International Friendship Program

  • International Friendship Program

    What Is the International Friendship Program?

    Every year, hundreds of international students come to Indiana to study, research, or learn English; yet, many of these students will never step foot inside an American home. The International Friendship Program (IFP) seeks to promote international understanding by matching Indiana area families or individuals with international students attending Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP).

    Discover the benefits of international friendship...

    Learning about another culture is an enjoyable way to expand your awareness of the diversity of the world and a practical way of promoting cultural exchange and peace between nations.

    International Friendship

    What Commitment Do I Make if I Participate?

    International students and community members are matched for the length of one academic year, from August to May, or for the remainder of that period, if made mid-year.

    We suggest you meet with your student once a month to keep your friendship growing. During periods when your schedule is busy, telephone calls and e-mails can help bridge the gap between personal visits.

    What Are the Obligations?

    Participants act as contacts and resources to the international students. They have no financial obligation, and, since this is not a homestay program, students do not live with community member participants.

    What happens after a student is assigned to a community member will depend on the mutual interests of each student and host. For example, members might invite students for a dinner at home, attend a cultural or sporting event, take a shopping trip, or participate in other similar activities.

    How Can I Get Involved?

    Community members, apply online here! If you prefer a print version of the application, apply here!

    International students*, Apply here!

    *Students, please note that the IFP is operated on a first-come, first-served basis, with preference given to students in their first semester at IUP.  Placement with a community member is not guaranteed.

    If you have questions about the program or would like further information, please call the Office of International Education at 724-357-2295 or e-mail