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Lansing State Journal from Lansing, Michigan • Page 29
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Lansing State Journal from Lansing, Michigan • Page 29

Lansing, Michigan
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TT Tlic State cUiiunmall Section Sunday, May 22, 1977, Lansing, Michigan LLDWDDQC Love amid computer printouts Sally and Frank have mixed emotions about their 'compatible romances 24 to 34 since he joined Scientific Matchmakers one year ago. "For the most part, the women I've met have been on a par with me educationally, but I guess I expected a little more compatibility," he said. "I have not been dissatisfied with the program, but a lot of women I've met have had some bad experiences," he said. "A lot of them tell me they meet a lot of losers through the service." Both Sally and Frank emphasized that, contrary to popular belief concerning dating services, the program they were in was not a sex-market. WHAT EXACTLY is it that Scientific Matchmakers attempts to accomplish? "We take the hassle out of meeting people," said owner Bill Colett. "To a single girl, hassle means running the risk of unknowingly getting involved with married men disguised as singles," said Colett. "To a single guy, it means spending a lot of money in bars." Colett describes his business as an "introductory service" rather than a dating service. "We make clients known to each other, and the people make the dates," explained Colett. "Everybody has in their own mind the type of person they would like to meet," he said "We try to find out what a person's prime reasons are for looking for someone and then try to work around that reason." A POTENTIAL CLIENT desiring to join Scientific Matchmakers' pool of available men and women must first fill out three questionnaires. They deal with the person's dislikes, likes, and personality. A six-page booklet containing 115 questions is used by the potential client to describe the type of referrals desired. Questions in the booklet range from physical and ethnic preferences to questions on education and sexual attitudes. "After they fill out the question- By JIMMY HARRIS Start Writer Sally came up with her $500 from a bank loan. Frank wrote his off to Master Charge. Both are Lansing-area people who are part of a focal trend turning to a computer to find romance. SALLY IS 25, an attractive brunette with a master's degree and a good job. She had a rough time after an affair with a married man, and started looking around for another way to meet men. So far, she has her doubts about the program, but she says she'll keep trying. Frank is 40. with a college degree and a good job. He's divorced and not happy with the singles bar scene. SO FAR, he says, the computer-dating program has worked out all right although he expected it to be a little better. The electronic brain, it seems, has touched upon yet one more human sanctum the relationship between men and women. Thousands of people are taking advantage of the analytical powers of computers to aid them in meeting folks of the opposite sex. with the ultimate goal being compatibility. FRANK AND SALLY (not their real names) go to a Lansing firm called Scientific Matchmakers, Inc. Bill Colett. the owner, says he has thousands of clients throughout central Michigan. Sally has her master's from Michigan State University and works as a dietician in a Lansing hospital. After her affair with a married man. she says, she was "raked over the coals in court." She came to Colett's firm two months ago. "I figured people depend an awful lot on looks when they meet people in normal situations or at least, I know I do, and I thought this program would allow me to avoid that," said Sally. "Since I began working in my profession, I've been meeting more women than men." she said, softly and candidly. "I mtmmmsammwm i terested me, but they were all terribly nice." Sally's referrals ranged in age from 30 to 40 years. They included a postal clerk, a machinist, a physician and corporate controller. She later went to a representative of the company to say she "didn't want any packrats" for referrals but only referrals with equal levels of education. "WE SPENT most of our time trying to figure out why we were matched because we couldn't find much in common," she said of her meetings with the three men. thought the computer program would allow me a way to meet guys other than trying it the natural way." FOR APPROXIMATELY the next three years. Sally will receive monthly several names of single men through the mail; The price approximately $500 would guarantee her anywhere from one to four referrals of "possibles" per month for the entire period. "During my first month in the program I received nine referrals and went on dates with three," she said. "None of them really in "Since my first batch of referrals, I've begun thinking this is kind of sad, and I've lost faith and confidence in the program." "I don't think I would stop now, however," she continued. All of Scientific Matchmakers' clients have the option of canceling their referrals or "go on hold" if they begin dating one person regularly. "Maybe I'll meet some people and well, for $500 you don't throw those referrals away," said Sally. "So, I spent a lot of money on a venture which was important to me to prove I had looked at humanity in a different way," she concluded. "It gives me an added feeling of security to know that there is no way to meet people other than the natural way." FRANK HAS a bachelor's degree, and is an accountant in Lansing. He, too, signed, for Scientific Matchmakers' three-year program. "I got interested in the program after seeing an ad in the newspaper," said Frank. "I joined because a single man can spend a lot