Although being a lesbian limits the dating pool for me, I still feel like I see all of my Tinder matches 60 times a day. Of course, there's the awkward eye contact when you both realize why the other person looks so familiar (and honestly, I sometimes regret ghosting them when I see they're cuter in person). But it never has to be that big of a deal.
My worst encounter was outside the Arizona State Capitol for an internship assignment and having a person yell “We matched on Tinder!” from across the lawn. Not only was this the wrong setting, but the experience was overall pretty cringey to say the least.
Still, it was something I could just laugh off. However, many people treat these situations like they're the end of the world.
As much as running into a match from a dating app may mortify us, if handled correctly, it does not need to stress us out so much. Instead, running into a Tinder match on or around campus should be handled with self awareness and plenty of confidence.
Anna Schmidt, a sophomore studying nursing, is the designated ASU Tinder campus representative. Schmidt’s role includes observing the patterns of Tinder usage amongst ASU students and discussing these findings with Tinder HQ.
Even though 70.8% of college students have never actually met up with a Tinder match, the statistic is just the percentage of students who haven't willingly met up with a Tinder match. Sometimes, seeing someone you matched with is out of your control.
Schmidt mentioned that, in efforts to appeal to the student demographic, Tinder has introduced an extension of the app called “TinderU,” which Schmidt described as “an exclusive portion of Tinder that is only accessible to university students ... which basically eliminates all the creeps.”
Having an option that targets the student demographic specifically may make it more likely to see your matches on campus. And with Tinder, which has been described as an app that provides “confidence-boosting procrastination,” it inherently attracts student populations that make it likely to see someone on campus that you met through the app.
Whether somebody chooses to use Tinder for the hookup scene, for love or to get attention from people they find attractive is up to them, but seeing one of their matches from Tinder in public does not have to be such a huge ordeal.
Even in the more awkward situations, such as being ghosted, seeing someone from Tinder can be handled without confrontation.
If a student sees someone who ghosted them on Tinder in class or around campus, the first thing that might come to mind is to ask for an explanation or try to address it. But doing so can come across as entitled and taking the situation way too seriously, which can make people even more turned off or even make them feel uncomfortable.
Amber Burnette, a junior studying biological sciences, took this approach when a guy she went on a sour Tinder date with ended up having one of the only open seats next to him during a test. Burnette kept her cool and focused on her test instead, which she ended up passing.
Yet sometimes, running into a match can be difficult to ignore.
Olivia Kurschat, a freshman studying supply chain management, learned this lesson the hard way on move-in day when she realized the guy she ghosted on Tinder ended up being her community assistant in the dorms.
While a lot of people might not want to address the situation head-on, Kurschat treated the situation in a light-hearted way with her CA and both of them ended up just laughing it off.
Realizing that it's not the biggest deal in the world can sometimes even work to your advantage as Christopher Gonzalez, a sophomore studying film, said he realized in one of his classes.
Gonzalez said he went on a date with someone he met on Tinder, and afterwards, both realized that the spark just wasn't there.
They went on their separate ways – until they had a class together.
"I just tried to not be seen by her, but I don't think that worked lol," Gonzalez wrote in a direct message.
Ultimately, he decided it would be best to talk to his ex-Tinder fling about class assignments, via Snapchat, of course.
As websites and apps become a larger part of modern dating, it is important to remember that you are not the only student using Tinder and will be likely to run into someone from the app at some point.
Letting each other treat the topic as taboo will continue creating these awkward encounters, which can be easily avoided if the attitude surrounding modern dating life continues to evolve.
Reach the columnist at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow @JennyGuzmanAZ on Twitter.
Editor’s note: The opinions presented in this column are the author’s and do not imply any endorsement from The State Press or its editors.
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