MJCA is blessed to host international students each year. These students are an asset to our school community and give our students an opportunity to learn about other cultures.

When an international student comes to MJCA, he or she stays with a host family. Host families make a commitment for two semesters.

Having a new family member who shares your family's interests is fun! International students are eager to become a true member of their new family, school and community. Each student has a lot to offer. Many host families become lifelong friends with their international students.

When you host an international student he or she becomes part of the family. As a member of the family, the student is expected to follow the family rules, participate in family activities and contribute to the home environment. The host family is given a monthly compensation for providing room and board (including regular meals). The family is not obligated to cook special meals for the student, but we ask the family to encourage the student to cook dishes from his or her home country.

Program Overview

About Your Student

Your student will come from a varied background. Try to learn about his/her family and life-style at home from his perspective. You will learn a lot about his culture. Students want to share their culture and many come from far away places that are very interesting. They will also want to share the differences they see with everyone with whom they have contact.

About DMD

DMD Private High School Program was incorporated in 1997 and is a non profit public benefit corporation of the state of New York. DMD was designated in 1998 by the United States Information Agency as an Exchange Visitor Program.

What Does It Mean To Be A Host Family?

The most important quality for a Host Family is the ability to make an outsider feel like a member of your own family. Host Families are committed to a mutual exchange of cultural experiences. Our priority is to ensure the quality of the experience between student and family. Families are welcome with or without children at home. MJCA seeks homes that generate warmth and friendliness while possessing a reasonable degree of stability.

Do Host Families Recieve Compensation For Hosting?

Host Families are volunteers, but they do receive $350 monthly to help defray the cost of food and other expenses. International students bring their own spending money and are expected to pay for clothing, souvenirs and personal items.

How Long Is The Commitment?

International students live with a Host Family for a full, 10-month academic year. All students arrive approximately one week before school begins and depart 7-10 days after the program ends.

What Kind Of Support Does A Host Family Receive?

Host families are supported by the local contact with DMD, and a 24 hour counseling service at DMD is available.

What Information Is Given Before The Hosting Experience?

You will receive an orientation before the student's arrival, including a "Host Family Handbook."

What Will Our International Student Expect?

International students expect to be treated as a member of your family. They have made the decision to leave behind their own family and friends for 10 months to have the experience of living with an American family and attending an American high school. International students are as diverse as the families who host them. Some are outgoing and gregarious; others are quiet and shy. Like most teenagers around the world, they are curious and inquisitive. They have come to the U.S. to discover what the American way of life is all about. Your international student will expect you to communicate with him/her about your values, and will also expect you to listen when he/she tells you about the way of life of his/her country.

Will The International Student Abide By The Rules Of Our Home?

Your student is expected to behave as a member of your family and follow all of the rules and expectations of your household. Since every family has its own set of house rules and policies, it is important for the family to take time in the beginning to explain to their guest everything that is needed to know about your household, including rules, chores, daily schedules, curfews, etc. You should be honest and open about your household rules. Remember, your student is not merely a guest, but a new member of your family!

Who Covers The International Student's Expenses During The Program?

All international students have their own spending money for clothes, souvenirs, school supplies, snacks outside the home, and entertainment. Host Families are expected to provide food, room and board for the student. The expenses of Host Families differ depending on the lifestyles of each individual family. Host Families receive $350 per month to cover the actual costs of hosting.

May An International Student Share A Bedroom With Another Child?

Yes. It is required that children sharing a room are the same gender and there is no more than a five year age difference between the two. International students may not share a room with an adult. An international student must have his or her own bed and space in the closet and the chest of drawers. An appropriate place for study must be provided.

Contact Shawna Shoemaker if you are interested in hosting an international student. She may be reached by phone at 615-824-1550 or through e-mail at