As the weather starts to grow colder with every passing day, the organizers of Date Month—which will take place throughout November—are hoping to heat up the campus dating scene.
Date Month, sponsored by the Alliance for Sexual Assault Prevention (ASAP), seeks to promote safe and healthy dating at Bowdoin. Formerly known as Date Week, the initiative has been extended in an effort to increase its impact.
“I think a lot of people were concerned that weeks can be too concentrated,” said Kendall Carpenter ’13, one of Date Month’s coordinators. “If people have a busy week, they can’t end up going to all the events.”
The increased duration was one of several changes made to the initiative this year, including the addition of a date panel—comprised of six students who will answer dating questions—a date raffle, featuring prizes like a sunset cruise in Portland and a fondue basket, and dating discussions in the College Houses.
“House members speak to affiliates about their [dating] experience at Bowdoin and things that they had wish they had known,” said Matt Frongillo ’13, who is working with Carpenter to coordinate Date Month.
This year, Date Month will no longer offer special deals restaurants in Brunswick.
“We chose not to do that this year,” said Carpenter. “We heard from the restaurants that they weren’t used as frequently as we would suspect them to be.”
Instead, there will be a “date night” in Daggett Lounge on Friday, November 16. Organizers predict this event will be better attended, since it is more convenient for students.
“It gives students a free, easy, fun option that people can go to,” said Carpenter.
Other Date Month events include “flirt notes,” which students can purchase and send for $1, and “Screw Your Roommate,” which allows students to set their roommates up on blind dates.
Several other NESCAC schools, including Colby, have events similar to Date Month.
While many of the specifics of Date Month have changed this year, the overall goals have stayed the same.
“One of the things we’re trying to get across through Date Month is that dating does happen at Bowdoin,” said Carpenter.
The initiative also hopes to extend relationships beyond College House parties.
“Date Week developed as a way to promote people to go on dates and get to know each other,” said Carpenter. “Not necessarily to promote relationships but to get people to know each other outside of the party scene.”
Some students felt that in the past, Date Week did not promote new relationships.
“[Students] don’t take advantage of it to meet new people,” said Tasha Sandoval ’13. “A lot of the time it’s just people going to the events with their friends.”
Students from the Bowdoin Queer Straight Alliance, Bowdoin Student Government, Safe Space, and Peer Health comprise ASAP, the group behind Date Month.
“ASAP came about a couple of years ago as a desire for a lot of these different groups on campus that are working towards raising awareness about sexual assault,” said Frongillo. “[It’s] a space for them to connect and collaborate on some of these things.”