Welcome to UT Dallas and to Texas! We are so glad you are here! Just as many unique tiles come together to form a beautiful mosaic, the Mosaic Home Group is excited to celebrate the different cultures and customs we all represent. We know coming to a new country and speaking a new language can be difficult, and we look forward to being a place of connection and support as you settle into your new U.S. life as a student!
We meet twice a month (on the second and fourth Saturday of the month), usually at 821 Vinecrest Lane in Richardson very near campus. Our time together always begins with a community meal as we relax from the week and share what’s been going on over some delicious food. If you enjoy cooking, we hope you’ll share some of your favorite dishes with us!
After dinner, we’ll have fun with a few games, music or American trivia to help you better understand the culture and improve your fluency. And finally, we’ll spend time each week either discussing an interesting cultural topic or learning and discussing some of the basic ideas of the Christian faith. We’ll talk about how the Bible is essential to understanding American holidays and culture, but also some of the ways in which Christian faith differs from the culture. Come prepared to discuss and also to share your own background and insights as we learn together!
Mosaic Home Group Leaders:
- Dennis Kavanaugh – Dennis was born into a loving family of six siblings in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. His cross-cultural experience includes working in S. Korea, and in Japan (where he acquired an intermediate ability to speak Japanese). In 2010 Dennis completed a seminary degree and now works with international students professionally, emotionally, and spiritually.
- Ethan & Hope Tayne – Ethan and Hope have been married for almost one year and just moved to Richardson this year. We have been international students ourselves and love getting to help international students feel more at home here in the U.S.!
- Todd & Melissa Palmer – Todd and Melissa are originally from Cincinnati Ohio and moved to Dallas about seven years ago. They LOVE working with students and learning about different cultures! Melissa worked at UT Dallas for five years as the coordinator of the MS accounting program and then as the assistant director for the Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship in JSOM. She is now the manager of internships at a company called Thomson Reuters. Todd studied theology first before moving on to become a CPA and get his MS in tax. He currently works as a tax director. They have three children – a son who is a senior at UT Dallas, a daughter who is a sophomore at the University of Arkansas, and a daughter who will be in her last year of high school. When they’re not busy with their kids, they love traveling, going for long walks with their dog, doing Ju-jitsu (Todd) or yoga (Melissa), and have recently started learning the waltz and the west coast swing!
- Daren & Jennifer Clements – Daren and Jennifer have been married for 23 years and have three children: Jude, 14; Lucy, 12; and Will, 10. We lived in northeast China for four years from 2007-2011, where Daren taught English at Jilin Normal University. We’ve been in Dallas for two years working with international students.