7 Ways To Make Friends At University
Starting university and worried about making friends? It can be daunting leaving friends and family behind for the big, bad world of university.
Don’t worry; you’re not alone. Everyone worries about making friends. Fear not: there are plenty of things you can do to make friends and enjoy a fantastic social life.
Look out for any events that are taking place near you. There could be parties, social gatherings, pub quizzes, charity fundraisers. Whatever is happening make sure you’re in the know and get yourself there. Take each event as an opportunity to mingle and get to know as many different groups of people as possible.
Look out for noticeboards or a uni blog to find out what’s happening.
Join local Facebook groups or meet up groups to get the information on local things happening near you. There will be so many things going on; the trick is to find them. So if your interest is reading, join reading groups, or if its gigs- sign up to local bars newsletters or their Facebook group to get updates on when things are happening.
Don’t be shy
Introduce yourself to your flat mates or others in your hall of residents and strike up a conversation. Easier said than done, but there are plenty of ways to strike up conversation.
Show interest in other people’s stories, ask questions about them, their interests and hobbies; you might find common ground which will lead to further, more natural conversations. The main thing is to not fear rejection. What’s the worst that could happen?
Social hang outs
Common rooms and student unions are great places to hang out and meet fellow students. Use your conversation skills to get into a friendly chat; challenge people to a pool or darts game if there are facilities to do so. Check out the social page of your uni to find out what’s on offer and make sure you get down there.
Cooking for your house mates, or corridor mates if you’re in halls, can be a nice gesture to get to know one another. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or formal; you could just have people round for a buffet and get easy finger food. This is both more sociable than a sit-down meal and probably more appealing. Get ideas on easy buffet menus and get inviting.
If you do fancy a proper sit-down meal with a few people, look out for some easy meals online.
If cooking’s not really your thing, then a party or small gathering could be. Depending on your interests and space, parties are always welcome in the student zone. Make sure you have some fun games on standby as an icebreaker. You could even set a theme if it’s around Halloween or Christmas.
You’ll want to make sure you have plenty of room to sit down, so grab pillows or bean bags for people to sit on and move anything valuable safely out of the way. Plastic cups and paper plates can save you the big clean up afterwards. Prep in advance and look into options for how to throw a fab party based on your budget.
University is for studying but it’s also for playing, so don’t spend all your time reading in your room. Make sure you enjoy the social scene and embrace the new lifestyle. Even if you’ve got a lot on work-wise, give yourself a break and have three nights off a week. Remember: you never have to go crazy and drink so much that you have a hangover the next day.
Remember this important fact: everyone is in the same boat and wants to make friends. Don’t be shy; get stuck in to as many social events as possible and say yes at any opportunity to go out and meet new people. Chances are you’ll find yourself in loads of social circles and be inundated with invites in the coming weeks. Still, real friendships take time, so be patient, keep smiling and keep talking to people.