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To The Freshman Who Doesn’t Have A “Friend Group” Yet

So you made it to your first year of college, away from home and away from your high school best friends. It probably feels weird; you miss them, and you’re not used to missing them because you never had to before. Obviously, college is a great place to meet new friends, and you want to make sure you find good ones. You’re nervous, nobody knows you really well just a few weeks into the semester, and you’re looking to chill with people. Who do you turn to?

You don’t know.

Sure, you talk to a few of your floor mates. You discuss notes with a student you sit next to in class. You have a couple people who you’re friendly with, but you wouldn’t consider them “friends.”

To the freshman who doesn’t have a friend group just yet: don’t worry. You will find it.

It is easy to experiment with hanging around the different types of cliques on campus your first year to see where you fit in. Allow yourself to do that.

Join a comfortable amount of clubs. If this comfortable amount is one or five, that’s up to you. It depends how much time you are spending for class, work, and how much free time you want to have. Clubs are important for making friends with similar interests as you.

Don’t bind yourself to one group of friends right away. Spend time with anyone and everyone who is fun to be around. You might be missing out on other valuable friendships, and your one “main group” might fizzle out or break up by sophomore year. I’ve seen it happen.

Don’t get into a relationship right away. This was a mistake I made my freshman year, dating someone right at the beginning of the school year. You might tell yourself you’re not spending every waking moment with your significant other, but you are. Or it might seem that way to others, and they won’t ask you to hang out with them because they will assume you will be out with your boo. Make your solid foundation of friends first, then think about relationships.

Reach out. Make sure you are talking to people and asking to hang out. It can be easy being on the meal plan, because everyone has to eat. You can start small as well; ask a potential friend if she or he wants to grab lunch. Focus on making one friend at a time, then you can add to that and form a bigger group.

You can also insert yourself into a preexisting group. While this can be tricky, because the group is a clique for a reason, it can be done. Make friends with each member of the group individually, and then you’ll be a part of the whole group in no time.

Know that you will not connect with everyone. I didn’t have a lot in common with my floor mates freshman year, and I often felt left out. People say that it’s the easiest to make best friends with the people you live with, but if you find your friends elsewhere, that is okay.

Give yourself time. You will see obvious friend groups start to form as people split up from the larger group by the start of second semester at the latest. Don’t let this discourage you if you don’t feel like you have one. I didn’t find mine until halfway through first semester sophomore year.

College is hard enough as it is, don’t stress out about friendships.

Rachel Kubik

Marquette '19

Journalism and writing-intensive English major from a suburb of Chicago. Avid flute player, artist and Netflix lover.
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