Since this is my last year at Northwestern, I’ve been pushing myself to try new things and cross off items on my Northwestern Bucket List. I’ve managed to cross off one item (I visited the Baha’i Temple), but I still have a lot to do, especially because I keep adding items to my bucket list.
One recent event I added to my list was Dinner with Twelve. The Northwestern Alumni Association and Northwestern Career Advancement partner together to organize this event, which aims to connect alumni and students in the Northwestern community. For the Fall dinner, Chicagoland alumni host dinners at their homes or other locations, and eight to 12 students have dinner with the host.
I chose to finally participate because I wanted to make more Northwestern connections. After my first year, I felt comfortable in my communities on campus and didn’t branch out much. Sure, I met some new friends in classes or through other friends, but this dinner was an opportunity to interact with students and a Northwestern alum that I had no connection with prior to this event.
My group met at The Arch on Sheridan and Chicago on a Sunday night, and then we went to our host’s home in Chicago. On the way, we introduced ourselves and talked about our life at Northwestern. It was pretty relaxed the entire time, even when we arrived at our host’s house. There we chatted a bit with our host and his wife before dinner and they asked a lot of questions about our lives at Northwestern. A visiting professor also attended (she was related to our host’s wife) and we talked to her about her work.
As if that wasn’t enough, the dinner was delicious. As someone who lives off-campus, it was a nice break from cooking my own meals. My host also had a dog, and to be completely honest, when I looked through the available hosts, I searched for a host with pets. There wasn’t much information about the host when I was choosing one, besides dietary restrictions the host could accommodate and pet information. Regardless, it all worked out and I’m happy with my experience.
I’m glad I finally participated because it was more meaningful than I expected it to be. Since the event, I’ve seen one student from the dinner and we both said ‘Hi’ to each other. It was a small moment, but it made me feel grateful to be a part of a community that values all sorts of connections, even if it’s just from a two-hour dinner.
Image courtesy of Northwestern Alumni Association.