Making Friends From Around the World

Emma Sutherland Granada, Spain


October 27, 2021

Studying in a new country can be difficult, and it can sometimes be hard to make friends. One of the unique things about the study abroad program in Granada is that it is an Arcadia-based program, which means that when I arrived here, I was met by Arcadia staff and grouped with students from my school. 


This gave me a great sense of comfort. I knew that we would all become fast friends. Aside from Arcadians, I was able to meet students from other parts of the U.S. and Europe in my classes taught at the Centro de Lenguas Modernas (CLM). Some of my closest friends are a group of girls that are studying here from Indonesia. It has been so interesting to see the cultural similarities and differences between their country and the U.S. They even invited me over for dinner to teach me how to cook traditional Indonesian food! 


Another way that I was able to meet new people was through “Best Life Experience Granada.” This is a program that sponsors discounted trips and events for international students studying in Granada. The trips usually run from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and take you on a private bus to a historic town in Spain for only 20 euros. So far, I have been to Cordoba, Rhonda, Sentil, and Gibraltar UK. They also have weekend trips to Madrid, Portugal, Barcelona, and Morocco.


These trips usually have between 50 and 150 people on them, so it is a great opportunity to meet other students. It's mostly international students—I didn't meet anyone from the U.S.— who speak English and Spanish and are very friendly. Through these trips, I’ve met people from Romania, Poland, Austria, Germany, Ireland, UK, Greece, Slovenia, Hungary, France, Portugal, Spain, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, Italy, and the Netherlands. We meet up for churros and chocolate in Granada all the time!


Meeting people from all over the world has been an amazing experience—one that I never would have had in the U.S. It makes me so grateful that I not only chose Spain, but that I chose Granada because it is such a big student destination.  While you're here, take advantage of every opportunity. Go out and explore Spain, and meet as many new people as you can.