Help Case Western Reserve University’s international students feel welcome in Cleveland by applying to be a host in the International Friendship Program.
The program helps students transition to life in the U.S., offers hosts the unique opportunity to learn about diverse nationalities and cultures, and serves as a springboard for friendships that last beyond a student’s time at CWRU.
Host and student testimonial
Last year, Lisa Kollins, institute administrator for the Social Justice Institute, and her family hosted Kayele Silue, a rising sophomore from Cote d’Ivoire.
“From the first hug when we picked her up from the airport to our recent dinner celebrating the end of Ramadan, our family’s friendship with Kayele Silue has been a joy,” Kollins said. “Although she is far from her home in Cote d’Ivoire, Kayele brings a happy sense of adventure, an open heart and mind, and a wonderful spirit to each of our times together.”
Among the moments they have shared: Silue has met Kollins’ extended family, been part of birthday and holiday celebrations, taught family members a South African boot dance and cooked the family a traditional meal.
When traveling to Case Western Reserve University last fall, Silue planned every detail of her arrival carefully. Her plans were derailed by a delayed flight, which meant she missed the last shuttle from the airport to campus.
Kollins insisted that Silue allow her to pick her up and host her for the night.
“I was blessed with Lisa and her family from my first day in Cleveland—literally—and I am forever grateful to CWRU’s International Friendship Family and all the people who made this happen,” Silue said. “I sincerely look forward to spending the next three years close to them and I wish every international student to live a similar experience.”