Twinning: Three sets of senior twins look back

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Erin O'Neill, Reporter

Twins often share many things: birthdays, friends and memories, and sometimes they choose to share the same college.

For seniors Danielle and Paul Zerr and seniors Taylor and Reilly Trieloff, this is the case. While neither of these sets of twins initially planned on going to the same college, they both ultimately chose identical schools.

Danielle described that while it wasn’t a requirement for her and Paul to attend Indiana University together in the fall, it will be a convenience. She said, “We both knew what we wanted when looking for a college, it just coincidentally turned out to be the same one.”

Danielle added, “I haven’t cared much whether or not he would go to IU with me because I knew we would rarely see each other.”

Taylor and Reilly have each chosen to attend Purdue University next year. Reilly said, “We visited the same schools, but I ended up choosing between Purdue and Marquette, and Taylor didn’t even apply to Marquette.”

Taylor said, “We were both looking at pretty much the same schools, and it just ended up that Purdue was the best fit for both of us. I’m glad we will be at the same school next year.”

Taylor said, “(Attending the same college) was not a requirement, but my parents are very glad we picked the same school; it will be much easier for them. It would be sad if we were far away from each other.”

Reilly said, “I am super glad we are going to the same school because I know that I’d miss her a lot if I was four hours away.”

Reilly also added, “Purdue is just the best fit for both of us. Taylor is doing nursing and I’m doing pre-physical therapy, and Purdue is a good school for both of us.” Reilly also said that they “fell in love with the campus and the environment” at Purdue.

One thing that the Trieloffs will not share next year is a dorm. Reilly said, “We never wanted to room together, because that’s what we’ve done our entire lives. It’d be fun to be in the same dorm or sorority, though.”

Taylor added, “We’ve roomed together our whole lives so it will be weird but good that we aren’t rooming together next year.”

Unlike the Trieloffs and Zerrs, seniors Bailey and Riley McHugh have decided to attend different universities in the fall. Bailey will go to Indiana University, while Riley will head to Wisconsin to attend Marquette University.

Although Riley and Bailey have gone to school together their whole lives, they didn’t think they would end up at the same college. Bailey said, “We are different people, so we expected we would choose to go different places.”

Riley added, “We never thought we would go to (college) together.” Bailey said that while they applied to a few of the same colleges, they ultimately decided they preferred different schools.

These sibling duos all described that having a twin has shaped their high school experience in one way or another.

Paul said, “It has always been nice to have someone there with you through all of high school. Especially for the past two years, it has been nice to know that there is someone in the car with you whenever you want to sleep.” He continued, “I for sure do what I can to one-up Danielle in grades and whatnot, but through that competition I believe I was pushed to take new risks constantly.”

Danielle added, “It hasn’t been the easiest experience, but it’s always nice to have someone to talk to that understands and knows exactly what you are going through.”

Reilly described the best aspect about having a twin in high school. She said, “My favorite part is that I have someone so close to me that experiences the same stuff that I do. We go through and do everything together. We play the same sport and have the same friends, so it’s super fun to be able to go through the same stuff together.”

Taylor expressed similar feelings. She said, “My favorite part has been being able to go through everything together: Sports, school, social life and everything in-between. She’s my built-in bestie.” She added, “Having a homework buddy has been nice.”

Bailey said, “You never lose motivation because you always have someone to challenge you and push you to do your absolute best. It’s nice having Riley around, because she always has a sarcastic comment about everything which helps me get through the long school day.”

Riley expressed the similar idea of always having someone by your side. She said, “You never feel fully alone, which is lucky. Also, I would have never been to school on time if I didn’t have Bailey to play my alarm clock every morning.”

As for looking toward the future, the twins seem to be optimistic.

Reilly said, “Even though we will still be at the same school next year, it’s going to be a big change. I’m very excited to branch out and have people not know that I’m a twin. I love that we won’t be automatically grouped together.” Taylor also described her happiness that she and her sister will have the opportunity to be their own people, but she is still glad they won’t be far apart.

Paul added, “I do not plan to see her at IU because the campus is so big, so hopefully there is not much interlap in our lives.”

Danielle said, “Hopefully, we stay far apart for a while next year. Honestly, I’m looking forward to (having) him struggle without me.”

Bailey and Riley both expressed that next year will be challenging for them as college freshmen. Riley said, “We have never had to be completely independent. We are different, but there is also no person on this planet who knows me better.” She added, “I will not miss her singing voice, though.”

Bailey would agree. She said, “I think since we are both so opposite, it will be an easy adjustment, but I know I will miss her so much. I’m interested to see how things go next year for both of us.”