The International Friendship Program (IFP), sponsored by University of Houston's Office of International Student and Scholar Services, is now celebrating it's 49th year of matching UH international students and scholars with area families for a once a month visit with each other. Both short-term scholars and long-term students are welcome to participate. The IFP provides international students and scholars exposure to American culture by opportunities to visit American homes while studying at UH. These unique partnerships also provide internationals opportunities for off-campus activities.
The events enjoyed most by internationals with their American friends include the Houston rodeo, sporting events, and visiting Houston homes. Annual IFP festivities include a night of fun and games in October, also known as October Fun Night, and the annual mid-July Appreciation Luncheon here on campus.
The relationships built between area families and UH's international community can last long after the student/scholar has completed their program at UH. Several IFP Houston families have visited their international students at their countries of origin after graduation. In fact, the longest continuing international friendship in the program is between a South Korean couple and a Houstonian couple which began in 1972, shortly after the IFP began. That's 46 years of international friendship and counting!
If you are a new or continuing international student/scholar at University of Houston and are interested in learning more about IFP, please email Melissa Aylward, IFP Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is it?
Can I see some friendship program photographs?
Sure! Click here....
To see IFP Photos to go to the photographs showing matched up Houston area families and international students.
For the longest-ongoing international friendship (so far!) in the program.
Meet the couple who, currently, has been 'matched' with the greatest number of students in the Friendship Program.
For quotes from previously matched international students in the Friendship Program.
To read an International Educator magazine article which featured the University of Houston International Student Friendship Program.
For photos of Houston families who have visited their UH international students after the students returned to their home country.
Who is involved?
After I arrive at the University of Houston as a UH International Student, How Do I Sign-up?
Sign-up for IFP to completing the online application form for the International Friendship Program.
If you have questions about the program, you may email Melissa Aylward, the program coordinator, Monday through Friday at email@example.com.What Should I Expect?
- Take you sightseeing.
- Have you over for a meal, family birthday celebration or special holidays.
- Take you with them to a sports or cultural event.
Families are encouraged to give you assistance as needed when you first arrive, then see or call you at least once a month. We hope you will stay in touch throughout your stay in America.What if I have Problems?