Three International Programs offered by Rotary

One of the best things offered by Rotary, does not take place at the local Rotary Clubs. These are educational programs offered by the Rotary Foundation which take place through-out the entire world. They include: (1) the Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarships, (2) Grants for University Teachers, and (3) the Rotary Peace and Conflict Studies Program.  Their purpose is to promote world peace, goodwill and understanding. While studying or working abroad the scholars serve as ambassadors of good will to the host country. On return to the U.S. they tell the local Rotary clubs and other groups about their experiences. Deadlines for submission of applications for all three programs are set by individual Rotary Districts. Here is a summary:

1.  Ambassadorial Scholarships - There are three kinds of Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarships

  • An Academic-Year Ambassadorial Scholarship which provides funding for one academic year of study in another country (not the United States.) The scholarship provides funds to help cover round-trip transportation, tuition and board, and some educational supplies. Currently the scholarship provides up to $26,000 for one academic year of study abroad.
  • Rotary offers a Multi-Year Ambassadorial scholarship for two years of study. The scholarship provides a flat grant of $13,000 for each of the two years to be applied to the cost of study abroad.
  • There is also a Rotary Cultural Ambassadorial Scholarship for three to six months of study for those interested in studying foreign languages and learning about the host country. The scholarship is $13,000 for three months and $19,000 for six months. It helps pay for round-trip transportation, language training and living accommodations with a host family. Applications are available for persons interested in studying Arabic, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin Chinese, Polish, Portugese, Spanish, Swahili and Swedish. The Ambassadorial Scholarship candidate must be a citizen of the country and a resident of the district of the Rotary Club which sponsors her or him, have completed at least two years of college level study or equivalent professional experience (one year for cultural ambassadors) , and not be directly related to a Rotarian, nor an employ of Rotary. The applicant should be proficient in the language of the host country and support one or more of the programs' objectives which include: health care and awareness, aging, literacy and numeracy (mathematical literacy) , urban problems, disabilities, international understanding and goodwill, poverty and hunger, polio eradication or environmental awareness and protection.

2.  Grants for University Teachers

  • The Rotary Grants for University Teachers provide funds to people who are teaching or have taught at secondary school level, or higher, to enable them to teach at colleges and universities in foreign countries. The program is intended to build international understanding as well as encourage higher education in developing countries. Subjects taught should be relevant to the needs of the local population and contribute to the area's social and economic development. The teachers represent their home country and educational institution while abroad and will be asked to speak at Rotary clubs in the host country and to describe their experiences to local Rotary clubs and groups upon their return.
  • Applicants must hold a full-time college or university position for three or more years (or if retired, have held such position) in a subject which will be of practical use to a low income or developing host country which has at least one Rotary club. The applicant must speak the language of the host country and may or may not be a Rotarian. There is no limitation as to age, gender or marital status. Rotary grants are $12,500 for a three to five month term and $22,500 for six to ten months.

3.  Rotary Peace and Conflict Studies and Rotary World Peace Fellows

  • After establishing Centers for International Peace and conflict resolution in 2002, Rotary began to offer international programs for Peace and Conflict Studies. The programs are to train professionals from around the world in conflict resolution and peace-making. The programs are offered in English at the Rotary Centers for International Studies at eight universities around the world. (Duke University and the University of North Carolina; Sciences Po, Paris; University of Bradford, West Yorkshire, England; University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia; International Christian University, Tokyo; University del Salvador, Buenos Aries, Argentina: University of California, Berkeley; and since 2005, a three month program at Chulalongakorn University, Singapore.)  The program accepts up to 70 students per session, twice a year. It accepts participants chosen from many different countries and cultures. Admission to the program is on a competitive, world-wide, basis. Qualifications include a four year undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university, proficiency in the language of the host university, excellent leadership skills, a demonstrated commitment to peace and international understanding and citizenship in the country of the sponsoring Rotary Club.
  • Funding for each participant is a combination of contributions from the Rotary Foundation and the sponsoring Rotary District which donates from their District Designated Funds for full or partial scholarships. The amount of funding is not fixed but is intended to defray most of the participant's participation in the program.
  • Graduates are designated as Rotary World Peace Fellows. After graduation they are expected to work for mediation of disputes, conflict resolution and understanding, food security, health, education, conservation and economic development in undeveloped and impoverished countries around the world.


(This information is paraphrased from the current Rotary International -- Study Abroad website.)