Jessica came to NZ this year on a Rotary Foundation Global Grant scholarship from Virginia.  She earned a Master of Teaching in Learning to be a high school English teacher from Canterbury University but what has been most memorable and life-changing for her has been the experience of living abroad. “Along with all the tramps and travel in this stunningly beautiful country it is almost a case of where have I NOT been?”
"I also think that my living in New Zealand has achieved part of Rotary's mission, particularly through the fourth guiding principle - “the advancement of international understanding, goodwill, and peace through a world fellowship of business and professional persons united in the ideal of service.” I understand a different culture and have effectively become an ambassador for Māori tikanga.
I am finding one whakataukī to ring particularly for teaching, and also more broadly in all of life's circumstances:
He aha te mea nui o te ao?
He tangata, he tangata, he tangata.
What is the most important thing in the world?
It is the people, it is the people, it is the people.
I will be returning to America so much more aware of other people’s cultures and how to embrace them and build on them in the classroom."
The benefits of Rotary’s scholarships are echoed by the many who take part whether into NZ or out to other parts of the world.  These men and women become leaders in their communities and hopefully in time Rotarians (Clubs to stay in contact and ask if they would like to join, but equally Rotary Alumni are welcome to contact Rotary to continue their involvement).