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Global BUddies FAQs

Global BUddies aims to increase integration between UK students and international students on campus, helping you to build a network of new friends from all over the world and develop important skills that your future employers will really value. For new students (both UK and international) it will provide valuable support settling in to life at BU thanks to advice about what to expect from life in the UK.

These are answers to some of the questions we’re often asked about the scheme – if you have any other queries, please contact us at

Who will be in my Global BUddies group?

Each group of 10 to 15 students will be comprised of different ages and nationalities studying different undergraduate or postgraduate courses. Global BUddies is about intercultural exchange and making friends, so although it may feel challenging to start with, a diverse group will make the experience so much more interesting for everyone.

Do I need to attend training to become a Global BUddies Group Leader?

Yes. We will do our best to schedule the training at a time when you are available.

Do not worry if you are currently on a study exchange or work placement abroad – we will email you the training materials and catch up with you when you return to BU. Your experiences abroad will help you to be a great Global BUddies Group Leader!

Can I be buddied with a student from a particular country?

If you have expressed an interest in a certain country or language then we will do our best to factor this in during the matching process, but there are no guarantees as it depends which students apply to join the scheme. However, we will try to not match you with students of the same nationality.

How much time will being a Global BUddy involve?

Group Leaders – we expect that you will spend approximately three hours per week planning and promoting activities and keeping the Facebook groups up-to-date and engaging. In addition, we expect you to meet with your group in person at least once a month.

New students – you don’t have to attend everything but we hope you will join in as much as possible. This could be anything from a 30-minute coffee on campus to a Saturday morning walk or evening meal in an international restaurant. Don’t miss out on any information about activities and events for your group – check your email and Facebook regularly!

How long does Global BUddies run for?

Group Leaders make contact with the new students in their group at the beginning of September (and at the beginning of January for students starting courses then).

New students are welcome to apply to join Global BUddies at any time during the year.

The last official event takes place in May when we celebrate everything you’ve done during the year. After that, of course, we hope you will to stay in contact with your Global BUddies and that some of them will become lifelong friends!

What if I don’t get on with any of my group?

The fact that you have applied to join Global BUddies means you’re open to new experiences and making new friends. There will be challenges, but try to see these as learning opportunities. Remember – everyone is in the same situation and it will become easier with time as you get to know each other.

We’re here to support you and if you have any questions or problems, just let us know – we’ll be happy to try to help you find a way to resolve any specific problems.

Can Group Leaders help new students with their studies?

No. The Group Leaders’ role is to organise activities and encourage everyone in the group to be curious and learn about other cultures. If you need help with your studies, there is plenty of support available, including PAL (Peer Assisted Learning) which Group Leaders will be able to direct students to if necessary.

What should I do if one of the students has a problem or question that I can’t help with?

You may not be able to deal with every question or problem and we do not expect you to. The training and your Group Leaders Handbook will include information to help you understand how to refer students to relevant support services at BU if you need to.