BY LAJU IREN, MAXMILLIAN ANOSIKE AND SARAH OFONEDU
The beauty of young love is something that cannot be easily descried with mere words. With less experience in the heartbreak department, young people are unafraid to open up their hearts to ‘love at first sight.’ Although many are disillusioned by their new relationships because of the naivety that sometimes comes with age, many go on to spend their lifetimes with their school mates.
In fact, a Facebook Data Sciences study released in 2013 revealed that about 28% of married graduates attended the same higher institution as their spouse. About 15% of individuals on Facebook attended the same high school as their spouse. In celebration of Valentine season Saturday School Life, SSL, tries to find out what love looks like on campuses around the country.
Wilson Nelson (not real name), who studies in the Eastern part of the country has more than one girlfriend, but says that he wishes to spend Valentine ’s Day with one of them that is very special to him. He said: “We will spend time in my house and at the love garden on campus. She is going to boil indomie (noddles) for me so that we can enjoy our self, after that we can then go to the love garden inside the school, I will buy her some gifts and we will drink together. I think valentine is a time we lovers express the love we have for each other in different ways.” Not surprisingly, Nelson says he is not interested in a relationship that leads to marriage at this stage of his life.
Another undergraduate, Hilda Eke says that she is in a relationship heading for marriage. She said: “I am in a relationship where we are sure of getting married, but my boyfriend and I have no plans for valentine. Although the school is organizing some valentine parties, I plan to be home through out today.”
However, not everyone is engaged in campus relationships. Iroanusi Favour, a student at the Lagos State University, LASU, is single and content. “I am going to be at home because I’m not expecting anyone to take me out. Valentine is not just about showing love to your boyfriend, it is also about visiting orphanage homes and prisons to show concern for the less privileged in our society.”
Also speaking to SSL is a husband who did not want his name in print. He said: “I married someone who I had been friends with from the university. Love is not just about Valentine ’s Day. You must make a decision to love that person every day, and if you’re dating in school, let it not just be for status sake. Seek to know that person for who he or she is, beyond emotions or sex.”
Despite the amazing results from the Facebook study, there are very many campus relationships that do not eventually end up in marriage. In fact many graduates can testify that the popular couple in school many times end up splitting and marrying totally different people. It is a two way street; some school relationships work, and some don’t. But it’s more than a matter of chance. The true lesson? Maturity, love and commitment are indispensable ideals whether love is on or off campus.