Niffy’s First Year Survival Guide: Making Friends

Niffy is a final year Law student at City, who moved to London for university and is a big self confessed BTS fan.


Starting university is both an exciting and confusing time. There’s a lot to get used to and it can be difficult to know what you should and shouldn’t do so to help you get started I thought I would share my own experiences and what I have picked up along the way.

Chapter 1: FriendshipsNIffy and friends at a ball pit party

Before I started university I was pretty nervous about making friends because I tend to be very introverted and shy and if you’re anything like me starting over in a new setting is one of the scariest things you can do.

One tip I read before freshers week was that if you live in halls (student accommodation) you should keep your door open so then people could walk in and talk and then you would have the perfect college friendship group you would have seen in your favourite coming of age film.

This works for anyone who makes friends easily but I was too scared to leave my door open and even more terrified to just walk into someone else’s room.

Instead I decided to take things slow and speak to at least three new people everyday. I would really recommend this because if you approach someone first they are more likely to reciprocate because most likely they are looking for friends too.

University is very much what you decide to make of it so always put yourself out there whenever you get the chance.

Here are my top tips for making friends at university:

  • Make sure you put in the effort to talk to other people, the worst they can do is not respond
  • Join societies and take part in whatever activities are going on around campus or online
  • Participating in group chats is a great way to get to know people and form bonds while we’re all away from campus due to Covid
  • If and when you’re comfortable meeting up with people, explore London together – it is an amazing city and there is always something going on
  • Secret London always has a list of the best things to do in London for any budget as well as a food guide to the city which is always a great way to bond

* More from the WP Team on making friends in 2020/21, what with the pandemic and all:

Yes, the way your course will be delivered and how you experience starting university will be different to the experiences of our current students as there may be fewer opportunities to meet in person but, as Niffy says, you can still take opportunities to make connections with other students.

Connect with other students on your course through social media or start an online study group, check what your Students’ Union and its’ societies are running and join online/in person events that match your interests, or see if your university is running a magazine or radio you could contribute to. Whatever opportunity peaks your interest, be brave and take it, starting with a simple ‘hello’.

And if you don’t make as many friends and connections in your first year as you had hoped, don’t worry – everyone is in the same position and there will be plenty of opportunities throughout your university time to continue meeting new people and building on the connections you make.

Read Niffy’s other survival guides for your first year at university here:

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