What is a "Rebound" Exchange Student?
Rebounds are students who have spent a year abroad on the Rotary Youth Exchange program and return home for their "rebound year." This is a year of transition for them, as they:
  • Reflect on the change they have undergone in their host country
  • Focus on reintegrating into their home culture, school, friendship circles and social networks
While the Rebounds are excited to share their experiences from their year abroad, this may be a time that is confusing for them. Many find they are now a part of two cultures: their host culture and home culture.
Our commitment to the Rebound students is to provide a support network as they go through this transitional year. In the fall, after their exchange year, Rebounds are invited to an orientation where they can share their experiences with fellow Rebounds who understand their joys and challenges. We provide a facilitator to work with the Rebounds, in exercises where they explore ways they've changed, and discuss ways to translate their exchange experience into their lives back at home and future goals. A professional referral may be made for kids who have had particular challenges on their exchange year.
It is our hope that the Rebounds will transition from students who are served and helped by RYE, to a group who is serving and helping the Exchange Program, and others. We ask Rebounds to work with their sponsoring clubs to:
  • Recruit and train prospective Outbound students
  • Help provide orientation for Inbound students in their community
  • Participate in their sponsoring Rotary club's service projects
  • Share their experiences from abroad with their club and community
  • Continue to be outstanding representatives of the program.
Students who excel in these areas are invited to the Inbound Orientation, to serve as trainers and role models for Inbounds and Outbounds. At the same time, many Rebounds enjoy the chance to strengthen friendships in their Rebound class and expand their Rotary connections and network.
We hope Rotarians make an effort to seek out Rebounds in their communities, invite them to club events when appropriate and keep them involved in RYE and other Rotary service activities. Rebounds can sign up for Rotex, an organization of RYE alumni, or join a local Rotaract group, perhaps one day becoming Rotarians themselves. Rebounds represent the "finished product" of the Rotary Youth Exchange program. Although the goal of RYE is not to create future Rotarians, we hope their experiences from the program lead them to adopt some of the goals that Rotarians hold dear: service above self, working toward a better understanding among cultures, and world peace.