International Student Information

Montevallo Friendship Partners

Did you know that almost 90% of international students go back to their country without having a friendship with an American or American Family experience? Don’t be a part of that statistic!

What is Montevallo Friendship Partners?

The Friendship Partners program pairs UM international students and scholars with internationally-minded families and individuals from the Montevallo community. The program seeks to promote friendship and understanding between cultures. The Montevallo Friendship Partners Program is sponsored by the Montevallo MADE Program at UM along with the help of several community organizations.

Why Should I Participate?

  • Promote cultural awareness
  • Participate in stimulating conversation
  • Make your stay in the US a memorable and enjoyable experience
  • Share wonderful and fun experiences
  • Experience the U.S. with an American friend
  • Gain insights into a different world view
  • Meet community members with similar interests
  • Visit an American home
  • Make a new friend!

Student – Friendship Partner Application

What is Expected of a Friendship Partner Member

  • Agree to be a friend to a Friendship Partner for two semesters.
  • Contact your friend once a month as studies allow.
  • Include them in some of your activities and share your culture.
  • Actively support and participate in social activities planned for Friendship Partners.

Things You Can Do with Your Friendship Partner

  • Plan something together on campus or in the local community
  • Cook cuisine from your country/ culture with them
  • Attend a cultural event together
  • Attend a sporting event at UM
  • Go to a movie or a concert
  • Explore the local parks together
  • Go shopping together
  • Explore Birmingham and other local areas
  • Include your new friend in your family and holiday traditions

What Else You Need to Know?

Your American Friendship Partner is aware that foreign students come to this country with their own religious and political beliefs. Proselytizing is not allowed.

We ask friends to be sensitive and respectful of each other’s beliefs while allowing for a mutual exchange of ideas and culture.

ORIENTATION – Orientation is required to participate in the Friendship Partner program. We will notify you of the closest orientation dates when you contact us.

KICK OFF PARTY – We will have a special event to introduce you to your Friendship Partner. You will be notified of the date at orientation.

Friends and students are matched during the first few months of the fall and spring semesters.

For additional information, contact the Montevallo MADE Office at 205-665-6219 or, or Steve and Katie Sanders, American Directors of Montevallo Friendship Partners, at

To join Montevallo Friendship Partners, complete an application online as a student or as a Friendship Partner.