Each year, undergraduate and graduate students from other countries as well as new faculty join the Fairfield University family. Through the Adopt-a-Stag program, friends of the University help welcome these students and faculty ("Stags") into the Fairfield community.
Once a month, the sponsor and "Stag" participant get together for dinner, a movie, watching sports on TV - whatever works well for both parties and helps new international students or faculty get to know Fairfield.
Who can sponsor?
- Sponsors can be alumni, parents, or friends of Fairfield University
- A sponsor can be a single individual, a young couple, large family group, or a retired couple. The only prerequisite is the desire to make your Stag participant feel comfortable in a strange and new setting.
- Groups can partner to jointly sponsor someone, as long as one person is designated as "lead sponsor" and coordinates who is with the student each month.
What are the benefits of being a sponsor?
- Make a positive impact on a person's experience in a new setting
- Expose yourself and your family to a new world of learning
- Learn about another culture, tradition, occupation, or custom
- Develop a life-long friendship
What is expected of a sponsor?
- Attend the Welcome Mass/Brunch in the fall
- Meet once a month with your Stag for one academic year (typically October through early May)
- Help your Stag get to know the Fairfield area
- Depending on your availability and interest, attend other campus events with your Stag
- Show your Stag you care by being a good listener and a welcoming presence
Note: Sponsor families are not expected to support their Stag financially or to board them at their homes. For those interested, however, there may be opportunities to have your international student Stag stay with you during the holidays when the dorms are typically closed.
What activities can I do with my Stag?
There are lots of options; here are some examples:
- Help him/her settle in to their living situation
- Invite him/her to your home for a meal, or for a holiday or birthday celebration
- Cook together
- Go to a local event - play, concert, sporting event, etc.
- Attend a University event - lecture, basketball game, etc.
- Provide baked goods or care packages at appropriate times, such as finals week
- Meet for coffee
- Include him/her in what you normally do!
What should we talk about?
- Family histories
- Your favorite places to eat or visit in the area
- Your experience with Fairfield University - classes, roommate stories, etc.
- Photos of family events, vacations, friends
- Travel experiences
Who can participate?
- International students visiting Fairfield for a semester or a program
- New faculty during their first year with Fairfield
What is expected of a participant?
- Be willing to learn
- Meet monthly with host
As a participant, what can you expect from the Adopt-a-Stag program?
- Opportunities to learn about Fairfield and the surrounding areas
- Sense of support
- Social connections and interaction
- Another connection to the University and the community
To find out more, or to fill out an application to the Adopt-a-Stag program, please complete the below application and e-mail them directly to Dorothea Brennan M.A.'81, who will coordinate matches and answer any questions.
Applications will be matched by our Alumni Association and University administrators. While we cannot guarantee that there will be an appropriate match for everyone, we will do our best to include everyone who is interested. Thank you!