Global Buddies connects Birkbeck alumni with new international students during their first term of study to help them settle in.

International students face additional challenges when coming to live and study in London. The aim of Global Buddies is to support their transition to life in the UK.  

By using and sharing their experience of London and Birkbeck, Global Buddies can make a real difference to a student’s Birkbeck journey. 

Student Applications, Spring 2022

If you are an international student in your first term of study in January 2022 and would like to participate in the programme from January – March 2022, please fill in the application form below:

Volunteer Applications, 2022

Volunteer Applications to the 2021/22 Global Buddies programme are now closed. The programme will start once more in September 2022. If you wish to participate, please register your interest – we would love to have you involved.

Matching and Timeline

Alumni will be matched with one or two students based on which subject they studied, the languages they speak and their interests and hobbies. We will also match according to whether participants would prefer to meet in person or virtually. 

Before meeting with their student(s), alumni buddies will receive training to ensure they are fully prepared to participate. They will meet with their student(s) at least once, either face-to-face or virtually, before the first term ends. 

Key Dates
Early September 2022Application open
End of September 2022Global Buddies training session for new alumni buddies
Beginning of October 2022Alumni buddies and students introduced via email
Monday 3 October 2022 -Friday 16 December 2022 Autumn Term – meet at least once during this period

Feedback from a previous alumni buddy:

Global Buddies is an excellent scheme to share my experience to someone I can relate and help them overcome some of the hurdles I faced first-hand.” Former Global Buddy 

Feedback from an international student:

I really enjoyed this opportunity! It was a valuable experience to get in touch with a former student speaking the same language since everything was new and overwhelming at the beginning. We still text each other every now and then. Thank you for the great opportunity!” – Former student participant