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Top 10 ways to make friends in your classes

The last two years made it hard to meet new people around Grounds — this year gives us another chance

<p>Anna Mason is a Top 10 writer for The Cavalier Daily.</p>

Anna Mason is a Top 10 writer for The Cavalier Daily.


1. The classic — just introduce yourself

Nothing is more reassuring for a person who doesn’t know anyone in their class to have someone come up to them and introduce themselves. Introducing yourself to the person sitting alone in your lecture opens up the door for more dialogue and the ability to ask clarifying questions surrounding the material. If you also don’t know anyone in your class, this gives you at least one person to talk to that day.

2. Ask a person in your lecture if they’d like to study together

If you have an exam coming up, reach out to the people around you and ask if they have a study group or a plan to study for the exam. If they say yes, you might find yourself an invitation to a study group. If they say no, invite them to study or compare study plans. This will allow you to make a friend — and hopefully receive a better exam score.

3. Ask someone what made them decide to take this class

There are many different reasons for people to take specific classes. Some people may be in your major, and other people may just be taking it for credit or because it sounded interesting. Occasionally, there will be people in your classes who were just so passionate about the topic that they had to take the class. Striking up a conversation with someone who is truly passionate about the subject might give you a new appreciation for the class and the topic.

4. See if anyone wants to make a GroupMe

GroupMe — or any other form of group messaging — is great for figuring out when assignments are due, discussing what everyone is going to do to study for the exam and fostering a sense of community. This will give everyone in your class the opportunity to stay in contact outside of the classroom and could help you create a new connection.

5. Work with someone you don’t know on a project

If there is group work in your class and you only know one or two people, work with someone you do not know. This will force you to branch out from your comfort zone and interact with someone new, and it could be the start of a great friendship.

6. See what other classes people are taking

This is a great one to ask people in the same major as you. If you are unsure about which classes you should be taking or what material interests you, this is an easy way to find courses you might enjoy. Talking to someone and getting their first-hand account of a class is much more valuable information than theCourseForum’s anonymous ratings.

7. Be open with people

Never be afraid to be yourself. Just walking up to someone and dropping something casual that happened on the way there is a great way to break the ice. Mentioning you cut it close to missing class because of the dog that you pet on your way is a fun way to get a friendly interaction going with someone you don’t know. Simply breaking the ice and cracking a smile is the best way to meet new people in your classes.

8. Make an effort to get involved in class discussions

Especially in smaller or discussion-based classes, being able to interact with other students and join in on the conversation is an excellent way to show that you are approachable. While in your discussions, take part in the dialogue between students and your TA. In all classes, don’t be afraid to ask questions, because there is definitely a chance that someone in your class has the same thought — even if it's not your neighbor and you don’t become friends, they will appreciate you from afar.

9. Allow people to talk about themselves

Ask people how their day or weekend was. People enjoy being asked how they are doing, even if it is by a stranger. You never know what people are going through, and you don’t know how much just asking them how they are could mean to them. This will also open up a natural conversation and you could learn a lot about this person just through one question.

10. Go to events for your major

One of the smartest things you can do for yourself is make friends who are studying similar things as you or are in your major. Whether it is an advising session, a club that is connected to your major or just an information meeting — attend the event. These events let people come together and form bonds that can turn a helpful relationship into a lasting friendship.