Introducing The Next Generation Of Leaders And Thinkers

5 Tips For Making Friends Your Freshman Year of College

Whether your future school is two miles away or two hundred, whether you’re commuting or dorming, starting a whole new life in a higher education institution is a scary concept for everyone. 

What if I miss my family and friends from home? What if I can’t sleep at night and fail all of my classes? What if I hate the food?

Being a senior in high school who has already chosen the college I will attend in the fall, these are questions that circulate my brain as graduation day approaches in less than six months. But those questions are always overpowered by the biggest question: how do I make friends in college?

In colleges with freshman classes ranging anywhere from 500 to 10,000, where do you start? I asked friends and family who are currently in college for their advice on how to successfully make friends your freshman year.

1. Don’t Be Shy

While that seems like a no-brainer, oftentimes colleges hold various orientation events the first week 0f college, and many times freshman will skip them due to anxiety or loss of interest. If you want to make friends, these events are perfect for making them as early as possible. Besides, everyone is nervous during the first week of college, so you certainly won’t be a fish out of the water.

2. Introduce Yourself

It is best to step out of your comfort zone and introduce yourself to someone rather than waiting for someone to introduce themselves to you. Making friends with the people in your dorm is crucial, especially during the first few weeks of college. Even if you and your roommate go door to door introducing yourselves, it’ll relieve some nervous tension and you’ll end up meeting some great people in the process.

3. Take Advantage of Dorm Activities

Oftentimes, dorms will have specific ‘dorm activities’, such as movie nights or game nights. While these activities might sound childish or boring at first, college is not the time nor the place to underestimate just how much fun you can have. Who knows, you might just meet some really cool people in your dorm as well.

4. Clubs, Clubs, Clubs.

The piece of advice I hear the most from college students is to get involved early. If you see a club for something you’re interested in, join it as soon as possible. It doesn’t matter if you have little experience or knowledge in the topic of the club. If you’re interested in the club, you should join it. Joining clubs in college is a great way to make life-long friends who share similar interests with you and want to expand upon those interests.

5. Try Something New

High school is a tough time period for trying new things, such as theater and club sports. There’s so much focus on college and the slight chance of being ridiculed if you don’t succeed right away. College, to say the least, is a whole different ballpark. It’s the perfect time to try new things, without the pressure of being succeeding right away or having natural born talent. You may end up finding a passion for something you never expected to have, and it’s a perfect opportunity to expand your friend group.

One of the most important things to remember that first week of college is that everyone is in the same boat. Terrified? Excited? Relieved? No matter how you feel, just know you won’t be alone.

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