Hotspots for finding dates & mates

From clubs to class, the Journal Copy Editor Catherine Owsik examines the most popular meeting spots for students

Bars, school clubs and online are among the most common places for students to find dates.
Bars, school clubs and online are among the most common places for students to find dates.
Photo: 
Nightclubs can be the place for both hookups and budding romances, a student says.
Nightclubs can be the place for both hookups and budding romances, a student says.
Photo: 

Let’s face it, a lot of the romance on a university campus can be lost in the large classes, the incessant technology and the hunt of finding someone you can actually relate to.

Yet somehow, amidst all this, relationships are forming all the time.

With this in mind, I narrowed down the most popular ways Queen’s kids are meeting.

Online

Unlike in high school, many of the classes students take at Queen’s showcase hundreds of their peers, which can make meeting someone new pretty intimidating.

According to Sidney Eve Matrix, assistant professor of media and film at Queen’s, social media plays a vital role in connecting students both inside and out of the classroom.

“It’s a hugely positive thing … It personalizes the classroom and pulls people closer together,” Matrix said. “It really helps make those large classrooms feel more intimate.” The trend towards instant intimacy is epitomized by the website likealittle.com, which is based solely on students flirting with strangers they see around campus.

This past December the site became instantly popular in libraries where students were often more focused on those around them rather than the exam notes in front of them.

“A post came up describing what I was wearing and sitting where we were [in Stauffer], and so once I came to the conclusion that none of my friends had written it, I messaged them back,” a second-year student said, adding that the messages stopped by the time second semester began.

“Eventually I stopped messaging because I thought it was kind of pointless to carry on a relationship over the Internet when they didn’t want to expose who they were,” the student said. “If instead of playing this game they had said exactly who they were and if they just wanted to get to know me, I’d have probably gone.”

Nightclubs and Bars

Ian Wight, ArtSci ’13, started a serious relationship with a girl he initially met at Ale House.

Wight said that although nightclubs may not be the best location to look for a long-term relationship, people are generally looking for some sort of contact while they’re there, and that could be the grounds to start something new.

“With society nowadays everyone’s so closed in, especially around people you don’t know, so it’s an opportunity … where you can be around strangers and meet strangers,” he said, adding that most students just go to clubs looking for fun.

Nightclubs provide us with an entirely different environment to interact in, which gives the people involved a shared experience yet a slew of different problems, Wight said.

“There’s a whole other set of laws of socializing at a bar rather than in the street, I guess some stuff can crossover but there’s a different etiquette because you can’t hear the other person so there’s other ways that you communicate,” he said, adding that body language and other simple cues were important in getting to know the other person.

School clubs

As opposed to nightclubs where the only thing in common you could have with a stranger is your love for dubstep, extra-curricular clubs on campus cover a broader range of interests.

For Michelle Lavery, ArtSci ’13, her involvement in Queen’s Bands led to her meeting, dating and eventual engagement to a fellow Bands member.

She first met her fiancée during her audition and shortly thereafter they had their first date. According to Lavery their first date wasn’t awkward at all because both of them being involved in Bands gave them easy conversation starters yet their different programs gave them separate things to share that the other person didn’t already know.

“Everyone in Bands was really supportive but I was kind of worried that if this didn’t work out it would be really awkward because we were together all the time and we have all the same friends,” she said, adding with a laugh that this obviously wasn’t a worry anymore.

“I didn’t go into bands looking for a serious relationship, but when the right person comes along just don’t let them go. Because they will eventually come along,” Lavery said. “And put yourself out there and meet people.”

Honourable mention

Residence

We are told not to do it by Dons and even the Existere performance throws in lyrics against it, but floorcest often does occur. Occasionally it even proves to work itself out without the awkwardness we’re always warned about. Just keep in mind that this is only applicable to first-years; those upper-years awkwardly lurking in your hallways usually aren’t seen as prime dating material.

Labs/Tutorials

Even though there is the chance that you’ll be paired with someone you’re not interested in, if you are then the sparks will fly (just like those ones created when you weren’t focusing on your lab and almost burnt down the room). At least you’ll have something fun to talk about over dinner.

Gym

Although not everyone may look their best while at the gym, it can be a very social place. And working up a sweat is something you already have in common, so just turn that workout adrenaline into nervous first-date adrenaline and it’ll be fine. Just remember to take a shower first.

When commenting, be considerate and respectful of writers and fellow commenters. Try to stay on topic. Spam and comments that are hateful or discriminatory will be deleted. Our full commenting policy can be read here.