Picking a school based on the dating scene


In a column (subscription required) for the Wall Street Journal, Donna Freitas, author of the upcoming book Sex and the Soul: Juggling Sexuality, Spirituality, Romance & Religion on America's College Campuses, advises parents of college-bound youth to "find out about the dating lives and party habits of students at your child's dream school, or whether hooking up has replaced dating altogether. As students told me time and time again, romantic relationships -- the good, the bad and the ugly -- can make or break the college experience. Before you mail that check, do your research."

I agree completely -- the dating/relationship scene at a college is vitally important to the college experience, but it's often overlooked. College guidance counselors might ask whether you want city/rural and discuss the options for majors at different schools, but I think that very few delve into the dating scene at prospective colleges.

To get some color on dating issues at colleges, check out The Insider's Guide to the Colleges, 2008: Students on Campus Tell You What You Really Want to Know. This book is great -- it features quotes from current college students describing what student life is actually like.

If you're looking at colleges for a student who is LGBT, you should absolutely order a copy of The Advocate College Guide For LGBT Students.