There are few things more liberating than sitting surrounded by a crowd of your peers on graduation day.
It’s not only the fact that you’ve completed a degree, but it is also a consummation of all your memories.
It’s a reflection on four years of people, events and experiences that have molded you into a better person.
There is a bittersweet aspect to graduation; you will no longer see your best friends every day. They’ll no longer be a short walk away, and you may even have to drive hours to see them.
These friends, however, are life-long and will be there to support you on whichever road life takes you down.
When I graduated two years ago, I was more upset about the friendships I knew wouldn’t stretch beyond the stage that graduation day.
When I said goodbye to my university, I also said goodbye to hundreds of transient friendships that served me perfectly well through my college years, but were not strong enough to continue.
Or maybe, the friendships were strong at the time, but life does not allow us the time to keep in touch with so many people once we are no longer eating at the same dining hall, working on the same assignments or drinking at the same bars.
Here’s a list of the people we knew in college, but will never talk to after graduation:
1. The Classmate
Once you realized you and this classmate had most of the same classes together, you clung to each other.
Maybe you did not have much in common otherwise, but you were the same major and had similar life goals.
You spent countless late nights studying together, were sure to remind each other via text when assignments were due and complained about the cranky professor who seemed like his life goal was to fail you.
Once you graduated, you said goodbye and went your separate ways, but you probably wouldn’t have been able to ace some of those classes without his or her support.
2. The Weird Roommate
Has anyone ever had the luck of never having a bad roommate? It seems like we’ve all had at least one.
Unfortunately (or sometimes fortunately), when you get to college, your roommates are your first built-in friends.
Even if they are total weirdos, you have to be polite, because, uh, you’re sharing quite a small living space and you never know if they’re crazy enough the spit in your food or steal your things.
Maybe you weren’t besties, but you were forced to reside closely to each other for months.
This inevitably resulted in some late-night conversations, inside jokes and shared take-out.
Complain about his or her snoring all you want, but this person definitely dealt with your weird habits, too.
3. The Overly-Excited Friend
This person was born to go to college. His or her dorm looked like the school mascot threw-up, and every day, he or she was decked out in your university’s attire and never missed a campus event.
This person was great to turn to whenever you needed a buddy to watch a campus sporting event with or to show you where that hidden classroom is.
This person was obsessed with making his or her “college-besties.” However, this person’s post-grad depression is a bit too much for you to handle.
4. The Party Girl Or Guy
SHOTS? was probably the first word out of this person’s mouth whenever you saw him or her. Always with a bottle in hand, this friend would never say no to a night at the bar or a frat party.
When your close friends felt like staying in, you knew you could call this person as back-up for a good time.
It got to a point where you began to wonder if he or she ever even went to class.
Well, that’s none of your business, and since he or she always provided a good time, God bless this person… and his or her liver.
5. The Pothead
When in doubt, you knew where to find him. He was always chilling in his messy room, surrounded by remnants of fast food and the smell of marijuana that never had the time to dissipate.
You shared endless giggles, munched out and probably had some really deep ganja-induced conversations.
He was great for a relaxing night, but you don’t know much else about him. Did you ever graduate, dude?
6. The Hookup(s)
There isn’t much to say about this one. We all swapped saliva at some point in college.
Maybe you had your go-to person (err, people), maybe it was always switched up, but unless it ended in a relationship, there was no real reason to keep in contact with these people.
Just remember, it wasn’t a walk of shame if you owned it; it was a stride of pride.
7. The Funny Girl Or Guy
This person was an essential part of your friend group. He or she brought the laughs, the ridiculous behaviors and the great stories.
This person was the life of the party. You loved that he or she was part of the group, but after graduation, you’d never call this person to hang out solo.
8. The Sorority, Fraternity, Or Organization Friends
Greek life is a virtual reality, but you don’t realize this until you graduate and take a step out of it.
At any campus event, community service opportunity or mixer, you had dozens of people who knew you and could talk to you.
That goes for all of Greek life: These people were your community and, at the time, you could connect with all of them about something.
You had your best friend frat guys, your close sorority sisters and your family tree.
After graduation, though, you only keep in contact with a select few. The only thing you have to talk about is “old times,” and though the nostalgia is nice occasionally, you’d rather look on to new things.
9. The Convenient Friend
This person always had a similar schedule to you. You could get lunch at the same time, share wine on a quiet night and walk to classes together.
At the time you thought you were tight. However, once you graduated and realized you lived four hours away from each other, you found the friendship was based more on convenience than anything else.
10. The Significant Other
Maybe you were one of the few who found his or her spouse in college. If not, you probably were in a relationship for at least a while.
College relationships are nice because you usually share a group of friends, are on similar paths and live in a close proximity.
Unfortunately, you may realize that the relationship was fun-based and won’t work in the real world, or maybe you’ll learn that your partner is a bit crazy.
It’s hard to talk to this person after graduation because his or her memories are too real.
After graduation, you’ll discover who your real friends are. If you can make it as friends a year after graduation, you will make it as friends for life.
This doesn’t discredit those you don’t talk to anymore. Don’t be sad about what you left behind in college; be grateful for the memories and for how these people shaped your experiences.
It’s not practical to stay in contact with everyone, but your closest college friends will be important to you for life.
Congratulations to the classes of 2015!