Center for International Studies and Programs

International Guest Frequently Asked Questions

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autumn vegetables, corn and squashWho can participate in the Thanksgiving Dinner Program?

Any current UToledo international student/faculty, staff or scholar interested in celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday with new friends is welcome to participate in this event. Guests must fill out and submit an online request form located on the Center for International Studies and Programs (CISP) Thanksgiving Dinner Program webpage. Signing up does not guarantee that you will be connected with a host to celebrate Thanksgiving. The earlier you sign up, the better chance you have to participate.


How are international guests matched with hosts?

By filling out the online application, guests and hosts are matched on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no guarantee that a student will be matched. Matching depends on the number of families available.


How will I know if I am matched with a Thanksgiving holiday host this Thanksgiving?

After submitting the online application form, you will receive a notification as soon as we have a host family for you. Our UT Explorers team will provide an orientation to outline the program and the holiday traditions. Submitting the request form does not guarantee a Thanksgiving holiday host.  The program operates on a first-come, first-served basis. Matches are mainly based on the number of hosts we have available. Individual requests are taken into consideration.


When does the Thanksgiving Dinner Program take place?

This year the Thanksgiving Holiday is on November 23, 2023. However, the event may be scheduled for another day depending on the host’s tradition and customs. For example, instead of Thursday, a holiday host may invite guests to join his/her/their family for Thanksgiving dinner on Sunday. Your family will communicate a date and time for your dinner.


I do not have transportation but would still like to be hosted. Is this possible?

Yes. Many hosts offer to provide transportation for their guests to and from the Thanksgiving event even though it isn’t required. For guests who do not have transportation to the event, our specialists will try to match them with hosts who can provide transportation. 

picture of a pumpkin pie


What are the expectations of a Thanksgiving holiday guest?

By signing up for the event, we ask you to be sure to attend the Thanksgiving holiday event that your host has invited you to.  It is expected that guests contact their host family to make arrangements for the Thanksgiving event.  Thanksgiving holiday events occur at various times depending on the host’s plans. 


Should I bring anything to the Thanksgiving holiday event?

The choice is yours whether to bring something or not. However, it is tradition to bring a small gift to your Thanksgiving holiday host like flowers or a pie.


How should I dress for the event?

Your family will indicate on their application the dress for their dinner.


Will my Thanksgiving holiday host provide housing for me overnight?

Hosts are not expected to provide overnight housing for students, but all plans and arrangements should be discussed before the day of the event.

Last Updated: 10/17/23