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My name is Anda, and I will share my tips for making friends in Aarhus and at Aarhus BSS when you are an international student, who has moved thousands of kilometres away from home.
Written by Anda Codreanu
Anda and her buddies from the Buddy Programme. Private photo.
One of the biggest struggles that an international student faces when they move thousands of kilometres from their family and friends, is developing a social life in a new country. Even though it might seem very easy, making friends is an activity that requires time and some patience, as well as some openness from your side.
When I first arrived in Denmark, I was completely alone and had no idea how to start meeting new people. So, I have made a short list with ways you can make friends here, so you won’t feel alone in Aarhus: There is no room for that, you’ll see!
"You won't feel alone in Aarhus: There is no room for that, you'll see!"
1. Study groups:
The study groups at the university is a good opportunity to meet some people. They are beneficial because you can all both prepare for the lectures and exams and enjoy some social activities together. In my case, we were assigned some study groups from the beginning, but if not, you can always just start doing schoolwork with students from the same classes/programme and maybe you will get to meet them outside school, too. Learn more about working together in a study group.
2. Associations or organizations:
Although it might seem like volunteering is a boring thing to do, it has plenty of benefits. The biggest one is that you get to know lots of wonderful people while you collaborate with them. To me, it was both AIESEC and the Student 2 Student network who helped me meet some great people and schedule some fun events. There are plenty of organizations listed on the “Internationals” page on Aarhus University’s website so it is impossible not to find something that is suitable for you.
3. Learn Danish:
Danish lessons are free and apart from the fact that they will help you communicate in the local language and learn more about the Danish culture, the classes might be a good opportunity to find new friends. Since it’s about internationals who want to learn more about the country they arrived in, you already have a thing in common. See more about learning Danish.
"Be open to the opportunities and be enthusiastic about creating the social life you are dreaming of."
4. Take part in events:
There are hundreds of events made for students and not only around Aarhus. The fact that you might not yet have someone to go together with is not going to be a problem at all. During these events you can, for sure, make a lot of connections. Most of them are usually free or have reasonable attending prices. Just a short search on Facebook and you’ll see that there is no room to get bored here.
5. Join university programmes:
You can, for example, join the “Buddy programme” where you will be assigned a “buddy,” which is another student who is eager to introduce you to Danish life. A lot of them are internationals, just like you, and would be happy to share tips and rules of thumb with you. Apart from this, they also organize events with the other members in the programme and you will meet lots of people who are in the same position as you: new here.
6. Use social media platforms:
Dating apps aren’t just for dating. A lot of them give the possibility to meet people for a cup of coffee or a walk around the town.
From our introduction trip with my study programme. Private photo.
And there are many more ways in which you can make friends here. There is a big international community that is, for sure, ready to welcome you. Just be open to the opportunities and be enthusiastic about creating the social life you are dreaming of. Now, get ready to be making friends in Aarhus! Good luck!