Making friends or acquaintances in college

Martin Lopez/HIGHLANDER

I think everyone can agree that making friends anywhere is relatively difficult. It’s just easier for some people to put themselves out there than others. There is a large number of students who are considered anti-social, but the truth is that they just find it harder to make friends. Rejection causes people to fall back into themselves and makes it harder to make friends. If you open up to someone, you risk the negative judgement they might bring. After experiencing rejection most people would rather stay in their rooms and listen to a sad song playlist. Instead, those seeking friends should take a different route.

Meet your neighbors

The perks of being on such a big and beautiful campus as Riverside is that you can find people anywhere. This means you can make friends anywhere. If you live in the dorms, you can easily introduce yourself to the other students in your hall or just the students in dorms close to your own. If you live in the on-campus apartments, then you can introduce yourself to your neighbor and invite them over to watch TV or for a cup of coffee.

Find like-minded people

Students can also join clubs in order to look for people who they can click with. If a student isn’t interested in a club then they can go to any place on campus where they could fit in. If you are a musician or are interested in becoming one, then the arts building is a good place to go and meet musicians that are trying to hone their craft. If you like skateboarding, then you can go to the bell tower and find any number of skaters doing flips and riding around. Going to places on campus where you might find those that share your interests is a surefire way of meeting the right crowd.

Go to class

Classes also give you the opportunity to meet new people. Talk to someone who sits next to you in lecture. If you don’t feel like you’ve clicked with this person, then find another person. You can keep doing this until you find someone you click with, and who knows, maybe you’ll hang out after class.

Discussions or labs are even better environments to approach people, as the small class size pushes you to interact with each other. Working with your lab partner or finding someone in your discussion to study with is a great way of getting to know someone.

Study your way to a friendship

Being open doesn’t mean you have to reveal your deepest secrets to other people. It means being able to slightly open up to another person and interact with them. Just approaching someone nowadays is hard for many people to do.

Creating study groups with students in your class who you want to be friends with is a smart way to meet interesting individuals who motivate you to do better academically. The study groups can be just you and another person or as many people as you want that are in the class. You can go out to eat before having study sessions or do other activities.

Be Yourself

Being slightly open gives you the opportunity to make companions. To be open is to reveal the any of the things that make you who you are: activities you enjoy doing, your habits, your interests, etc. Once you get to a point where you are completely comfortable and in your element with a person, that is how you know that you’ve made a friend. The best thing to do is relax, smile and just be yourself.

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