The International Friendship Program (IFP) at Hamilton College pairs international students with a volunteer from the community. This is a great source of support for new students as they become acclimated to life in the U.S.

IFP provides an enrichment opportunity for all participants: the student gets a chance to experience what life is really like for families or individuals in small-town America, and the volunteer(s) get a chance to explore another culture and another way of life through interactions with the student. Both get the chance to develop a lasting friendship.

These are the sorts of things that IFP volunteers and students might do:

  • Attend our opening kickoff cookout for students and volunteers.
  • Have dinner or another meal at the volunteer’s home.
  • Participate in some of the volunteer’s usual activities, such as school events, sporting events, special events in the area or other outings.
  • Share an American holiday celebration with the IFP volunteer, the volunteer’s family, friends, etc.

IFP volunteers can be families, couples or individuals. Participating in the program requires very little, just a simple desire to meet people, share your culture and learn about a new one. There is an understanding that both students and volunteers are busy, so meals and activities are at your convenience.

Students are not required to participate. Those that are interested should request to be assigned to an IFP volunteer and will be asked to fill out a simple information form in order to make the best match possible. Note that you must be signed into your My Hamilton account to access this form. We look forward to building this bridge between our international population and the community!


Office / Department Name

International Student Services

Contact Name

Omobonike Odegbami

Director of International Student Services

Office Location
Days-Massolo Center

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