Publication Date

2005

Abstract

Effective preparation of outbound participants for serving as cultural ambassadors is fundamental to Rotary Youth Exchange's (RYE) success in advancing international understanding. Clear articulation of the ambassadorial role and preparation of participants are keys to ensuring that participants achieve the desired outcomes. I conducted a survey and follow-up questioning of Youth Exchange Officers (YEOs) to examine the uniformity of approach to this preparation across Canadian districts. Through this research I discovered that, in spite of diffuse leadership and scant central guidance, YEOs have established sophisticated resources for administering the program and have done so with significant success. However, differences in articulation of expectations and preparation of participants suggest that RYE suffers from a lack of common vision and a dearth of official resources. While YEOs have fostered RYE, Rotary International (RI) should help steer this program and better ensure achievement of the desired outcomes. This research is relevant to those involved in the administration of RYE at the district and international levels. Furthermore, it may be of interest to anyone involved in ensuring that an organization's programming is in line with organizational objectives and makes progress toward the stated institutional vision.

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