For many of us, graduation is right around the corner. Some people know what is next for them while others have no idea. Graduate school, jobs, and moving are all something we are going to have to deal with. So what’s going to happen to the friendships formed over the years in college?

First of all, it’s a choice. Do you want to stay friends? Losing friends is easy… don’t make plans, don’t answer texts, calls, emails, etc. However, keeping friends after college will take some effort. Effort doesn’t mean hard work, but you can’t expect it to be as easy as… “Hey what’s up wanna come over to my apartment in 10?” You and your best friends may be living in different cities, states, or even countries.

Fast forward to this summer… Now you suddenly live far away from your best friend. Email and texting is great way to stay in touch in today’s busy world, but it’s not enough. You’ll both be meeting new people and experience different things. Here are some tips you can use to help you keep in touch:

• Remember, sometimes emotional tone gets lost over text and email. What you mean to say and how it is received can be two different things.
• Be timely with returning texts, emails, and calls!
• Make time to actually call, FaceTime, or video chat with them!

For Friends that live in a different city or a state away, go visit them or plan to meet somewhere in the middle. Don’t just say “I miss you” and “I really want to see you”, be more definite say, “what are you doing the first weekend of September” Or “These weekends are really good for me to travel, what about you?” Be specific, make plans, and follow through.

I know my best friends here will all be moving home which is only about 20 minutes from West Chester, while I’ll be going to graduate school from anywhere to Towson, Maryland to Buffalo, New York. So we’ve already made Fourth of July plans for them to come to my house, and depending on where I am next year they want to visit my new school and get an escape from living with their parents!

Start a tradition! Whether it is a winter trip to somewhere warm or hitting the slopes! Make a point to do something every year. Everyone will be at different points in their life, but that doesn’t mean you don’t deserve a vacation! Or start an annual party/reunion, every year a different friend hosts it! There are tons of ways to make sure you don’t lose your friends, always keep in mind it’s not goodbye, it’s see you later!

Until then remember there is still plenty of time from now until graduation! Make some memories, have some fun, and enjoy the time you have left in college with your friends!

Written by Julia Kane, Peer Educator