want to go to the same college as my brothers,” Lauren said. “We graduated from a small high school in Huntingdon Valley, Pa., before my parents moved to Ft. Washington. Everyone knew everyone in Huntingdon Valley; I wanted to go to a large school and be more independent.”

Judy Muchnick had always heard good things about UD, so she brought the triplets here for a visit while they were high school seniors.

“I instantly fell in love with the place; I thought the campus was so beautiful,” Lauren said. “I remember telling my brothers: ‘This is my school. You can go somewhere else!’”

A few weeks after the visit, Jordan told Lauren how much he liked UD. So, she “relented” and told him he could attend, too, she recently recalled, with a laugh.

By sophomore year, Seth had transferred to the University. In their first years here, the Muchnick triplets were focused on spreading their wings and didn’t see each other frequently. But, as upperclassmen, they said they got together more, especially Jordan and Lauren, who lived three doors away from each other in apartments on Cleveland Avenue.

Seth, who was born first, wasn’t in any classes with his siblings. But Lauren, who was born seven minutes after Seth, and Jordan, who was born seven minutes after Lauren, attended several business classes together.

In terms of tastes and preferences, Seth said he and Jordan and Lauren aren’t any more similar than any set of siblings. “Jordan and I like the same kind of music, but there are also a lot of ways that we are different,” Seth said.

They’ve never gone on double—or triple dates—with each other. “No way!” Jordan said, adding that each triplet had separate sets of friends at UD.

But, each Muchnick triplet also knew he or she had two siblings who could be relied on. “If I ever needed help, it was nice to know that Jordan was just three doors away,” Lauren said.

After graduation, the triplets will return home to Ft. Washington as they begin the next stage of their lives. Seth has accepted an outside sales position with Empire Marketing and begins work June 1. Jordan has a job offer that is currently in the final stages of negotiation. And, Lauren has taken a summer position in retail sales.

A few days before Commencement, Lauren reminisced about the good times she had as an undergraduate and what a special place the University has become to her. “I made friends here who I know will be my friends forever,” Lauren said.

She said she will miss frequent trips with her buddies to Pita Pocket and DP Dough on Main Street and “simply walking around the beautiful campus.”

Jordan echoed Lauren’s sentiments about the campus ambiance. “I liked my classes, the teachers were really good. But, the overall campus atmosphere—the look of the University—is what I liked the very most,” Jordan said.

Being in a small college at a large university was one of the things Seth said he enjoyed about UD. “I had small classes in the College of Ag, so I developed great relationships with the professors,” he noted.

Although Lauren, Jordan and Seth said they will miss much about their University experience, there’s one thing Judy and Steve Muchnick won’t miss: triple tuition bills.

“I put smiley faces on the very last check I wrote to the University,” Judy Muchnick said. “It’s great to have that behind us.”

By Margo McDonough
Photo by Kathy Atkinson

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