As a college freshman, I was very nervous to enter a new environment filled with people I had never met before. I have now officially survived my first semester, and have met a bunch of new people. If you are entering college for the first time, transferring, or simply want to make more friends, I will offer some helpful tips that I learned when meeting people and making new friends.
- Find One Person You Find Interesting and Meet Their Friends!
The best way to make a group of friends that you get along well with is to find people who you actually want to be around! A big issue I have seen since coming to college has been the people around me trying to fit in with anyone around them. They have been abandoning themselves for the sole purpose of not sitting alone at the lunch table. It is important to remember that with patience, you will find the people you are supposed to be around! Do not settle for friends who make you feel uncomfortable or unhappy; it is not worth it! It is much better to sit alone at the table than with people who bring you down. Remember, sitting alone also means that there are plenty of empty seats waiting to be filled… friends are coming!
- Join Clubs/Sports
One of the decisions I am most grateful for now is joining clubs and sports. I decided to take part in intramural soccer and volleyball, allowing me to meet people who were looking to have some light-hearted fun. I was able to build a team bond out of strangers, and the games and matches gave me something to look forward to every week. I definitely recommend getting involved in games and sports to make long-lasting friends all while getting stress-relieving exercises. I also joined multiple clubs that have allowed me to become close to other students with similar interests. This not only helps establish comfort and connection, but I also get some time to partake in activities I find enjoyable.
- Hang Out in the Floor Lounges and Hall Activities
Do not be afraid to hang out in the public lounges! At first, I was worried about entering a room full of people I had never met, but I quickly realized this is the easiest way to spark friendships. Because I got over the nerves of entering my hall’s lounges, I was able to meet people both from my floor and other floors as well. Now that I think about the friends I have made, I realize that I had met most of them while in the lounges. URI holds many hall activities that are fun and great for seeing people who live throughout the building. Approach people with a friendly hello, spark conversation, and who knows, you could have a best friend in the making!
- Ask Someone Who is Sitting Alone if They Want a Friend
Remember that first point I made? Yeah, remember those empty chairs waiting to be filled? You can be the one to fill them! If you see someone alone, whether it be in a lounge or at the dining halls, it is an awesome idea to ask if they want a friend to sit with. From my experience with this, I have realized that often times, the person you approach is just as excited as you are to make a new friend. If you are the person being asked, this is a great opportunity to get to know someone new!
- Snapchat Works Wonders
One of the greatest surprises I have encountered while being at college has been a heavy reliance on Snapchat. It is less personal than sharing phone numbers, so it is a lot easier to casually contact new people you meet. It is also an easy way to get to know someone through short spurts of pictures and captions. I definitely recommend creating Snapchat group chats as well as using it as a tool to make friends.
Get out there and make some friends!