Being a freshman in college means a lot of things. It’s one of the most exciting times of your life so far- it means having more freedom, starting a brand new academic journey, exploring your college town, beginning to think about what you want to do when you “grow up” and, the more nerve-wracking part, finding a brand new circle of friends. More likely than not, you won’t attend the same college as all your friends from your high school. Although this can feel sad, I promise you there is a silver lining! Freshman year is all about finding your people- it may take a few weeks, a month, or even a few months, but it is SO worth it. Although this task is daunting, I’m going to let you in on a little secret.
At Furman, many of the greatest friendships start with the simple question, “Do you want to go to the DH and get lunch?”
I’ve learned a lot during my three years at Furman, but one of the things I learned the fastest was no one will say no to getting lunch with you (unless they have class, of course). On my freshman move-in day, a girl who lived across the hall knocked on my door and asked me if I wanted to get breakfast with her. We sat at a high top table in the DH, ate our oatmeal while asking each other the standard get to know you questions, and went about our separate ways after we finished eating. Well, y’all, that girl is one of my very best friends and we’ve lived together two years in a row.
We all have to eat three times a day, so why not get to know someone new in the process! I encourage you to be bold and brave and ask someone random to get lunch in the fall- I promise you they won’t say no. You’ll feel good about putting yourself out there and even if you don’t become best friends, you’ll have a friendly face to wave to when you cross paths on campus. Although I’m obviously a huge fan of DH meal dates, there are plenty of other ways to meet new people your freshman year.
To name a few:
Student Org Fair: The student organization fair takes place at the beginning of the semester after about a week or so of classes. This is a great opportunity to get a general feel for what kind of clubs and activities you can find on Furman’s campus. Further, it is a great way to meet people! I encourage you to go up to a table and ask some questions about whatever club or organization you’re interested in- I know that anyone would be happy to share their insight and will most likely try to convince you to sign up! I found my a cappella group at the student organization fair my freshman year and it has been one of my favorite parts of my undergraduate experience!
Hall Activities: Perk #23263 of a small school is that your hall sizes will be smaller. Typically, you’ll have around 30 hall-mates your freshman year, which may seem big, but it really isn’t! Because your hall is smaller, your RA (resident assistant) will be able to plan a lot of activities that are designed to intentionally connect the hall and bring you all closer together. I know I’ve said it before, but I met some of my best friends on my freshman year hall. Our RA planned fun events for us like having a Bachelor watch night, making homemade stress balls, and other speed dating events where we were able to get to know each other better.
Class: Ah, the Furman Advantage hard at work. Here at Furman, you’ll never have a class size over 30 people, and even then, classes of 30 are rare. This semester, most of my classes have around 15 to 20 students in them which I really appreciate. The small class sizes encourage engagement and interaction between the students which is a great way to make friends! Even if it seems scary, class is a perfect time to ask the fool proof question, “do you want to go to the DH and grab lunch?”
Overall, there are tons of great ways to get to know your fellow freshmen during your first few weeks and months on campus. If you ever want to chat about more tips and ticks to get to know people, you know where to find me!!!
Have a happy week!