||The campus love connection
More than one in seven alumni "married to an alum"
RELEASED: Oct. 30, 2003
DANVILLE, KYDating is a hot topic at Centre College. Depending on whom you ask, the opinion of Centre dating can vary.
"I think the definition of dating in college becomes hazy because you are in such close quarters that you see each other much more than you did in high school," said one sophomore who is currently in a relationship of seven months. "This isn't necessarily bad, but when everyone has different views of dating, it can get a little tricky."
"Centre is conducive for couples becoming serious but maybe not for meeting in the first place," said a senior guy while seated across from his fiancée.
Despite varying opinions on the Centre dating scene, four trends could be agreed upon by a majority of students.
The dining hall tradition A practice almost as old as Centre, the infrequency of mixed-gender seating at Cowan Dining Commons seems to influence Centre relationships. While some claim that they prefer the seating situation because it allows them to spend quality time with their friends, others admit that they would probably eat more with their significant others if the seating wasn't as segregated. "When I first started eating meals with my boyfriend, I felt a little alienated, but now I just don't care," said a senior girl. "I want to sit with him, so I do."
The Weekend Party Scene Many Centre relationships don't start in the classroom or dining hall but instead at the Friday or Saturday night party. "Honestly, I know a lot of my friends started dating their boyfriends after hooking up on the dance floor at a party one weekend," said one senior girl who is newly single. Whether this trend is pervasive or not, the Centre party scene does appear to be a focal point of Centre dating. "It's definitely more fun to go to parties if you have a girlfriend, because there's less pressure" said one committed senior guy.
The Greek Factor Dating trends and traditions seem to be influenced by Centre students who are involved with sororities or fraternities. On one hand, Greek life openly promotes dating with date events, such as homecoming dinners, costume "crushes" and formal events. On the other hand, some students say that their activities with their fraternity brothers or sorority sisters can become a detriment to having serious relationships. "I think a lot of guys might be opposed to dating just because their fraternity brothers think dating someone might take them away from each other," said one independent male who is single.
The Convo Date vs. the Lexington Date While there is some debate on whether many couples really go on dates to convocations, it does appear to be a dating option for students. "It's an easy and inexpensive way to spend time with someone you're interested in," said one senior female who is currently dating, "I saw a lot of couples at Porgy and Bess, which is typical of most of the College's Norton Center events." However, students overwhelmingly agree upon the Lexington date as a popular Centre date. "When you go on a date to Lexington, it doesn't mean you're serious, but it's definitely a step in that direction," said one upper-class male who is in a two-year relationship. Most students agreed that going to Lexington was a "real" date rather than going to a convo or going out to eat in Danville.
Students must be doing something right on the Centre dating scene as it's not uncommon for Centre students to tie the knot after graduation. According to research by Beau Weston, associate professor of sociology at the College, there are 780 married alumni couples. That means 1,560 individuals out of 10,840 living alumni marry a fellow studentmore than one in every seven alumni.
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