Academic Success, Student Engagement

Why is it hard to make and keep friends at UofT?

By: Sandrine Uwimana

Loneliness can contribute to inability to perform at your best and could even affect your grades. When new students come to U of T, they are eager to make new friends. Once at U of T this dream can turn into an illusion. In fact, some people graduate without having ever made good friends. But is it really hard to make friends at U of T? Diversity and the huge size of U of T are some of the challenges to making good friends. To add to this some people are naturally shy about initiating a conversation. Introverts find it hard to make and keep good friends

Diversity.

“Like poles attract each other and unlike repel.”  U of T is a multicultural, diverse and prestigious learning institution. It draws a lot of students from different backgrounds and continents. When students come to U of T, they are most likely to make friends with people from the same background. The perception is that somebody from your country or culture will have the same philosophy of life as you do. Effort is needed to overcome the barrier posed by different backgrounds.

Size and making friends.

U of T is the largest university in Canada.  The size of the school can be a barrier to making friends. For instance, you might meet somebody in class but never run into them again. It is important to put yourself out there and be proactive in making and maintaining friends.

It is important to make friends from other cultures, because likely after you graduate, you will be working with people from different backgrounds. Adjusting to your work environment will be easier if you have acquired these social skills at school. As well, it is vital to maintain friends as a means of understanding and solving common problems. It is also crucial to reach out to students from other cultures as a means of eradicating racism, discrimination and prejudice.

You can reach out to students from other backgrounds through participating in different clubs at U of T and various events at Hart House, the Athletic Centre and the Multifaith Centre. I would recommend the Multifaith for an introvert, because people there will most likely reach out to you and you can make friendships there which last forever.

Below are some of the links to the clubs that might help students make friends.

https://ulife.utoronto.ca/organizations/view/id/1821

http://www.cie.utoronto.ca/

gasparni

2 Comments

Shannon

Where are you getting this data that introverts find it hard to make and keep good friends? I’m an introvert and I’ve cultivated many friendships over my years here at u of t and in life.

It seems like you’re relying on a stereotype. Introverts may not be as outgoing as extroverts, especially in certain settings, but it doesn’t mean they don’t know how to make friends or small talk. As for the supposed inabilty to maintain friendships, you’re grasping at straws to support a poorly researched and mildly offensive article. an it

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gasparni

Hi Shannon,

Thanks for your reply and it’s great to hear your experience has been a positive one. Please note that the blog is the opinion of one students experience and not based on any facts just one perspective.

Take care,
ASC

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