Blog of the Peer Advising Leadership Program, College of Natural Resources, UC Berkeley

September 14, 2008 10:22 PM

Making New Friends

Making new friends can be hard. Making new friends on a campus as big as Berkeley can be even harder. Coming in as a freshman from a small school in New Jersey, one of my biggest fears was not being able to make friends. It seemed like eveyrone knew at least a couple of people from their high schools, and it seemed like people already had their little groups that they hung out with. Since I didn't hit it off with my floormates, and I didn't know any other people in my building, I was desperate for other ways to find new friends, but I didn't know where to start.

During Welcome Week and for the first month of school, it felt like I was meeting a lot of people, but not really making any friends. Then, I set a goal for myself that when someone asks me to do something, I will always say yes. That is how I started on my goal of making friends. I don't really remember when it started, but I knew one person, who said, "I'm going to visit my friend at Clark Kerr, do you want to come?", and with my new goal in mind, I said yes. There, I met a few cool people. It turned out that one of them was in my class, so I sat next to them, which led me to meet another person. Just by setting one simple goal, I met person after person, like a chain reaction. It was awesome!
I met some of my friends through classes too. One class was called CALeads, which was a 2 unit leadership seminar. The class was only about 20 people, so it was easy to make conversation and to make friends. Also, I met some people through a freshman seminar, EPS 39A, which was also the best class ever. We went on a four day camping trip through central California and Yosemite, and it was another amazing opportunity to get to know a cool group of people. Freshman seminars are definitely a good way to meet people with similar interests. Here are my classmates and I mining for gold on our camping trip:
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I met my closest friends through joining my sorority. It was a great way for me to meet people who have similar goals and interests as I do. Of course we weren't friends at first sight, but as we got to know each other, we studied together, ate togther, and just became closer and closer. My sisters and I have a lot of fun together; this was when we went to Santa Cruz: n3226520_35878853_9307.jpg
I think the best advice I could give someone is to get involved. Getting involved in organizations that catch your attention is the best way to meet people that match your interests. I think once you start getting involved, meeting people will just come naturally. Don't be scared just because you haven't made a best friend within the first few months. Sometimes, you just need to give it some time, and things just fall into place naturally.


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