Like many other teenagers entering college for the first time, I was terrified. I had lived in the same town my whole life, so I was surrounded by the same people from elementary school through high school. Friendships were created and lost over that period of time, and at the end of senior year, I grew even more grateful for the friends who had stuck by me for years through thick and thin.
Although I knew going to college didn't mean our friendships would come to an end, the idea of leaving these amazing people and having to create a whole new circle of friends was horrifying.
The spring and summer before entering college, I spent a large amount of my time on various forms of social media to find other people that would be entering Stony Brook University as a freshman. I was determined to find friends so that the first few days wouldn't be awkward and lonesome. Some of the people I met online I haven't met up with or spoken to since, but to my pleasant surprise, many of them turned out to be my best friends.
Over the summer, I had met a girl named Jennifer that seemed incredibly sweet and we were in a similar situation since we were both beginning college in a relationship. As I entered my building on move-in day with bags in hand, a familiar face and friendly voice approached me. Until that moment, I hadn't known Jenn would be living in my building and that I'd have a friend close by.
That same day as I was crying in my room after my family had left to go back home, Jenn invited me up to her suite to distract me from being sad. I was hesitant because I wasn't familiar with her suitemates, but I took her up on the offer anyway. I quickly felt incredibly comfortable around all five of the girls she lives with and to this day, I'm an honorary member of their suite. Their suite is the place I go to do homework, eat some snacks, blast music with friends, and most importantly, feel at home.
Even though classes such as chemistry and math are overall miserable, they helped me find some amazing friends. I look forward to seeing my friends in our usual seats every day in class. They make the lectures a little more bearable just by sitting next to me because I know people that I love are in the same situation I'm in.
We always help each other with difficult topics and make sure that we all get our work done. They began as my friends inside the classroom, but quickly became some of my best friends overall. I love grabbing dinner with them after class or going to our building events together. We can even make studying or doing homework together so much fun.
I was very fortunate to find my roommate about six months before we even began college. Alongside many other colleges, Stony Brook provides incoming freshman with an application called the Schools App to get to know other people in the same situation and potentially meet friends. I vividly remember being on a date with my boyfriend when to my surprise, I got a direct message notification from the Schools App.
The mysterious messenger was named "Nichole," which at the moment, I thought was a typo. At first, we made small talk and I could automatically tell that she was extremely kind. We eventually got to talking about school and our majors, and I discovered that we both wanted to be orthodontists, which I had never related to anybody else on. Later, I learned that we played the same sports and had many of the same interests.
After only days of talking, she nervously asked if I would be her roommate which was a huge relief because I was too shy to ask. Thankfully, we got along equally as well, if not better, in person and she's taught me that your roommate is meant to be your built-in best friend.
Nichole, along with another one of my best friends, Sophia, and I do everything together. We do the most childish things when all three of us hang out whether it's deciding to dye our hair at a random moment or have a dance party at midnight. Sophia is basically our third roommate and doesn't even bother asking to come over anymore. No matter what, we feel as though we can be ourselves around one another and most importantly, we're always there for each other when times get tough.
Without every one of these girls in my life, I don't know if I'd be succeeding the way I am in college. They motivate me to do my best in my academics, always provide someone to confide in, help me with school work, and heal my homesickness. At the beginning of this school year, I was convinced I would never have as strong of friendships as I had in high school and that college would be a lonely place, but I thankfully found an incredible group of girls that I know will now be in my life forever.