Thrice as nice: Triplets graduate together from U-M

May 3, 2019
Contact: Fernanda Pires fpires@umich.edu
Three sisters in graduation caps and gowns.

The sisters Abby, Seraphina, and Zoey graduate this weekend. Credit: Rui Zhong.

ANN ARBOR—The graduation celebrations and photo shoots are in full swing for the Provenzano triplets—four ceremonies in total, running all around town to different schools and departments, luckily with no overlaps.

For the official pictures, the sisters—Abby, Seraphina and Zoey—have a rule: the trio lines up in alphabetical order, which matches their birth order.

During the University of Michigan commencement tomorrow at the Big House, once more, they plan to walk and sit together and share joyful moments the same way they have been doing throughout their lives. Soon after, however, they will go their separate ways and live far away from each other for the first time.

Turning 22 this Monday, May 6, the triplets all agreed that this is the perfect time to spread their “own wings.” Abby, a biomolecular science graduate, will move to Boston this fall to pursue a master’s degree in creative writing.

“I am also getting a minor in creative writing here (at U-M) and next semester I start pursuing my dream of writing fiction,” she said.

At the end of May, Seraphina, who studied kinesiology, will head to the University of Wisconsin to pursue a clinical degree in physical therapy. She had hip dysplasia that required surgeries and physical therapy while in high school.

“That drew me to the profession,” she said. “Now, I want to give back and help others.”

Graduating from the Ross School of Business, Zoey is not leaving the state. As soon as she finishes a summer job in Grand Rapids, she will come back to U-M for a master’s degree in accounting.

“We will live away from each other for the next years, but we’ve made a deal,” Zoey said. “Every big holiday, we will go back home to see each other, our parents and recharge the batteries.”

“One of the perks of being a triplet, you go through the same thing at the same time and can help and advise one another”
Zoey Provenzano

Three kid triplets in matching outfits.

The trio grew up in Alma, Michigan. Credit: Personal Archive

Growing up, the triplets always had one another to lean on. When it was time for college, it was no surprise they all decided on the same school. The trio only applied to Michigan, where their parents met as undergrads.

“It was a dream to come here,” Abby said. “We were early action and decided to apply together and see what would happen.”

Laughing at each other, the triplets remember the day they were accepted at U-M.

“I was the first one to get the email,” Zoey said.

“A few minutes later, it was my turn and I was so happy,” Abby added.

Seraphina though was refreshing her inbox for almost an hour.

“I didn’t get a rejection email, so I was not sure what was going on and was freaking out,” she said. “It was the longest hour ever until we were all able to celebrate together.”

Having not only one, but two sisters on campus helped them adjust to college life.

“One of the perks of being a triplet, you go through the same thing at the same time and can help and advise one another,” Zoey said.

During the academic years, the trio, who followed quite different academic paths and lived in separate houses, was often busy but still made time to see each other.”At least once a week, we would meet,” Abby said. “And several times, we would bump into each other around campus by luck. This is a big campus. So we were able to find our own areas of studies, own jobs and have different experiences, but we were close enough to still hang out and see each other.”

Special events, like Seraphina’s concerts, were mandatory.

“Seraphina is also a musician. We always supported each other and wouldn’t miss our sister’s performances,” said Abby and Zoey.

Sisters in caps and gowns walking away from camera.

Triplets will celebrate graduation together at the Big House. Credit: Rui Zhong.

Geography will separate them for now, however, they believe they will eventually end up in the same place.

“My sisters broke away from our original plan when they decided to go to other states,” Zoey said. “But I know we will live close by again because we are really close.”

Meanwhile, they say that no matter where they are, they’ll always have each other’s backs and carry with them the same pride of being a Michigan Wolverine.