VCU's nternational students having conversation with another VCU student

Global Buddies Program

About the Program

GEO proudly administers the Global Buddies Program, which provides international students and English-speaking volunteers the opportunity to learn about other people, places and cultures and to make friends with people from around the world!

Volunteers meet virtually for at least one hour each week with VCU's international students/scholars to enable them to learn more about American culture, practice English language skills, and gain confidence in their communication abilities. Volunteers serve as cultural mentors to international students/scholars and practice cross-cultural communication skills.

Most participants will be matched in small groups with both international and American students,
as well as a small number of individual native English-speaking volunteers for those who prefer a single partner.

Benefits of participation in the Global Buddies Program include:

For International Students

  • Practice English-language communication skills
  • Learn about U.S. and other cultures
  • Learn about things to do in the Richmond area
  • Make friends with a native-English speaker and other international students

For English-speaking Volunteers

  • Learn about other places and cultures
  • Make friends with students from different cultures
  • Develop intercultural communication skills
  • Possibly learn a new language

How It Works

Global Buddies are matched with one or more partners and meet at least one hour per week. Meetings may take place on or off campus. Suggested activities include meeting for coffee, lunch, or dinner; going for a walk, going to the gym, and attending special events and activities on or off campus. This is a great opportunity to explore the city of Richmond and its rich history and culture.

For more information, email

Students in a group conversing
Three students enjoying talking and engaging.
Two students engaging in conversation