What is the Student Buddying Scheme?
The Student Buddying Scheme is a scheme where the University pairs new students with current students. Starting university is a new process for many people, and I know it can be quite daunting. Having a student buddy can be a massive help in this sense. They can help you settle down and guide you through your university experience. The student buddy has already been through the process that you will be going through, so will have some useful tips and will be able to answer any of your concerns.
Having a student buddy is a great form of support during your first year of university. Your buddy will be with you for the whole year. However, if you decide you don’t need them any more, you have the option to opt out whenever you want – there is no obligation to stay on the scheme.
When applying for a student buddy, you can request a buddy:
- with a similar background to you
- with similar interests as you
- who is studying in the same department as you.
Why have a student buddy?
A buddy is there to support you and answer any questions you may have. But they are also there for you to just have a chat about anything.
Are you worried about moving to a new city?
Talk to your buddy and they can tell you about York as a city. They could provide you with the best places to visit in York. Or perhaps they could let you know about the popular food spots and provide you with some suggestions of some great places to eat.
Nervous about university in general?
Your buddy can help you with this. This could be by helping you find your way around campus if that is something you would like. They can also give you details about how you will be taught at university, by explaining the various teaching methods and what these involve. Or maybe you are unsure about the exam style, and would like some advice about exam formats. They could also give you some useful to tips for how to revise for the exams.
Do you just want someone who you can talk to?
Having a buddy can provide you with just that.
I think you get the point at this stage; you can ask your buddy about anything on your mind!
When starting university, I was nervous as I had no idea what to expect. The Student Buddying Scheme was a chance to be partnered with an experienced student. This helped me feel less anxious about this big change in my life.
I chose to have a buddy who is studying in the same department as me. I am a Biomedical Sciences student, and was allocated a Biochemistry student, allowing me to discuss any course-related questions. We didn’t study all the same modules, but this wasn’t an issue. I felt supported.
My student buddy would email me weekly, which helped me feel less alone while at university. We would have Zoom meet-ups fortnightly (because of Covid-19 restrictions). The meetings are flexible, you can have them wherever and whenever you like, for example at a café or on campus. In ours, I had the chance to bring up any questions I had, and also have a friendly chat. We became good friends, and we still stay in contact.
From my experience, I would strongly recommend looking into this opportunity. I am glad that I signed up for this scheme!
How to apply/who is eligible
Any new undergraduate is eligible! Once you have accepted your offer, you will be able to apply for the Student Buddying Scheme. The form is short and easy to fill in, so why wouldn’t you?
So why should you apply for a student buddy?
- To get to know someone and potentially gain a friendship.
- To have someone support you and answer any of your questions.
- To hear from someone who has been in a similar situation to you.
In conclusion, student buddies are a great way to welcome you into university, and to support you along your way.