February 28, 2024

Heart-shaped candy and cupid cutouts flooded stores and street corners before January ended. Whether one views Valentine’s Day as a celebration of love and affection or as “Singles Awareness Day,” Feb. 14 is fast-approaching.

It is no surprise to anyone attending California Baptist University that the concept of “Ring by Spring” permeates the campus culture.

“Ring by Spring” is the idea that students expect to be engaged or married by the time they graduate from college. Whether or not it is the goal of an individual, attending a school where that mindset is evidently present is a different experience for all.

The coincidence of Valentine’s Day occurring in the spring semester may potentially highlight “Ring by Spring” for some, causing a feeling of urgency in a relationship, but Greg Marmo, senior biomedical engineering major, said he does not understand the fascination with “Ring by Spring.”

“‘Ring by Spring’ is a gimmick almost,” Marmo said. “It’s this thing that’s made up to try and tell people that they should get married as soon as they can. Relationships shouldn’t be rushed; they should be about getting to know the person.”

For Marmo, Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to express affections without rushing into anything.

“People shouldn’t be going all out,” Marmo said. “Something simple like flowers and a collage or something should do. That’s what I’m doing for my girlfriend.”

Other students recognize the pressure that Valentine’s Day can place on couples and singles.

Haley Gray, freshman undeclared major, said the entire concept possesses a level of humor, yet the roots of it can be unhealthy.

“This ‘searching for a relationship,’ from a Christian perspective, is a form of fear or mistrust that God and only God is enough for us,” Gray said.

For Gray, Valentine’s Day is a time to celebrate godly partnerships and relationships that work toward the ultimate goal of God’s glory.

“The way we percieve romance should be that two people come together to better fulfill God’s purpose , but at the end of the day, God is who they look to for satisfaction and purpose,” Gray said.

Valentine’s Day does not have to be a day of celebration for couples only. Despite what “Ring by Spring” influences, the holiday celebrates love in a
variety of forms.

Students can take a day trip with friends, watch a movie at the Van Buren Drive-In theater or go bowling. Valentine’s Day is a holiday for everyone and should not be influenced by “Ring by Spring” culture.

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