Chocolates, teddy bears and candy hearts hit shelves as University of Maryland students are ramping up for Valentine’s Day, but how do students really feel about dating on campus? The Offbeat team took to the streets of College Park to find out students’ dating “icks” and “awws”.
You can find us on Spotify and Apple Podcasts. A full transcript for this episode is below.
JULIA BISCHOFF VO: From candy hearts scrawled with phrases like “kiss me” and “xoxo” to crimson love notes and everything in between, Valentine’s Day is certainly in full swing here at the University of Maryland. But dating looks different for everyone, and there are a variety of standards and preferences that students have when it comes to love.
JULIA VO: Hi, I’m Julia Bischoff and welcome to Offbeat by The Diamondback. This is just part one in our two part exploration into dating in College Park. Today our team spoke to students to learn more about what the dating scene around town looks like. Let’s hear what they have to say!
MICHAEL TIBURZI: I am currently dating somebody. I’ve been in a relationship for a while now, so it’s been actually pretty good.
DONGGEON KIM: I’m taken, yeah.
DEVIKA GOVINDARAJAN: Single
TODD PHILLIPS: Single and desperate!
JENNIFER GARCIA-HERRERA: Single and single.
CYNCLARA HILLIARD: In a relationship.
NIKITA KHAPRE: Single.
CAILIN BLESSEY: I am currently single, very much so.
OLIVIA MARX: I’m single.
LAUREN MONNIG: I’m taken
OLIVIA MARX & MEGAN BARNES: Whoaaaa!
GRACIE PERRY: I think in general relationships aren’t easy. So, it doesn’t just fall right into place.
MICHAEL TIBURZI: It’s fine dating in college. I know it’s traditionally kind of unstable. I don’t think that — especially like — dating life in general. I would hate to be still on those apps, swiping left and right, trying to play guessing games and having dull lull conversations all the time.
JULIA BISCHOFF: Do you think finding people on dating apps is a good way to find people?
DEVIKA GOVINDARAJAN: I feel like for the long term probably not cause the likelihood of finding someone that matches you perfectly just from their profile is pretty slim, so it’s a lot of hit and miss. But I guess it’s one of the best ways to do it now.
CAILIN BLESSEY: Oh that I meet people? Oh, definitely the bars. I don’t have any dating apps, I never have. I love looking at my friends’. I never have because I don’t know, I feel like you have to be pretty outgoing to respond to that sometimes, and I’m just … I’m not.
NIKITA KHAPRE: I feel like the only way that I’ve been “meeting people” has been by going out to the bars and stuff, but those aren’t really the types of people you’d be in a long term relationship with anyways, so yeah.
JENNIFER GARCIA-HERRERA: Just the vibes around here. I don’t want to go meet people at Looney’s.
AYOMIDE AWOYERA: I am pretty friendly, so I just meet people naturally. I haven’t tried any dating apps, I haven’t tried — what’s the thing called? First blind dates or whatever. Instagram mostly. The DMs, it goes down in the DMs.
CAILIN BLESSEY: I feel like a lot of people I know that are also single also tell me that this is just not the place they feel like they want to meet people. We’re so close to D.C. so you can go there, I don’t know, just not this campus in particular. And everyone I know that has a boyfriend, they don’t go here.
GRACE KPETEMEY: Have some of the people that you’ve been dating been [from] UMD?
AYOMIDE AWOYERA: Only one.
MEGAN BARNES: As a taken woman how did you meet your significant other?
LAUREN MONNIG: In high school … they don’t go here.
MEGAN BARNES: Has it been hard?
LAUREN MONNIG: It has been, but you make it work and it’s okay.
GRACIE PERRY: Uh no actually, I met them the summer — well I met them a few years prior to us dating, but we started dating the summer before my freshman year.
GRACE KPETEMEY: And do they go to UMD?
GRACIE PERRY: They don’t.
CYNCLARA HILLIARD: We went to the same high school, we’re high school sweethearts.
MEGAN BARNES: Do they go here?
CYNCLARA HILLIARD: No.
GRACIE PERRY: It’s hard nowadays to realize who real people actually are. You know? We have such a tendency to look at how you appear or look at how you appear on your social media. If somebody doesn’t seem how they appear or how you think they appear people automatically think like ‘oh they’re lying, they’re lying,’ but just talk to them, you know? I think communication is so important.
KIMBERLY CLOPP: Being an older student, I feel like that “toxic” is a great word to describe a college dating scene. I think I remember that from my undergrad. From my perspective, there isn’t much of one for masters students. You do get a lot more picky. And I think a lot of that boils down to experiences that you have and things that you’ve learned in your younger relationships, but it’s still very, very hard.
MICHAEL TIBURZI: It’s really difficult to meet anybody who wants to do something that’s long term in a way that isn’t just for the four years that you’re here. Then again, I don’t really know that anybody during our era of life, like the 18 to 20 something, young 20s is really looking for that. I think if you have a standard that you want to meet and there are specific things like green flags and red flags, listen to it. And listen to ‘this is kind of like a red flag for me.’
JULIA BISCHOFF: Are there any green flags?
NIKITA KHAPRE: My green flag would just be communication. As in, just like tell me how you’re feeling because we can’t really work anything out if you’re not gonna be open to a conversation.
DEVIKA GOVINDARAJAN: I like when they pay on the first date; big green flag or at least offer.
DONGGEON KIM: I don’t know if it’s just me because I am biased with my girlfriend, but I don’t really see any red flags there. You have to put certain boundaries with your relationship, and you have to communicate with your partner obviously, which is why communication is such a green flag.
ENOC MUNEZA: So, I feel like someone who is easy going. If we automatically are just chatting and and like it’s going well then I might try to get your number or something.
ZOEY ANASTASIADIS: Having goals or a vision of some sort, a plan.
OLIVIA MARX: Be confident and bold and if you find someone attractive I think that’s okay to share. But also, just know when to stop.
GRACE PERRY: I think green flags are definitely like asking you how you feel and wanting to know how you perceive certain situations because we all have different experiences.
HOST VO: Thanks so much for listening to Offbeat, I’m your host Julia Bischoff! If you liked this episode, be sure to come back at the end of the month where we dive deeper into the modern dating scene and talk to more students about their experiences. Today’s episode is brought to you with the help of our assistant editor Grace Kpetemey, and our two reporters Megan Barnes and Fatima Yazdi. Our music this month is by MusicLFiles. Follow Offbeat on Twitter @DBKOffbeat and follow The Diamondback on Twitter and Instagram @thedbk. You can find a transcript of this episode at dbknews.com. If you liked this episode, tell your friends and tune in next time!
The following music was used for this media project:
Music: Celebrate Your Wins [Full version] by MusicLFiles
Free download: https://filmmusic.io/song/10381-celebrate-your-wins-full-version
License (CC BY 4.0): https://filmmusic.io/standard-license