The University of Bristol Global Lounge is a multicultural hub in the heart of campus, open to all students and staff.
It has two main functions:
- bringing home and international students and staff together through a vast range of social events and cultural celebrations, offering everyone across the University the chance to share experiences, learn from each other and make friends from around the world.
- supporting international students during the arrivals period, helping them to settle into Bristol and university life through a vast array of welcome events and activities, as well as offering practical support with opening a bank account, setting up a phone or signposting to other services.
A cultural hub on campus: bringing home and international students together
From celebrating significant dates in the global calendar – such as Day of the Dead and Ramadan – to hosting weekly events like Language Café, the Global Lounge runs a variety of activities which are available to everyone, giving the entire University community the chance to experience and learn about a vast range of different cultures right on campus. Events are open to all students and staff members, the majority of them are free and they typically include free refreshments and entertainment! (Check out some of the past events).
The Lounge previously operated as a pop-up from Autumn 2019 to the beginning of September 2021, but now has its own dedicated space on the first floor of Senate House. It is a place where both UK and international students can connect and learn from each other, broaden their social circles and increase their intercultural awareness. They can also find out about opportunities for studying, working and volunteering abroad through the Global Opportunites team, who are situated in the same space.
Relax and meet new people
The colourful and comfortable Global Lounge is open from 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday (during term-time) to all students and staff at the University. There is unlimited free tea, coffee and biscuits to enjoy, and relaxing music to give you those cultured café vibes! You’ll always find a smiley and friendly person on hand, ready to greet you, be it one of the Global Lounge team or Global Lounge Ambassadors.
From celebrating significant dates in the global calendar – such as Day of the Dead and Ramadan – to hosting regular events like the Language Café, the Global Lounge runs a variety of activities which are available to everyone, giving the entire University community the chance to experience and learn about different cultures right on campus.
Learn in the Lounge
A vast range of social events and cultural celebrations give students and staff the opportunity to meet new people, challenge their global awareness, increase their interactions with people outside of their regular social bubbles, and learn something about themselves, and others. From regular events to large scale cultural collaborations, the Global Lounge works with many different teams across the University to bring you events that span from celebrations with free food and entertainment, to study skills sessions and intercultural webinars. The Global Lounge aims to bring together students from the UK and all over the world to socialise, celebrate global festivities, and share and learn about others’ cultures and traditions in a friendly and inclusive environment.
We want to work with you! The Global Lounge offers the perfect place to collaborate and join forces with others. Whether you’re an individual, student society, student service or professional services team, the Global Lounge is open to you. We offer a dynamic events space with bookable areas, or, if you have an event you’d like to run you can book out the entire Global Lounge. If you share our values and ethos of bringing people together to share and learn in a friendly and inclusive environment, then we’d love to hear from you.
Our Welcome programmes: supporting international students
As well as holding events which aim to encourage intercultural communication and social exchange, the Global Lounge helps to support international students before, and after they arrive in Bristol for their academic studies, through fun and social events. Not only this, but the Lounge provides practical information sessions, such as their Student life webinars, which give new students a flavour of what to expect from Bristol before they even arrive, with the opportunity to ask current students any questions they like about life as a student and the culture in the UK:
‘Many thanks for today’s phenomenal session. Like the previous ones, it has been incredibly informative, enlightening, and useful. This is all thanks to you guys!’ Sude Capoglu, Honours Law (LLB).
‘The Global Lounge’s student life webinars are extremely helpful, and enable students to settle quickly into a new place,’ Dhruv Marwha, Data Science (MSc).
During the Welcome period, students are able to not only learn more about the city and University through campus and city tours, get support through dedicated ‘Ask me anything’ drop ins, but are also given plenty of opportunities to meet other home and international students through an array of social events, both online and in person.
‘I’ve attended events since first joining the University, and they were such a promising resource for me when I was in quarantine after arriving from Dubai. The Global Lounge is incredibly creative, welcoming and proactive, with a team that genuinely sets out to support and mobilise the community.’
Tala Youhana, Honours Law LLB.
Since arriving in Senate House, the Global Lounge has delivered exciting Welcome programmes to students, allowing them to meet other new students from the second they arrive, and to have a friendly and familiar place to go to in the heart of campus.
How you can get involved
The Global Lounge collaborates with groups and individuals across the University – including Bristol SU, Student Inclusion, staff members, student societies (and so many more) – enabling everyone to experience and learn about different cultures from their peers, whilst providing a platform in which to showcase their heritage and culture. In the past, students have approached the Global Lounge to hold their own large-scale event and hosted virtual events during 2020/21. These encourage all members of the community to celebrate the rich and diverse Bristol community, giving attendees the chance to speak to people outside of their regular social circles. They also offer the students who run them valuable development opportunities, and a chance to build on their transferable skills.
‘A lot of the opportunities I’ve received at University that have built on my leadership and soft skills have come through the Global Lounge team. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed being involved in all their events.’
Siddharth Sreekanth, BSc Economics and Politics alumnus.
Many activities are led, and run by, a brilliant team of Global Lounge Ambassadors, who support and help facilitate events. Ambassadors play an important role in supporting the University’s recruitment activities, such as campus tours and virtual webinars for new and prospective students. Many students who are recruited as ambassadors support the Global Lounge as volunteers first, for example as Travel the World hosts, Language Café volunteers or as mentors to new arriving students.
If you have any questions, or would like to discuss any ideas you might have for an event, you can contact the team.