Community as a College Student

Community is a common desire for any college student. It’s a place of belonging and a safe space to freely express. Towards the end of the year the idea of community can be solidified or blurred. Sometimes as a college student community can be an immediate success through clubs or hallmates. Other times community can be difficult and feel isolating to put yourself out there. The difficulty to find your own niche in a huge campus full of students coming from all different walks of life can seem intimidating. Understanding the importance of overcoming one’s fears of community or how to find one can make college life exciting and beautiful.

 

How to Tackle Fears of Community

 

In high school social groups are marked by shared interests, but in college everything is multiplied. The amount of people you meet aren’t based on age group. Everyone is coming from different socio-economical walks of life with personal experiences. It’s scary to make friends in discussion or walk into a general meeting by yourself. It’s difficult to create a community when you aren’t in dorms and you live in an apartment. How can these fears be tackled? How can you overcome them?

(Image by Mum & Career)

 

Practice Helps

 

Practice may not make perfect, but it will make approaching people easier. Begin with around you in lecture or discussion periods. Small conversations can start with simple questions such as How are you and what year are you? Based on their answer you can start to ask about their college experience and hopefully create a meaningful connection. It’s all about branching out slowly by picking up little statements and drawing a deeper conversation with genuine interest.

 

What you Want

 

Authenticity is important when beginning to make friends. It’s essential to understand what you want out of a friendship or community group. Is having fun and being adventurous important to you? Are deep and serious conversations needed for an intimate friendship? Recognizing your own desires of what you want out of people will navigate an easier understanding of what environment you can thrive in.

(Image by Lockheed Martin)

 

Community is always a hard topic. It takes lots of patience and trust to build a good group of friends. At the end of the day community is a space of understanding and compassion to be heard and understood. It enables students to make memories with people they care about, but also a group of people they can grow with. It’s a beautiful feeling to know that there is a support group cheering you on and also people to share life with. It’s not an easy circle to build, but knowing that you are not alone will make the hard test weeks and stressful adulting moments a lot easier.