Abington couple unites two Penn State families

Aly Mullen and Jimmy Link outside of the Sutherland Building at Penn State Abington

Aly Mullen and Jimmy Link, both class of 2019, celebrated their engagement with a photo shoot where their relationship started — on the Penn State Abington campus.

Credit: Penn State

ABINGTON, Pa. — When Jimmy Link and Aly Mullen walk down the aisle on June 8, it will be the culmination of a love story that began along Penn State Abington’s tree-lined walkways. The ceremony will also unite two clans with deep ties to Penn State. Their parents and siblings graduated from University Park, and, except for Aly’s mom and brother, the family members were enrolled at Abington at some point. 

Link and Mullen met as official campus tour guides known as the Lion Ambassadors (LAs), and they remained friends after graduating from Abington in 2019. Their group of LAs went out together at least once a month.  

“I wanted to go out with just Aly, and it took a little while, but I eventually asked her out in April 2022,” said Link, who earned a degree in business

Things moved quickly, and eight months later on a rainy weekend morning, Link invited Mullen to go out for breakfast near the campus and some Christmas shopping. They wrapped up the day with a “surprise” visit to campus to walk off some calories. 

“I was wondering where to propose, and I decided that the corniest spot, but the best spot, would be at Abington where it all started,” Link said. 

He took Mullen on a “tour” as if she was a prospective student.  

“I told her about this girl I met at Penn State Abington, and I pointed out different places and the memories that we had at each spot. At the end, I asked Aly if she had any questions for me, like we would do when we were LAs. She asked me how much did I love this girl? I said 'I love her so much,' and I got down on one knee in front of the lion shrine. Aly’s first words were, ‘No way,’“ Link laughed. “We had known each other so long at that point, and it felt so natural."

Former LAs are on the wedding invitation list, and the couple recommended that current students apply for become campus tour guides.

“You will meet such a great group of people and give back to Penn State Abington, and it also helps you develop leadership skills,” Link said. 

Mullen described herself as incredibly shy before joining the LAs, even though she had served as an orientation leader and on the student activity fee board, and she had completed an internship. 

“The LAs gave me a chance to break out my shell by speaking to parents and prospective students. I was so afraid of public speaking before I joined. I even met some of my best friends in the LAs,” said Mullen, who earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting at Abington and a master’s in accounting at University Park in 2020.

The pair both said they miss being on campus, which they chose because it allowed them to save money and continue working nearby. Also, graduating from Penn State is a family tradition. 

“I chose Abington because I wanted to stay close to home, and it was the best fit for me,” said Mullen, who is a senior assurance associate at the consulting firm RSM. 

With their wedding quickly approaching, the couple has settled about 20 minutes from Abington in Bensalem, Bucks County. 

“I have always loved the Penn State Abington, and the people on campus,” Link said. 

About Penn State Abington 

Penn State Abington provides an affordable, accessible and high-impact education resulting in the success of a diverse student body. It is committed to student success through innovative approaches to 21st-century public higher education within a world-class research university. With more than 3,100 students, Penn State Abington is a residential campus that offers baccalaureate degrees in 25 majors, accelerated master's degrees, undergraduate research, the Schreyer Honors College, NCAA Division III athletics and more.