Making friends always seems so difficult, but a simple conversation can build friendships. I definitely was terrified that I was not going to make any friends, especially since I wouldn’t consider myself an extrovert. I can say that I was very wrong. I’ve enjoyed connecting with people. I’ve learned so much about peoples’ backgrounds and experiences, especially as college students.
I was lucky enough to have a smaller program that has a maximum 35-40 students, so we were all able to become familiar with one another. I have even traveled with some of them. Having people who not only are doing the same thing I am, but can relate to my feelings has definitely helped my anxiety about studying abroad.
I’ve made UB (University of Barcelona) friends too! I was so excited to meet and talk to actual UB students. At first I found it difficult to form friendships with them, especially since I didn’t know how they felt about international students. It sounds so corny, but I was interested in learning about their lives in Barcelona as college students. I’ve just had some of my best conversations with them. As a bonus, they have given me various recommendations for things to do or see. I definitely wouldn’t have found many of them on my own. It’s just nice to see another perspective of someone who is like me, but not… if that makes sense.
Anyways I think that once you cross the barrier of speaking, friendships are easy to make. I think it’s important to take advantage of meeting so many new people. You’ll learn so much about them and relate to others on a personal level. It was definitely scary to leave my comfort, but I am so glad I’ve gotten to create new experiences with new people.