There are lion cubs who need a den for Thanksgiving
For the first time ever, Columbia Alumni are going to have the opportunity to welcome Columbia College and School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Undergraduates to their family's Thanksgiving experience. One of Columbia's greatest strength is a student body that is both international and diverse in every way: race, ethnicity, geography, religion, academic and extracurricular interest, family circumstance, sexual orientation, socioeconomic background and more. Each year, hundreds of our students who are unable to travel home for whatever reason to join their family in the US, or head abroad to their home countries far away, would love to have the opportunity to share the uniquely American holiday meal of Thanksgiving with a family.
Our Long Island Alumni Association, together with the other Columbia Alumni groups in the tri-state area, have been granted permission to try to run a pilot program this year, that if successful, will hopefully become a cornerstone event for Columbia families in the trip-state region to welcome students annually. Considering the wide variety of families and cultures that our Long Island Alumni represent, we have a very special opportunity to provide a window into our collective homes and unique celebrations.
If you would like to welcome a student(s) into your family's Thanksgiving celebration (not for overnight, but merely the meal), the requirements are that the event should be held on Thanksgiving Day (sometime on November 23, 2017) in a location no more than a 10-15 minute drive from an LIRR station, and have at least 5 people attending excluding the student(s). You will be required to either pick up and drop the student at the transportation arrival point or arrange for transportation to and from that arrival point at no cost for the student (students may have very limited means and/or have never been to Long Island before). The Alumni Association will pay for the students roundtrip travel to your community.
Please reply no later than Wednesday, November 15, if you meet the criteria and would like to host a student(s) for the Thanksgiving meal and if selected, a member of the Long Island Alumni Association will contact you by telephone to conduct light screening before you are hopefully matched with a student(s).
As it is a pilot program, unfortunately not every family who volunteers to become a host will be selected this year, and not every student will be accommodated. We hope to learn from this year what works and doesn't and will welcome your straightforward feedback after the event.