Tinder has helped people connect with their soul mate, meet a hookup, and now (apparently) get a college scholarship. In a surprising twist of events, a junior at the University of Nebraska Omaha found that defying her local sorority chapter — and being a Tinder user — had some unexpected benefits.
Shannon Workman made the news last week after word spread on Facebook that she had been disciplined by her sorority, Chi Omega, for wearing a shirt with Greek letters in a Tinder photo. Workman recorded a conversation with chapter administrators, who told her that they were "going to pursue membership revocation." Workman chose to leave the sorority rather than go through an appeals process, telling Good Morning America that the option wasn't apparent, but also that she was humiliated by the sorority's response.
Standing up for her freedom to use social media and wear a shirt of her choice paid off. Tinder announced that they are giving Workman a scholarship and a paid internship at the company because "what Shannon did sends a very empowering message to young women and college students," a Tinder spokesperson told Refinery29.
The spokesperson also nodded to the app's roots on college campuses:
"[Tinder] was launched at USC, primarily through the Greek system — sorority and fraternity members were our earliest adopters, and that demographic is still one of our most active today — more than 50% of our users are age 18 to 24. When we found out what Shannon was going through we wanted to help and turn her experience into a positive one."
It's not the first time that the app has come under fire. It's been at the center of conversations about modern hookup culture and has been blamed for creating a "dating apocalypse".
But in this situation, it seems like Workman and Tinder came out on top.
"Shannon’s actions showed a depth of leadership and courage that is admirable and something we value as part of our company culture," the Tinder spokesperson said. "We always want to stand up for our users who stand up for us."
It's certainly a unique way to leave a mark on your alma mater.