The International Buddy Program allows international and exchange students to become immersed and socially integrated into the Catholic University community through the partnership of Catholic University students. This program is led by International Student and Scholar Services and the Education Abroad Office in an effort to develop and enhance intercultural and global relations and interactions between students.
Are you a Catholic University student that has participated in a study abroad program? Or, are you an incoming international student? If either of these apply, you are the perfect participant for our International Buddy Program!
For those students who have studied abroad, they understand what it's like to feel lost and alone in a foreign country. The transition to American culture for International students can be difficult as well, and it helps to have a local friend. The Buddy Program aims to provide international students with a "buddy" to help them overcome the challenges of adapting to life in the U.S.
What is a buddy?
Buddies are returning Catholic University students who serve as a resource for 1 - 2 incoming international students. Buddies provide a friendly face, helping hand, and offer that first friendship, which can make a world of difference for incoming international students. The Catholic University host students are interested in meeting the incoming international students and helping them adjust to life at Catholic University and in Washington, D.C.
What's involved for International Students?
If you are interested in having a Buddy, that person can help you as you explore campus and even the greater city of Washington. To ensure that you have the best experience possible, we will also coordinate several cultural excursions over the course of the semester. These excursions may be events like a baseball game, pumpkin carving, a scavenger hunt, or a holiday meal. We also want to hear your suggestions!
What's involved for Host Students?
There are no binding obligations between you and your international buddy, but we hope that as their first contact with a Catholic University student, the Buddy Program might lead to lasting friendships. The Buddy program has two required events (described below) as well as a number of optional events offered throughout the semester. Here is a summary of what we encourage you to do as part of the program:
Email your Buddy prior to their arrival. Attend the required training session and reception. Help your Buddy get oriented to Catholic University and the community.
Examples: learn the Metro, find their classrooms, shop for groceries, etc.
Meet with your Buddy and spend time with them throughout the semester.