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In the Loop
Alumni News : Feb 14, 2019

Art of Love: Jennifer and Joel Berman

By Emma Friedman (BFA Acting '22)

Jennifer and Joel Berman’s love story began in the Music Building where they were both in Gator Band.

Jennifer (BSESS ‘99) recalls the moment they first met during the fall of 1995.

“A mutual friend of ours asked him for a quarter to ride the Commuter Bus,” Jennifer said. “When he said no, our friend told him the quarter was for me, so Joel told him "well then I'll give her a quarter".”

At first Jennifer thought he was a “wise guy” with “a very smart mouth”. Little did she know the “wise guy” with “a very smart mouth” would soon become the love of her life.

After being “15 minutes too late” to ask Jennifer out, as another guy had already done so, Joel (BS Mathematics ‘99, MED ‘00) and Jennifer remained friends during the spring and summer of 1996.

Their love story advanced in the fall of 1996 when they returned to the University of Florida for the new semester. Joel asked Jennifer out and they went on their first date.

“She was so nervous, she brought her friend along with her,” Joel said.

From then on, the Bermans were inseparable. Throughout their studies at UF, they were able spend a lot of time together during many games and trips with the marching, volleyball and basketball bands. They were both members of a service sorority and fraternity and attended many conventions and events together.

The Christmas following their graduation, Joel got down on one knee and popped the question in front of Jennifer’s entire family. Jennifer said yes and the two tied the knot on March 17, 2000.

The diehard Gator fans currently reside in Oviedo, Florida, with their daughter Emelia and son Noah, who hopes to follow in his parents’ footsteps and be in the Gator Band. Joel works at Valencia College as a tenured math professor and Jennifer, having worked in the medical field since graduating, currently works for LiceDoctors.

“We both enjoy going to Gator Football games,” they said. “Especially Gator Band Alumni weekend, where we catch up with friends and reminisce on all the good times we spent together in Gainesville.”