I ran into an EXIT alumna at church this past weekend. She graduated in May, and when I asked about her transition, she talked about the challenge of finding community after college. “It’s been harder than I expected.” After months of searching for a church and friends, she’s finally starting to make connections. Our conversation made me think of countless alumni over the years who have struggled to find community in a new or changed location. Here are some soundbites from other PSU alums:
“At PSU there are people around you all the time, and being there for four years, I got to know a decent amount of people. It’s definitely a change to move to a place [back home or a new location] and only know a few people. The relational part has been a challenge…finding another Christian community…it’s definitely different because all the people you are used to hanging around aren’t there.” – Nate
“It was really hard to transition into a community that’s not set up like college where everyone’s your age and sort of in the same position of needing to build and make community…I really struggled to find a church. I really struggled to find a group of people who were…I don’t know…who were like me.” – Katy
Finding meaningful community after college often does not happen instantly, easily or organically. We need to go after it. And, we need to prepare ourselves with accurate expectations. We’ll keep talking about this at EXIT, but here’s a great article on The Five Big Misconceptions About Community. Let’s (re)frame our mindset for finding friends post-college…or in any life-stage. Most importantly, let’s remember that though we may have challenges, God delights to provide. He wants to root us in rich community. While things may not unfold according to our picture or plan, He has good in store!