Since we’re a month into the semester now, I’m sure we’ve all found ourselves easing back into the normal routine of things. For me, that means class and then the library to half study, half socialize during the week, all the while patiently waiting for each coming Thursday to begin my weekend. Though I thoroughly enjoy wasting time away in the depths of Alderman Library, there are also a few things I wish I really did more of. The list is a long one, but some notable bullet points are reading leisure books, cooking and getting coffee with more people. Something I have loved about my time at the University is the amount of things I have been lucky enough to get involved in. Notably, Class Council has been a huge part of my college experience, and working among other passionate individuals in my class has been incredibly enriching and inspiring. Our Sunday general body meetings aren’t a chore for me, but rather something I look forward to. To sum it up, I love being “involved.” And while that is true, I found that there are some parts to my story that don’t add up. Despite being a moderately “involved” individual, I still find, unfortunately, that a lot of my friendships with other people are pretty surface level; they are relationships that are sustained by a simple “hey” on the way to class. I constantly find myself torn between wanting to develop meaningful friendships and wanting to keep my social life strictly to weekend festivities in order to focus on my schoolwork. A recent friend fixed this issue for me when she suggested we grab coffee together in between classes. We met at Grit, where it was, unsurprisingly, too packed to find a seat. At the cost of the artsy, local Instagram/Snapchat post, we settled on Starbucks and then decided to sit in the basement of 1515 to chat. I could lie and tell you we had a life-changing conversation where we both found our passions and changed our majors, but we honestly just sat and laughed and caught up on the past week. Though our conversations were about run-of-the-mill stuff, it was the type of non-library, non-weekend social interaction I wanted to have more of. It was refreshing to talk to someone to really just talk, and I don’t mean over laptops or a frat pong table. This somewhat trivial conversation was exactly the type that could sustain a real friendship despite these hectic college years. I realized that these conversations also take on many different forms. My frequent Dunkin’ runs with Katie are just a long enough car ride to catch up on all the need-to-knows since last time. Late night Taco Bell while watching Real Housewives and various other trash reality TV with Rhea is the best way to sustain our decade long friendship. Staying in with my roommate Megan and acting like we’re investors in the show Shark Tank is way more fun than any other night out at Boylan. Finally, the Cook Out runs after libraries with my sorority friends are a much better place to discuss proper use of first/second/third person than Alderman Library ever was. To be honest, these moments away from the library that are spent in the company of people I love and want to know better were more beneficial than half-heartedly studying anyway. In order to really form meaningful relationships with people, it’s important to go out of your way to do it. Though it may be easier to just chat on Clem 2 or hang out at a pregame, trust me when I say a conversation means more when it’s intentional. To really get to know what the cool people around you are like, and to then keep that relationship, more effort is required. At the end of my four years here, I hope to have a diploma, some good stories and a lot of great friends. In between studying, being involved and going out, I’m going to try to find some more time for coffee, too.