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Tips for Staying in Touch While Away at College

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Posted on September 27, 2016 by Diana Patton ’15.

Courtesy: Annmarie Ely Stay in touch with friends while you're away with these tips!

Going away to college is an exciting time, but between buying books and studying for exams, it can be hard to keep in touch with the people that you don't see as often anymore. Whether your school is within an hour of home or, across the country, your lifestyle is going to be different. Making the time to do the simple things that you've always done with people from home may be difficult. That’s why it’s important to experiment with different ways of communicating that fit your schedule when you go to college.

Check out this list of tips to make keeping in touch easy and convenient. Figuring out what works for you will help you maintain great relationships with people from home throughout the college years and beyond.  Take your pick of these tips to stay close with people from your hometown!

1.     Use Instant Messaging or Email. Most people are familiar with instant messaging because it’s so convenient. It’s an easy method for when you are out and about, but if you find you don’t have a lot of time to go back and forth, consider emailing. Communicating via email will give you more time in between messages so you can craft a well thought out response.    

2.    Utilize Social Media. Everyone is on it! If you aren’t on Facebook, it’s a great place to start to stay up to date on what's going on back home while keeping others in touch with  what's happening with you. Instagram and Twitter are options as well. All these sites are free and have mobile friendly apps for when you are on the go!

3.    Send an Old-Fashioned Letter or Card.  It doesn’t have to be fancy, but you may need to spend a few bucks on a card, envelope and stamps. If you don’t have time to write a letter, type it out! No matter the length, the recipient of your letter will appreciate your effort!

4.    Set Up Phone Dates. Sometimes emojis and gifs just don't say it all. When it’s tough finding time in your day to sit down and make a phone call, plan a regular time for calls with your family member or friend. Add the time(s) to your schedule; like you would any other important event in your life! Having a regular time when the person knows to expect your call will help make sure you’re not playing phone tag. It also leaves you time to fit in studying and other responsibilities if you schedule your calls.

5.     Photo Sharing Services. Consider using a photo sharing service to share your exciting moments with friends and family! These services allow you to share images without putting them on social media. Google offers a free option as part of the user’s account. 

6.    Video Chat. Using video chats is an easy and free way to stay in touch with friends and family. Skype, Facetime and Google all offer video chat tools.