The art of socializing is mastered by very few people. So if you’re having some trouble making friends at college, or you’re an incoming freshman worried about making friends, it’s okay. It’s natural to be concerned, but don’t worry too much about it. There are many ways for you to make friends in college. Keep in mind also that other students want to make friends as well.
Here are 6 ways to make friends in college.
1. Join Clubs
Joining a club is one of the best ways to meet people in college. If you have an interest, find out if your college has a club for it. It could even be helpful to join a club where you’re not familiar with the subject matter. That way, you and your club mates will be learning something together, or you’ll be able to learn from your peers. You don’t have to be a pro photographer to join the photography club.
You will undoubtedly meet people at a club. The whole point of a club is for people to come together and get to know each other. This can include joining a sorority, fraternity, or even your school’s student government.
2. Get to Class Early
Get to a class 10 minutes early. You should do this just to be punctual anyway, but getting to class early can help you make friends. While you and other students are waiting for the class to start, you can use the time to get to know your classmates. It’s the perfect time to start a conversation. A safe topic to bring up is the class material. You could talk about recent homework or tests, or perhaps an eccentric professor, and establish a bond.
3. Do Everyday Activities Together
Let’s say you meet someone who you talk to occasionally and you want to initiate a hang out, but don’t know how. Just keep it simple. Inviting someone to do regular everyday activities with you is a great way to kill two birds with one stone. Inviting someone to join you for coffee or a meal, study with you, or even go to the gym with you, can lead to a new routine together.
4. Join a Social Media Group
Many students are unaware of the fact that each college has many group pages on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter that are meant for students to gather as a community. For instance, Brooklyn College has many group pages on Facebook, including ones tied to specific majors, and ones for general community purposes, such as clubs or events, which are run by students. These pages are a great way for you to learn all that’s going on in your college. You may also have the opportunity to talk to students who have questions about a class you’re in, or who have the same major and interests as you. Of course, you shouldn’t rely solely on social media to make friends, but it can be a good medium for college students.
5. Be Present On Campus
It can be tempting for students who commute to college to go straight home after classes, or for those who stay in dorms to spend all their time in their dorm rooms, but that just makes it harder to make friends. Instead, you should make an effort to study in the school library, read your book under a tree on campus, or eat at the cafeteria. Being around campus opens up your chances of talking to someone and making friends.
6. Attend Campus Events
Your college will host a number of events every semester. Even if the event isn’t normally something you would go to, get out of your comfort zone and attend. If sports isn’t your thing but you go to a big sports college, attend a few games just to see what all the hype is about. Exploring new things will open you up as a person, give you more topics to talk about with your peers, and provide another avenue to make friends.
It may be hard initially, but you should make an effort to follow these tips, which will open up opportunities for you to converse and get to know other students in your college. It’s okay to feel nervous, but remember that there are other students just as nervous as you about making friends.
Brian Bonilla is a Journalism and Marketing student at Brooklyn College. When it comes to sports he’s an expert watcher and a mediocre player. When he’s not busy catching up on shows or writing scripts he’s probably telling people to watch The Americans on FX.