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5 Ways to Make Friends in College

Nicole Manges
The good news is that you are not alone — everyone is nervous about making friends in college!

College is a huge transition, and it can be intimidating to start over at a new school with people you don’t know. It’s natural to crave a sense of belonging and want to make friends in college, but sometimes that feels like an impossible task. The good news is that you are not alone — everyone is nervous about making friends in college! Hopefully some of these tips will help:  

  1. Say yes. College is full of fun events, late-night adventures, and so much more. But you have to be willing to say yes when someone invites you to hang out. It’s tempting to stay in your room and watch TV or take a nap, but you’ll miss out on making memories and meeting some of your best friends. Whether it be hanging out with people you don’t know, chilling at a bonfire, participating in a floor event, or joining a new club, be willing to live outside your comfort zone and say yes!
  2. Go to events. There are so many fun opportunities to connect with the campus community by attending events. Huntington University has a Student Activities Board, Student Government Association, and many other groups that plan events throughout the year for you to participate in. These are just a sampling of a few events and traditions: 
  • Olympiad – During the four days of Olympiad, you can sign up to compete in various events on behalf of your team. With bubble soccer, synchronized swimming, Mario Kart racing, a capella, basketball, Fear Factor, Just Dance, arm wrestling, and more, there’s a competition for everyone.  
  • Hoedown – A professional line dancing instructor comes to campus and teaches everyone how to line dance, then you compete for first place. If dancing isn’t your thing, there is a mechanical bull, apple bobbing, and photo opportunities.
  1. Ask and initiate. As hard as it is to say yes when people invite you to hang out, it might be even harder to invite people. Think about how great it feels when someone invites you to join them at an event — you feel seen and valued because somebody thought of you. This is your chance to do that for others, so be willing to be brave and ask others to hang out!  
  2. Get involved. There are over 70 clubs and organizations you can get involved in while you’re a student at HU, like the Student Activities Board, Student Government Association, Undignified dance crew, Multicultural Activities Council, and so many more! You can read more about these opportunities here!  
  3. Be present. This might be the one of the easiest ways to make friends! When you’re in your room, keep your door open; you will be surprised how many people stop by to say hello or come in to hang out. Or hang out in your residence hall lounge or in common areas like the library. Just being present allows people to see you around campus, stop to chat, and become a new friend.

One last thing to remember: You are going to have so many resources on campus to help you connect with others. Your Residence Directors and Residence Assistants on your floor are there to plan hall and floor events for you to get to know everyone. Your professors are going to help you make friends by creating group work in class. Clubs and organizations on campus will give you information on how to get involved and will plan events throughout the year.

Making friends is intimidating, but you will grow so much and find a beautiful community just by using your resources and trying out these helpful tips. You’ve got this!

Written by
Nicole Manges