How to IMSA: Dinner Dates

Don't forget to enjoy the food, either. - Source: Pixabay

Dinner dates are a staple of the IMSA experience, but they can be a little complicated to navigate, especially if it’s your first time experiencing one! So, we’ve put together a handy guide for making sure every one of your dinner dates is a success.

All Dinner Dates:

  • Check the time and date. Commit the date to memory! Much confusion has been had over when a dinner date is supposed to be, so make sure you know the date. Don’t forget the time, either — while most dinner dates take place from 9:00-10:30 PM, it’s always good to double check, as the time might be different due to special circumstances.
  • Casual or formal theme? There are generally two types of dinner dates — those with casual themes and those with formal themes. As they say on the tin, casually-themed dinner dates won’t require much dress up. But if there’s a specific theme, you may want to take note of that and dress according to the theme. For example, you should wear pajamas to a Pajama Dinner Date. Formal dinner dates will require a little more work. You won’t have to wear your Convocation clothes, but you might not want to show up in jeans either.
  • Sign out! Before heading off, make sure to sign out if your dinner date extends after ten check, which it most likely will. If you’re a part of the wing hosting the date, the RC on duty will know of the dinner date and let you sign out easily. If you’re a dinner date guest, your RC will probably have to check that you’re on the list for the dinner date before letting you sign out. As long as your date reported your name to their RC, there should be no problem. If there is, you can always attend the first part of the date before leaving for your hall before ten check.


A Dinner Date in Your Wing:

  • Donate food or money. You should definitely check with your wing guides on this one, as it will vary from hall to hall, but it’s always a good idea to donate food to the dinner date if you can. Pay attention to the theme. If your wing is doing a Dessert Date, for example, you don’t want to bring a main course dish! If you can’t bring food, most wings will appreciate money, which they’ll use to buy food for the dinner date.
  • Find a date. Some wings have you find your own date; others have someone else find a date for you. Listen to your wing on this one. The most important thing to remember is that, despite the name, a dinner date isn’t romantic. The point is just to get to know more people. While it’s generally accepted that most people bring a person of the opposite sex in a different grade from them, this is hardly a requirement. As long as your guest is an IMSA student from outside your wing, it’s fine. It’s also fine to go to a dinner date without a guest, but this can ruin the fun because you won’t have anyone to talk to! If you’re having trouble finding a date for yourself or someone else, you can always ask others in the wing. There will often be an upperclassmen or two who will be thrilled to help you out.


Dinner dates can be intimidating, but after the first one, you’ll figure out the rhythm. Just remember to sign out and have fun!

About the Author

Mara Adams
Hailing from Peoria, Illinois, Mara Adams is a senior at IMSA, currently residing in 03A. This year, she's the Managing Editor of the Acronym, but more importantly, she has recently discovered her love for Twix.

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