New extension of the Buddy-Mentor Programme: Buddy Abroad

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New extension of the Buddy-Mentor Programme: Buddy Abroad

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New extension of the Buddy-Mentor Programme: Buddy Abroad

The new Buddy Abroad Programme, which was implemented for the first time in 2014, wants to put UGR students who are studying abroad next year in touch with international students now living and studying at the UGR. In this way, international students that have a mentor from the UGR to help them know and understand Granada better, now become mentors for other UGR students that need their help and advice to go study abroad.

Moreover, these international students now living in Granada will have a great opportunity to meet new people and get to know Granada and its people better.

This new initiative wants to continue the solidarity chain that started with the original buddies and their mentors in July or December (depending on the student’s period of stay). Now these buddies can return the favour, becoming mentors for other students that are embarking on the adventure of studying abroad.

Evidently, this new programme is an altruistic endeavour that needs the participation of both international and local students to work. Nevertheless, we have confidence that the participating students will support the programme and that new friendships and pleasant experiences will come out of it.

This programme also wants to give some structure to something that was already commonplace in the University, as many students already looked for international students coming from their future university of destination in their Faculties through common friends, events, classes, etc.

We are certain that this cultural exchange will bring many positive experiences both to the international and the local students.

How does the programme work in practice?

In the new Buddy Abroad Programme, international students that are going to be mentors for the local students going abroad next year will be referred to as international mentors, while the local students will be called local buddies.

The Office for International Relations will assign the local buddies to the international mentors. The criteria used to assign the students are Faculty and Home (or Host) University for Erasmus students and only the Home (or Host) University for students in the UGR Exchange Programme. If it is not possible to assign students according to their Home (or Host) University, the country of origin will be taken into account. Once all local buddies have been assigned to their international mentors we will send an email from the programamentor@ugr.es email account to both buddies and mentors, so that they can begin their exchange.

What can I ask my international mentor about?

You can ask them about their University in general or their Faculty specifically. Some of the things you can ask about are: location, class timetables, canteen service (lunch timetables), sport and cultural activities, student associations, film clubs, etc.

Furthermore, you can ask about what main differences they see between the learning systems both here in Granada and in their home universities, including teaching methods, group work, language difficulties, etc.

Another important aspect is asking about accommodation: where to look for it (university’s accommodation office, real state agencies, websites, advertisements…), what the most common accommodation options are (student halls, shared flats, living with families, etc.), best dates to look for accommodation, good hostels to stay for the first few days…

“When in Rome, do as the Romans do”. It is important to know and understand the local traditions to really immerse yourself in the culture of your country of destination. Ask your mentor about food, holidays, traditions, etc.

What can I offer to my new international mentor?

You can show them corners of Granada they might not know about or share activities such as going to film showings and concerts (take a look at the UGR events calendar http://canal.ugr.es/agenda-de-la-semana/week.listevents/). You can also show them some local traditions (Las Cruces, Corpus Christi, plato alpujarreño, etc.), visit some of the beautiful natural areas around Granada (Los Cahorros, Güejar Sierra, Salobreña…) or just help them practice and improve their Spanish.