How To Make Friends In College If You Don't Drink

If spending a night in a crowded frat basement clutching a plastic cup of beer while top 40 tunes blast all around you isn't exactly your idea of a good time, know that you aren’t alone. While movies and TV make it seem like crowded frat, dorm, or house parties are the only ways to have fun and meet people in college, that couldn’t be further from the truth. There are plenty of ways to make friends in college if boozing it up isn't your idea of a good time.

Drinking isn't everything, and to be honest, it can often lead to a lot of unwanted drama. You should never feel peer pressured to do something you don't want to do, and likewise, you should never force yourself to do something in hopes that it will make you more popular.

You are going to come across every single type of person you can think of during your first year of college, and you're going to be able to find a common ground between yourself and many of them that doesn't have to do with tequila. Whether it's joining a club, getting a job, or just putting yourself out there on the regular, you will find ways to make friends that don't involve a six pack and a hangover. Here are five of them.

1. Join a common interest club.

If you thought your high school had a lot of clubs to join, then college is going to blow your mind. You like something? So does somebody else... and there's probably a club for it. Quidditch club, animal rights club, Spanish club, laser tag club — you name it, they got it. And guess what? Even if they don't, you can always start it yourself. A common interest is a quick way to make a long-lasting friend, so take advantage of what makes you unique.

2. Go to every ice breaker event.

The first few weeks of college are packed with ice breaker events. You have to remember that a huge portion of students are in the exact same boat as you, arriving for their first year of school with no friends in sight. You'll find that people are surprisingly friendly at all of the the ice breaker events, because they want to make some friends just as badly as you do. Deal with the awkwardness and attend everything on the calendar.

3. Join an intramural sports team.

Even if you didn't make the official university sports team, that shouldn't stop you from playing a game that you love. In fact, even if you're not that great at sports, it shouldn't stop you from joining in. Intramural sports teams bring people together quickly, forming a community of friends that gets glued together thanks to the competitive nature of the game.

4. Get an on-campus job.

On-campus jobs not only provide you with a little bit of a supplemental income, but they also create a working environment where you can get to know many of your peers. Whether it's working in one of the dining halls, the library, or in the campus bookstore, you'll instantly be able to become buddies with those who are busy working alongside you.

5. Become involved with your department.

Another wonderful way to meet some peers who have similar interests as you is by getting involved in your department. Talk to the chair of your major to see what ways you can help out in the department. You might even be able to pick up a paid gig as an added bonus. Making friends, making money, and working for a department you love? It doesn't get any better.

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