Making Friends and Your College Experience

Making Friends and Your College Experience
  • Opening Intro -

    Chances are you do an excellent job of "friending" people on Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites.

    And that is easy to do: you simply "like" someone or send a friend request, and you may gain a new contact almost instantaneously.

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Your online contacts, however, pale in comparison to the people that you will see on campus this year: individuals who you’ll do much face-to-face time with and may want to get to know personally. Read on for some tips on how to make friends while at college.

1. Show yourself friendly. Friendly people attract other friendly people, therefore show the welcoming side of your personality when you’re on campus. If you are shy, resolve to push past this barrier by looking at people in the eye, smiling and by saying, “hello.” Likely, one or more people you want to meet harbors similar feelings of hesitancy and would respond positively to your initiative.

2. Go to orientation. If you are an incoming freshman, plan to attend your orientation. Better yet, show up as early as possible. An early arrival will help you get settled and will also give you the opportunity to meet other early birds. With a smaller group of people on hand, you may find it easier to meet up and befriend other students.

3. Get social. Plan to attend as many social events on campus that your schedule allows. If someone is throwing a party and you’re invited, then attend it. You don’t have to stay long, but maybe just long enough to meet one or two new faces.

4. Study with your classmates. With four or five classes to handle each semester, you may find that it is easier to study with other students. In fact, that studying time will help you connect with students that possess a shared passion for learning. Regular group study times will help you meet new people, make friends and plan “good times” away from the books.

5. Offer your assistance. Helpful people attract friends, sending a clear signal that such individuals are approachable. Consider volunteering as a tutor, manning the check out desk at the library, helping out at a sporting event or volunteering with the student newspaper.

6. Know your neighbor. There are several people in your college sphere of influence that you will have regular contact with: your roommate, your residential advisor and fellow dorm mates. These people are the ones that you will see regularly and are, naturally, the ones whom you may gravitate toward. Your roommate may be in the same position as you: alone and wanting to make friends. Break the ice with this individual and resolve to make new friends together. It is easier to meet new people when you have at least one other person by your side.

Stay the Course

College life can be difficult for some students, especially for those that are shy or are struggling with a personal problem. If you feel overwhelmed, seek help — your college’s counseling center is there for you, by offering assistance to help you navigate college and stay the course.

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Categories: Personal Advice