First Friends Program

Connecting International Students With Others

First Friend Program


What is First Friends Program?

Tennessee State University First Friends Program is designed to connect International Students with people on and off campus in the Nashville area. Coordinated by the Office of International Affairs (OIA), this program pairs each international student with friends from the following areas:

Regional Friend – A current international TSU student from the same region of the world as the international student will assist new international students with the transition into the United States and University community.

American Friend  – A current TSU student shares the Historically Black College and University (HBCU) experience with the international student by providing opportunities to participate in University activities and campus life to help manage successful progression.

Community Friend -- A local citizen from the Nashville area provides opportunities for international students to experience American life, as well as local and regional culture.

How Does It Work?

Phase 1 - Upon Admission

OIA draws Regional Friends from Tennessee State University’s current international student population. OIA connects the incoming international students with regional friends through phone calls, e-mails and/or instant message once the University issues the I-20.

Phase 2 - Upon Registration

OIA draws American Friends  from different student organizations of Tennessee State University. Interested American Friends attend an orientation hosted by OIA.  OIA makes arrangements for American Friends to meet the incoming international students before the registration period ends.

Phase 3 – Within the First Academic Month

OIA draws Community Friends from civic and religious groups as well as TSU staff and faculty. Interested Community Friends attend an orientation hosted by OIA. Community Friends are matched and introduced within the first month of each semester.

How Can I Participate?

New Students

Regional Friend

American Friend

Community Friend