Posts Tagged ‘friends and college’
If you’re like many high schoolers, at one point you had a vision: you and your best friend, boxes in hand and your parents a few yards behind you, stepping onto your college campus for the first time. You probably sat around a camp fire one summer, or on your bed listening to your favorite song one afternoon, and talked about the wild adventures the two, or three, or four of you would have all together in an eclectic college apartment as young adults facing the world on your own.
But more often than not, when the time comes to formally enroll, things change. You may have taken a shot at a dream school across the country, and in return, was awarded a great scholarship. You might decide you want to pursue a pre-med degree, a major that isn’t offered at the arts school you had all planned to attend.
Finding yourself in this position is extremely tough for high school students. On the one hand, you don’t want to disappoint your friends, or have them mad at you, especially now that you might not see them much in the next four years. On the other hand, this is your future, and you don’t want to compromise it for the sake of making someone else happy.
Here’s a few ways you can open up a dialogue with your best friend, or group of friends, about wanting to attend a school other than the one you had initially planned.
An Emphasis on Your Future
One of the most important aspects of this conversation will be about what you want for your future. By explaining everything you will personally gain from going to your college as opposed to the one you had planned with your friends, they are more likely to see your reasons for taking this opportunity. The best of friends will want what’s best for you, no matter what.
An Emphasis on Your Friendship
The other most important aspect of this conversation will be about how you plan to handle your friendships. Obviously, your friends don’t want to lose you. They won’t be happy to discover you won’t be embarking on the same journey as them. Have a couple of ideas prepared ahead of time, so when they ask you questions such as, “When will I see you?” or when they make statements such as, “We’ll never get to talk to you,” you have a response that will make them more accepting of the situation.
When Your Reasons Are Tricky
Sometimes your reasons for wanting to attend a different school than your friends are far more difficult to explain than something like “one has my major and the other doesn’t.” You might want to go to another school because you want this chance to be on your own. Maybe this decision was made because you want to break away from your friends. When this is the case, you may be better off by explaining that this is simply something you have to do, and that you hope they respect your decision. Again, trust that your true lifelong friends will understand.
Choosing to go to the same college as your high school best friend could be an incredibly fun experience you share and remember for the rest of your lives. It can also be what ends your friendship. It doesn’t matter how long you have been friends or how close you are, or how the ins and outs of your friendship work. The fact of the matter is, attending the same school as your best friend is a complex idea that deserves quite a bit of thinking. Certainly it can be done, but there’s a right way, and a wrong way. Check out these tips on how you and your best friends can attend the same school successfully!
Don’t Do Everything Together
People get sick of one another. Even if after ten years of friendship, and two week-long vacations together, you have never gotten sick of your best friend before, but if in college you do everything together, you will. This is why colleges tend not to match roommates with the same majors. Protect your friendship by rooming with other people, or taking classes at different times. Join different clubs. Eat meals with different people. This will ensure that you aren’t seeing too much of one another, and that you’re not growing dependent on each other.
Don’t Let Your Friendship Interfere with Your Social Life
Part of attending college is meeting new people and starting new relationships. Don’t let your friendship with your best friend hold you back from doing these things. If your high school friends are the only people you spend time with, or if you refuse to go to a club meeting or to get dinner without your best friend there, you’re missing out on one of the best opportunities college has to offer! Make sure that if you are attending the same school as your best friend that you both feel free to do your own thing with other friends in addition to one another.
Don’t Let Your Friendship Interfere with Your Future
College is all about preparing for your future. You will be given many opportunities such as the chance to become a resident assistant, to study abroad, or to take on an internship. You may find yourself wanting to transfer schools or switch majors so you can ensure that you’re receiving the best education for what you want to do. Don’t let your friendship with your best friend stop you from doing any of those things, as this can often lead to resentment. Make sure that you both feel free to pursue your dreams.
Don’t Let Your Friendship Hold You Back from Change
Nobody leaves for college and returns the same person. College is about identifying who you are and becoming comfortable with that. For many, this might mean letting go of high school, or becoming something other than what you were growing up in your home town. Keep in mind that your best friend will remember your past. Don’t let your friendship stop you from becoming the person you want to be.
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