Starting a relationship in college is tough. You meet people at parties, but typically that only leads to hooking up and never talking to them again. Or you meet people from your dorm, but if things don’t work out that leads to an incredibly awkward situation. You could always meet someone in class, but let’s be honest, most of us go to class not dressed to impress and we don’t feel like socializing.
So how do we expect to meet and fall in love with anyone then?
Ball State University in Indiana took its own approach to falling in love. The university created a Cardinal Chemistry project where three couples were created to try to connect and genuinely fall in love. Three bachelors were selected through their willingness to volunteer: Sam Kearney, Brandon Phillips, and Alex Romoser. They were paired with girls through a mixer where groups of three girls would go in and talk to the bachelors for about five minutes. The bachelors decided who they liked best and a personality and love language survey was given to the girls after the mixer to learn more about them. The psycho-analytic team then talked to the men about the girls and had them fill out the survey as well to narrow it down. After that process, three couples were created: Sam Kearney and Shannon Hines, Brandon Phillips and Claire Huntley, and Alex Romoser and Jen Zarate.
Once the couples were formed, they each went on three dates. They started off with a Panera Bread date, then a group date to a pumpkin patch, and finally the men cooked dinner for the women.
I’m all for these dates, which were planned out by the romance team. First of all, who would pass up a chance to have a bread bowl or Panera’s famous mac and cheese? Then you get to go to a pumpkin patch with a cute boy during the fall? That sounds perfect to me. And, finally, having a man cook you a meal; that’s just asking you to fall in love.
After each date, the men had to fill out an evaluation form for the psycho-analytic team. Pretty much nothing was private in this project. The psycho-analytic and promotional teams planned out every part of the three relationships, so nothing was to be kept from them.
Sam Kearney commented on the lack of privacy by saying, “Anything we did, we would walk into class the next day and have multiple people ask us how it’s going and we had to keep nothing disclosed.” He even said that, because of this, there was a “low level of intimacy in the relationship.” Imagine having to share every single detail of your relationship with someone who is analyzing you to see if you are on the right track to fall in love…I would hold off on the intimacy for a little bit too.
Out of the three couples, Kearney and Hines were the only ones to break up. They both felt as though there was no spark and that they had just formed a friendship. Maybe this was due to the lack of intimacy and having to report everything back to their class.
All that the two have said though was that there was no spark and both of their lives were very busy and their schedules did not line up. The project manager, Albert Jennings, commented on their breakup, saying how they expected something like this to happen: “Not with this couple, but just in general,” Jennings said. “I’m glad we got multiple couples … for insurance. Fortunately we have two more that seem to be doing well. I wish they had worked out, but overall, it’s a good thing because it makes it a bit more real and gives us an opportunity to work with things like this.
Two out of the three couples are still together. That’s pretty good considering this was a project based off of falling in love.
It seems like this approach to falling in love might actually work. The one big catch is you would have to be okay with sharing every aspect of your relationship with the teams who are helping you fall in love. So maybe it might not be as personal, but if you’re looking for love, and nothing else has worked out, why not give it a try?