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1995-1996 index

Distributed February 6, 1996
Contact: Richard Morin

Valentine's Day in cyberspace

Cupid comes to Brown University through a computer dating service

PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Having determined that Brown students are too wrapped up in academics and extracurricular activities to date, a student government committee called Helping UnderGraduates Socialize (HUGS) has hired a computer dating service for Valentine's Day.

"I think at competitive colleges like Brown that dating is really not a high priority," said HUGS member Joe Ruffolo '96 of Fort Wayne, Ind. "This is a way to prime the pump and not only get people dating, but meeting one another. At such a diverse place as Brown, there is no excuse for not meeting new people."

More than 1,500 students have returned completed questionnaires responding to such questions as: "When you walk down the street, do you smile at people?" "Do you believe God has only one perfect mate for everyone?" "What type of taco sauce would you be: mild, medium or hot?" The questionnaire was designed by HUGS to accommodate all sexual orientations. According to HUGS members, there has been an equal number of questionairres returned by male and female students.

The computer dating service will provide students with a list of the 10 most and the two least compatible people on campus. A $2 fee draws names from a student's class; a $3 fee draws names from the entire student body. All profits will be donated to Brown's financial aid office. "Student government always has a tendency to focus on lofty goals," said student government member Rajib Chanda '97 of Lawrenceville, N.J. "We wanted to focus on something that would improve students' day-to-day lives."