One of the most intimidating things about going to University is making friends; if you don’t make friends you’re more likely to feel unsettled and homesick. It’s important to remember that everyone is in this situation; most people come to university knowing no one on their course or in their halls. Here are our 10 top tips on making friends.
- Don’t be afraid to go up and chat to people
- Smile and be friendly towards people, and then they’ll want to get to know you better
2. Be confident
- Don’t be afraid to introduce yourself to someone and start a conversation
- Other people are probably just as nervous as you, so don’t be discouraged if someone isn’t talking to you, go up and start the conversation
3. Get out of your comfort zone
- If you have friends that at coming to Swansea as well, that’s great! But don’t just stick with them, make sure that you are making time to get to know new people as well
- Try out a new activity or club you’ve never tried before, you never know you might love it, and it’s a great way to make friends
4. Join Societies
- This is a great way to do things you enjoy and meet people with the same interests as you
- It’s also a great way to stay busy, especially in a course like Psychology you will have a limited number of contact hours a week, so joining a society will keep you from getting bored in the evenings
5. Invite people on your course for a coffee
- Making friends on your course is really important, in Psychology you will have to work in practical groups with people and it’s a lot easier if you’re friends with the people in your group
- Also, if you have to miss a lecturer due to illness, it’s nice to know that someone will let you copy up their notes of what you missed
- Having people to have lunch with every day is also great, in Psychology in Year 1 and 2 everyone does the same modules so it’s good to get to know the people you’ll be with for every lecture
6. Chat to people before you come to University
- Don’t be afraid to add people on Facebook who you’ll be living with for the next year – there will be a Facebook group for each halls of residence
- If you are living at home ask if others in our Facebook group (or on Twitter@) are local too – find out if anyone lives near by and could car share to come into University – saving money and making friends.
- Chatting to people before you start is a great way to feel more confident moving somewhere new
- It’s good to have someone you can sit with on the first day of lectures as well, so chat to people on your course too
7. Talk to lots of different people
- The friends you make in your first week of university aren’t always the friends that you’ll stay close with during your 3 years at Swansea
- Make sure you chat to lots of different people and get to know who you have the most in common with and who you are most likely to stay friends with
8. Get good at small talk
- Think of a few standard questions you can ask people to get to know them a bit better, for example:
- Where are you from originally?
- What A-levels did you study?
- Why did you choose to come to Swansea?
- What course are you studying and why did you choose to study that?
9. Get involved in things outside the university
- It’s good to make friends in the local area who are outside of the university, it helps to make you feel more integrated into the community
- This can be done through joining sports clubs or organisations in the local area that follow your interests
- This can also be done through Volunteering, with organisations such as Discovery
- Make sure you are a friendly face for others so they’ll want to come back and talk to you again
- Don’t be disheartened if the people you speak to on your first day aren’t the people that become your friends. This is a big university, there are lots of people who will have the same interests and hobbies as you, you just have to find them.
Ellie and the Swansea Uni Choral Society