Many Eagles flocked to the Boston College Marriage Pact looking for a match with the approach of Valentine’s Day.
“I think first of all, [the] promotion was like all over the place, so everybody’s really into it,” Ben Hetherington, MCAS ’24, said. “And I think everybody was extra down bad this year with COVID.”
Hetherington was one of 3,556 students that Marriage Pact said signed up for the survey this year. The Marriage Pact, which students brought to the University in 2020, is a survey containing about 50 questions that attempt to connect students based on compatibility.
The questions range from political views to drinking habits. Participants are asked to rank their answers on a scale from one, “strongly disagree,” to seven, “strongly agree.”
According to Molly Harrison, MCAS ’23, the COVID-19 pandemic hampered many people’s ability to make connections, so the Marriage Pact provides a potential solution.
“COVID has impacted our ability to meet people,” Harrison said. “People are yearning for friends.”
Harrison said while her primary reason for signing up for the Marriage Pact last year was COVID-19, this year, she signed up because many of her friends did as well.
Harrison wasn’t the only person to sign up because of other students. Jaret Farhat, MCAS ’25, said he decided to fill out the survey because so many students were.
“Honestly, I think there’s a little bit of peer pressure, like everyone else is doing it,” Farhat said.
Though the pandemic did not influence his decision to sign up, Farhat said it impacted his ability to meet people—the Marriage Pact creates connections that might not happen otherwise, he said.
“I matched with someone in a different grade,” he said. “I haven’t even really met a lot of people in that grade either.”
Elizabeth Shaw, MCAS ’24, however, isn’t sure how successful the Marriage Pact is at facilitating connections on campus.
“I feel like in theory it is [successful], but I don’t know how many people actually reach out and talk,” Shaw said. “It’s more just like you look them up on Instagram and see who they are, and it ends badly.”
Last year, Shaw was paired with a “friend match” along with roughly 600 other straight women due to uneven participation between male and female students. Still, Shaw said the Marriage Pact was a good way for her to meet people her freshman year.
“Yeah, that’s why I honestly met up with a person even though it was a friend, because it was so hard to meet people, especially as a freshman not knowing anyone,” she said. “So it was nice to have another way to meet new people.”
Lina Sora, MCAS ’25, said her RA met a current friend through the Marriage Pact last year, when COVID-19 restrictions were tighter at BC.
“She said she wouldn’t have met him otherwise because it was hard to get out last year,” Sora said.
Sora was assigned a friend match and is open to potentially forming a new friendship.
“Maybe I’ll become friends,” she said. “I actually thought I learned a little bit more about myself [by] answering the questions.”
Hetherington said that no matter what comes of the Marriage Pact, he has had fun participating in it.
“And I think it’s just a fun thing to get hype about [though it] never really goes very far with most people,” Hetherington said. “Yeah, I like … all the drama around it.”
The BC Marriage Pact team did not respond to a request for comment.
Featured Graphic by Liz Schwab / Heights Editor