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24 September : Get Acquainted

Studying abroad is never easy, especially when you are alone in a new country that is very different from your own. There could be language barriers, you could get lost finding your classes and you might not know where to eat good food! It would be great to have someone to be your friend to show you around, to help you around campus or to just simply hang out. A friend like this would make life abroad much easier. That is what Buddies Association UPM is offering to the international students who are studying here in Universiti Putra Malaysia(UPM) through our Get Acquainted program.

What is Get Acquainted? It is a platform for the international students to establish friendships with one or a few local Buddies in UPM. When an international student applies for the program, we will pair them up with a Local Buddy in UPM to be their friend and help them out throughout their stay here. Acquainted students will have the opportunity to share and learn various customs, traditions and lifestyles. If you are a new international student, by participating in this program, you can expect:

  • Help settling in to your new university life
  • Advice on the facilities and support services available on campus
  • Learn more about Malaysian culture
  • Meet and make new friends
  • Develop your own social network.

Many of our Buddies look forward to the Get Acquainted session every semester as they are always enthusiastic to meet new people from around the world, be their friend and help the international students however they can with whatever problems they may face.

One of my best memories of Getting Acquainted is when I got acquainted with two students from Brunei. I was very happy I got to meet them and be their Buddy. They were both really friendly and very curious about UPM and Malaysia. I answered whatever questions they may have the best I can and they answered mine. Though I didn’t have my own transportation to take them to popular places nor did I have the money to buy them cool gifts, we still have a good time every time we meet as we got to know each other better and share our culture and knowledge. We still got to go to popular destinations by joining fieldtrip programs organized by i-Putra and Buddies Association UPM and through those trips I was able to show them around and try new things”.

Yes, some of our Buddies have the advantage of owning a car to drive their new international friends around or they have money to treat them or they have contacts of people, places and events they can go to spend time with them. However, Getting Acquainted is not about driving your new international friend around, or buying them expensive gifts, or going to cool festivals or events. Being a Buddy is being a friend and getting acquainted is a platform to find that friend and as a friend we treat the international students the same as we treat our friends”.

How do you apply for the Get Acquainted Program? If you are an international student, when you go through your orientation program which is the New International Students Welcoming Program, there is always a counter open for the Get Acquainted program where you fill in the forms. You may apply as an individual or as a group. As soon as you submitted your form, your form will be hand to your acquainted Local Buddy. As soon as they have received your information, they will contact you accordingly. If you are a local student who wants to participate, then apply as a Buddy and come join us for future programs where you will be given an induction about those programs as well as the Get Acquainted program and you will be acquainted with an international student by the coming semester during the new international student intakes.

Interested? So what are you waiting for?

Written by Afiq Nuradli, Vice President 1 of Buddies Association UPM

Date of Input: 26/09/2018 | Updated: 07/10/2018 | azlida_jamil

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Putra International Centre (i-PUTRA)
Universiti Putra Malaysia
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Selangor Darul Ehsan
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