Former editors Tommy and Jessie Collins are proof that Hilltop Views doesn’t just produce news, but apparently romances, too.

The couple met almost a decade ago when Tommy was working at HV as sports editor and Jessie as viewpoints editor. Although they both tell the story a little differently, the common thread is HV’s current faculty advisor, Jena Heath, who supported the couple throughout their years at the university.

While they were working at HV, Tommy and Jessie’s exchanges were not sweet. Tommy had been promoted to editor in chief and was in charge of making sure the paper ran smoothly. According to the couple, Jessie “missed her deadlines a lot,” provoking more headaches than romantic yearnings in her colleague.

“I had always thought he was incredibly handsome even though I drove him insane,” Jessie said.

It was shortly after Jessie graduated when the pair’s future began to foment. In August of 2009, Tommy was about to begin his last semester at St. Edward’s and he’d reached out to Heath to talk about what the newspaper would be like in the months following.

Tommy recounted to Heath his run-in with a bee, that, according to him, “was not a big deal.” He had been stung and had an allergic reaction, which, although not nearly as close-to-fatal as Heath would later describe, turned out to be incredibly fateful.

According to the couple, Heath had relayed her slightly exaggerated version of the bee-sting story to Jessie, suggesting that Tommy was in a precarious state. Jessie thought it serious enough to reach out to Tommy, who she hadn’t spoken to since her graduation several months prior, and the two began dating shortly after.

“[Heath] was stirring the pot a little bit I think,” Tommy said. “I guess she saw something in both of us that was compatible, something that hadn’t occurred to us while working together for a couple years, but clearly she was right.”

Both Tommy and Jessie also credit their former advisor Michele Kay, who had encouraged them to get involved with the paper, and their experiences at HV have carried into their professional lives as well. Now Tommy divides his time between teaching English at the Austin Tennis Academy and running a tech startup called mytennislessons.com, an online marketplace that connects Tennis players to coaches all around the country and Jessie is the Director of Communications for The Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in Austin.

“Writing defined college for me and it has now defined my career,” Jessie said. “[Tommy and I ] are both in some ways still writing and still very awkwardly laughing about the way we got together.”

The couple has a daughter named Amelia, who will be two in March. Above all, they credit Jena’s influence and Hilltop Views for leading them to where they are today: happily married for nearly three years.

“Jena really and truly is the reason that I reached out to Tommy. She’s the reason that I dated and then married him,” Jessie said. “Basically my newspaper advisors have determined the course of my entire life.”