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Buddy Programmes

Helping one person may not change the whole world, but it can change the world for that one person

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The HHU Buddy Programme is aimed at all HHU students: from the first to the last semester. It brings students from abroad together with experienced students from higher semesters at HHU. They support the international students. The focus is on topics related to studying at HHU and life in Düsseldorf. A trusting exchange develops. The students decide for themselves how intensive they want their exchange to be. We support them in this, for example by organising network meetings or excursions.


The most important information

Are you from abroad and new to HHU (=international first semester students)? Then register here.

You have already studied at HHU for at least two semesters and would like to share your experiences with first-year students from all over the world ("experienced HHU students")? Then register here as a mentor to accompany the international first-year students.

1. You register using the registration forms.

2. We will suggest a partner or a buddy team of approx. four people. We will take into account the information you provided on the registration form regarding your field of study, language, etc. 

3. At the kick-off, you can get to know your buddy team and other international and German students.

4. You organise yourselves as a buddy tandem or buddy team:  You decide how you communicate with each other, how often you exchange information and which topics you discuss. You also decide how much time you invest in your buddy relationship. 

5. Once a month there is a Buddy Network Meeting with the International Office team, where you can ask questions and exchange ideas with all participants of the Buddy Programmes.

6. You can take part in all the International Office's participatory offers (see list on the website and on social media).

7. You can sign up for the International Office newsletter here. You will then automatically receive information once a month about the participatory offers and many other interesting information on campus and beyond. It's worth it!

As an international student you will be able to

  • start your studies at HHU better (first semester) if you have someone at your side to answer your questions and give you orientation
  • cope better with your studies (higher semesters) if you have someone with whom you can talk and confide in
  • get support when you have problems
  • improve your German language skills
  • get to know life in Düsseldorf
  • spend free time with new friends


As a mentor and experienced HHU student, you can

  • get to know people from other cultures
  • deepen your intercultural competence
  • expand your foreign language skills
  • network worldwide
  • receive a certificate of participation for your commitment (you can have this credited to your certificate for intercultural competence, add it to your CV as proof of voluntary commitment, etc.).

Registration for the buddy programmes is possible at any time.

Please note: The Buddy Programmes are part of our offers for international full-time students (degree-seeking students). Exchange students (Erasmus etc.) can register for the Buddy Programme of the European Student Network (ESN) 

Please note: Experienced HHU buddies should be at least in their 2nd semester at the time of registration.

You will receive a message from us as soon as we have found a buddy for you. This is usually at the beginning of the next semester.

Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee that everyone will get a buddy immediately, as the number of registrations for international buddies and experienced HHU buddies sometimes varies. Experience shows that most applications are received shortly before the start of the respective semester. If we are unable to assign you a buddy immediately, we will put you on the waiting list.

Your commitment is voluntary (honorary). You decide how much time you want to invest in the relationship with your buddy or buddy team so that you feel good and the buddy programme has a benefit for you. 

Former buddies say that it depends on your personal situation. This means that if you are new to Germany and Düsseldorf and to HHU, you are certainly very interested in first getting to know everything at your leisure. You should take your time and ask your buddy or buddy team to support you.

On the other hand, it also depends on how well you get along with your buddy or buddy team. Former buddies say that close relationships and even friendships have developed that last until today. 


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