The first week at college can be overwhelming. Trying to find classes, adjusting to the teaching style of tertiary education, and dealing with the sheer number of other students and lecturers wandering the campus is often daunting.
One of the biggest fears that many new students face when starting college is the question of how to make friends. This task, while seemingly difficult, can be made easy through a number of different approaches.
Join Clubs and Societies
This is the fastest and surest way to meet other students, both old and new. Clubs and societies are the social side of university life – aside from whatever activities or interests the clubs cater for, there are usually a variety of social activities, such as trivia nights, welcome parties, movie outings and regular meetings.
Never done theatre in your life? That’s not a problem – these societies exist to promote various interests, which also means teaching new members. Interested in archery? The archery club will do its best to point you in the right direction.
Joining a student society does not mean that students are forced to remain members – many people sign up to several societies or clubs until they find the ones that interest them the most. The biggest challenge is often simply working up the courage to attend the first interest meeting. However, it is a fact that these clubs and societies want new student membership just as much as new students want to make friends.
Find the Student Bar
This might be a cliché, but it is inevitably true – wherever the student bar is located, students will be around. This may be a setting where it is best to be in the company of a friend or two, or to invite new acquaintances along for a drink. Student bars have the advantage of both cheaper drinks and a younger crowd, making them a good place to socialise and meet new people. If you aren’t interested in drinking alcohol (or haven’t reached the legal age), this is not a problem – most student bars also have food and non-alcoholic drinks.
Every college or university has a student-volunteering program, whether it involves helping out on open days or taking part in regular promotions of activities or events. Volunteering often has a large network of students who volunteer for a number of different causes and are on campus quite often. In return for giving up a couple of hours a week, new volunteers can meet many other students and simultaneously do something worthwhile for the university.
Talk to Your Classmates
Taking a class with the same people all semester offers a good opportunity to meet new people and see them on a regular basis. Talking to your classmates can lead to social outings such as study groups or coffee meet-ups before or after class. Don’t be afraid to start conversations!, learn more.
By taking a chance and going along to a few meetings and activities, new students can make friends with similar interests in no time. All it takes is a little self-determination – and to remember that there are thousands of other students looking for new friends, just like you.