Audra Thielen (BFA Music ‘16) met Sam Hendley (BS Physics ‘16) met in the orchestra and cello studio while at the University of Florida. Thielen and Hendley have been together for two years.
Thielen and Hendley met during their first year at UF, they were friends for two years before they closer after working with the Gainesville Orchestra as stand partners.
“Music first brought us together, and we spent a lot of time playing duets after rehearsals together and attending each other’s performances,” Thielen said.
Hendley was also Albert, UF’s alligator mascot, for 3 years while he was attending UF. Although Thielen had never been a sports fan, Hendley taught her the fun behind Gator games. When Thielen wasn’t supporting her boyfriend by attending the games he performed as Albert at, they both were in the crowd together cheering on the Gators.
When the two are not playing cello duets together, they enjoy going to Disney, Gator games when they visit Gainesville, and playing with Thielen’s dog, Albert. Thielen currently lives in Lakeland, Florida where she is working toward a second degree in nursing. Hendley is a Ph.D. student in medical physics at the University of Chicago.
“The University of Florida is such a special place to us and holds many of our fondest memories,” said Thielen. “We are both so lucky to have had the opportunity to get a wonderful education, have unforgettable performance experiences, and to fall in love at UF. Without the College of the Arts, we definitely would not be where we are today!”