Good friends are meant to last longer than careers

If you’ve made it into Tech and survived for however long you’ve been here, congratulations. Really.

It takes a lot to be a successful student here: meetings, all-nighters, interviews and coffee. We are indestructible because of these things, and nothing can distract us from accomplishing our goals.

Take a second, though, and think about some things that are important to your life that you are probably not paying attention to.

Recently, I have noticed that so many of my friends and people around me are making a trade-off: They are sacrificing quality relationships for personal ambitions.

There is nothing wrong with making and keeping goals. Remember freshman year, though, when you moved in, fresh faced and assuming the best? It was probably one of the last times in our lives when everyone around us was the same: optimistic, slightly naive and looking to make long-lasting friends.

The friends you make in college are supposed to be your friends for life. I know that the people I met my freshman year each brought something awesome to the table, and I still try to keep in touch with all of them.

Things change, though, like your vision for your career, the organizations you want to get involved in and the amount of dedication you put into your academics. Along the way, you find that the people you used to surround yourself with are not the ones you want to keep growing with, and you change your circle of friends. Sometimes you go overboard and lose sight of your friends altogether. You become a workaholic.

When you realize you have come to that threshold where work and success have taken over your relationships, you have reached the breaking point. You have become so absorbed internally, dead set on what you think is best for your career, and find that you have lost your enjoyment and social life because you let go of the people that made you happy.

People overlook the fact that opportunities will come, if you have the right intentions. If you work hard, the rewards will be waiting. At the same time, though, if you lose friends among the chaotic nature of college life, you may not always have a chance to get them back, and that is a loss that cannot be easily compensated for.

I am that friend who witnesses other friends change over time. I also know that it is important to be aware of yourself and to let others know when they are forgetting the relationships in their lives, because that is always the hardest way of losing friends—when you simply drift away for no reason other than that you were not on the same page and did not have time for each other.

Set aside some time for making memories and for letting those that care about you, know that you reciprocate and respect their friendship. Keeping friends through college is such a valuable investment of your time, but it is easily forgotten about.