Tips for Hosts and Frequently Asked Questions

Thank you for considering hosting Marquette students for Supper for 12 Strangers, a Marquette tradition since 1973!

Below are answers to a few of your most likely questions. For more information, please contact University Advancement at (414) 288-7441 or

Sign up to host a Supper for 12 Strangers event!

Q. It’s called Supper for 12 Strangers. Do I really have to host 12 people?
A. No! You can have as few as two and as many as 12 (or even more). The title was inspired by Jesus’ last supper with the 12 apostles, but don’t let that intimidate you! Universities around the country sponsor similar programs as a way of bringing alumni, faculty, staff and students together for socializing and networking. We want you to host a group that is a comfortable size for you so you can enjoy the experience.

Q. AMUW, the Association of Marquette University Women, sponsors Supper for 12 Strangers. Does that mean it’s only for female students and alumni?
A. Absolutely not! AMUW takes care of matching students with hosts, but the event is open to all current students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends of the university.

Q. When will I receive information from Marquette?
A. You’ll receive an email confirming your registration shortly after submitting the online form. Early in the week before your Supper, you’ll receive an emailed list of the students’ names and contact information. Via mail, you’ll also receive a packet containing nametags and Marquette posters to use during your Supper.

Q. How will the students get to my house?
A. Some students have cars or access to them, but if you are able to provide transportation for some of your guests, that would be a big help. We’d suggest that if two people are hosting together, one might volunteer to drive while the other stays home to prepare the dinner and greet the students as they arrive.

Q. I live more than half an hour from campus. Is that too far away for me to be a host?
A. Transportation is a big consideration, and we appreciate your concern for the amount of time students might have to spend traveling to your home. At the same time, we wouldn’t want you or your potential guests to miss out on this fun tradition. If you feel your home is too far for students to drive, one possibility would be for you to team up with a friend or relative who lives closer to campus to welcome the students to his or her home while you provide some of the food and, of course, help with the dishes.

Q. I’d like to help, but I don’t like to cook. What can I do?
A. Don’t stress over the food. As you probably recall from your student days, any free meal is a good meal! Pick up sub sandwiches, order pizza from your favorite neighborhood restaurant or heat up a few jars of pasta sauce, and you’re in business. The idea is to have fun and spend time getting to know the students.

Q. I’m happy to cook but don’t know what to make. Any suggestions?
A. We’ll let you know in advance if any of the students in your group have dietary restrictions. And because this is a Marquette event with students, we remind you that no alcohol should be served. Beyond that, make whatever you’d like, from burgers on the grill to ham sandwiches to your favorite spaghetti dish or chili. A can’t-miss menu we’ve relied on in the past is a large tossed salad; two pans of lasagna, one with meat, one without; and some cookies or bars for dessert. We offer diet and regular soda, but find that many students prefer water instead.

Q. What should I tell the students before they arrive?
A. The main things you’ll need to do are figure out transportation arrangements and set a time for your Supper. We’ll let you know which students in your group have volunteered to drive and how many students they can transport. It might work best to contact them first. Be sure to provide directions to your house. You might also want to mention a dress code, if you have one, or suggest that they dress casually.

Q. What time should I have my Supper?
A. We ask that you please start your Supper sometime between 5 and 6:30 p.m. Figure on having students at your home for about two hours total.

Q. Will the students in my group know each other?
A. Students are allowed to register with up to three friends. But many students sign up individually. You could end up with a mix of students who know each other and students who’ve never met.

Q. I have a relative or friend who’s attending Marquette. What if I’d like to request that student and his or her friends as my Supper guests?
A. That’s great, and there’s a spot on the registration form for both students and hosts to request each other. Just make sure everyone is requesting the same Supper date when they register to avoid confusion!

Q. Do you have any suggestions for icebreakers?
A. In our experience, the students who sign up for Supper for 12 Strangers tend to be outgoing and good conversationalists. They might enjoy hearing your recollections of dorm life, Marquette basketball and job-hunting. It’s always fun to show them photos and relics from another era, such as yearbooks, which, as you may know, are no longer a part of the Marquette experience.

Q. Is there anything else I should do?
A. We really appreciate if you take pictures during your Supper and share them with AMUW. We like to see everyone’s smiling face! You can email your photos to us at

 Have a question that isn’t answered here? Please let us know.


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