After four years of writing and organizing the Love Connection segment for the Life section of The Cavalier Daily, fourth-year Commerce student Alex Stock is finally retiring. The feature matches two students based on the compatibility of their answers to a questionnaire and sets up a first date.
Stock started writing for The Cavalier Daily as a first-year.
“I was writing for news my first semester and that was pretty boring,” Stock said. “Then I got an email about signing up to do the Love Connection.”
Stock had high hopes for the section that drove him to apply.
“Back then I was a little more idealistic about love,” Stock said. “I thought it would be nice to be part of the dating culture and form meaningful connections between people.”
Over the years, Stock has enjoyed setting up dates and hearing the occasionally awkward results. For some, Stock can recall particularly notable set-ups where the dates were either successful or disastrous.
“Interviewing people was always the fun part for me, sitting down with people after the date and seeing what they said. The reactions didn’t always match up,” Stock said. “Some of the dates went really badly — especially some of those first ones. There was Kurt, who was probably the most memorable — he had an awful first date. I liked [hearing about] those awkward things”
Stock’s greatest success was setting up a pair who who ended up dating each other for over a year. Stock said the couple even moved in together for a period of time.
As one of his last features for the section, Stock organized a Bachelorette Edition of Love Connection for The Cavalier Daily’s Valentine’s Day special issue in which fourth-year Batten student Paige Sullivan was set up with five dates.
“I wanted to do [Love Connection] before I graduated, it was kind of like a bucket list item,” Sullivan said. “It was a very good experience. I had a lot of fun, but it was exhausting having five dates in a row.”
Though Sullivan said she does not know Stock well, she wishes him the best of luck in the future.
As Stock prepares to leave Love Connection, he does not yet know who will replace him. However, plans are underway for the new writer’s first assignment.
“I heard that whoever it is is going to set me up with somebody, so I’m looking forward to that after setting up so many,” Stock said.
In Stock’s four years, things have changed with online dating set-ups. He hopes Love Connection might be further developed in the future.
“I think it’s interesting because when I first started Love Connection in 2012 I had never heard of Tinder or anything like that…we looked at trying to do a Tinder format, like trying to get an app or something like that where there’s a selection to choose from,” Stock said. “Love Connection is the real Tinder.”
After dedicating much of his time to the feature throughout his time at the University, writing for Love Connection will remain one of Stock’s fondest memories.
“I feel like such an old man,” Stock said. “I think I’m going to miss the faint hope I always had that it would work out.”