WMU Buddy Abroad Program

Buddy Abroad

Western Michigan University welcomes exchange and Study Abroad @ WMU students from around the world each year. Exchange students come to WMU through one of 23 international exchange partners. The Study Abroad @ WMU program is designed for students to study at WMU as visiting international students.

The WMU Buddy Abroad Program seeks to provide support and intercultural learning opportunities for these students while studying at WMU. The program pairs an incoming exchange or Study Abroad @ WMU student with a WMU student, usually one who has studied abroad in their home country. Participant’s academic majors, language skills, class levels, and personal interests are also considered in the pairing process.

WMU students selected to serve as a Buddy Abroad must make a one-semester commitment to an incoming student and will begin corresponding with their buddy a few weeks prior to their arrival on campus. Buddies will meet in person for the first time at a welcome event from 4-6pm on Tuesday, September 10. The WMU student buddy will serve as a cultural ambassador for their international buddy and be committed to meeting regularly with their international buddy to help them learn about campus, the local community, and American culture. Buddy pairs collaboratively decide how often they wish to meet.

WMU buddies who successfully complete at least one semester of service will receive a certificate of appreciation at the end of the semester.

Who can be a WMU Buddy Abroad?

  • A WMU Study Abroad alumni or a global and international studies major
  • An Exchange or Study Abroad @ WMU student

 What are WMU Buddy Abroad responsibilities for WMU student volunteers?

  • Correspond with assigned buddy before arrival to WMU
  • Attend program welcome events
  • Meet regularly with buddy for activities of your choice throughout the semester
  • Facilitate intercultural exchange
  • Serve as a cultural ambassador

How to become a WMU Buddy:

  1. Review WMU Buddy Abroad Program requirements
  2. Complete and submit the application (fillable PDF) by June 28, 2013 to the WMU Study Abroad office at study-abroad@wmich.edu .
  3. Successful applicants will receive Buddy assignment notification and information about getting started by mid-July.


Questions or comments may be directed to study-abroad@wmich.edu.

Buddy Abroad application--WMU Buddy (PDF)
Incoming Buddy Abroad Application  (PDF)