There are billions of people in this world, and the sad fact is that you’re never going to meet all of them; it’s just not possible. But, on the other hand, you’re going to get an incredible opportunity to meet a TON of people when you’re in college. A lot of the people will come into your life and leave within the next couple of years, but then there are the people you’ll meet who’ll be around for at least a decade or more.
This past week my boyfriend, who I met through a mutual friend out in California (long story short, don’t rule out those people you hang out with for a short period of time, they can connect you with the best people!), came out from San Diego to visit. We decided to go to Niagara Falls for his first time. In Niagara, we met up with my old roommate from last spring semester (2008) at Paul Smith’s College. Jena and her girlfriend live in Buffalo, NY, and I’ve been up to visit her several times since she and I were roommates. All though we were only roomies for a semester, we built a great relationship to where we can go for weeks without talking to each other but basically pick up right where we left off the last time we saw each others.
The same goes for my best friend Adam, who lives in San Antonio, TX when not at school in the Adirondacks. He and I met at PSC, freshman year, and have been close friends ever since. We see each other several times a year, but we can still have conversations when we see each other as if we were never apart.
That’s the best part of college friendships. You go all school year with your friends at college, hanging out all of the time, and then you split up during the breaks to go home and come back when school is back in session. You visit one another at home to see what the home life is like, or you take trips with them to go on vacation and to spend time together.
Freshman year is crucial for making these friendships because it’s a time when your peers are all in the same situation as you: you’re in a new, unknown place, with an unimagined amount of freedom and responsibility, and you don’t know anybody, yet. For starters, summer orientation is a great time for you to make new connections and to learn about the different types of people in a new setting.
Once you get to school, you and your peers spend time together, going to meals together because you don’t want to go alone. You explore the campus because you’re not sure where the library is. You search around the residence halls for the laundry room, and you go door to door on your floor meeting new people. You go to the advertised events on campus, and you even go to some of the word-of-mouth frat/sorority parties off campus.
You spend a lot of time with these new people in your life, and you learn that some of them are like you and some are not. You change friends a couple of times during your first two years at college. Some people change or you change, and you find that your schedules are different or that your interests spread you apart. This is part of college! The great thing is that the few friends that stay with you throughout the entire four years or so are the ones who stick around for the rest of your life!
College friends last long after high school friends, and while you may keep in touch with one or two of your friends from back home, it’s the college friends you may find yourself working alongside in your careers. These are the people who have a lot in common with you, allowing you to learn a lot about your job through each other.
SO, despite me transferring to a different college and my friends graduating and starting their careers, we all still keep in touch. That’s one of the perks of college, besides a degree. Jobs may come and go, but just as the cliche goes, friends will last forever, and the friends you make will be with you for years to come.
So don’t be afraid to get out there and make friends!!!