Valentine’s Day social unites students, but not for romance

College redefines Valentine's, highlighting community, self-love, and unexpected friendships
Photo: Yuye Jiang
Delina Hailu, a student majoring in business administration at Algonquin College, enjoys snacks, drinks, and chatting with a new friend at the AC Hub.

Valentine’s Day is no longer exclusively a day for romance. Many students now enjoy diverse expressions of love on this day, celebrating with family and new friends.

Algonquin College organized a lively social event at the AC Hub on Valentine’s Day, transforming traditional romantic celebrations into an inclusive social experience.

From music and sweet treats to bingo games, the event not only provided relaxation for students amidst midterm tests but also offered opportunities to make new friends.

Yasmine El Bouberri, a student in international business management at Algonquin College, found herself enjoying the social atmosphere at the Valentine’s Day event, despite attending alone.

“I was just sitting here playing on my phone, and then many people approached me because they needed help filling out their bingo paper,” Bouberri said. “It’s much easier, cause you don’t have to initiate a greeting anymore. Just ask, ‘Can you help me fill out this paper?’ It’s enough.”

Bingo became the highlight of the entire event, not only because it connected students but also broke the social barriers through a simple and enjoyable game, redefining how new friendships are formed beyond emotional compatibility.

Harsh Rajgor and Natasha Singh, studying business and event management at Algonquin College respectively, praised the content planning of the Valentine’s Day event.

“We saw this event on the website and came here right away,” Rajgor said. “We got some donuts and drinks, and now just stay chilling here with music, bingo, and making friends from different places.”

Samantha Therrien, Algonquin College’s event officer, aims to create new connections among students and change perceptions of Valentine’s Day, moving away from its exclusive link to romantic relationships.

“We’re hoping the students can realize that Valentine’s Day can mostly be like a community thing,” Therrien said. “It isn’t only about romantic relationships; it’s about the love between friends and self-love.”

Samantha Therrien, the event officer at Algonquin College, gives a speech for the Valentine's Day Social event at AC Hub and goes over the bingo game instructions.
Samantha Therrien, the event officer at Algonquin College, gives a speech for the Valentine's Day Social event at the AC Hub and goes over the bingo game instructions. Photo credit: Yuye Jiang

“A social setting like this is really useful, because it’s all about the networking,” Bouberri said. “You meet new people, they might refer you to a job. So, it’s not about being together, falling in love, but more like visiting new places and getting resources.”

“Whether you take care of someone in a friendship or romantic relationship, we should take care of ourselves first,” Singh said. “Only when we know how to love ourselves, can we provide the same things to others.”

Therrien said that the Algonquin college is definitely planning to roll out similar events in the future. More information on upcoming events can be found out on AC Hub’s official website.

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