Making (and Keeping) Friends in College
Remember walking through the gates on your first day of high school? The way your hands perspired and the irregular pattern of your heartbeat – inhale, exhale, repeat. Those constant worrisome thoughts that your best friends from middle school won’t have the same classes as you. Four years later, hopefully, you settled in well. Despite all the worrying you did back then, none of that matters your senior year – you have made a group of friends that have become family, and that’s what’s important.
High school friends are irreplaceable
Senior year is the capstone of a great chapter in your life that you wrote alongside your partners in crime. You realize that as you are about to enter college, your high school friends have simmered down to a core group of about five people maximum. These friends were there through the memorable school dances, tragic heartbreaks, hardcore crushes, and supported you through the rough times. These friendships will be an everlasting bond; nothing can come between you. Although college will try.
But you’ll make new friends
When you head off to college, you don’t get to take your high school friends with you. Those worries you had a few years ago have turned into reality – this time around, your high school friends actually won’t be in any of your classes. But that’s okay. Really. Because as scary as it seems, you will make a new core group of friends.
So be open
Be confident, nice, and take advantage of open doors. Yes, that means walk into open dorm rooms and say hello. I’m sure in a few days you’ll discover a group of people you can see yourself becoming close with. However, as a few weeks pass by, don’t be alarmed if you see a difference between your friends from home and and these new friends from college.
But be true to who you are
Your friends back home know you for who you were in high school, whether that was being super introverted, innocent, or even crazy. They know your deepest darkest secrets. College friends are another story; they know you for how you’ve decided to present yourself in college. So don’t be afraid to be your true self, there is no shame in who you are, and real friends will see that.
These new friendships will grow strong
There’s something about living in a small room next to diverse people that makes you feel like you’ve known each other your whole life. You start to shed your skin and really discover who you are as a person. Your friends in college will be with you as this happens, generating friendships that are stronger than most.
Just don’t forget your friends back home
As the year goes on, you may lose contact with your friends from home, but when you do talk again, it’ll be like nothing has ever changed. It is an unbelievable feeling to hear a familiar voice when you are feeling down, so don’t be afraid to give your old friends a call while you’re at college. Of course, your college friends will be there for you, but there’s something special about venting with a high school friend.
Because true friendships are unbreakable
Both sets of people are very important to maintain. Remember that you get to choose who is in your life and who is not, so choose wisely. While it’s not easy living in a new place with strangers, it’s an opportunity to create some amazing relationships. College should be the best years of your life. Think of it as a new chapter in your book, that you will co-write with a new set of authors. This does NOT mean that the other chapters have been erased. So go out on adventures, learn new things, and make everlasting memories.
“Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart”
Feature image source: teentimes.com and beliefnet.com
Leilani Alva, 17, is currently a freshman at California State University, Chico. She is an Agriculture major with an option in Education in hopes to become an Future Farmers of America high school teacher. She is obsessed with tea and socks as well as loving to hang out with her friends.