Unofficial Orientation 2020: Making Friends

This is Bab’s heavily truncated (thanks to COVID) repost of fakeshark’s repost of michelle’s update of kitab‘s update of daniphantom‘s update of their own post. Find the rest of the posts in our 2020 Unofficial Orientation series. here

Make lots of friends to share lots of sandwiches with.

Orientation is the time when you’ll meet so many new people that you’ll begin to doubt that Wesleyan actually has less than 3,500 students. (Don’t worry, in a few months, you’ll start to realize exactly how small this place really is.) In order to help you on your journey to make those lifelong college friends that everyone gushes about, here are a few tips and tricks to use during orientation and beyond:

 

  • Get involved with student groups

There are SO many clubs, teams, and societies on campus that it’s pretty hard not to be involved in some capacity. Being active on campus gives you an instant network of people that you share interests with. This is a great way to meet upperclassmen, and to expand your friend group beyond your hallmates, and/or orientation friends. Which leads me to…

 

  • Have various different groups and relationships

It’s easy to get really close really fast when you start college, and that’s a good thing! That being said, remember to spend time with different people. You and your roommate may get along really well, but if you spend all your time together, there’s likely to be some tension. Most of us are used to having distance from our friends—going home after high school, for example.  This distance is pretty important for a lot of relationships—don’t be afraid to take time for yourself and for other relationships. It’s okay if not all your friends know each other; it gives you an opportunity to explore different things and meet more people.

 

  • Balance old and new friendships

Maintaining relationships at home is important too: some of my best friends are people I’ve known since I was little. Don’t get too caught up in old relationships though—spending all your time on the phone with your best friend from home makes it hard to make new friends. As important as old friends are, having friends who understand your current environment and are physically there gets more and more valuable as you get settled at Wes. You’ll be a lot less homesick when you have new friends, and you’ll have more stories for your old friends anyway. Sometimes it’ll feel like you’re leading two different lives: one with your friends at Wes, and one with your friends back home. It’s pretty fun! 

 

  • Relax, nothing’s set in stone

You’re going to make friends. You’re going to make friends you don’t stay friends with. You’re going to make acquaintance-friend hybrids you feel differently about over the course of your time at Wesleyan. You’re probably going to make friends you later hook up with and then feel really awkward around for a while. You’re going to end up with phone numbers of people you talked to twice during orientation. The point being, people will change and grow over the next four years and your relationships will change and grow with them. Don’t stress if you don’t immediately find people you can see yourself being friends with forever. Keep making new friends—your random Usdan acquaintance might end up being your best friend later on. It often feels like everyone has a wonderful, permanent group of friends they’re completely thrilled with, but lots of people are open to new relationships, take advantage.

Best of luck, new (and even returning!) students. Make lots of friends, maybe even some here at Wesleying! 

This will be your home for the next 4 years. Soak it all in – this place is truly something special. 

We hope this guide to ~Official~ Orientation helps you as you embark on your Wesleyan journey. If there’s anything you still have questions about (or we made a mistake somewhere), please reach out to us via Twitter, Facebook, Email, or in the comments! 

Best of luck, Class of 2024!