Rotary Club of Saratoga Springs, NY
P.O. Box 1307
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Friendship Family Program for International Students at Skidmore College

The incoming Class of 2016 includes the largest number of international students in Skidmore’s recent history.   Each of these students will be invited to participate in the International Friendship Family Program and Skidmore is once again looking for Saratoga community families and individuals interested in engaging in what can be a meaningful intercultural relationship.  The responsibilities are light but the rewards can be many.
Citizens of the following countries will be joining the Skidmore community in the fall:  Austria, Bhutan, Canada, China, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Jamaica, Jordan, Kenya, Republic of Korea, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Swaziland, Taiwan, Tunisia, Turkey, United Kingdom, Vietnam.
Skidmore will match you with an incoming international student and you'll have a chance to meet early in the new semester; their Welcome Picnic is held in mid-September.   Then, throughout the school year they plan optional gatherings while you and your student guide the rest of the relationship.  Samples of group events include picnics, pumpkin carving, a dinner and dessert reception at a basketball game, and bowling; each year is different.  At your own schedule and pace, you may arrange to check-in with your student as needed.  Some students enjoyed the Thanksgiving holiday with a local family, others participated in school presentations, grocery shopping expeditions and even a short family vacation.  It is all up to you.
At the end of a semester, students may seek a ride to a local train/bus station or the airport.  Friends to our international students have also offered storage space for student belongings (a few boxes, luggage, or “the dorm fridge”) during a summer vacation or semester off-campus.
Friendship Families have shown exceptional care for the needs of our students from around the globe while the students have enjoyed knowing that a community member knows them and is concerned for their well-being. One-year visiting scholars selected by the Office of Off-Campus Study and Exchanges also enjoy participating in this program.
Please contact Darren Drabek or 580-8155, if you’d like an application form for the program.  Thank you to our new Rotary member Kristin Drabek for bringing our attention to this program.