Youth Exchange Program

Rotary-Youth-Exchange-For those interested in learning a new language and meeting new people, the Rotary Youth Exchange is the opportunity of a lifetime. More than 8,000 students participate worldwide each year. They share their culture and embrace a new one, helping foster global understanding—and learning a great deal about themselves and their home country in the process.

What is a Rotary Youth Exchange?
Youth Exchange is a study-abroad opportunity for young people who spend anywhere from
a few weeks to a full year as an international student hosted by local Rotary clubs.

Is an exchange right for me?
Exchanges are for people ages 15–19 who:

  • Have demonstrated leadership in their school and community
  • Are flexible and willing to try new things
  • Are open to cultural differences
  • Can serve as an ambassador for their own country

How much does it cost?
Costs vary from country to country. Local Rotary clubs generously host students and provide room and board with a host family and a small monthly stipend. Participants are generally responsible for

  • Round-trip airfare
  • Insurance
  • Travel documents (such as passports and visas)
  • Spending money, additional travel and tour fees

How can I apply?
Contact your local Rotary Club to see if it participates and to learn more about the types of programs offered, and specific application process required. Because the selection and orientation process can be lengthy, we suggest you apply 6­–12 months before you plan to leave.

Can I host an exchange student?
Hosting an exchange student can be an incredibly rewarding experience for your family, providing an international experience without leaving home. Host families provide room and board and share their lives with exchange students, involving them in family, community and cultural activities.

For more information about the Rotary Youth Exchange Program, please contact Steve Alexander, our club’s Youth Exchange officer, through the Club office.

RYLABannerYouth Service, formerly New Generations, refers to the youngest generation in the family of Rotary. Many are participants in Rotary’s youth and young adult programs: Interact, Rotaract, Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) and Rotary Youth Exchange. Others are service-minded young people involved in Rotary Club and district activities.

Youth Service became Rotary’s fifth Avenue of Service in 2010. It is defined in article 5 of the Standard Rotary Club Constitution:

Youth Service recognizes the positive change implemented by youth and young adults through leadership development activities, involvement in community and international service projects, and exchange programs that enrich and foster world peace and cultural understanding.

Rotary Life Leadership

Sponsored by the Rotary clubs of Rotary International District 6290

Rotary International District 6290’s Life Leadership Conference has been shaping the lives of future leaders each summer since 1949. Coming from large cities and crossroads communities alike in Michigan and Ontario, participants meet exchange students from other countries and discover a unique blend of intellectual curiosity and cultural diversity.

The program challenges young men and women who have proven leadership skills. With an agenda designed to meet the needs of these future leaders, the speakers and discussion topics test the depth of thought and provoke stimulating discussion as these intellectually gifted students share their lives, feelings, and thoughts on significant issues pertaining to their world, their country and their community.

Past conferees have found this experience to be the most rewarding of their educational careers. School officials report a marked difference in the lives of returning conferees. Sponsoring Rotary clubs and college counselors indicate that these young people are more than willing to take an active role in their communities as a result of their attendance at this conference.

Who Attends the Conference?

Rotary clubs within Rotary District 6290 identify and sponsor the finest young leaders in their communities. Students who have completed their high school junior or senior year, exchange students, and students who have completed their college freshman year are offered the opportunity to participate in this special conference. Ideal candidates are outstanding student leaders who are a credit to their schools and communities. They are hungry for knowledge, willing to meet new friends, and eager to engage in a program that will have a lasting effect on their lives. They are, simply, the leadership of the future!

Life Leadership Conference 2014

When: 1:00 pm Wednesday, June 18 through 3:00 pm Saturday, June 21, 2014

Where: Kettunen Center, near Tustin, MI

Who Attends: Students who have completed their high school junior or senior year or college freshman year

What is the program:Thought-provoking and motivational! An exchange of ideas across international boundaries.

Where is the Life Leadership Conference Held?

Life Leadership Conference is hosted by the Cadillac Rotary Club at the Kettunen Center near Tustin, Michigan. The Kettunen Center is a complete conference and retreat facility that offers collegiate-style dormitory accommodations for about 150 conferees. It has superb dining and recreational facilities, several large and small meeting rooms, a half mile of lake frontage, modern communications and learning facilities, and a congenial staff. Nestled in the rolling woodlands of Osceola County just 20 minutes south of Cadillac, the Kettunen Center provides a beautiful setting for a total learning environment.

For more information or to apply, visit the Rotary District 6290 website, which carries promotional materials, documents and the Application Form. The applications can and should be completed online by candidates, then printed, and submitted to our Club by May 1 to be uses in the selection process.

S. T. R. I. V. E

S. T. R. I. V. E = Students Taking a Renewed Interest in the Value of Education

STRIVE is partnership between Traverse City high schools that offers scholarships and job programs for seniors.

The opportunity

STRIVE is for high school seniors who want to improve their present educational status and their life prospects.

STRIVE recognizes and rewards students, academically ranked in the lower one-third of the senior class, who demonstrate their desire for success by achievement in three years.

STRIVE honors all students who accomplish the goals set forth by the STRIVE program.

Students of the Week

Each week during the school year, we honor two students from Traverse City high schools, Northwestern Michigan College, Interlochen Arts Academy or the local home school program. Students are selected by school administrators based on academic success and extra curricular activities. Students are introduced at the weekly Rotary meeting and have the opportunity to present their goals, accomplishments and ambitions. Members may take turns introducing the new students each week.


Community-mindedness can start at a young age. Interact is a club for youth ages 12-18 who want to connect with others in their community or school. Members have fun while carrying out service projects and learning about the world. Interact clubs organize at least two service projects a year: one that benefits their community and one that encourages international understanding. While Interact clubs receive guidance from individual Rotary clubs, they govern and support themselves.