UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN River Falls

Host Family Resources 

Greetings Host Families,

Time flies! I can't believe it is already time to say goodbye to the many international students leaving UWRF this spring. Some are graduating after completing their degrees and others are returning home after short exchange programs. 43 students in total will depart this month! While it is difficult to see our friends leave, we are happy for them as they begin the next chapter in their lives.

The next couple of weeks are an important time to connect with your students. Invite them to spend some time at your home, go out for dinner, or just get together to catch up. If your host student is graduating or returning home at the end of the semester, be prepared for the tears to fall. The reality of the situation is likely setting in - it is possible that you will never see each other again so saying goodbye can be hard for both you and your students. As the last days draw near you may find yourself sad and saying goodbye may be difficult. Your host student has become part of your family - you have given a lot of yourself to your student and I am certain they have given a lot of themselves to you too.

Make sure you have your student's home address and consider sending a letter or post-card before they leave so when they arrive home it's there waiting for them. We encourage you to stay in touch with your student after they leave. Fortunately, there are a lot of ways to stay connected to your student including Skype, Facebook, email, and so on. You never know, someday you may visit your host student in their home country. It has happened before!

It is also time to start thinking about continuing your commitment as a host family. If your student is leaving, I hope you consider hosting another student! If you would like to continue with the Host Family Program please send us an email at iss@uwrf.edu and we will add you to our list of continuing families. We still have about 15 students on our waitlist – many of whom will be in River Falls during the summer. If you are interested in being matched with one of them, please let us know.

Do you have a friend, neighbor or family member who would be a great host family? Encourage them to apply! We anticipate a record number of new international students in the fall so we will be on the lookout for new families to participate in the program! The Host Family Program application can be found on the ISS webpage. If you are currently hosting a student who will return in the fall, keep up the great work!

It is also time for me to say goodbye. After a series of considerations, I have decided to enroll in a different graduate program at another university. My work as the Graduate Student Intern in International Student Services will end on May 2. I would like to thank you for all that you have done this year. It is your support that makes UWRF home away from home for our international students. It was a pleasure to work with all of you. Your commitment has made the program possible. We hope that you know just how important you are to the students and to us!

If you have any questions regarding the Host Family Program, please contact ISS Coordinator, Shelby King at shelby.king@uwrf.edu or iss@uwrf.edu.

Have a wonderful summer!

Garnett Ge
Graduate Student Intern
International Student Services

 


Host Family Handbook

Check out the Host Family Handbookdocument for more information about being a Host Family and to view a list of activities you can do with your student!