Social or Campus Life Advice

Get involved on campus

  • Try as many activities as possible, even if over time you realize they’re not the best fit.  You might meet some of your closest friends through campus involvement.  Try something new!
  • Take advantage of the club fairs and join one or two that look interesting. Get involved with your hall mates.
  • Do everything you can to get out of your residence hall room.  Study downstairs in the parlor or library.  Go to everything that gives you opportunities to get involved in clubs, etc.  Attend all home football games.  Even if you don’t enjoy watching sports, it is a great way to meet people.
  • For those whose kids choose not to drink — the first few weeks can seem a little more lonely.  There are options with THRIVE and RUF that might be a great social outlet.
“The process of making true friends takes time — keep putting yourself out there and trust the process.”

Be open to new friends/perspectives/experiences

  • Meet new people!  Make friends in each of your classes. Get involved in things that interest them.
  • Take the initiative to ask others to do things with you.
  • Choose wisely and not only surround yourself with your support group but with others not so much like yourself that you will learn from.
  • Their residence hall will be their first social connection.  Some of them will remain life-long friends, others will be part of their first-year experience.  The guarantee is that there will be plenty of opportunities for them to find their place(s).

Keep it in perspective

  • The first month is HARD! You are not the only one having a hard time meeting people or missing your friends.
  • You are not the odd man/woman out.  You’ll meet people who will turn out to be friends.  And you’ll meet people who just aren’t your type.  That’s ok.
“Take advantage of a pre-orientation experience!!! It makes all the difference, especially if your student is moving far from home and doesn’t know anyone else going to Wake. My son made lifelong friends.”

Greek Life

  • Our son checked out fraternities on campus and pledged 2nd semester freshman year.  He has a close group of friends within his fraternity and really loves it.
  • My daughter has really enjoyed the social life afforded by being in a sorority. I honestly was not very supportive initially because of the partying that Greek life encompasses. However, she has made great lifelong friends in her sorority.
  • It all seems so serious and life changing when students are making decisions about Greek Life.  While it can be a great part of their Wake experience, which one they get in – or whether they do it or not – does not matter.

Parental advice

  • Print out the advice Betsy Chapman of the Daily Deac gives you: Stop, Drop and Roll. USE IT !! Everything is crazy in the beginning.  Honestly, we think they need us but what they need is a non-judgmental ear.
  • Quite often over the first year and a half I would get the phone call with the download of everything that wasn’t going well. I tried to be a good listener, but after hanging up the phone I naturally took on all his stress.  I finally realized these calls were his way of venting.  The humor in it all was when I would follow-up several days later and delicately ask how he was doing with situation X,  his response was most often “what?, oh that, yeah, it’s fine, not a big deal.” I then wised up and when I got the calls I said a lot of “that’s a bummer,”  “hmmm,” “I’m sorry, that sounds frustrating”, etc.  He just needed a familiar, unconditional loving voice, and non-judgmental listener on the other end of the phone.
“Our job (with training and encouragement by Wake and the Daily Deac) is to listen, offer perspective, and let them live the experience.”