Graduation ceremony interrupted by shock marriage proposal

Why does everyone keep doing this?

Finalists at a graduation ceremony yesterday were left stunned by an on-stage marriage proposal.

Visibly nervous International Marketing and Management graduate, Ian Ying, took to the stage at the end of an otherwise-ordinary ceremony at Southampton Uni.

Addressing the audience, he said: “I’m standing here, because I have something to say, to a very important person in my life.”

In front of the MA graduates in the Faculty of Business & Law, he said: “Southampton University is a magic place. They open the gates to students from all over the world. So people living thousands miles away will have a chance to meet each other.”

“And there was a girl who came into my life and has changed many of myself and now I have lived a happier life than I ever have.”

“When we first met she said I have a very strange looking face. But here we are, dating almost two years. We lived together, started together, and both have got our degrees.”

He then asks his girlfriend of two years, Chloe Ou, to join him on stage, to the excitement of the audience. He can be heard whispering “It’s okay” as she sheepishly joins him on stage.

He continued, to Chloe: “I know we live in different cities and people will say that long distance relationships can be really hard.”

“I know you are the only one, and I want to spend the rest of my life with you, because I love you.”

The gathered crowd could no longer contain their excitement, and he pops the question.

Vice-Chancellor Don Nutbeam then approached the couple and said it was “very brave of him”.

Nutbeam, presiding over his last graduation ceremony before retirement, returned to the podium, commenting that the proposal was “a first” after “doing graduation ceremonies for 25 years”.

Bride-to-be Chloe told The Tab: “We met in pre-sessional course and we are classmates.

“I didn’t expect anything for that I was totally in shock.

“Our friends seem very excited and we are being congratulated all day long.”

Union President Ben Franklin said: “Luckily all of us on stage had been told beforehand, but it was really tense waiting to see if she’d say yes!

“I could feel myself grinning from ear to ear, I’m a hopeless romantic and it was like living in a romcom!”

Footage of the proposal can be seen in the 2:15 ceremony stream at around 32:15.