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Connect with your high school alumniConsider reaching out to students who graduated from your high school who now attend your university or have recently graduated from your university. Even if they recently graduated, they may have friends still attending the school. Let them know that you’re going to be attending the same university and ask if they would like to meet for a cup of coffee so that you might be able to chat with them about the school. Don’t be afraid to let them know that you don’t know anyone at the university and would love to have a familiar face around!
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Attend a local meet-and-greetIf you have the option, attend a meet-and-greet for classmates in your area. Colleges and, sometimes, alumni organizations from the colleges will host events for new students to meet one another the summer before freshman year. Don’t have the option? Create it! Organize the event yourself and post an invite to the Facebook group mentioned above for local students to attend. Think about it: you’ll be sure to make plenty of new friends if you’re the official event organizer! Be sure to host the event in a public space that is easily accessible to everyone. You certainly want to ensure that everyone feels safe and you want to ensure your own safety and well-being as well. Whether you attend or host a meet-and greet, be sure to be friendly and open to new people. It’s understandable to feel it’s out of one’s comfort zone to talk to people who are unfamiliar but remember that everyone is in the same situation! If you reach out – they will likely be thankful that you were the first one to do so. Be mindful that you’re polite and conscious of topics of conversation. While this seems like a no-brainer, some topics that seem like they’re not a big deal to some, may be to others. Avoid topics like which sororities or fraternities are better than others, their GPA or if you have negative opinions on any particular clubs or extracurricular activities.
Do you have any other suggestions for making connections before the start of the semester?