The Global Buddies Program matches new international exchange students with domestic students who have been on campus for at least one year. Domestic students are often former study abroad participants. Students will learn from each other as they engage in fun activities together.

The new exchange students will be learning about the University, Iowa City, U.S. culture(s), and the English language. The students from the United States will learn about the culture, language and country of the student with whom they are matched. In addition, this is an opportunity for all participants to reflect on and gain a deeper understanding of their own culture through new perspectives, as well as an opportunity to make a new friend.

Global Buddies on stairs of Old Capitol

Global Buddies Activities

UI staff organize one or two Global Buddies events a month. Previous activities include:

  • Visit to Wilson’s apple orchard in the fall
  • Evening gatherings to play board games and eat pizza
  • Hawkeye football/basketball/volleyball games
  • Other activities suggested by students throughout the year!

Global Buddies commit to the following:

  • Meeting with your buddy at least 1 or 2 times per month outside of group activities


Please email here if you are interested in Global Buddies. If eligible, you will be emailed an application weblink. Please note Global Buddies membership is limited to domestic students and J-1 exchange students coming to the University of Iowa for a short term stay (not F-1 students).


Please contact the Global Buddies Coordinator for more information:

Taivna Mills