Two Indiana Wesleyan University students have heard the calls of help from students tired of hearing “ring by spring” stories from their peers every year, only to find themselves heartbroken, single and desperate.
Shawn Howse (sr), a computer information systems major, and Mike Winterberg (fr), a political science major, are creating an online matching network exclusively for IWU students, set to debut at the start of the fall 2012 semester.
The network will allow students to create profiles with just enough information for the site to generate possible matches with students of the opposite sex, based on the information given, according to Howse.
Howse, who is coordinating the network’s technological development, said participants will answer both subjective and objective questions.
“Objective questions will pair individuals based upon search criteria and preferences,” said Howse. “Examples of objective questions include hobbies, interests and sports. Subjective questions will be in the form of essay.”
Howse and Winterberg are aware of the usual problems that arise from online dating sites but think that this network should solve those problems.
“Many popular dating websites such as eHarmony allow anyone to register, regardless of their religion, hometown, etc. The network Mike Winterberg and I are developing is for IWU students only. In this manner, men and women can more readily meet each other without having to worry about traveling miles,” said Howse.
The original intent of the site was to spark romantic relationships, but the creators are encouraging those who are already in relationships and those not even searching for romance to use the site to develop friendships with others who share similar interests or hobbies.
“I don’t want the site just to be a dating network,” said Winterberg, the network’s visionary. “Many people at IWU walk around campus totally unaware of others who have very similar interests to them, and it prevents good friendships from happening.”
The early buzz about the imminent arrival of the network has been very positive.
“Of course I would use it!” said Emily Sather (jr). “That kind of site would make it easier to build romantic relationships or just friendships. If a guy found me on Facebook, I would think that’s sketchy, but here I know it’s just people from our school who want to chill and get to know me.”
Davy Jones (fr) echoed Sather’s comments and added that having a network like this saves time, finding good relationship and friendship options for you, instead of having to actively search for them yourself through time-consuming, potentially awkward socialization.