Student FAQs

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What is Thanksgiving?
Who can participate in the Thanksgiving Holiday Host Program?

Any current Brandeis international student that would like to be invited to a Thanksgiving meal and celebration is welcome to request a Thanksgiving Holiday Host. Signing up does not guarantee that you will be connected with a local host/host family to celebrate Thanksgiving. Arrangements are made a on a first-come, first-serve basis.

How are Thanksgiving Holiday Student Guests matched with Hosts?

Students and hosts are matched on a rolling first-come first-serve basis. Matches are also based on the information provided on the student and host Sign Up Forms.

How will I know if I am matched with a Thanksgiving Holiday Host this Thanksgiving?

After submitting the online Sign Up Form, if you are matched with a host you will receive notification soon after you submit the Sign Up Form. The ISSO will notify Student Guests in plenty of time so that they can begin making Thanksgiving arrangements with their host. Please know that submitting the Sign Up Form does not guarantee a Thanksgiving Holiday Host. Matches are made depending on how many participants, student and host, sign up each year.

What is the commitment as a Thanksgiving Holiday Student Guest?

The commitment is for the Thanksgiving event only. Hosts are not expected to continue hosting their Student Guest throughout the remainder of the year. However it is our hope that both you and your Thanksgiving Holiday Host will continue to stay in contact.

What are the expectations of a Thanksgiving Holiday Student Guest?

By signing up for the program the ISSO asks you to be sure to attend the Thanksgiving holiday event that your host has so graciously invited you to. It is expected that Student Guests contact their host via email or telephone to make plans and arrangements for the Thanksgiving event. Thanksgiving holiday events occur at various times depending on the host’s plans.  Hosts are not expected to provide overnight housing to their Student Guest. 

The ISSO is not available to provide transportation for Student Guests.

The ISSO is not responsible for assisting with making plans and arrangements between Student Guests and Hosts.

Should I bring anything to the Thanksgiving holiday event?

It is tradition to bring a small gift as a token of your appreciation to your Thanksgiving Holiday Host. For small gift ideas, feel free to contact the Coordinator of Host Programs. 

Will my Thanksgiving Holiday Host provide housing for me overnight?

At no point are hosts expected to provide overnight housing for Student Guests.

I do not have a mode of transportation to my Thanksgiving Holiday Host’s event but would still like to be hosted, is this possible?

Yes.  While not required, many hosts offer to provide transportation for their Student Guest(s) to and from the Thanksgiving event. For Student Guests who do not have a mode of transportation to the event, the ISSO will do its best to match them with hosts who can provide transportation. Also, students might be able to get to the event if there is a feasible public transportation option available.

When does the Thanksgiving Holiday Host Program take place?

The Thanksgiving Holiday is on the fourth Thursday of November, but the date and time of the host's holiday celebration can be flexible. The event does not have to be on the day of the holiday. For example, instead of the fourth Thursday of the month, a holiday host may invite students to join his/her family Thanksgiving Dinner on the weekend.

I signed up to be hosted but I was not matched with a Thanksgiving Holiday Host. Why?

Although the ISSO is capable of doing many wonderful things, it cannot predict how many participants will sign up for the program each year. Some years, there is an abundance of students resulting in a handful who are not matched with a Thanksgiving Holiday Host, and vice versa. In this case, the ISSO will notify students accordingly and encourage participation for the following year.