Would you like to help new international students settle in while having fun and practicing your intercultural and language skills? Then join the SCIENCE Buddy Programme and make a world of difference to the faculty's international students.
Every year, the faculty welcomes hundreds of international students from all over the world. Not only do they face the challenges of entering a new university, they also have to deal with a new culture and society. This is where the Buddy Programme comes in.
The Buddies provide assistance to incoming international students to make them feel welcome and safe when they first arrive in Copenhagen and help them better adapt to their new environment.
The programme also functions as a year-round platform for social events and cultural exchange across nationalities and departments.
All Buddies are volunteer SCIENCE students from across the faculty. As a Buddy, you will not get paid, but there are plenty of other benefits (see the "What is in it for me?"-section below).
You are a social and cultural ambassador, a practical go-to person and a friendly face in a new and foreign environment - you are not an academic advisor, a study guidance counsellor or a personal assistant.
You will be part of a group consisting of 2-3 Buddies and 6-9 new students that you and your Buddy colleagues are responsible for supporting and helping out.
In general, you are expected to:
- Help out during welcome and arrivals
Tasks include e.g. greeting new students at the airport or train station when they arrive, picking up their keys and guiding them to their new residence, providing advice about life in Copenhagen and at SCIENCE, 'hanging out', etc.
- Help out during the welcome and orientation programmes
Tasks include conducting campus tours and organizing and hosting social events for new students. The event is organised twice a year prior to each semester.
- Participate in social and cultural events during the semester
You can participate in activities such as day trips, movie nights, city tours, museum visits, etc.
You can apply to become a SCIENCE Buddy if you:
- Have been studying at the Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen, for at least one full semester (both Danish and international students are welcome to apply)
- Speak conversational level English
- Take an interest in helping international students
- Are responsbible and open to meeting new people
As a very general rule of thump, you are expected to spend approximately 15-35 hours per semester on various Buddy activities.
Below an example is shown of how you could spend your time as a Buddy:
- 5-8 hours greeting new students at the airport and escorting them to the city or their dorm
- 3-6 hours of 'hanging out'
- 3-4 hours of orientation programme participation
- 5-7 hours of participating in social and cultural events for students and Buddies, e.g. a day trip or a movie night
- 8-10 hours of Buddy activities, e.g. information meetings and social events exclusively for the volunteer Buddies
The number of hours will depend very much on how much help the students in your group need, and what your personal schedule allows.
There are many benefits to being part of the Buddy Programme besides the gratification of helping fellow students, making new friends and having fun.
As a SCIENCE Buddy, you will get a chance to:
- Improve your linguistic, organizational and intercultural skills
- Gain insights into different worldviews and the challenges of cultural adjustment
- Add valuable experiences to your resume
- Expand your social and professional network
- Have fun with and meeting new people from different departments and around the world.
As a Buddy, you will also receive a free Buddy T-shirt and an official Certificate of Recognition that acknowledges your contribution to making SCIENCE an attractive international study destination (upon request).
The Buddy Programme offers a seminar and training day and several social activities like bowling or dinners each semester exclusively for the Buddies.
The Buddy Handbook
Interested in being a Buddy? If you want more information, you can read the Buddy Handbook here.