Editor’s Note: Thirst Trap is a column on dating and relationships in college.
I came to this university in part because of our world-renowned computer science program. Not because I have a passion for programming, but because I have a passion for marrying rich.
I would be lying if I said I had never opted to study in Reboot Cafe over Parnassus. I’m pretty sure the coffee is the same, but you’re more likely to find a budding billionaire in the former.
I’m kidding. I am far more inclined to eat the rich than to romance them, and I don’t think you should limit your dating pool to people who will one day work for Amazon or Microsoft or some equally dreadful corporation.
I also don’t think majors or departments are a monolith. Not all business majors wear 5.5-inch inseam shorts (unfortunately) and do body shots off girls in pre-nursing (fortunately). Not all gender, women & sexuality studies majors have blue hair and wear socks with their Birkenstocks. Not all communication majors are too dumb for other majors — that’s just me.
That being said, a person’s major should be considered in the pursuit of romantic or sexual relationships. Someone’s major can give insight to their schedule, values, and future path. (If you think I’m wrong and your major is extremely date-able: prove it. My Twitter is linked at the end of this article.)
Relationships are, by nature, a commitment of time and energy, which not everyone’s schedule allows.
For example, if someone is pre-science: Run. She does not have time for you. She is applying for computer science, then informatics, then computer engineering, and if all else fails, she’s transferring.
This isn’t to say STEM is more stressful or time-consuming than other majors. Unless you're cool cuddling your English major boyfriend while his face is wrongfully buried in a book, you may want to reconsider, even if he writes you somewhat pretentious love poems.
However, I am a firm believer that you can always make time for the things that matter to you. In most cases, people who care will find a way to prioritize you, even if they have an in-person lab three nights a week. (Side note: Never trust a Foster boy who can’t fit you into his schedule — they don’t have class on Fridays.)
Someone’s major can also be indicative of their values. It’s not as simple as an environmental sciences major having moral superiority over a chemical engineering major. For example, I once matched with someone who studies CHEM E, and he had no interest in becoming a petroleum engineer. Protecting the environment was his top priority — definitely a higher priority than me, since he only ever hit me up when he was drunk.
It’s important to know why someone chose the major they chose. Are they a theater major because they’re an attention seeker, or do they want to use performance to make the world a better place? Are they public health because they want to be rich or because they want to be part of reimagining health care in the United States? Are they studying business because their dad told them to or because they want to exploit the working class? I may have a bit of bias.
But just because you wouldn’t date them doesn’t mean you couldn’t hook up with them necessarily. Do I want to date someone in law, societies and justice? Absolutely not. They want to be paid to argue, and I’m a Libra. But if an LSJ hottie made a good case, I wouldn’t object to a short recess.
If you are looking for something long term, you can look at someone’s major as a preview for their future plans. If she’s pre-med, she’s got quite a bit of school ahead of her. If he’s studying journalism, he will not be buying you designer bags for your birthday. If they are studying a language or culture, they may have plans to travel.
I don’t think it is always necessary or even wise to think too far ahead in relationships, but if you are nearing graduation, it may not be worth the trouble to get serious with someone whose future is incompatible with yours.
Regardless of who you choose to date — whether you are sleeping your way through the comparative literature department or find a geography major who becomes your whole world — you should be more concerned with your own studies. Pick a field of study that you feel passionate about and use the privilege that is going to college to make the world a better place. You are not in college to get your “Mrs.” That’s not a degree, and it will not get you a job (says the communication major).
Reach columnist Hannah Krieg at email@example.com. Twitter: @Hannahkrieg
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