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What is harder in the college transition: trying to make friends or trying to adjust to being on your own?

Just to try to garner a little more understanding about what might cause me more of a struggle when I go off to college and what to prepare myself for #goingtocollegenextyear #goingtocollege #newplace #college #college-advice

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Eric’s Answer

You'll make friends. In fact, it's probably easier to make friends in college than in high school, if only because there's a larger and more diverse population and there are more opportunitities to interact. You will have a roomate, and you'll have other students from your major/department as well as anything else you join: student government, intramural sports, clubs, volunteer events, societies, etc. You will make friends based on not just academics, but the whole person you choose to be -- politics, athletics, language/culture, comic books and games, AV/cinema, photography -- whatever defines you, you will others that share that life outside of the classroom. The friends will come easily.

Now here's where it gets cautionary: unfortunately for some of my students, there are too many things to do. They go from having structured and limited lives in high school to living on their own for the first time, and with so many new opportunitues for experiences, they want to try them all. And that's fine, but they forget that they are students first and foremost; they over-commit outside the classroom and end up with a terrible GPA for the term.

Now that's not to scare you, and it shouldn't. The biggest challenge I've seen for new students is self-control. If you approach life on your own with a clear set of priorities (i.e., school comes first, club second, etc.), and you hold yourself to timelines and basic standards, you will be fine. Take advantage of what the school offers, but know that it is still a school at the end of the day.

I'm sure you'll be fine. There isn't anything to worry about. It seems like a big transition, and it is, but it's a wonderful opportunity to develop yourself as a critical thinking and self-sufficient adult.

Good luck! Hope this helps.


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Ashish’s Answer

Hello dear,

1. Wherever you will be never compromise with self respect.

2. Everyone has their own ideology,so few people likes your ideology and few will not. So in that case, learn to respect others ideology and stick on to your ideology.

3. Always accept your mistakes.

4. Always ready to misunderstood.

Keep all into your mind and go to the college, you will face no hardness.

Best of luck

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Raven’s Answer

Hey Anna,

Everyone has a different experience with transitioning, I didn't have a tough time, but my situation was different I was apart of the EOP program so I actually was on my campus and learning the transitioning process early so during general admission I felt settled and ready to go. However it can be hard and may be a little scary to be on your own. A couple of things :

  1. Your roommate may or may not be your friend and this is ok, as long as they are respectful and respects your space and belongings and your do the same.
  2. Know your RA (resident associate ), build a relationship with your RA so if anything you'll be able to go to them about it and to have in your corner.
  3. Freshman year everyone is interested in making friends and cliquing up. Take advantage of the fact that there are others feeling the way you are, be the one to make the first move, give the first smile, say the first hi. Even in your classes.
  4. Always remember to breath- don't overwhelm yourself with the small things.
  5. Never Compromise Who YOU are!!
  6. Not everyone will like you and You won't like everyone.
  7. Focus on your school work and stay organized

College is your introduction into the world, you are in control of your environment, freshmen year is your year to make mistakes, to mess up, to get it right, to find yourself, to know yourself, to be yourself and to blossom!! Have fun don't stress, enjoy every minute of it. Good luck sweet pea! I have full faith in you. If you need anything else reach out, I'm here.

Raven recommends the following next steps:

Let it Go!

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Nick’s Answer

I would say trying to adjust to being on your own, but i would change it to ... being comfortable being on your own. In college, you will more than likely have ample opportunities to make friends. Discovering yourself is a deeper mission that will ultimately help you with what kind of friends you need. It is not a day one conquest, it will take time as you adjust and learn about yourself.

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Richard’s Answer

If you live in a dorm, you won't have the typical stresses of "living on your own" like shopping, cooking, paying bills etc.

There are plenty of people in college that will share your interests. Try joining pre-professional organizations or social groups based around some of your hobbies to meet like-minded individuals.

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Rachel’s Answer

This depends entirely on your personality. If you are someone who naturally makes friends easily, this character trait will serve you well in college. It will probably be relatively easy to make friends there as well. If you are someone who is naturally responsible and independent, you should adjust to being on your own relatively easily. If you don't have these character traits, there may be a little more effort and growth involved in the transition.

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Riley’s Answer

I think that this really just depends on your personality and upbringing! For example, if your parents required you to do things like cooking and laundry on your own for the last few years of high school then going to college would be slightly less scary because you already know how to take care of yourself! However, things like knowing how to make a comprehensive grocery list without forgetting things or going over budget definitely took me a few years to get a handle on. In my case, I definitely found it harder to make friends, because I'm a pretty shy person. This is something that you will get much better about throughout the course of college, though, which will make it easier for you to espresso yourself and find jobs more easily in the future.

Riley recommends the following next steps:

Leave your dorm room door open, people will often poke their head in to say hi as they walk by and this is how I met most of my friends!
Join your college's Facebook group! This is a great way to find friends and roommates.