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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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A&M faculty and staff open homes to students for Thanksgiving dinner

Thanksgiving
Photo by Creative Commons
Thanksgiving

While the Thanksgiving break meant a trip back home for many students, those who had to stay in town were welcomed into the homes of some Texas A&M faculty and staff members.
Assistant Director of Choral Activities Travis Angel has hosted Thanksgiving dinner for his choir students for three years. Angel also invites students over for Christmas and Easter.
“Some people don’t have anywhere to go, so I say, ‘If you don’t have anywhere to go, come to my house and eat Thanksgiving dinner,’ because we always have more than we need to eat,” Angel said.
Angel said an English professor at West Texas State University — now West Texas A&M — inspired him to open up his home.
“When I was in college, a long long time ago, we had a professor that invited us over to his house for an English class over there,” Angel said. “That made an impression on me that he cared enough.”
Political science lecturer Dwight Roblyer has been hosting Thanksgiving at his home since he was a graduate student at A&M.
“As faculty members, we don’t often think about it, but we’re actually teaching all of the time, not just lecturing during a class,” Roblyer said. “Modeling generosity and the willingness to invite other people into your circle is a good thing to do.”
When Roblyer was an undergraduate student at A&M, his Sunday school teachers opened up their homes to him because he didn’t have a car to drive home. Today, Roblyer has also opened up his home in other ways. He and his wife have adopted six children in addition to their two biological children.
“I always got to go home for the holidays, but there were a lot of other times when people would be going home and I didn’t get to,” Roblyer said. “Inviting people over for Thanksgiving is not a stretch. It’s sort of a natural extension of who we are.”
Uday Toodi, Class of 2018, attended Roblyer’s Thanksgiving dinner last year. Toodi had Roblyer as his professor for two semesters during his sophomore year. Toodi’s family comes from an Indian culture and had never had an American Thanksgiving dinner.
“Being able to participate in one was really fun,” Toodi said. “A professor opening up his doors to his home and his family on a holiday like that, that’s big. Not just to one student, but to all of his classes.”
Toodi said the gesture has increased his respect for Roblyer, and generous actions like that build credibility. He said he hopes that more people are inspired to begin acting selflessly.
“If someone’s so gracious to open up their home on a holiday, especially in the spirit of giving, I think students should take that wholeheartedly,” Toodi said. “If everyone were to do something like Dr. Roblyer, I think the world would be a much better place.”

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