The Pressure To Find A Spouse By Graduation 

Aaron Thomas | Staff Writer

Go to class. Make good grades. Walk across the stage. Attending college can be seen as a stage of life that represents being one step closer to entering the “real world.” As students pursue prospective careers, it is common for them to have relationships on the side.

In some cases, these relationships turn into engagements.

With a university like N.C. State that has a large population, one would think finding a potential spouse is easy. Some people in past generations hold the notion that women generally attend college for their “MRS” degree- that is, attending a university with the purpose of finding a man with high earning potential.

Today, women are focusing on their own education and pursuing a career. That isn’t to say they aren’t looking forward to that “fairy tale moment.”

Kiarah Anderson, a senior majoring in psychology, is now engaged to her boyfriend of seven years after he proposed to her on Feb. 12. The engagement came as a surprise to her.

“I wasn’t [expecting a proposal],” Anderson said. “Because we had been together so long I just thought we would keep dating until we had our careers situated.”

Graduation is around the corner and senior year is a common time to get engaged. Students are preparing for the workforce and hopefully have matured mentally during their four (or more) years of undergrad.

While some couples look forward to engagement during senior year, there are others who choose to wait by taking the relationship one step at a time. Kimberly Rucker, a senior in psychology, has been dating her boyfriend for over a year and wants to wait for a proposal.

“I wouldn’t say right now in this very moment do I want him to propose because I wouldn’t be ready,” Rucker shares. “I think we should grow up, get used to the real world and figure out things along the way.

Taking time to make sure a significant other is “the one” is a smart idea. It will be awhile before Adrian McNeill decides to propose to his girlfriend of three years, who is a non-N.C. State student.

“[The distance] definitely makes it tough,” the sophomore said.

Anderson, Rucker, and McNeill all agree that the college atmosphere is a great opportunity for finding a potential spouse.

Senior, Kiarah Anderson, was surprised on Feb. 12 when her boyfriend of of seven years proposed to her.

Senior, Kiarah Anderson, was surprised on Feb. 12 when her boyfriend of of seven years proposed to her.

“Even though college is tough and takes a lot of focus, it is also a socializing institution that offers many opportunities to party, have fun, meet new people and establish relationships,” Anderson comments.

Finding a potential spouse outside of college may be more difficult with a different setting in the workforce. Having multiple social outlets on campus is a benefit according to McNeill.

Adrian McNeill believes it will be a while before he decides to propose to his girlfriend of three years.

“If I weren’t in any clubs or smaller social communities it would be difficult for me,” he states.”

The workforce may not have the same social opportunities as a college setting, however Rucker believes the demands may make it easier to date.

“At least you don’t have homework; now there are more chances to be social, go out, hangout,” she shares. “Sometimes if you do have a job, you have financial stability or more in the mindset of wanting to settle down and be serious. It’s be to find someone at that point.”

Finding a potential spouse in college does carry a lot of pressure, especially for those who come from families where their relatives met their significant others in college. There are some students who feel as if they are not ready to date or would rather focus on their studies before searching for a partner.

Senior Kimberley Rucker and her boyfriend, Senior, Travis Eaton.

Senior Kimberley Rucker and her boyfriend, Senior, Travis Eaton.

There is plenty of time to find the “right one.” Whether it’s during college or after, it will happen in due time. Until then, focus on those studies.