Finding Your Niche on Campus

Finding Your Niche on Campus

The biggest piece of advice I received before starting college was to get out of my dorm room as much as possible. When I started at Loyola, I lived by this rule.

Every fall semester Loyola throws a Student Organization fair in Gentile Arena (where the basketball players play). Every club and intramural sport are present and have their own table to ask questions at. If you are interested in one of the organizations, you are able to sign up on the spot to receive emails on how to get involved and when club meetings are.

I found myself entering this event feeling intimidated at all the clubs available and all the people I didn’t know. Though, I pushed myself out of my comfort zone by finding interesting clubs and engaging in conversation with the club representatives. I left leaving my email address on many club signup sheets to receive emails with more information and when their club meetings are.

Get involved in clubs that interest you and it’s okay if you end up leaving some during your four years. Clubs are also a great way to meet friends on campus. My first few friend groups sprouted from the organizations I was involved in. My Christian Life Community group sponsored by Campus Ministry included freshman like me who were looking for friends. And we were all able to find each other.

My advice for incoming students is know that everyone else is also trying to find their niche on campus. That can come from getting closer to your roommate in your dorm, trying out a new club, or introducing yourself to the person that sits next to you in class. Sparking a conversation can go a long way into potentially a new friendship.

The process of finding friends and feeling comfortable in this new environment is going to take some time. It won’t happen all at once and there might be some up and down moments. But eventually, as long as you put yourself out there, it will come. Some people might find this earlier than others, yet know that we all get there eventually.

If you feel like you are struggling transitioning into this new environment, reach out to your academic counselor, resident assistant or the Wellness Center at Loyola. We are all here for you and want you to reach college success.

Good luck and know you got this!

The three of us who all lived together on the same residence hall floor decided to spontaneously explore the city during one of the first weekends of freshman year.

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