The first connections that we make in college are with our roommates, and at some schools this involves multiple suitemates. Then, you develop other friendships during the first week of school, some of which are fleeting while others last longer. Most people can't wait for the first few weeks of school to be over so they can find their "real friends" and develop a new friend group. I personally feel that this preconception about the cycle of "fake first week friends" and then finding your "real friends" is flawed, and we shouldn't use this as a model.
Not only have I remained friends with a fair amount of people that I met during my first week, but I also don't believe that there is a point when you "settle in" to a friend group. I believe that this can prevent us from meeting more people and making new friends. This kind of "tunnel vision" is dangerous because out of the hopes to maintain a constant group of friends, you could be missing out on countless potential friendships with people who you cross paths with every day. As a college student at NYU specifically, there is this sense that the student body is overwhelming in size and therefore it can be daunting to think of making new friends. On the contrary, I believe I should use the large school size to my advantage to meet people from all walks of life and all across the globe.
There is another preconceived notion that after the first month or so of school, people have established their friend groups and therefore there is no room to try to meet other people. I think that instead of falling prey to this myth, you should constantly find new ways to talk to more people and learn as much as you can about them and their experiences. It only takes the simplest gesture, from sitting with a new group of people at breakfast, to asking a classmate how their day is going-and there are limitless possibilities and ways to meet people. Talk to people in the elevator in your residence hall, invite the people who sit next to you in your lecture to lunch after class, and meet up with friends of friends.
The amount of people that I have met so far can only be rivaled by the number of different countries that they have lived in and visited. Spark up as many conversations with as many people as you can, and I can assure you that it will completely transform your college experience. There is no time limit to when you have to stop meeting new people and making new friends-this is different from going to high school in your small town with the same people that you have grown up with. This is college, and I believe that the friendships and connections that you make will be just as essential as any grade that you will receive on your transcript. Take advantage of the people and possibilities that make up such a big part of the college experience.