of money, time, and effort in the bar scene and if he's lucky he might meet somebody." Frank said he has met around 25 women ranging in age from Concluded on page C-3 Conference to deal with child care and aging women are coming from," Ms. Aikey continued. "The older woman will be very concerned about looking at the aging problem. I'm thinking of the double burdens of the minority women, too. "And I think the rural and farm women workshop is very important I think this is an area we haven't really looked at that's going to be unique." Workshop leaders include Dorothy Haener, National Women's Commission, on women in the work place; Lorraine Beebe, former state senator, on teen-age pregnancy; and Shirley Monson. past state chairwoman of the National Organization for Women (NOW) on full patners in the home. Sarah Goddard Power and Helen Milliken will co-present the international Woman workshop. UNDER THE direction of the conference's presiding officer. Dr. L. Eudora Pettigrew, acting chairperson and professor in Michigan State University's college of urban development, speakers include: Elizabeth Athanasakos, immediate past chairperson of the IWY commission; Virginia Allan, former deputy assistant secretary for public affairs, department of state; and Dr. Nellie Varner, associate dean at the University of Michigan's Rackham School of graduate learning. Artist Patricia Burnett, chairwoman of Michigan Women's Commission, is in charge of ethnic and cultural presentations and exhibits. "And many organizations that relate to women's concerns will be distributing and selling information," Ms. Aikey added, including special interest groups. By TRUDY WESTFALL Staff Writer There promises to be something for everyone at Michigan's statewide International Women's Year (IWY) meeting June 10-11 at the Lansing Civic Center. "We have such diversity in (the) workshops," explained Mary Aikey, conference coordinating committee chairperson. "They run the gamut." she added, from sessions exploring women in the work place, education, child care and substance abuse to aging and the older women, poverty and the working poor and full partnership for the homemaker. "WE TRIED to look at the walks of life where "AS A state planning committee I feel we did our very best to follow the guidelines and the law." Guidelines came from a survey by the National Women's Commission suggesting barriers affecting American women. "They said to the states 'Can you identify in your state where the problems and-other problems," Ms. Aikey explained. The workshop topics are based on the commission's book, "To Form A More Perfect Union." THE CONFERENCE, expected to draw up to 6,000 persons, is supported by a grant from the National Commission on the Observance of IWY, an extension of the commission established by then-President Gerald Ford in 1975 and extended by Congress to sponsor meetings in each state and territory no later than July 10. 'They were not excluded from the planning. All of the meetings were public they attended. Mary Aikey, IWY 'It is urgent that we send more women than the women's libbers do, so we can outvote them. Phyllis Schlafly publication. 'I hi ii ii iiJiiM ini if 1 1 i i yJJ jw. -i Mary Aikey 'The agenda represents just one viewpoint. This is an insult to women. Elaine Donnelly, Stop ERA and Citizens Review Committee Phyllis Schlafly 'This is emanating from a very narrow group This group seeks in effect to violate the law. Bella Abzug. Elaine Donnelly Bella Abzug 'Conference a fraud' Battle with Bella brews I By TRUDY WESTFALL Staff Writer "We are going to expose this whole conference as a fraud," says Elaine Donnelly, Michigan chairman of the National Stop ERA Committee and member of the newly formed Michigan Citizens Review Committee for International Women's Year (IWY). "It's a phony festival for feminists," she exploded, speaking of Michigan's statewide IWY meeting scheduled for June 10-11 at the Lansing Civic Center. THE REVIEW committee she was speaking for is a coalition of organizations: Stop ERA, Hap CAROL R. RICHARDS Gannett News Service WASHINGTON The scene is being set for a national battle between two opposing titans of the women's movement, conservative Phyllis Schlafly and liberal Bella Abzug. The inevitability of such a clash became evident recently as the International Women's Year Commission, headed by former Democratic Rep. Abzug, met to make plans for its national women's conference to be held Nov. 18 in Houston and to review the progress of the statewide conferences leading up to the national event. An organizer of the Georgia women's conference held in Atlanta told the IWY commission that piness of Womanhood (HOW), and other political and local groups. Mrs. Donnelly said her group hopes to get "as many supporters as we can" at the IWY meeting, which she. charged has been "illegitimate right from the start." "We feel the (national) women's commission has been unfairly lobbying for goals not sup-, ported by the majority of women," Mrs. Donnelly explained, referring to abortion and the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). "It's unfair to use tax dollars for this." According to Mrs. Donnelly, the Michigan con-Concluded on page C-12, a group calling itself the "Citizens Review Committee for IWY" had attended, disrupted the meetings and monopolized the TV cameras with their complaints that the conference was stacked on behalf of the Equal Rights Amendment. CONNIE PLUNKETT of Carrollton, warned that the IWY review committee is "a national group, and they'll show up at other meetings." Abzug said the review committee was the work of Phyllis Schlafly, who is leading the Stop-ERA movement. She waved the March 31 issue of Concluded on page C-14

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