We are UBEM: The University of Bristol Ethnic Minorities. We are a group of students just like yourself, BME (Black and Minority Ethnic) students: people who identify as not being of British ethnicity and/or do not identify as being “white”. We are looking forward to getting to know you! At UBEM we organise get-togethers, parties, panel discussions, talks with influential BME leaders and more!
As an International student, and therefore a BME student, it might be difficult to adjust to life in Bristol...so we’ve created this helpful guide just for you!
Get to know your personal tutor well, as they can help you to adjust to university culture as well as as giving you a reference when applying for a future job.
Welcome Week may be daunting, but it helps to be as sociable as you can early on. You'll be grateful for it later in the year when you've got all of your great friends. It may never be this easy to approach strangers again!
Join a society. This is an excellent way to explore new opportunities and meet even more people at university. There are so many socities that Bristol Students' Union has to offer - From sport to media there is something for everyone.
If you are religious, there are several churches, mosques etc. here that cater to the BME community. For instance there is KICC Bristol which has several students of African descent as part of the congregation. There is also Christ Church in Clifton which has several East African, Malaysian and Singaporean members.
Places like Easton and Stokes Corft are packed to the brim with shops that stock diverse food stuffs as well as hair and fashion. So don't worry, there is somewhere to buy your plantain, Maggi Cubes and Kikkoman Pearl Soymilk!
If you have the time, prepare your meals for the week. This will stop you from spending excess money as food in the UK can be quite expensive. Often knowing that you have a prepared meal at home will stop you from reaching for that ready meal!
Coming to a university in the UK might be the only time thar you've felt that you are a 'minority'.
Join a cultural society to meet people of the same race/ ethnic background as you - The people in these societies will understand your situation better than others.
If you've struggled to find someone from your home country, or you'd just like to get in touch with another international student, the following students have given their contact information: