FAQs: Have a question? We’re here to help!
Although we always recommend submitting an inquiry form , we have compiled the following list of frequently asked questions in order to help answer your questions as promptly as possible.
Q. Who is Cambridge Network?
A. Please refer to the “ABOUT US” page
Q. Why should I develop a relationship with Cambridge Network?
A. At Cambridge Network, we pride ourselves on our proven recruitment methods and track record of success, including recruiting over 5,000 host families since 2011. We have worked with programs of all shapes and sizes in communities across the country and in each instance, we have successfully accomplished our goal of attracting dedicated host families.
Q. How is Cambridge Network different from other homestay providers?
A. Although we offer a number of unique services and boast a proven track record of success, our primary differentiation can be described in one word: support.
We’re proud to offer various layers of support to our school partners, hosts and students. By providing your school and students a locally basedstaff member, a support services manager (located in one of our corporate offices) and an on-call team of multilingual and multicultural specialists in case of emergencies, we empower all parties to thrive.
Q. How does Cambridge Network’s model or practices for recruiting host families differ from other homestay providers?
A. There are two significant ways in which Cambridge Network’s recruitment practices differ from those of other homestay providers.
First, we aim to recruit a “bank” of qualified families well in excess of your school’s program size. Having this “bank” of qualified hosts allows us to:
• Provide your students with a choice of families so a better match is made. Additionally, we have found that providing students a choice increases the student’s commitment to enjoying a successful experience with the hostthey have chosen, thereby minimizing the need for a switch of host families.
• Provide additional available families should the need arise for a back-up housing option for the student (e.g. during school breaks), or in the event that a change of residence is necessary.
Second, because our local staff lives in your area, we establish a genuine connection with your community and are able to recruit families who are part of that community and appreciate your school.
Q. What services does Cambridge Network provide?
A. Cambridge Network offers a wide range of services for our students and schools, including:
• Recruitment and enrollment of host families, including annual background checks and evaluation of each family’s suitability to host an international student, according to the guidelines set forth by the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel (CSIET)
• A qualified host family for each student
• Training for hosts
• Orientation for students
• Ensuring that the student is greeted at the airport upon arrival
• Regular check-ins with hosts and students from our local staff
• Regular residential reports translated and sent to student’s natural parents
• Organized social activities to help students explore their local community
• Multilingual and multicultural on-call support in case of emergencies
Q. Does Cambridge Network find host families in my school’s local community for the international students?
A. Yes! Our central Host Compliance Coordinators and our local, on-the-ground staff collaborate to identify and recruit host families within a 30-minute drive from your school. The closer the family is to your school and the more of a relationship they have with your school, the better!
Q. Does Cambridge Network screen the host families it provides? How does this screening work?
A. We’re proud to thoroughly screen our hosts in order to ensure they are qualified to accommodate your school’s international students. This screening process includes a phone interview, a background check and a site inspection of the potential host’s home.
For more information on the host application process, click here.
Q. What requirements does Cambridge Network have for its hosts?
A. At Cambridge Network, we hold our hosts to a higher standard. First and foremost, we expect all hosts to welcome students into their home as another member of their family and supervise the student as one would his or her own child.
Additionally, at a minimum, all host families must be able to provide students:
• A private bedroom
• 3 meals per day
• Daily transportation to and from school
Q. Can Cambridge Network help me ensure that my students have the proper health insurance and immunizations that are needed to study in the United States?
A. Absolutely! Cambridge Network is well-versed in the requirements for study abroad and would be happy to help you coordinate your students’ health insurance and immunizations to ensure that all students meet the federal requirements for studying abroad.
Q. Does Cambridge Network support its hosts? How?
A. Cambridge Network is thrilled to support our schools, hosts, and students by providing all of the resources each party needs to thrive. To learn more about how we support our hosts, click here.
Q. If any problems arise, is there a member of Cambridge Network I can contact?
A. Yes. Each community we work with has a local coordinator who serves as the primary liaison between your school and Cambridge Network. Additionally, each community has its own manager stationed at one of our corporate officesnear Boston and Los Angeles.
Finally, should you need to contact a student’s parents or to navigate any cultural or linguistic miscommunications, Cambridge Network features a team of multilingual and multicultural associates who are eager to help.
Q. Is Cambridge Network recognized by any third-party organizations as a reputable homestay provider?
A. Yes. We are proud to be approved by the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel, the preeminent organization for vetting international educational travel providers. This recognition reflects Cambridge Network’s commitment to providing a safe and accommodating homestay program for students and host families.
Q. Are host families offered any compensation for hosting?
A. Yes. Cambridge Network provides all hosts with a monthly stipend to offset the additional costs associated with hosting a student. Stipend amounts range depending on location and the specific school the student is attending.
Q. How can I learn more about Cambridge Network?
A. You can give us a call at 781-996-0400, send us an email at [email protected] or fill out an inquiry form and we will contact you as soon as possible.