opens dating site to NU students

Michelle Ma

Northwestern singles could meet their perfect matches this week — and if it’s not love at first sight, at least couples will be compatible.

Students with an NU e-mail address can now register with, a compatibility matching service for college students.

Although CampusMatch was created for Wesleyan University students more than three years ago, more students at universities across the country are requesting to join the network.

And starting today, NU is on board.

Dan Stillman and Matt Eaton, both Wesleyan ’04 graduates, created the network in 2002 on a whim, Stillman said.

“It was created to get me a girlfriend,” he said. “Our main goal has just been to make it as unsketchy as possible to get in touch with people.”

CampusMatch asks new users to complete a multiple-choice survey when they register.

Within seconds, the program displays students’ top 20 most compatible matches at the university based on split-second number crunching designed within the program, said Eaton, who is a computer science doctoral candidate at Wesleyan. Students can also check their compatibility — displayed as a percentage — with any registered user.

“At first people didn’t take it seriously,” Eaton said. “(But now) people do put a lot of faith in the numbers.”

Some survey match-ups prove to be surprisingly accurate, sometimes matching couples who are already dating, he added.

The two friends intended for CampusMatch to remain a small network at Wesleyan, but Eaton said that by the first weekend of its existence, half of the school was signed up.

“We couldn’t keep people off of it,” Eaton said. “‘CampusMatch’ became a buzz word on campus. People would walk across campus and say, ‘Wow, we’re 86 percent compatible.'”

A year and a half ago, Eaton and Stillman first launched the network at other universities. Now students can check their compatibility levels with any registered student in the country. About 35 universities — including Princeton, Brown and Tufts — are on the network. Within the next few weeks, more schools will be added, Stillman said.

Setting up the network at a university is contingent on expressed student interest, he said. About 12 NU students have e-mailed CampusMatch during the year to request that it be launched at the university. Though they have received request e-mails from “pretty much everywhere,” Stillman said NU’s volume of requests proves it’s time to bring CampusMatch to NU.

“Our main goal right now is to bring this to as many schools as possible,” Stillman said.

NU’s network will include some standard survey questions as well as a few “customized” questions, allowing for NU-specific compatibility questions to better match students, he said.

Reach Michelle Ma at [email protected]