AC students put school, work before romantic pursuits

By D Hill

Page Editor

Many students say they meet their spouses in college. However, AC students say they’re too busy to date.

“Dating has changed and remained the same,” said Beth Rodriguez, a psychology professor and the program coordinator of behavioral science. “It really depends on age, culture and family lifestyle. There is definitely online dating for younger adults in the workforce.”

Dating trends change from generation to generation, but not all college students are looking for romantic relationships. Many have mixed feelings about dating at all.

“I think it’s either really good or really bad.” Daphne Ervin, an environmental science major, said.

Some students just see dating as a hassle.

“Dating in college makes for very complicated college life,” Elena Munoz, an engineering major, said. “So, college for me is just my life right now, and if I had a relationship, I feel like I would either focus too much on my relationship and not enough on college or vice versa.”

Some AC professors see the college years as an ideal time for dating.

“I think dating in college is very important,” Vanessa Miles, an engineering professor, said. “I mean, it’s part of life. What better place than a college campus to date and find your future spouse. You all are trying to better yourself in a learning environment, and so I think it’s a perfect place to find what and who you’re supposed to connect with. I have three daughters. All of them dated in college,” she said.

Some experts say college students have unrealistic opinions about romantic relationships.

“They think it should be like the movies. They often have an idealistic point-of-view of how a relationship should work or they don’t even get out in the world and meet new people,” Rodriguez said.

Plus, dating takes time, which is something most students don’t have. Miles said balancing school and dating requires the correct approach.

“I believe that regardless of whether it’s an intimate relationship or just a relationship with teammates in class, that’s an additional person is in your space,” Miles said. “You have to find a way to balance that. So, yes, relationships are going to exert some amount of stress, but at the end of the day, you have to set boundaries, whether you have boundaries with teachers, classmates, significant others or parents. Say, ‘hey, these are my boundaries’ and just let folks know when they’ve crossed your boundaries.”

Rodriguez has some tips for dating in college. She encourages students to look for partners with similarities and common morals and goals. “Be realistic and take your time,” she says. “Dating is hard, and it’s work.”

Rodriguez offered a few more guidelines for people pursuing romantic relationships. “Treat people the way you want to be treated. Communication is also very important. Have safe sex and get tested for STDs.”

Miles said that despite students’ reluctance to date, they should take a leap and make an effort.

“Love makes the world go around,” she said. “It is so important to find loving relationships, regardless of who we fall in love with. Love has no color; love has no boundaries and love conquers all. I am a proponent of love.”

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