Definition of a Rebound student:
A Rotary exchange student who has successfully completed his/her exchange year.
What? You don’t want to be here?
We get it.
After experiencing what many rebounds consider to be “the best year of my life”, it’s difficult to transition back home.
Welcome Home Weekend…
Reserve the first weekend of August and join us at the Rebound Orientation. We want your parents with us on Saturday morning. After that, you and current Rotex members will have a chance to share stories about your exchange year.
Click the Resources tab to see the materials that may help you in your transition back home.
Below is a farewell speech given by Carla de Oliveira Silva (Brazil) who was hosted by the Owatonna Rotary Club, 2011-12. Her sentiments may feel familiar:
“A year has passed and now I stand on the brink of returning to a world where I am surrounded by the paradox of everything, and yet nothing being the same. In a couple of weeks, I will reluctantly give my hugs and, fighting the tears, I will say goodbye to people who were once just names on a sheet of paper to return to people that I hugged and fought tears to say goodbye to. I will leave my best friends to return to my best friends. I will go back to the place I came from, and go back to the same things I did last summer and every summer before.
As you walk into your old bedroom, every emotion will pass through you as you reflect on the way your life has changed and the person you have become. You suddenly realize that the things that were most important to you a year ago don’t seem to matter so much anymore, and the things you hold highest now, no one at home will completely understand.
Who will you call first? Where are you going to work? Who will be at the party Saturday night? Who from school will you keep in touch with? Then you start to realize how much things have changed, and you realize the hardest part of being an exchange student is balancing the two completely different worlds you now live in, trying desperately to hold on to everything a while trying to figure out what you have to leave behind. I now know the meaning of true friendship. I’ve left my world to deal with the real world. There have been times when I’ve felt so helpless being hours away from home when I know my family or friends needed me the most, and there are times when I know I have made a difference. Just weeks from now I will leave. Just weeks from now I will take down my pictures, and pack up my clothes. I will leave my friends and families whose random e-mails and phone calls will bring me to laugh and tears this summer, and hopefully years to come. I will take my memories and dreams and put them away for now, saving them for my return to this world.
Just weeks from now I will arrive. Just weeks from now I will unpack my bags and have dinner with my family. I will return to the same friends whose random emails and phone calls have brought me to laugh and tears over the year. I will unpack old dreams and memories that have been put away for the past year.
In just weeks I will dig deep inside to find the strength and conviction to adjust to change and still keep each other close. And somehow, in some way, I will find my place between these two worlds.
In just weeks.
Am I ready?”