How to Find Your People

Meeting and Connecting with Other Students on Campus

A college campus with a world of possibilities before you is exciting. Finding new friends and activities can also be daunting. College is supposed to introduce you to connections and truly close friends. You know, the friends that will be in your wedding and that you’ll talk with decades later. College has meaningful activities to add to your resume and intriguing people that will write that first-job recommendation someday. Simply put, they are “your people.” But how are you supposed to find your people?

Students are often concerned about making friends. You don’t have to force it. Talk to the people next to you in your classes and go to any social events planned by the college. If you find someone you click with, invite them for coffee after class or go to a game together. Joining clubs will help too. The more you’re involved with, the less lonely you’ll feel.

Kiya Oleru, a senior psychology major from Merkel, Texas, leads a busy life. She’s involved in TRIO, Psi Chi, Student Ambassadors, and Promoting African American Heritage and Traditions (PAATH). That level of involvement didn’t magically appear. When she transferred to McMurry, she started saying yes to things she wouldn’t normally do.

“Just sign up, especially if they give free food or hold an event,” said Oleru. “Just go. Get out of your comfort zone. Enjoy your college experience to its entirety.”

McMurry’s new “living room,” an expanded and modernized Garrison United Methodist Campus Center, is a hub for student activity. Newly opened, it includes a fitness and wellness center, a coffee shop, a food court, private study rooms, the McMurry Spirit Store, and enhanced event spaces. It is a great place to bring students together in formal and informal ways, with new places to meet and congregate.

Joanie Burns, a sophomore religion major and psychology minor from Snyder, Texas, is deeply involved on campus. She is in the Honors Program, Religious and Spiritual Life, Promoting African American Heritage and Traditions (PAATH), is manager for the McMurry volleyball team, a Martin residence assistant, vice president of Christian Student Ministries (CSM), and a former Lift Off peer mentor.

“Be open to try new things and things you don’t expect yourself to like,” said Burns. “Try it, determine if it’s for you, and be willing to say no to what’s not right for you. Also, be open to failure. You can always try again later.”

College is about more than your major or playing a sport. McMurry has a lot to offer, including extraordinary faculty that truly want to engage with you. Take advantage when you are invited to participate in special and alumni events on campus. Attend events like the Garrison Lectureship or Women’s Luncheon each year to begin networking. Developing relationships with community leaders and McMurry alumni takes time and effort, but when you merge into the “real” world, you’ll have a network to guide and support you.

“We want to ensure our students develop a wide variety of skills, have a good time, and meet new friends. After they graduate, we want them to look back fondly on their college experience and seek ways to get involved helping the next generation of students to come,” said John Yarabeck, dean of students and campus life.

Sage advice from those who found their people?
“Be thoughtful about choosing your friends,” advised Burns.

“Be the best version of yourself. Give the benefit of the doubt and don’t judge,” said Oleru. “Then start building your community on how you see yourself.”

You get out of college what you put into it. And you will find your people.

Receive emails containing the latest blogs on McMurry1923.

Sign Up