How Do I Become an Exchange Student

The Rotary Youth Exchange program is open to enrolled students who are between the ages of 15 and 18 at the date of departure (mid-January in each year). Please note that some countries may have lower age limits. All applicants and their parents are interviewed by your local District Youth Exchange committee. Successful applicants who progress through the initial interview are then asked to complete a more comprehensive final application. Your local Youth Exchange committee then nominates successful applicants to an overseas District committee for their consideration.

This official application provides the following details for a potential host Rotary club:

  • Personal particulars and background
  • General information relating to the applicant
  • Applicant’s school activities
  • Principal’s report
  • Medical and dental reports
  • Endorsement of sponsoring Rotary club and district
  • Guarantee form signed by applicant and parents
  • Parental/guardian release form

How are students prepared for the exchange?

The District committee arranges training in a wide range of areas. These include personal development, public speaking, communication skills, cultural awareness and financial management. This is to prepare the student as much as is possible for the exchange year. Parents are required to be involved in this training and therefore gain an appreciation of the many issues, which will confront the student during the year.

Important dates

The dates referred to are only indicative and will vary slightly from District to District.

  • February – March: Initial applications close with Rotary clubs and District Youth Exchange committee
  • April – May: Applicants are interviewed by Rotary clubs or District Youth Exchange committees
  • June: Applicants of selected students forwarded to host Rotary Districts overseas
  • July – December: Training programs for the selected students continue
  • January: Students depart for exchange, returning in January of the following year

Endorsement of the application by an overseas District can occur at any date during the period of August to November. Only then is the student considered to be a Rotary Exchange Student.