Story by Sarah Grossman
The Princeton Review and U.S. News have dubbed Drake University as one of the top universities in the Midwest. Known for its rich history, academics and thriving students, Drake stands apart from many other universities.
There is one way, however, that Drake is much like any other university — its students hook-up.
It’s casual. Involving little to no commitment, hook-ups can have many definitions ranging from make-outs to sex.
“I think in the context of Drake, ‘hook-up’ usually means ‘make-out with.’ I feel at Drake then, there is a lot of hook-up culture,” junior radio and television production major Annelise Tarnowski said.
“People make-out all the time,” Tarnowski said. “I don’t actually hear about a lot of people sleeping together, casually having sex.”
But, to some students, hook-ups mean sex.
“Generally, when I hear of two people hooking up, I think they have a one-night stand with sex,” said junior law, politics and society major Lucas Baker.
Throughout all interviews conducted, boys alone were never mentioned as the majority of instigators of hook-ups. Most stated the pursuit of hook-ups was equal in both genders.
“Anyone who tells you that one (gender) does it more than another is lying to you,” Baker said.
This new hook-up culture has morphed the way students get to know each other and has changed the world of dating.
“I think for college kids our age now, hook-ups are closer to dating,” Tarnowski said. “People don’t date as much. They hang out in groups, but they hook -up. Sometimes it can lead to something, just not as substantial, but it definitely happens.”
As to the causes of hook-ups, “I don’t want to say booze, but probably booze,” Tarnowski said.
Baker supported this opinion: “In incidents, alcohol is typically the incident factor.”
Some believe, however, there are other reasons.
“People use college hook-ups as a stress reliever,” sophomore pre-pharmacy major Annie Stella said. “It can be hard on the emotions, hard mentally. Students need to find a better outlet.”
Emotional difficulties can and do arise in hook-up culture.
“I think college is time to explore things. Hook-ups can be a good thing. When emotions get in the way and people’s feelings start to get hurt, then the point of hooking up is lost,” Baker said. “It can be good until it’s detrimental to your mental health. Talk to someone, a friend, if it starts taking over your life.”
“I think if you’re looking for (hook-up culture), you can find it. If it’s not something you’re interested in, then it’s something you can avoid being a part of, but it’s definitely there,” said junior Austin Cooke.
For many students, college is a time to explore and have fun.
“I think college is a good time to hook-up. It can develop into something else, but I don’t think I’m going to meet my soulmate from a one-night stand,” said junior violin performance major Reuben Kebede. “Just try not to ‘sexile’ people too much.”