By Megan Ann Williams
Just hearing the phrase “potluck roommate” can send chills through any high school senior. Many young students wait in anxious anticipation to see who they will be paired with for a roommate in their freshman year of college. Unfortunately, as that first year goes on, students tend to collect more horror stories rather than fond memories of their freshman roommate.
When Maizeanne Scarpati of Houston and Nincy Mathew of Mesquite first moved into Room 287 in North Russell in August 2007, both had their fair share of worries about the roommate situation. Neither one could have imagined that four years later they would still be great friends.
“I didn’t expect to be paired with someone as different as Maizeanne,” said Mathew of her friend. Both students went potluck their freshman year and were surprised to find out that a “tomboy,” Mathew, had been placed with a “girly girl,” Scarpati. When they moved into North Russell, the girls were quick to notice all of their differences – from hobbies to comforters to majors.
The extreme dissimilarities in their taste “defined our relationship of how opposite we were,” Scarpati said. Despite the physical contrast between Scarpati’s “enormous pink and blue organizers” and Mathew’s black milk crates, it didn’t take long for the girls to find out just how similar they really were. “We had many late nights laughing and crying in North Russell 287’s twin beds.”
Scarpati entered Baylor as a fashion merchandising major, while Mathew was studying to become a doctor – or so they thought. Through self-exploration, they discovered who they were supposed to be. In the end, Scarpati graduated with her degree in international studies, and Mathew earned a degree in journalism.
Mathew and Scarpati would continue to live together for the duration of their Baylor experience. “Our friends knew us as the girls that were always baking cookies, eating cookie dough, or watching reality shows.” While they made new friends, joined different sororities, and changed their majors a couple of times, their friendship did not suffer. They took care of each other through the good times and the bad, and now they have continued their friendship despite living far apart.
Upon graduation in May 2011, both girls were sad to see each other go. “Though there were withdrawal symptoms at first, we are surviving,” Mathew said. Currently Scarpati is working as the youth minister at St. Cuthbert Episcopal Church in Houston, and Mathew is working for Research Now in Plano.
One of the most challenging things about Scarpati and Mathew’s relationship is maintaining their friendship since walking across the stage at the Ferrell Center. “It’s definitely difficult since we live in different cities and work full time, but we make an effort to communicate through e-mail, text, Skype, or phone,” Mathew said. “It takes effort to keep in touch, but thankfully, there’s so many different ways to do it. We probably talk at least once a week.”
Scarpati also recognizes the importance of maintaining her relationship with her Baylor friend. “We know each other better than most people, and we have God in the middle of our relationship. I know Nincy will give me Godly wisdom and accountability. She has seen all of my highs and lows, so she has better advice than most people cause she has watched me grow.”
The girls plan on returning to Baylor for football games and Homecoming. When asked what tools help them stay connected to their university, they replied, “The alumni association definitely helps!” Pot “luck” brought these two opposites together, and they hope that nothing tears them apart.