Words by Kiana Duncan

I’ll never forget the words I heard on the last day of my freshman year.

My good friend Nikhil was pushing the last of his boxes out of Stopher on a cart and said “Well, the last day is exactly like the first day—sweaty and awkward.” Truer words have never been spoken.

Photo by Matthew Merchant |

Welcome Weekend is madness. It can be your equivalent of Wonderland if you’re like me and from small town nowhere. However, it is also stressful, sweaty and awkward. Making friends isn’t easy when you’re spending your weekend being herded into buildings you’ve never heard of (Where is Moulton Hall again?) But fear not! If you didn’t spend your first week doing karaoke at Quaker Steak or drunkenly raving in a random frat house, listen to me:

1. That is perfectly OK.
2. Take a deep breath.
3. You still got this.

It’s totally OK not to hit it off with anyone your first week. Just because you’re not into late-night movies or 500-person bingo doesn’t mean your social life is doomed. It just means you haven’t found your niche yet. Of course, if you went to every single one of these events, you go Glen Coco! That’s awesome. But if you haven’t, here’s why it’s all right:

1. Not everyone is into your stereotypical Welcome Weekend events.
2. This is a huge campus. You haven’t met everyone.
3. You still have the whole year.

There’s so much pressure to look and act like you’re having a good time that sometimes you don’t feel normal for admitting you’re uncomfortable. However, you may still need to exit your comfort zone a little bit. If going up to a random person isn’t your style, take a shot at it. It can be something as little as “Dude, that is an awesome ‘Doctor Who’ shirt!” (No lie, I have done this before.) No one is going to be mad you’re making conversation with them. I’ll even let you all in on a secret: Psst… See those other freshmen out there in the wild? They’re just as scared of you as you are of them.

If you’re a born-to-be sorority girl, then go for it. But if you passed a volleyball team or improv club at BlastOff! that the voice in your head screamed for you to check out, there’s no harm in doing so. Challenging and bettering yourself is what college is all about, even if it comes with some red-faced moments here and there. You have to believe you are a fierce lion-hearted Beyoncé with Pterodactyl talons. You can do whatever you want because college means that you turn awesome this year.

The cold, hard truth is this: College isn’t high school. Whatever personality or reputation you had in high school can’t follow you here. The scary part is that each day you are in control of who you want to be. Every word, action and motive forms you from here on out. This is also a blessing in disguise, though. No one here thinks you’re a loser when you eat alone and no one thinks you’re weird because you choose to join a certain club or dye your hair purple. Rock that mantra “you do you.”

Want to ask a frosh question but too scared to even ask Google? No worries! Submit HERE for my advice column of the week.