I used to be really good at making new friends, way back when I was six or seven and a carefree elementary school student. It was easy to walk up to someone I didn’t know and just start talking and be best friends five minutes later. Over time, I think I’ve lost my touch at becoming friends with everyone I meet, or just making friends at all. The last time I really had to make new friends was freshman year of high school. After that, I stuck with the people I knew for the next four years.
Getting to college was a jarring experience in many ways, but especially in the friend department. Suddenly I had to start over and do the whole “making friends” process from scratch. I thought it was going to be easy, that I would make my lifelong friends in a couple of weeks. When that didn’t happen, I started to worry. Why didn’t I have the picturesque group of friends that seems to be displayed on college brochures and in teen movies? I’m not going to lie; it was difficult my first semester without a solid group of friends, especially when I could see other people forming them right before my eyes.
But this semester, something clicked. I decided to spend more time with my friend from another residential college and started to get to know the people there. That decision was one of the best I’ve made at Rice, because she is now my closest friend here and I’m getting closer to the other girls at her residential college. With them, I’ve started to feel like I belong somewhere, even if that somewhere isn’t at Wiess (my residential college).
Coming to Rice, I thought that I could only be close friends with the people in my own residential college because that’s what I had seen whenever I visited. However, I’ve since discovered that the residential college system shouldn’t limit who your friends are. There are ten other colleges full of people to get to know, and maybe some of those people will become your lifelong friends. That being said, if you do find your group at your residential college, that’s amazing too. You will find people with whom you feel at home, and whether or not those people are from your own residential college doesn’t matter all that much.