Dear Alice,

I am twenty-four and just started a Masters' part time at TC. My last relationship was two years ago and I find it pretty difficult at my age to meet respectable guys. I enjoy the bar scene with friends, but don't find that it's very easy to meet good people there.

Anyway, do you have any suggestions as to where to meet decent Columbia men in my age group?

Signed, Cupid's Missed Target

Dear Cupid's Missed Target,

Based on the number of questions similar to your own, there are many Columbia grad students just like you, looking for friends, dating partners, and other meaningful connections. As you know, Teachers College is an affiliate of Columbia, meaning that your connection to the main campus may feel a bit more distant than for students in other graduate programs. But keep in mind that you have access to all of the socializing spots on the Morningside campus and surrounding areas.

Most importantly, know that many, many students at Columbia have an interest in making new friends and dating. Sometimes approaching someone, organizing an activity, inviting people to a dinner party, or asking someone to be a study partner takes courage. The other students you see may feel the same way you do, even if it seems otherwise; at some point someone is going to have to take initiative and make the first move — how about giving it a try?

You may find the suggestions in Graduate students meet graduate students? helpful (not to mention feel solidarity with another student who has very similar concerns!). Some additional options for meeting people around Columbia include:

  • Attending a film screening, offered each week through the Film Division of the School of the Arts
  • Joining Stressbusters (Alice!'s student stress-relief team)
  • Starting or joining a group at TC or for grad students that meets your interests
  • Hanging out at one of the many area bookstores
  • Organizing a TC or graduate student hiking trip, guided NYC tour, Circle Line cruise, etc.

Finally, consider this: Even with the largest of bull's-eyes, waiting around for Cupid's arrow to hit you may be nothing more than an act in patience-building. Yes, patience is a virtue; however you may find your experience at Columbia more enjoyable if you take an active role in meeting new people. Starting with little steps, like asking a classmate to eat lunch or get coffee after class, may be a low-pressure way to get to know more people.

Here's hoping all of you seekers and seekees bump into one another!


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