Published: Jan. 12, 2021

Making friends in college is a great way to make a new place feel like home, especially in the age of physical distancing and remote learning. Still, there are plenty of opportunities to take advantage of to meet new people! Here is a list of things to help you make new friends this semester.  

Explore and get involved

computer with zoom conversationOne of the best ways to meet new people is to get involved and CU offers many options for you to try. Often, the key to getting involved includes stepping out of your comfort zone and being open to new experiences. Here are some ideas to get you started. 

  • Browse the hundreds of student organizations through BuffConnect to find a club that sounds interesting to you. 
  • Sign up for a live guided painting class, where you’ll learn to paint like a pro, or gain some tips to help you create something to be proud of. 
  • Invite one person from your class to join you on a virtual DIY Night through the Center for Student Involvement
  • Visit the Student Events website to stay up-to-date on events happening throughout the semester.
  • Follow @CUBoulderLife on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter! 
  • Download the CU Boulder Life app. Check the Spring Events guide and easily add events to your calendar that you’re interested in. 

Try new things

College is a great time to try something new. Here are some virtual activities to take part in to make new connections and maybe find a hobby or passion that you didn’t even know you liked. 

  • If you love playing video games, meet fellow gamers by joining the CU Gaming club.
  • Join a book club! Read along with your fellow Buffs and learn new things on different topics from diversity, leadership, New York Times best sellers and more! 
  • Start your own book club. Get a few people to join you in reading a book, and meet weekly or biweekly to discuss a synopsis of the plot and what you think is going to happen in the story. 
  • Try out one of the Rec Center’s FitWell virtual classes and meet fellow Buffs who are interested in staying active during virtual times.
  • Ask some people from your class to join you on a game night. There are plenty of online apps to connect and have fun even if you can’t hang out in person.

Make the first move

It’s common to feel nervous about initiating social plans. However, you can use this to your advantage by understanding that most of us are nervous to be the first one to start a conversation. Therefore, one strategy to try this semester is to commit to making the first move.

  • Be the first to introduce yourself when meeting someone new, or be the one to say hello on the Zoom chat. If you take on the responsibility of breaking the ice, it can help pave the way for new friendships. 
  • When logged in for your online classes, look around for a few friendly faces. Reach out via the chat to set up a virtual study group. 
  • Whether you are volunteering, working or part of an organization, you’re likely to meet other students that have similar interests as you. Connect on hobbies or passions you have and be open to exploring more!

The important thing is to step outside of your comfort zone and do things you might not have thought of doing before. Doing these things can lead to gaining courage, exploring possibilities and creating a wider social circle during your time at CU. 

For more ways to connect and build friendships: