What’s the best way to get to know people in your residence hall?

Have you had success with going to community events? Inviting someone to go to dinner or to the gym? Do you think the suite-style or hall-style floor plan had any impact? If you’ve lived on campus before, compare your experience this year with other years.

Share your thoughts here, keeping in mind this board is public. Include your email address if you are a current student and you wish to be entered in the contest to win one of 14 Top Lottery Picks! Winners announced Feb. 6, 2013.

83 thoughts on “What’s the best way to get to know people in your residence hall?”

  1. I have found that the best way to get to know the people in your residence hall is to leave your door open while you are in there so that people can walk by and strike up conversations with you. It shows that you want to get to know the people around you. It is also great to stop when someone else’s door is open and introduce yourself, say hey, and start up a conversation. Another way is to study in the lounges on your floor, and other floors in your building. It creates a neutral area to get to know your peers.

  2. Doing homework in the study lounge with other people around and attending hall and community events are definitely the best ways to get to know other people in your residence hall.

  3. If you want to meet people in your residence hall there are many things you can do, as can be seen by the comments above. You live around these people in your hall so a simple hi and showing a desire to get to know others should help your cause. Other than that I think going to community events and floor meetings/programs are also helpful.

  4. There are so many ways to get to know people in a residence hall. You live around these people and all it really takes is a willingness to go around and say hi to others! Other than, community events and floor meetings can be a great way to get to know others you live around.

  5. As everyone’s said, open doors are great! But also, take the initiative and go introduce yourself to people on the hall, go to events together, grab meals together (aka food bonds people like none other), and ask to borrow a cup of sugar from a hallmate.

  6. Do something crazy or random in your hall that stands out that makes people want to come see what is going on and join in with you. Like corn-hole or door basketball

  7. One way to get to know people is to say hi to neighbors you see in the hall and in the kitchen. Also, making brownies and offering them to others usually helps!

  8. My roommate and I threw a birthday party the second week of school for a girl on our hall. No one knew each other so it was a great way to get to know everyone!

  9. At this point in the year, it’s a little awkward to just go down the hall and introduce yourself to people. What does work, nicely, however, is finding groups of people who are either in the hall or audibly chatting through a door, and offering them Nutella. It’s a subtle but brilliant way to insert yourself into the conversation.

  10. I like to leave my door open so that people walking by feel welcome to stop in and say hello. I have also met a bunch of people by going to the study lounge.

  11. Studying in the study lounge is actually a really easy way to meet new people. You’d be surprised at how easy it is to strike up conversation when everyone decides to take a little study break!

  12. It may sound basic, but just introduce yourself to people. If you’re going to be living together for a whole year, you should definitely just stop by to say hi sometime during the beginning of the semester. Invite people to dinner, a sporting event, a movie night, or something else on campus. You’d be surprised by the kinds of connections you can find from just one lunch with hallmates or suitemates! Leaving your door open is also a great option.

  13. I think the best way to get to know people on your hall is to leave your door open sometimes and to not be afraid of putting yourself out there and introducing yourself. Go to your hall events and know that everyone else is in the same position you are in: getting to know lots of new people!

  14. The best way to meet people is to attend events held by your RA. This is where I met many people from my other suites and how I got to know them. If your RA doesn’t have many events you can find out if other hall mates are in your classes and you can possibly study with them. This is a great way to handle school work while also getting to know new people.

  15. There are a few really good ways to meet people. The first is going to community, building, or hall events. The second is just by hanging out in common rooms on campus, and the last is by playing sports on a court or field near your dorm.

  16. I think the best way to get to know people is to sit in the kitchen with the door open. The kitchen is a place everybody walks by on their way to their dorm (especially in HOJO where it’s in the elevator lounge). If you just sit there with your laptop and work on homework chances are you’ll get nothing done. You’ll be so busy meeting new people and sharing the most random stories (those are the best types)!

  17. Leave your door open while you are in your room during the day, this way you can say hi to people passing by! Also go to any hall events that your RA plans. It is a great way to meet people!

  18. Walking down the hall and introducing yourself to people, attending community events, or just leaving your door open during the day and talking to people as they walk by are some of the best ways to get to know people.

  19. Going around and introducing yourself to people within the first couple of days during WOW and after move-in really helps out a lot. I met some of my best friends now from them just stopping by my room to introduce themselves! Its really amazing how it all works out!

  20. Live in a Living-Learning Community!! There are a lot of events and a lot of other people around you who are interested in making their hall a community. I lived in an LLC my freshman year and made lots of friends just by being there.

  21. I would definitely say there are LOTS of great ways to meet people in your residence hall! Leave your suite and room doors open as an invitation to visitors, attend community events and fun activities put on by your RA, community government, or community director; bake/cook something yummy in your floor kitchen, (the smell is sure to attract lots of hungry people) and then share your goodies! Study in the lounges and common areas where other residents hang out, or maybe just strike up some conversations in the elevator or mail room. In general, just get out of your comfort zone and branch out!

  22. Notice the resources you have around you! It’s easy to get your own friend group and ignore those that actually live around you, but they can be really cool people too! A guy on our hall plays guitar, so we take advantage of that and beg him to come over to play guitar for us sometimes. Of course we are courteous and bake him cookies as a sign of gratification! haha. Also, just always be friendly and have a smile on your face. Make small talk in the elevator! It can make all the difference! 🙂

  23. I think that the best way to get to know people on your hall is to leave the door open and attend the events that the RA’s plan. Its a good way to get out and see who all who lives on your hall

  24. Getting to know new people is a whole lot like dancing. Sometimes, it’s real formal and there’s a technique to it. Other times, it’s sloppy, informal, or just plain fun and doesn’t exactly follow any logical patterns or expectations. In the context of meeting friends in your respective housing locations, your residence hall is the “dance floor.” You’ve got to put yourself out there and get to it. The key in both cases (dancing and socializing) is to let go of your fears or preconceptions about what makes “good socialization/dancing” and trust in your feet (or in the social sense, your personality) to do the work. If you put enough energy into it, you’ll find the people you’re interested in. So whether you “just go with it” or learn the “steps to social networking,” it’ll happen if you stick with it.

  25. The best way to get to know the people in your dorm is by leaving your door open and letting people visit. You’d be surprised how much you have in common with the people on your hall or suite just by them seeing certain posters or things in your room that they can relate to. You could also go door to door just have a conversation and get to know the people on your hall. This is important as it builds relationships and is also for safety reasons.

  26. The best way to get to know other people is to just leave your door open! If this isn’t your style, just ask the people around you to join you for a meal, or attend a free campus event like a CUAB movie!

  27. The best wat to get to know other people in the dorm is by going to get food with them. When I first moved into my dorm, I didn’t know a single person on my hall, but one of the guys went around asking if we wanted to go to dinner together. Most of us did and we’ve been hanging out ever since.

  28. The best way to get to know people is to attend the events put on by your community government, not only do you get free food/fun activities, its a great way to meet friends!

  29. The best way to get to know people is to leave your door open. And, when people look into your room, just look friendly. You can’t act like they’re invading your privacy, you did leave your door open, and once in a while someone that wants to talk will pass by, and conversations will start. It’s pretty easy.

  30. I would say the best way to make friends on your hall is to hang out in the lounge and just be really friendly. Baking cupcakes and going door to door is also an option 🙂

  31. Kind of the corollary to the “leave your door open” advice: if people leave their door open, how upset could they really be if you decide to good-naturedly barge in? Talk to people who have their door open. Ask them a question or offer them a snack.

  32. I think that the best way to get to know your residence hall is first off going to all the programs. The RAs and CDs work hard to make each community a warm, familiar environment. Another thing that I think helps is the “open door policy”. If you’re just spending time in your room, open the door and see who comes by to talk! Finally, if you’re in the lobby or the elevator, start chatting people up! The best way to make friends is to show that you’re interested in being friends!

  33. My best advice is to leave your room door open when you are just hanging out. Of course it is not safe to leave your door open all the time, but it is a great way to meet people who are stopping by for whatever reason. I got a lot closer to a lot of my friends either because they would stop by my room or I would stop by theirs. There are also plenty of events, usually that have food. We all know free food attracts college students.

  34. The best way to get to know people in your residence hall is to talk to every single person you meet. Introduce yourself, shake hands, try and start a conversation. The first few weeks of school are a level playing field where nobody knows anyone else. Make a good first impression on lots of people, and you’ll see familiar faces around Carolina for the rest of the year.

  35. I love to spend my free time in the parlor talking to anybody who walks by! I also love to bake and put out my homemade goods for all takers (in addition to taking requests for anybody who has food allergies).

  36. Other than leaving your day open and say “hi” to those passing by, the best way to get to know people on your hall is to go to the awesome events your RA or other students plan for your hall. There is usually free food and you get to just eat and hang out while playing games or learning cool stuff like self-defense. It’s an easy way to start conversations and meet people!

  37. Leaving your room door open, studying in the lounge, and going to your floor events are all great ways to make new friends in a dorm setting. Finding people on your floor who like the same shows as you and planning viewing parties also work!

  38. The best way to get to know people in your residence hall is to be friendly and sociable the first few weeks after move-in. This is the time period where people are looking to be social so it’s best to take advantage of it! Another way is to keep your door open for visitors and to attend residence hall programs that are designed to get residents involved.

  39. In suite style dorms, it’s easier to get to know people. you automatically have 7 other people you will be living with, and it’s pretty hard to avoid having at least the smallest of conversations with them. In hall style dorms, for me, as crazy and stupid as it sounds, it’s in the bathrooms. You will see the same people brushing their teeth every night and it’s pretty easy to strike up conversation.

  40. I totally agree that one of the easiest ways to meet new people in your community is to go to the study lounges and join the party! At any given time, there are always people in the study lounges and believe me, not everyone is always studying! 🙂 So if you don’t happen to find a study partner, you’ll for sure find a new friend.

  41. Using the common areas on your floor and in your residence, like the study lounges and game rooms, is a great way to see new faces and talk to a lot of new people, especially in the bigger dorms like Hojo and Ehaus. I know I see a new face everyday because there are just so many students.

  42. The absolute best way to get to know people is to go door to door and introduce yourself to each and every person on your floor. Everyone is a stranger the first couple of days and doing this will increase your chances of developing new relationships with people.

  43. Just go to some floor events! Your RA will plan at least one per month, and there are also events put on by you residence hall. Go to those and just try to be social! Remember that everyone is in your same position, and that it’s natural for everyone to be shy.

  44. The best way to get to know people is simply to get to know them! It seems a little weird to put it that simply but the fact of the matter is that you see many of these people on a daily basis! Just by taking the time to invite someone to a meal, to take an interest in someone’s day, or even to just say hello in the hallways, so many doors are opened (see what I did there, “keep-your-door-open”ers?) to great new friendships. You never know where your lifelong friends are going to come from, so the best advice I can give is just to keep an open mind and to never be afraid to extend a greeting.

  45. There are several great ways to get to meet your floor or hall mates. The main way is to simply take initiative. This can include a variety of different things such as leaving the door to your room or suite open invivting people to stop in and say hello. It also includes attending floor and hall programs meeting the people who attend and finding out their interest and hobbies. Studying in the lounges allows you to meet people on your floor and to see those who pass by on a regular basis. Building a community is easy when surrounded by so many individuals in the same stage of life as yourself. Simply take initiative.

  46. The best way to get to know people on your hall is to go talk to them! Introduce yourself and exchange phone numbers! Meet for dinner or play on an intramural team together. My hall played volleyball together and it was a blast!

  47. The best was to get to know people on your hall is to communicate with them!
    Introduce yourself
    Speak when you see them around campus
    Invite them to your room
    Suggest studying together
    Attend hall/resident events
    Leave your door open while you are in there

  48. The best way to get to know other people in your hall is by saying hi and introducing yourself to anyone you don’t know! Living in a suite style residence hall definitely helped me meet new people, especially since I could meet eight new people in one suite!

  49. I would say the best way is to not be afraid to introduce yourself while passing in the hall or sitting with them in the dining hall. Leaving your door open is always great, but if you want to get to know people you have to get out there! I would also recommend any planned events that the residence hall puts on.

