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Meeting New People

By Steve Thompson

The social aspects of adjusting to college are easy for some students, while others have a harder time with classes and studying. Whatever the case, there are ways to increase your chances of meeting new people and finding a community on your college campus.

Start Early

You can actually start adjusting to college before you even arrive. If you are concerned about meeting new people, find online communities (such as Facebook groups) where current and future students congregate. Message boards and online forums are also a great place to start.

Call Your Future Roommate

Most colleges will tell you in advance the name and contact information of your new roommate. When you receive that information, give your future roommate a call so you can discuss what you'll bring to the dorm room. In addition to taking care of logistics, having a few phone conversations can make adjusting to college life easier because you and your new roommate will already have started to build a rapport.

Attend Orientation

Orientation might seem like a huge drag, but it's actually an excellent tool for meeting new people. The organizers of orientation activities will have great tips for adjusting to college life, and you'll find others who are in the same boat as you. Once you get to campus and start classes, you'll have people you can call and hang out with.

Leave Your Door Open

Whether you live in a suite or a single dorm room, you can open your door to the hallway or common room. This will keep you connected to the campus at large and encourage others to poke their heads inside to say "hello." It's also a good idea to talk to people in the halls of your dorm, getting to know them and building relationships.

Join an Organization

From the college newspaper to the lacrosse team, student organizations are one of the best methods of meeting new people. Joining up and participating will help you adjust to college life and will introduce you to all different kinds of students. As a bonus, these organizations can also help you choose (or discount) a future career.

Find the Hangouts

Every college has places where students tend to congregate, be it the student union or a section of lawn on campus. Even if you are nervous about meeting new people, you can bring your books and study in these places; someone will probably introduce himself to you before the hour is out.

Plan Study Sessions

Meeting new people in class is a great way to start adjusting to college life. Right before a big test or project, invite your classmates over to study. While you're hitting the books or quizzing one another, you might develop long-term friendships.

Get a Job

Campus jobs can really help students who are trying to adjust to college life. Work in the campus bookstore or a cafeteria—these places see lots of student traffic, so you'll be exposed to plenty of new people.

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