Recently, there were several articles on where people meet their future spouses. There was the controversial op-ed from a Princeton alumna who urged the female undergrads at her alma mater to snag a husband while they're in school because their pool will never be that good again. A recent NY Times article discussed the rapid rise of online dating while school still remains a top source.
I wanted to expand upon this a bit with my personal experience. I recently broke up with my long-term girlfriend whom I met in college. Lot of it was due to the fact that we will be at different schools, and we just did not see eye-to-eye on how to make things work. As a newly single man, I decided to try online dating since it seems like a rite of passage for young professionals. In the past six weeks or so, I have gone on dates with 10 women, all of whom I found on match.
Online dating profiles, by their very nature, are pretty dumb and incomplete; it is very difficult to ascertain whether the woman has the core qualities you're looking for, so one has to message as many remotely interesting women as possible, go on dates, and see what sticks.
Given that I'm looking for a very smart well-rounded woman who is ambitious, successful, well-travelled, well-read, and has her shit together, I spent much of the date trying to ascertain whether they possessed those qualities. Now don't get me wrong. I did not bombard them with questions about their college gpa, test scores, or resume, but over the course of the date, I was able to gather the information that I needed. Out of the 10 women, I went on a second date with just 2, and neither of those went any further.
This brings me to my point on schools. At top schools in particular, the admissions committee has pre-screened the students there. If I'm on a date with a classmate, I do not need to worry about whether she has her shit together. Moreover, by virtue of her being in school with me, I know that we're sort of on the same page with respect to our attitude towards education, professional success, ambition, etc.
Finally, due to the intense nature of school (especially b-schools), I will have a chance to interact with my female classmates in a wide array of situations: classroom, group projects, trips, social events, etc. In so doing, I will get a very clear view of their behavioral profile-how they respond to tough circumstances, how they treat people, how well they think on their feet and communicate, etc. Based upon such plethora of information, I can choose whether I want to ask out a woman in the first place, so I won't be wasting my time. In contrast, when I meet someone through online dating/clubs/bars, I will have to go on multiple dates at a minimum before I have a pretty good picture of the person.
I'm hoping to meet my future wife in school, so hopefully my analysis will prove to be accurate. Only time will tell.