News / Student Life

The Difficulty of Socializing at Hunter

The friends you make in college are the ones who become family and stick around for the rest of your life, or so people say. College is an inherently social place, as depicted in movies and told as so in many stories. Is that the sentiment here at Hunter, however?

Even though it’s been three years and students have been re-adjusting to a post-pandemic normal,  anxiety for many young adults went through the roof and the desire to make new friends plummeted. According to an article published in the Harvard Graduate School of Educations News, young adults are reporting double the rates of anxiety and depression compared to teens and 34% of the young adults surveyed say loneliness and fear of rejections is the cause. 

Senior Levia Zhou said it wasn’t until her senior fall semester when she joined the orchestra that she was able to connect with fellow students at school. 

“If you’re not in a club or aggressively social, it’s really hard,” she said. “Like where are you supposed to hangout on campus, there’s nowhere.” 

She stated that without places for students to relax and congregate the college is setting the students up for failure.  

“Half the time I’m stuck on campus I’m sitting on the skybridge or in some random hallway with my headphones on,” Zhou said.

Many students say they don’t feel supported by the administration and counselors at Hunter. They feel as though reaching out to those put in place to help them creates a lot of extra work for them and a whole lot of confusion.  

The counselors and Office of Student Life are not responsible for the social climate amongst the student body. However, students say they do little to support them academically, leaving the students to fend for themselves and adding to their overall workload. With that, socialization isn’t at the forefront of their minds and becomes a point of contention for students who have a lot on their plate with coursework. 

Journalism student Estafania Valencia feels that the disorganization at Hunter is really the bigger issue.  “You feel like you’re on your own… My counselor is pretty much useless, she has no clue, two out of 10 times she’s been able to actually address my questions.”

The Office of Student Life, which is tasked in making campus life easier for commuters, did not reply when reached for comment. 

On the other hand, this isn’t a difficulty for every student. Biology major Robert Poulos said his chatty personality helped create a social life on campus.

“I just never stop talking so eventually people spoke to me,” he said. “It’s not easy though and if I didn’t live in the dorms it probably would’ve been really difficult.” 

Poulos said that class with friends makes the workload bearable and in classes where he doesn’t know anyone he is more disengaged.

Socializing and connection is crucial for anyone especially in an unknown and unfamiliar setting. For Hunter students, not only do they have to put in the work to maintain their school work, they need to apply double the effort to have a social life as well.

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