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Study of the U.S. Institute (SUSI)

Information for individuals and families interesting in hosting participants for the southern Africa Weekend Homestay.

Do you have an interest in southern Africa? Do you want to offer a student a glimpse of daily life in Seattle and the warmth of a local home for a few days?

We invite you to host a university student from Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa, and Zimbabwe during this winter's Study of the U.S. Institute (SUSI) on Civic Engagement! The SUSI Weekend Homestay will take place from Thursday evening, January 26 through Sunday evening, January 29.

Hosts offer 3-night homestays for university undergraduates who are visiting Seattle for an intensive 5-week program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State focusing on Civic Engagement. Since students will live on the UW campus during the program (the College Inn), the one-weekend homestay is an important way for them to engage with local life and culture.

Apply to host a SUSI student by filling out the FIUTS host application, and read on for more information. If you are already a FIUTS host, you do not need to fill out an application again - just contact Bea to sign up to host.

Hosting Dates

Hosts will pick up their students on the University of Washington campus the afternoon or evening of Thursday, January 26. Students will attend class on campus on Friday and then return to their hosts' home (via public transit, if possible) to spend the weekend. On Sunday evening, hosts and students are invited to celebrate the end of the homestay weekend with a celebration potluck dinner and cultural presentations. If you are not able to pick up or drop off students, we can make alternative transportation arrangements if necessary.

About the Participants

University students between 19 and 25 years old, both male and female, and speak fluent English. They are from Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa, and Zimbabwe.

Hosting Requirements

Students should sleep in a separate bedroom that has a door for privacy. Hosts provide meals for their students when they are together.

Number of Students Per Household

Hosts are welcome (and encouraged!) to host more than one student. If you'd like to host two students and need an extra sleeping space, FIUTS is able to loan hosts an air bed for the weekend. Students hosted together who share a room will be of the same gender.

Participant Schedule

The homestay weekend is an opportunity for students to visit a local family and see how they spend their time and how they live. We expect that you spend time with the students and get to know each other. However, this is not a tourism weekend, so hosts do not need to plan a big itinerary! Simple activities such as taking a walk around the neighborhood, baking cookies, going to the park or the grocery store, and visiting family are all great ways for students to participate in daily life in Seattle! If you are interested in taking your student sightseeing, FIUTS will provide information about what activities students are participating in during the program so hosts will not have to repeat anything students have already done.

About the Study of the U.S. Institute

The Study of the U.S. Institutes are a program of the U.S. Department of State and are hosted by institutions around the U.S to promote a better understanding of the people, institutions, and culture of the United States among foreign students, teachers, and scholars. Learn more about the SUSI at, and connect on Facebook and Twitter.

Students take classes on topics in civic engagement and participate in sessions and activities focusing on leadership and service. They also have opportunities to explore the Seattle area and engage in cross-cultural experiences with local and international peers.

Host Events and Activities

Hosts will be invited to the annual Community Barbecue and International Welcome Night in September, as well as other Community Events throughout the year.

Questions? Contact Manager of Community Programs Bea Chang at or (206) 616-7025.

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