Tuesday, September 15, 2015

megaVOICE: The 5 Friends Every International Student Should Have

By Meghavaty Suresh
Contributing Writer

A big part of going to a different country to study is making new friends. It’s great to meet people from varying geographies and backgrounds, almost like having a melting pot of cultures in your friendship roster. There’s also the inherent possibility that you may just stick to a close group of friends who all share one thing in common – your home country. That said, irrespective of where your friends come from there are a few personas that every international student should be able to call a friend:

• The study buddy – Even if you’re a highly motivated nerd, you still need that one pal to hit the library with – someone who will pull an all-nighter with you before a big test.

• The party maker – Sometimes it’s a shots kinda night, and this person gets the party started and reels everyone in. You better be in the good books of this person if you want a vibrant nightlife.

• The clarifier – You need that one buddy who will tell you how things work in this country – patiently and in a step-by-step manner, without judging you for asking a question that you probably thought was too silly to ask. You know it’s true!

• The homesick extinguisher – Everyone loves home no matter what they say, and there will be moments when you will be in the homesick boat. You need that one friend who gets you through that and makes the homesickness go away.

• The localite – Whether you’re in school, working an internship, or even on vacation, it’s always good to have a chum who is from that town or city. Why be a tourist when you can feel like a local with your friend?

Do you have these people in your life as you navigate your study abroad experience? Who are the friend types you can’t live without at school? Leave a comment or tweet us!

Meghavaty Suresh is a brand engagement specialist at The Guardian. She is originally from Mumbai, India. She earned a master’s in new media at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, where she realized what it truly meant to be an international student and how best to enjoy the experience. The megaVOICE column is her opportunity to give a voice to the whispers of international students. Megha lives in New York City. Follow her on Twitter at @meghasuresh.

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