The holiday hosting program started in the mid-’90s when a faculty member in the School of Nursing began personally hosting international students in their home.
As the number of international students grew, the Internationalization Office (IO) took the community initiative under its wing and has been connecting students with local families since 2001.
What is the holiday hosting program?
Two students are invited to your home for a holiday dinner with your friends and family, typically around Dec. 23-28.
The program brings individuals from diverse backgrounds together, and families and students can share each other’s customs while celebrating the end of the year together.
The winter break can be a time of social isolation, as many students return home for the holidays. Due to their individual circumstances, many students remain on a quiet, but empty, campus.
The holidays are also a great time to celebrate and meet new people. The holiday hosting program helps students build a sense of community beyond Memorial’s campus.
How do I sign up?
Families who are interested in opening up their homes to students will be asked to fill out a short registration form detailing information about their holiday meal. Students interested will also be asked to fill out a registration form detailing accommodation requests and other important information.
For students, there is a mandatory orientation session on Friday, Dec. 20, from 10-11:30 a.m. The Internationalization Office will match students with families and facilitate the exchange of contact information. Please note, the Internationalization Office does not provide transportation support.
If you are interested in participating or have more questions, please do not hesitate to contact the office by Wednesday, Dec. 18.