Student Life

Making Friends in College: How to Find Them

Tips and tricks on how to make new friends in college. 

Student Contributor, Jason Macaranas

February 10, 2022

Making Friends in College: How to Find Them
Meeting new people can be a little intimidating -- and a lot of fun.
While part of college is about studying textbooks, going to classes, and developing yourself career-wise, building life-long friendships is an essential component of the college experience. Making new friends can be difficult, especially for introverts like me. This doesn’t mean that making friends is impossible though, as there are many ways to find your social circle. A way you can bond with friends is by doing something that is fun and recreational. For those who live on-campus, the first people that you usually meet on a daily basis are your roommates. Your roommates are individuals that you are supposed to have good tidings with. I bond with them by playing video games like Mario Kart and Smash Ultimate. You can learn more about my gaming experience in my other article, “The Benefits of Playing Video Games in College.”
Another recreational activity I have found to be friendship-forming is pool. I met three friends when I went to the gaming room, where you can play ping-pong, board games, and pool. I am a very good pool player, and I was able to show my skill by playing a quick game with them, and let’s just say, I pummeled them. However, my talent in pool is beside the point. The point is that I ended up meeting three more friends. I taught them how to hold the cue stick properly and how to aim on the pool table. We all had a great time, and all four of us decided to go to a lounge near my on-campus apartment. I got the idea of bringing a famous, comedic card game, Cards Against Humanity. At the lounge, we all had a very good time joking around.
Another way to make friends is by forming study groups. I am a Management and Business Economics major, and one of the classes I have to take is Econ 001: Introduction to Economics. The class is quite fast-paced and difficult for some incoming freshman. Funny enough, one of the friends I met in the gaming room actually took that class while I was taking it last semester. I was doing very well in the class, but it turned out that that friend was on the verge of failing. We decided to designate a time and place for us to meet to complete problems sets and go over economic concepts before midterms. Making study groups can help strengthen friendships, especially when you are an expert in a subject. When you have the capability of teaching a subject to your friend, your friend gets the impression that you are a reliable and trustworthy source for assistance. It is no wonder that I met some of my friends in my economics class; a notion that I learned in college is that close students will become close friends.
Joining clubs and organizations is also effective in making new friends. As a Management and Business Economics major, a resource that I have to enhance my professional networking is the Economics Club at UC Merced. I get to network with a group of people that have a similar interests and major as me, and during each meeting, we do a combination of recreational, academic, or career activities. During one meeting, I got help making a LinkedIn Page from the President of the Economics Club. Just like that, I made a new friend. Now on campus, I can meet that president of the Economics Club, and we have a previous connection that makes way for conversation.. I actually saw him at the cafe when I was buying a mocha frappuccino. I told him how I met him at the Economics Club, and then he realized who I am. He indicated that he knew I was a student who is doing very well in Economics, and how I got a perfect score on one of the midterms! Of course, I was flattered. We got into a conversation about how I study and how I am so successful academically. it goes to show that it is very easy to make connections when you are a member of a club. Sometimes making friends can be coincidental. I remembered in my first semester of college, I was in the library studying Daisy Miller for my English class. The janitor, however, had to vacuum the bathrooms at that moment in time. The noise was so disturbing that I had to leave the library and go to the elevator. Two other girls got into the elevator, and it turns out that their reason for going into the elevator was the same reason as mine! From there, we conversed about our fields of study, what we were studying in the library, and exchanged phone numbers. It was completely unintentional that I would meet them, but the stars aligned, and lo and behold, it was fate that I met them. My college has over 9,000 students in attendance. By following these tips, it is inevitable that you will find people that you can bond with. College is a place where you are meant to make life-long relationships, even after you graduate. It is just a matter of putting yourself out there and making the right connections.

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