STUDY: It's Surprisingly Tough For Foreign College Students To Make American Friends

party, Asian girl

Photo: Flickr / *Zephyrance – don’t wake me up.

College is a time for making new friends, but international students are struggling to build meaningful friendships with the typical American student.A new study released today in the Journal of International and Intercultural Communication revealed that nearly 40 per cent of foreign exchange students who have come to the United States for college report having no American friends.

The idea of coming to America to build real connections with students here and gaining a new perspective just isn’t happening, according to Inside Higher Ed.

The area where international students attended college did affect their answers in the survey.

With little surprise, foreign students in the south felt the most satisfied with their American friendships, where students studying in and around New York City felt the least.

Having a language barrier also affected the number of American friends an international student had.

Foreign students from English-speaking countries reported having at least three close American friends on average, while students from Asian countries often reported having no American friends.

Students who took the survey acknowledged that shyness could be part of the problem, but also called out the typical American college student for “superficiality or lack of interest in other cultures” as the reason for the lack of friendships, Inside Higher Ed reported.

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