  50. As strange as it may sound, the bathroom! is the best way to get to know the other girls that live on my residence hall! Because most of us girls have morning classes at the same time or go to bed around the same time, so we’re all crowded at the sinks trying to get ready and while at the sink we introduce ourselves, ask how each others’ days went and share these ‘talks’ with each other on a regular basis almost everyday!

  51. It’s a good idea to plan pizza parties or ice cream parties! Also we like to keep our door open so other people can come in and talk or just hang out. Cooking or baking together can also be a a great way to get to know new people and have fun conversations!

  52. Don’t spend time in your room at first! I met my best friends by hanging out on balconies, in hallways, or in kitchens/lounges. Do your homework in the public areas and smile at people as they walk by; soon you’ll be friendly with your whole floor! Always keep your door open too- my best experience here has been becoming good friends with my suitemates. We are truly like a family, and have “family” dinner all together every night at 6. It truly feels like home!

  53. Leaving your door open is a great way to meet people and let them know that you are open and inviting. Another great way is to spend time in the floor lounges and kitchens, and talk to people you see in there. They most likely live near you and are equally as interested in meeting new people.

  54. The best way is to be active in the community so that you get the chance to connect with other people. Spending time in the lounges and having a social presence pays off.

  55. I got to know the people in my residence hall by going to several hall and community events. I made sure to introduce myself and meet others early on, so it wouldn’t be strange meeting them much later on! Since the people on my hall also have similar interests, I sometimes ask if they want to go volunteer with me or go to a special event on campus. Being in a suite definitely helped me be close with some of the people in my hall because we simply see each other more often and can casually talk to others in passing every day. Also, it doesn’t hurt to be in a Living Learning Community! All of our LLC events really helped me get to know others on a sub-surface level!

  56. Putting yourself out there as often as possible is the best way to get to know people in your residence hall. When it’s warm in the fall, start volleyball and basketball games outside your dorm. Do your homework in the lounge or outside on the tables. One of the best ways I’ve found though is to use the kitchen. If you bake some cookies and bring them door to door offering them, you are sure to make tons of new friends because who doesn’t love some fresh baked treats?!

  57. Leaving your room door/suite door open at appropriate times, sitting in the lounge, and attending RA activities. Also, it never hurts to go door to door and introduce yourself!

  58. I definitely agree with everyone! Leaving your door open is definitely a great way to meet people; however, some people may not feel comfortable barging into your room. In that case, casual conversation in the lounge or the bathroom works! Last year, I got really close with my suitemates. We just kept our bathroom doors open and made it a rule to just come in whenever!

  59. Try to strike up a conversation with anyone you see! You can talk to people in the elevator, in the lounge, or go to the kitchen and talk to people there! Another great way is to go to the lounge often and just say hello to people. Attending events that are set up in your building is also a great way to meet people. Just be friendly and get to know the people that live with you!

  60. Other than leaving your door open, you should say hi to your floor mates as you past them. Especially in the first two weeks of the semester, talking to your neighbors are really important, and dinners are always a good way to get to know people. In addition, going to dorm events and events organized by your RA is a good way to meet people. You should be friendly in general with people you see in the lounge or kitchen.

  61. Best way I’ve discovered for meeting people is to turn on some music and bake cookies or other delicious treats in the kitchen, especially during the first week of the semester. People will come flocking. Later, you can take the leftovers and go door-to-door on your hall, especially if you don’t live on the same floor as the kitchen. Great excuse to knock on people’s doors and meet your new hallmates!

  62. The best way to get to know people in your residence hall is to participate in all the events housing and your community government set up for you. Whether it’s a viewing party or a hot chocolate break in the middle of finals, take part in the activities offered and have a great time with friends!

  63. The best way is to talk to them on hall! The kitchen is a great place to get to know others in the same building. Also, it’s nice to say hi in the bathrooms or while passing by their rooms!

  64. The best way to get to know people in your residence hall is simply to leave your door open while you’re in your room. This automatically sends a signal to fellow students walking by that you are open and welcome to a friendly “hello” or a quick conversation about classes. Another great way to get to know hallmates is to invite them to lunch or dinner with you at the dining hall.

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