Read her winning essay below! Despite the fact that love does have a controlling power over our lives and decisions, this state of mind is not that easy to achieve; but those who do, can enjoy the beauty of sharing their live with a significant other. But before I share how drastically different American dating scene is for me, let me tell you a little bit about myself.
I come from Moscow, Russia, and this is my third year in the United States. I was an exchange student in Colorado, where I got a chance to graduate from high school, and this year I am starting my junior year at Cornell College in Iowa. Russia has been holding the stereotypes of highly conservative country, and to be honest I could not agree more. Even if Russian girls might be super obsessed with their looks and clothes, the dating scene is very conservative.
My parents started dating when my mother was 16 and my father was 19, and after 3 years they got married. So, if you meet someone, you got to be friends with them for at least 3 months before you get intimate. When it comes to the USA, the dating and relationships here are completely of a different mentality.
Well, obviously, it does not happen all the time, but this was the first impression I got when I was in high school. In college, dating scene is slightly different from that of high school. Especially when it comes to fraternities and sororities, casual sexual encounters are highly encouraged. Of course, they are people who are dating, but they just found what they were looking for and are completely satisfied with their relationships. Well, college years is the time of your life when you are trying to find yourself and reveal your potential, and the main thing about the hookup culture is that you are trying to find someone who would be the best option for you.
It is different in Russia, because there most people just settle for what is available instead of exploring different options. Furthermore, internet dating is real in America. Young people honestly despise it, and only those who are older than 40 years old may turn to this in a hopeless search for their significant other.
Open-minded and friendly American are not afraid of meeting new people, while in Russia internet dating is not really acceptable. It is more democratic and open-minded.