Get friendly with your floormates to start meeting people


When I envisioned moving into my dorm freshman year, I imagined the move-in scene from “She’s the Man,” except I wouldn’t be cross dressing as my twin brother.  

In the scene, Amanda Bynes walks down the hall of her new boarding school dorm, dodging frisbees and footballs as other students blast music from their rooms. 

I was ready to embrace the madness — dorm life was going to be crazy and filled with characters. 

Along with not finding Channing Tatum in my room, my move-in day was almost completely opposite of what I was anticipating. 

Every floor in any given dorm has a different collective personality, and mine just happened to be quiet and reserved. 

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I and my roommate, whom I have known since the first grade, made our first friends by keeping our door open. The girls next door did the same, and we hit it off. 

As that first week advanced, I got to know the girls next door and my floormates much better. We went to dinner, visited the ARC pool, navigated Quad Day and managed to survive what was perhaps the hottest convocation ceremony in history.

This little group didn’t just happen, however. At times it was pretty awkward, and it took some facilitation on behalf of our RA to get our shy little floor to open up. 

The first time I really got to know anyone’s name and any sort of backstory was at our first floor meeting where we set out our rules and played some ice breakers. 

As uncomfortable as everyone was at the start, by the end of the meeting I had a sense of everyone’s name and age, and it was up to me to build from there. 

Throughout the semester my roommate and next door neighbors would venture to whatever floor or hall event fit into our schedules. Regardless of the event, they were a preset date and time to get to know one another on a more personal level than a half nod in the bathroom before an 8 a.m.

These opportunities are fantastic, but they’ll only work if met with an open mind. 

This is about to get all sorts of cheesy, but it’s leading somewhere, so stick with me. 

Don’t limit the interaction with the people on your floor to the ones similar to those you had in high school.

Living in a dorm is the perfect time to bring yourself out of your comfort zone in a controlled environment. 

The people from your floor will have entirely different backgrounds and interest from you, your friends in high school and perhaps from anyone you’ve ever met. Take advantage of the position you’re in to make friends with people you haven’t had the opportunity to be friends with in the past. 

Now, I’m not saying that you need to stay up late and braid each other’s hair or try to have deep philosophical conversations in the bathroom with the guy down the hall that doesn’t make eye contact, but out of all the different people you’re living with, you might find someone you wouldn’t have met otherwise.

Miranda is a sophomore in Media. She can be reached at [email protected].