The International Buddy Program (IBP) strives to make incoming international students feel welcome and help them prepare for their transition to college life before they arrive on campus. The program matches new international students ("cubs") with returning international or domestic students ("lions"). The "lions" serve as a resource for four to five incoming international students. "Lions" provide a friendly face and helpful information. They offer that first Columbia friendship, which can make a world of difference for incoming international students who are preparing to come to New York City.
Information for "Cubs"
Applications to become a "cub" are now open! Submit your "cub" application!
- All Columbia College and Columbia Engineering Class of 2023 international students (broad definition) are eligible to apply to be a "cub"
- All "cubs" will be matched with a "lion" based on their expressed interest, perspective majors and country/countries of origin
- "Cubs" will be able to contact their lions via email, Facebook chats, Skype and other channels of electronic communication throughout the summer
- The matched "lions" will be the point people for pre-departure questions and referral for campus resources
- All "cubs" will be informed of their matched lions on Monday, June 3
- Cubs will meet their matched lions in person during the International @ Columbia Open House in September
The priority deadline to become a "cub" is Sunday, May 19 at 11:59 p.m. "Cubs" who apply before the priority deadline will be matched with a lion on Monday, June 3. We will still accept "cub" applications on a rolling basis until Wednesday, July 31. Students who apply after Sunday, May 19 can expect to be informed of their matched lion 10 business days after they submit their application. "Cub" applications are open to all Class of 2023 students in Columbia College and Columbia Engineering who self-identify as international.
Information for "Lions"
Applications to become a "lion" are now open! Submit your "lion" application!
- Commit to be a buddy to new international students from June to September (each "lion" informally mentors four to five first-year international students who signed up to be in IBP)
- Connect via email, Facebook chats, Skype, Facetime and other channels of electronic communication
- Reach out to assigned first-year buddies and share relevant information (e.g. transition/packing/Columbia experience, etc.) electronically over the summer break
- Attend the International @ Columbia Open House in the fall to meet their assigned first-year buddies in person
- Participate in Friday Lunch Chats throughout September to provide face-to-face support to first-year international students