Story by Erik Potter

Move-in day was over. Their families were gone. Sara Grahn-Nillson and Megan Oosthuizen were alone in their new room, at their new school, in a state they’d never lived in before and where they knew no one.

“We were both in here, and we had tear stains on our faces,” says Grann-Nillson. “That brought us together immediately.”

Grann-Nillson is from Truckee, California, and Oosthuizen is from Dallas. Self-described introverts, the young women built a friendship from that shared experience and leaned on each other as they went to residence hall events and explored campus together.

They learned a lesson along the way.

“Don’t be afraid to get out there,” Oosthuizen says. “Wherever you end up, maybe you’re supposed to be there, maybe you’re supposed to meet a really good friend you didn’t expect to meet.”