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Tips for meeting people at university

21 March 2024
Photo by Quan Nguyen on Unsplash
Photo by Quan Nguyen on Unsplash

Making friends at university is commonly one of the key things that new students worry about before coming to univeristy. While there are many common stereotypes of what university life looks like, mostly involving a crazy drunken freshers’ week and mid-week nights out, it’s not recognised enough that there are many people at university who don’t share these experiences. However, there are still plenty of opportunities to have a great time and still make friends for life. To get started, you just need to bear in mind some tips on meeting people at university.

Put yourself out there

First things first, being brave and turning around to the people behind you in a lecture or anywhere on campus is the first step to meeting people at university. This helps you get to know people that you will see on a day-to-day basis but also allows you to get to know people on campus. It’s really surprising the high number of people who are social butterflies on a night out but aren’t familiar with their coursemates three years into the course. Don’t be that person and put the effort into getting to know some of the people around you.

Be ready for rejection

In hand with putting yourself out there, you need to be mentally prepared for the eventual rejection. Unfortunately, not everyone will want to make new friends with everyone in their lectures (though most will), or they may just be suffering from the dreaded fresher flu, so don’t take it too bad if not everyone wants to embrace the opportunity to chat.

Host events for mutual friends

Hosting a wine and cheese night

Once you have put yourself out there and have some regular faces you would like to see more, don’t be afraid to take the first step and suggest hanging out. I love a wine and cheese night but some people may choose to host a dinner, a game night or a baking session, all of which are great opportunities to get to know new people better, just try to make the event as inclusive as possible. This is great for bringing groups of friends together, getting to know more people and getting a feel for the sense of community you may miss from your home life.

Go to events that interest you

If you’re not the hosting type or feel you don’t have the space, another way to meet new people is to attend events that interest you. Some that I’ve personally attended in Cardiff are book clubs, wine tasting with the Wine and Cheese Society (yes, it’s a thing), and attending monthly networking events with Cardiff Young Professionals. At events that are aligned with your interests, you are more likely to vibe with the other attendees and find something in common. This is a great way to get out of your shell, outside of the context of uni-limited experiences.

Step outside the student community

Consequentially, it can be nice to step away from student life and integrate more into the local community You can achieve this by having a part-time job, volunteering or attending events, like some of those suggested above. Through this, you can build lasting connections in Cardiff and contribute to the local community – all while gaining valuable experience.

In all, there is a lot to be excited about when coming to university. While meeting people can be a nerve-wracking and stressful consideration, once you’re here, there are so many opportunities to make new friends and you just need to take the first step.