How to handle a crush on your GSI

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Caragh McErlean/File

We’ve all been there — it’s your first day of section, and your GSI walks in. They are cute, but you’re not infatuated. Eventually, however, the way your GSI derives equations and explains proofs with such ease sparks your interest, and before you know it, you’ve caught feelings. The only question that remains is: What do you do about it?

It’s going to take some patience and strategic thinking if you really want to go beyond a teacher-student relationship with your GSI. It’s important to not start dating until after the semester ends, especially so your romance can properly flourish.

This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to play coy. You should definitely go to all their office hours and make some small talk. Ask them about their research, or impress them with your knowledge of their subject area. If you aren’t well acquainted with the subject matter, then ask questions and allow your GSI to teach you. It doesn’t matter what you say — the important thing is to allow a bond to form between you two.

The next step is to find commonalities. Do they watch Game of Thrones? Do they enjoy hikes to the Big C? Do they take (absolutely necessary) daily naps? Once you’ve found some commonalities, you should establish the fact that you and your GSI have lots in common. In addition to that, keep in touch, emailing them with occasional questions about the material. Make sure to answer questions in class or participate in any way you can. In other words, make sure they notice you throughout the semester.

When the semester ends, it’s finally time to make a move — exchange contact info. Perhaps you could email them, thanking them for being a great GSI and asking them for their number to stay in touch. Another method would be to add them on Facebook and message them a note of appreciation. Hopefully, they’ll get the hint and ask you out for coffee or offer to help tutor you in other classes.

After all that work, we at the Clog hope you and your GSI have a wonderful romance, or at least a solid friendship. Just make sure to keep it outside of the classroom.

Contact Melany Dillon at [email protected].