It’s hard to believe we’re halfway through August already.  I’m sure those of you with school-age children or grandchildren are beginning to think about the start of a new academic year - now only a couple of weeks away.  

As students prepare to return to classes, it’s a good time to reflect on Rotary International’s programs focused on students and our club’s efforts with these programs:

  • Interact - Clubs that bring young people together at the high school and college levels to develop leadership skills and have fun through service. The Interact Club at Emmaus High School is a large and active group of students with a passion for service. Youth committee chair Tony Moyer is working with faculty advisor Samantha McFarland on opportunities to bring the Interactors and our members closer together through joint service activities and programs. Stay tuned for more on this… 
  • Rotary Leadership Youth Awards (RYLA) - An intensive leadership program for rising high school seniors focused on developing communication and problem-solving skills, learning from community leaders, having fun and forming lasting friendships. In our district, RYLA conducts its activities at Camp Neidig over Father’s Day weekend. We’re looking forward to sending several outstanding Emmaus High School students to next year’s event.
  • Scholarships - Emmaus Rotary Club recently continued its tradition of awarding scholarships to deserving students from Lehigh Career & Technical Institute and Emmaus High School. This year’s awards went to Autumn Weber and LaSair Nichochlain. Our club has established a goal to add $10,000 per year to our scholarship fund between now and the club’s centennial in 2026. Between dedicated fundraisers and generosity of our members (and growth in the fund’s investments), I’m confident we will reach our goal.
  • Rotary Youth Exchange (RYE) - An international exchange student program for high school students. RYE aims to build peace one young person at a time as students learn a new language, discover another culture, and truly become global citizens. Emmaus Rotary has a long record of sponsoring both inbound and outbound RYE students. It’s always a highlight at club and district events to meet these outstanding young people and hear the joy in their voices as they relate their experiences.

This week’s program will be a presentation by Maya Kita - ERC’s most recent outbound Rotary Youth Exchange student (to France). Maya will be accompanied by her mom, Tammy, who has also acted as a host for inbound students. I’m looking forward to hearing the Kita’s stories. You won’t want to miss it. See you on Thursday morning!

Yours in Rotary,