UCA’s Resident Housing Association (RHA) helped students come out of their shell and meet new people at its annual “Speed Dating” in the Student Center on Feb. 12.
“I wanted to meet new people,” junior Solana Hibbard said.
Many other students had the same reason for attending the event, and many said they were shy.
As people entered the event, attendees could feel the nervousness in the air, mostly because people didn’t know what to expect.
Senior Lindsey Sehon said she really didn’t know what to expect because she had heard so many negative things about the dating format.
“I thought it would be scary,” she said.
Many people said they came to the event to support a friend.
Participants had three minutes to speak in pairs and when time was up, they switched partners.
Once the event started, people started to come out of their shells and liven up.
The room was filled with laughing, talking and smiling faces as students socialized with each other.
RHA workers tried to create a friendly environment, greeting everyone with a smile. There were food and craft service tables and a handout with questions to help participants avoid awkward silences.
RHA adviser Amanda Kuster said the RHA set up the food tables for people who are shy.
RHA made it a point to not force anybody to do anything he or she did not want to do, which helped students feel more comfortable.
By the end of the event, numbers were exchanged, Facebook friend requests were sent and everyone was huddled up smiling and laughing.
Freshman Rowan Weatherely said she plans on hanging out with some of the people she met at the event.
Sehon also said she would hang with some of the people she met that night.
Junior Nicholas Reznicek said he liked that the event pushed people out of their comfort zones.
Overall participants said they had a good time. Several attendees said they would do it again next year.