Dealing with too many characters in novels

At some point during the writing process you might feel that you’ve bitten off more than you can chew (cliché?); okay – eaten more than you can digest.
You review the situation and realize that one problem could be that there are too many paper-people: characters created by you. Your novel is set in a college and the entire cafeteria crowd feature in your novel. So what do you do?

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