Big Table Initiative: Host or join an American-style home dinner!

by Julia McClenon, International Peer Advisor
Friday, October 25, 2019 11:20 AM

All you need is... a table!

The UCSB Big Table Initiative invites you to make a difference in the lives of our highly diverse international student population. Host an American-style dinner -- which can also be take-out, you don't necessarily have to cook! -- in your home for one or several international students, on a date you choose. Whether in a dorm, apartment, house, or hut -- all make great, real U.S. American hosting spaces!  

Host just once or host many times, it's up to you! 

The upcoming holiday season is an excellent time to welcome an international student to your home for an evening.

Who can be a host?
Any local--student, staff, or faculty--is encouraged to host! If you have an extra chair, you are qualified. You do not need to cook from scratch unless you want to. The hope is that you will share a typical dinner experience with a visitor. You can ask your guest to help with preparation (or not). You decide how many people you're able to host (1 or more). We'll put you in contact with a guest so you can coordinate the date and time. Sign up to host here!

Who can be a guest?
International undergraduates, graduate students, or visiting scholars and their families can sign up. If you prefer to go to dinner with a friend, you can let us know. We'll put you in contact with a host so you can coordinate the date and time. Sign up to be a guest here!

Will my guest have special needs?
We will ask people to identify any special needs or allergies when they apply. We will put you in contact with your guest before the meal so you can check if you like. 

Am I responsible for getting my guest to and from dinner?
No. If you choose to give a ride home, that's okay, but guests should plan on getting themselves to and from dinner.

Are guests expected to bring anything to dinner?
No. Guests may choose to bring a small gift for their host, but it is not required.

Can alcohol be served?

Only if guests are over age 21. 

Other questions? Email