Making commitments now for the years to come

Making commitments now for the years to come

by John Jacobsen

Despite the cost of weddings being on the rise and the difficult task of managing busy class and work schedules, many students see college as a good time to get engaged. While some see graduation as a time to start fresh with new people and places, others plan to start off that phase of their lives with that special someone they’ve dated in college.

“A couple months before graduation we tend to see a surge in student activity,” said Chuck Kuba, owner of Iowa Diamond in Des Moines. Though Kuba said that national average age for engagements is 27, this age tends to be a little lower in the Midwest.

Juniors Bryan Llyod and Trisha Buckley have gotten an early start on planning for a wedding after graduation. “Because of everything that Trisha and I have been through together, it just seemed like the right time to make this decision,” Lloyd said.

Some couples choose to have a wedding right after college because it seems to be the most practical and ideal time. “Economically it is a good time and it is works out really well that all of our friends will still be around to come to the wedding,” senior Justin Song said.

Planning is a key to successful and happy wedding. “The average engagement lasts 13 months,” Kuba said.

As the time draws near for Song, he says he is relieved that much of the planing is complete.

“It was kind of hectic in the beginning, but now everything is pretty much finalized except for the final guest list and tuxedos,” said Song, of his upcoming July wedding.

With the pressure of classes and preparing for a wedding, some might believe it is too much to balance.

“It really doesn’t take up a whole lot of time yet. We have done a lot of the preparation while we are at home,” Lloyd said.

“Bryan and I are doing all the planning, but we are still taking opinions from our parents since they will be paying for some of the expenses,” Buckley said.

Lloyd and Buckley’s wedding is set for June of 2003, making it impossible to reserve and schedule some portions of the wedding. “Because our wedding is still over a year away we can’t reserve Great Hall or Smith Chapel yet,” Lloyd said.

With only a sparse income during college and the average wedding costing $19,000 it is a good idea to examine what you can afford when planning athe event.

“The first thing is to try and get an idea of what you can afford right now. Students should take into consideration what they will do for a living before they decide to purchase a ring or anything else,” Kuba said.

For many the ring is a statement of the love shared between two people. “I looked around at rings quite a bit before I decided on a diamond,” Lloyd said.

For such a large purchase it is always best to understand what you are buying. “At Iowa Diamond we try to get the customer on a level playing field. If people are going to spend thousands of dollars you should know what you are getting,” Kuba said.

Kuba advises customers to never buy a diamond that is already in a setting because there may be hidden flaws in the stone.

“I can’t stress enough that when you are making a decision to buy a ring, use your eyes and not just the description, Kuba said.