When you begin college or move to a new school it is very common for the students who have been attending this school for a year, or two, or three to try and inform you on who everyone is and what type of person they are. It is easy to make a few friends right at the beginning of the year and cling to them. Sometimes we fall into the trap of allowing them to warn us about certain people and help us create an opinion on someone we barely even know. What I find so frustrating about this concept is that often times when we listen to those “warnings” we miss out on befriending a really great person. Although your friends are probably just trying to be helpful, you owe it to yourself to give everyone a chance.
Recently I transferred to a new school and was faced with this very obstacle. I find it interesting that a few of the people I was “warned” about during the first month of college have become some of my favorite people on this campus. I think the most beautiful thing about college is that you get a fresh start with fresh faces. That concept gets completely diluted the second students begin telling old tales to the incoming students. Granted, there are special circumstances where incoming students should be forewarned. However, if you just don’t like Susie because she decided not to be your roommate this year don’t go telling the incoming students that Susie is a backstabbing b***h who did this, this, this, and this.
My advice for any incoming student is to take everything with a grain of salt. When someone spoon feeds you gossip, politely nod your head and allow them to say what they need to say without holding it against them. The fact is they usually are trying to be helpful. Spend time with people before jumping to conclusions. Go out in a large group and feel out the dynamic, go on a coffee date at the local coffee shop, observe how each person acts in a classroom setting, but most importantly figure out who makes you feel good. You are the only person who can decide which people are good matches for you. You won’t always get it right, but I’ve found much more happiness in forming my own opinions than I have ever found in taking someone else’s word for it. Take your time and enjoy the ride.