Want Great Material for a Scholarship Application Essay? Host a Japanese Student in Your Home for 3 Weeks!

Imagine your child writing a scholarship application essay where she writes in detail about what it was like to have a Japanese college student living in her home for three weeks.

There are so many interesting ways to go with this kind of material — I can’t even begin to list them all.

If you’d like to host a Japanese college student in your Minneapolis/St. Paul area home for three weeks this August, here’s some information on a great program you can be a part of.


Many thanks to my friend Katie Craig for sharing this information with my blog readers.


Sixty Japanese college students will be coming to Arden Hills, Minnesota August 3- August 24 to study at Bethel University, and each one needs a family just like yours.

The students will be studying at Bethel courtesy of the St. Paul Intercultural Institute.  The institute’s academic and homestay program introduces these students to American life, language, and culture.  Students study at Bethel University during weekday hours from 8:45 AM – 4:30 PM, and then spend evening and weekends with a local host family.

Van routes are in place throughout the metro area to help the students get to and from Bethel each day.

Your responsibility as a host family would be to share your regular American life with your student – everything from grocery shopping, preparing meals, attending kids’ soccer games, going to church, and walking the dog.  Visiting Japanese students will have opportunity to tour Twin Cities attractions during weekday planned field trips, so you needn’t take the student to see the giant spoon with the cherry on it unless your family happens to be going there anyway.

Host families receive a $300 stipend to cover costs related to hosting a 19-22 year old student for three weeks.

For additional information click here, or watch the video here.

Here’s what another host family said said about the experience:

“Our family has hosted a student for many years now.  We began hosting as a newly married couple.  Our student was only a few years younger than we were!  Later, when the babies arrived, we worried that hosting would be too difficult.  Instead, I loved the adult companionship, even if only for 3 weeks.  And as our children grew, hosting became their favorite part of our summer…and it’s an amazing way to bring the world into our living room.  The program is a perfect fit for our family.”- The Johnson’s

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What about you?  Have you ever had hosted a student from another country in your home?  What do you remember most from the experience?