It can be tough meeting new people on your college campus, especially early in your freshman year. Your dorm floor and your classes are great for meeting people, but you can only be exposed to so many others through these methods. And, let’s face it, you’re not exactly going to introduce yourself and start up a conversation with very many people you randomly pass on the quad. (Well, probably not. Some people can just do that.)
So where else can you go to expand your social network? College-sponsored social events.
Most campuses, especially early in the year, sponsor events where students can get together, have fun, and meet new friends. Exactly what—and when—those events are varies greatly by campus.
Maybe your college will hold a weekly outdoor movie night, or a monthly free dance lesson. Some schools organize things like lawn game tournaments, where students compete in bocce ball or lawn darts. (Events like these are pretty common at school-sponsored houses.)
Another common event that you’ll see on many campuses are sports-watching parties for big sports games, like the World Series, the Stanley Cup, or the NBA finals. Even if you’re not into the sport being televised, these can be a lot of fun, because there’s usually a great deal of rivalry and associated ribbing going on.
Another nice thing about sponsored events (as opposed to ones you or other students put on) is that the college will usually provide free food. No matter what that food is, it’s free food, and you’ll come to appreciate it pretty quickly! Pizza, burritos, salads, and sandwiches are staple school-sponsored-event foods. If you find out that someone’s handing out free food, get there fast, because it won’t last long!
No matter which event you decide to attend, just go out and have fun! Get a couple of friends together and head out. Make it your goal to introduce yourself to at least five people that you’ve never met before, and see what happens. If nothing else, you’ll have met five new people and had the chance to hang out with your friends for a few hours doing something for free (which, you will find, makes every event even better).
Another option is to have your own party. Clean your dorm or apartment, and then just start inviting people over! Tell everyone to bring a friend or two, and see what happens. Put up a sign in your dorm hall that lets people know that you’re having a get-together to watch a football game, or just to hang out. Have a potluck at your apartment, and ask everyone to bring an ethnic food. Whatever you do, just make sure that you invite enough people (and encourage them to bring their friends) that you’ll be sure to cross paths with at least a few people that you don’t know.