How to Make New Friends in a New City

How to Make New Friends in a New City

I was very nervous about making new friends during my internship. Moving to Washington, D.C. is different from leaving home to go to college for the first time. 

It can fill you with emotions mixed between eager excitement and uncertain anxiousness. You’re leaving all of your college friends, friends from home and family behind all at once to go do bigger and better things for yourself during a professional semester in D.C

Making new friends as an adult can be intimidating, especially when it is in a new city. Fortunately, Washington, D.C. is the place to be when making new friends. Opportunities to meet new people are endless; and with so many people, with all different backgrounds and interests, you are bound to find a friend. The question is how. How am I going to make new friends in this new place?

From personal experience, meeting new people is something I look forward to immensely. However, I can be shy in new environments. Factors such as working full time, taking an evening class and living what feels like a “post-college” lifestyle can make having a social life that much harder, not to mention if you have more of an introverted personality or are shy in new environments. 

Fortunately, Washington, D.C. is the place to be when making new friends. Opportunities to meet new people are endless; and with so many people, with all different backgrounds and interests, you are bound to find a friend.

Morganne Blazejak

If you were accepted to The Washington Center, chances are you're driven and willing to step out of your comfort zone, take on a new lifestyle and meet new people in the process. Every semester, hundreds of other students from all over the U.S. and the world will also be accepted at TWC. You are not alone. Someone is going to be your friend.

A great way to start getting to know people before coming to TWC is through social media. A few weeks before coming to D.C., you will be  notified of who your roommates will be. This is a great opportunity to send them an email or find them on social media and start a conversation! There is also a Facebook page that you can join upon arrival, where you can connect further with fellow students.

Make new friends during TWC orientation and welcome weekend activities.
Make new friends during TWC orientation and welcome weekend activities.

During the first few days there were orientation and welcome weekend activities. Everyone is new to each other and everyone wants to make friends. It’s a good opportunity to take advantage of and talk to who you might be sitting next to or rooming with. You will be surprised how easy it is to talk to someone who is probably feeling the same thing as you. During the first weekend, I met a few students from my university that I never even met on campus prior to TWC. We all exchanged numbers, which led to us meeting each others’ roommates. 

During my first weekend alone I met and became friends with more than 15 people. 

Another way to make new friends is connecting with others in your evening course. You get to choose a class that interests you most, so you’ll likely find yourself taking a class with others who have similar interests. My evening course requires a semester-long project of creating a nonprofit organization and volunteering our time. During this class we formed a small group of five people of similar interests and now we get to work together and volunteer. 

As you start your internship, there is a possibility that you will be working with other interns from TWC. Regardless, you still have the opportunity to meet all of the people at your internship site! Not only is this a great way to meet new friends, but also great networking opportunities. At my site I work with another TWC intern, so we commute together every day. My office is very small with a total of three people, but I have heard stories from other interns who work with over 50 people who they get to interact with daily.

Always remember to stay true to yourself and you will have no problem finding your people during your time in D.C. You may just find forever lasting friendships. The opportunities to partake in new things and meet new people are endless. It's all about putting yourself out there.

Morganne Blazejak, Washington Center Student Blogger, Fall 2019

Morganne is a student at Alvernia University, where she double majors in Healthcare Administration and Healthcare Science. Morganne is a Fall 2019 intern at Retire Safe, an organization that advocates for mature seniors on issues including Social Security, Medicare, health, safe-retirement and financial well being.