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For out-of-state and international college students, having a traditional Thanksgiving with family just doesn’t work out sometimes because of distance, finances or other logistics.

Genesee Community College, though, is making an effort to unite the College Village community, especially those who are spending the holiday at the dorms. Tuesday at 6 pm, students will cook a Thanksgiving dinner for each other, creating one large, extended family.

There are about 50 international students at GCC and even more from out-of-state who look forward to celebrating the holiday, even if they’re away from family. Assistant director of Residential Life Ellen Brokaw says it’s something all involved look forward to.

“It’s a really great opportunity for our residents to share a really good meal together. It usually ends with a lot of laughter, a lot of good times," Brokaw said. "

This is some students' first time preparing a Thanksgiving dinner for a crowd.

"For them – a little bit of anxiousness going into never having cooked it before, but excitement, too.”

It’s the eighth year GCC has hosted a communal Thanksgiving dinner. Brokaw says it’s a good time for the students to reflect on the holiday and relax as they approach the end of the semester.

Two of the school’s seven residence assistants are international students and Brokaw says everyone involved learns about new traditions.

“We have an international student from Sri Lanka and another one from Japan on our staff that will be cooking," Brokaw said. "Our international student from Japan has never cooked a traditional Thanksgiving, so she’s learning about our traditions and what’s included in a Thanksgiving dinner.”

About 200 students are expected to attend.

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