Our SUSU Buddy System is an informal peer-to-peer support scheme for new students. The aim of the buddy system is to help students settle into life at University of Southampton by matching them to a volunteer who regularly keeps in touch (online and/or in-person) to check in and find out how they are getting on.
Signing up for a Buddy
Meeting new people at the university can be challenging, especially if you have arrived to Southampton or Winchester on your own, or if you have just moved here from another country.
If you are looking for someone to meet for coffee, share an activity, or just to have a virtual chat with while you get settled, the SUSU Buddy System is for you!
Our Buddy System matches you with another student who will get in touch to arrange a meet-up or call. When you apply, we will ask you to tell us a bit about yourself so we can match you with someone who shares your interests or hobbies. Its an informal way to get familiar with university life, look after your wellbeing and to meet someone new.
Signing up to volunteer
If you are a friendly and approachable student who would be happy to support one or more buddies as they settle into university life, the SUSU Buddy System is for you!
You would be checking in with your buddy once or twice a week to see how they are getting on, and to be a listening ear. We don’t expect buddy volunteers to act as counsellors and there are lots of services you can signpost your buddy to if they need it.
We will provide online training and SUSU staff will be on hand to support you with the role. Your volunteering experience will also be added to your online volunteering transcript, which you can download from your SUSU profile on our website.
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I do with my buddy?
The Buddy System is very informal so it is up to you and your buddy how you would like to spend the time together, whether you’d like to go for walks, grab a coffee, play a sport together or just chat online. All we ask is that you discuss what you feel comfortable with before meeting up, and that you pick a public place if you are meeting in person.
We have a wide range of events across the year which are perfect socialising opportunities for you and your buddy. Our Give It A Go activities programme is particularly great for buddy meetings as they are one-off events where you can try something new while chatting to your buddy. Find our full Give It A Go programme here: Give It A Go.
My buddy hasn’t spoken to me in a while, what do I do?
If you have contacted your buddy and they haven’t gotten back to you in more than 2 weeks, please let us know and we will see what we can do to help. Get in touch here: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I think my buddy needs further support, what do I do?
If you are not sure how to support your buddy with a problem or you are finding yourself in a difficult position, please contact us so we can help. Get in touch here: email@example.com.
I don’t want to be a buddy anymore, what do I do?
If you no longer want to be part of the Buddy System, please email us to let us know. Please don’t go silent on your buddy and contact us as soon as you can so we can find them another match. Get in touch with us here: firstname.lastname@example.org.
I still have questions about the Buddy System, who should I contact?
If you have any questions or just want to find out more about the buddy system, please get in touch with us at email@example.com.