A string of serendipitous events led Josh Wisch and Malia Dicksion to Carnegie Mellon University — and to each other.
Josh, a 1997 graduate of the Dietrich College for Humanities and Social Sciences and Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy, grew up in a small Ohio town that’s big on Pittsburgh sports. A 1999 graduate of the College of Fine Arts, Malia was born and raised 6,000 miles away in Hawaii.
They met during an orientation session in 1996. Josh, the community advisor for Doherty Apartments, was assigned to train the new, idealistic resident assistant, who had applied to CMU on a whim. Years before, her older brother had received a brochure from the institution, and the word “Mellon” amused her enough to be memorable.
“I got a scholarship and convinced my parents to let me go there,” says Malia, who only had a vague idea of where Pittsburgh was located at the time. “I didn’t do a college tour; I just accepted and showed up for orientation.”
The pair instantly hit it off, but they didn’t start dating until May 19, 1997, the day Josh graduated with honors.