Spend a Whole Year Abroad

Year Long Program

North Star Youth Exchange offers international abroad opportunities for students who meet our requirements. You can choose to participate in the program either during your high school years or in a gap year following high school.
Rotary International
Program Objectives

Program Objective

  1. To further international understanding and goodwill.
  2. Learn and adapt to another culture, while sharing your own.

Qualifications of Applicants

  • At least 15 years of age and not over 19 years at the time of departure. (Most receiving countries require that students are no older than 18 years 6 months.) See the Countries page for the list of countries.
  • Student must be a freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior in high school at time of application.
  • Student must demonstrate scholastic competence and be involved in extra-curricular activities.
  • Dietary restrictions may limit your options of host countries.

The selected student will:

  • Attend high school in their host country. (Grade placement cannot be guaranteed)
  • Act as a student ambassador, sharing customs and adapting to the host country’s culture.
  • Demonstrate a willingness to be flexible throughout the exchange process.
  • Follow the rules, regulations and counseling of the sponsoring and host Rotary clubs and Rotary districts.
  • Rules will be discussed at orientation sessions prior to departure.
  • COVID vaccination is required for all North Star Outbound Students.

Parents of the selected student will:

  • Pay the participation fee (which includes airfare, orientation materials, basic insurance, blazer, etc.).
  • Pay costs of passport, visa or residency permit, inoculations, gifts, local travel, personal items.
  • Abide by the rules and decisions as set forth by the Rotary International Youth Exchange Committee here and in the host country.
  • Pay costs of host country language camp, if required.

Rotary Club in host country will:

  • Correspond with student prior to arrival, giving pertinent data of the host city and family.
  • Meet and transport the student from point of arrival to host family.
  • Furnish one year’s education in a high school.
  • Be responsible for the physical well-being of the student.
  • Supervise the student’s activities, opportunities and experiences.

Simplified Outline for Outbound Application, Interview and Preparation Process

Application Deadline for exchange year 2024-25 is November 15, 2023

Scholarships Available to All Students

Rotary is proud to provide the most affordable youth exchange program by subsidizing the cost of studying abroad. Valued at over $14,000, this support for high school students covers room, board, tuition, and a monthly stipend for the academic year abroad program.

Participation Costs

The cost of participation in the outbound North Star Rotary Youth Exchange Program for students applying for the 2024-2025 program year, is $7,000.

This includes:

  • Airfare – round trip, open ended ticket to host country
  • Basic overseas accident/sickness/personal liability
  • 3 Orientation sessions
  • Rotary blazer
  • Rotary emblem
  • Orientation materials
  • Pins for trading
  • Name badge

Not included in the participation fee are:

  • Costs of passport, visa or residency permit
  • Visits to consulate
  • Host country language camp or language instruction
  • Inoculations
  • Gifts
  • Local travel
  • Personal items

Payment Schedule

Payment of the fee is due in increments as follows:

  1. January 27, 2024 (1st Orientation): $2,000
  2. February 24, 2024 (2nd Orientation): $2,000
  3. April 13, 2024 (3rd Orientation): $3,000

The fee is subject to change if there is a significant change in airfare. Should the student discontinue participation in the program, the unused portion of the fee will be refunded, less a service charge, dependent upon time of withdrawal. See schedule below.

Financial assistance may be available to the student, based on need. The availability and amount of assistance will be determined by the sponsoring Rotary club and the Youth Exchange Finance Committee.

While in the exchange country, students will receive a monthly allowance from the host Rotary club for miscellaneous spending.

North Star Rotary Youth Exchange Refund of Program Fees:

Qualifications of Applicants

  • On or before January 27, 2024 (1st orientation) – the full program fee is refundable.
  • Between January 28 and February 24, 2024 (2nd orientation) – the full program fee less $150 is refundable.
  • Between February 25 and April 13, 2024 (3rd orientation) – the full program fee less $350 is refundable.
  • On or after April 14, 2024 – the full program fee less $550 is refundable.
  • Once a student’s airline ticket is issued, 25% of the total program fee is refundable and 75% of the total program fee is non-refundable.
  • On the date a student is scheduled to depart for his/her host country, regardless of whether the student departs, the student will not receive any refund.
  • Once a student flies out to his/her host country, the student will not receive any refund.
  • Students who return home due to disciplinary reasons, home sickness, or inability to manage medical, mental, emotional or social health conditions will not receive any refund.
  • In the event that Rotary International (RI) or North Star Youth Exchange cancels the exchange, all students will receive a full refund.

A written request for refund must be sent to all of the following:

  • North Star Rotary Youth Exchange at: 4700 Lexington Ave. N., Suite C, Shoreview, MN 55126
  • or email letter to rotarynorthstaroffice@gmail.com
  • Travel One – Riverview Office Tower #1500, 8009 – 34th Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55425
  • Your Country Officer
  • Your Sponsor Club Youth Exchange Officer

The request is considered received by North Star by referring to the date and time of the postmark date, or timestamp of your e-mail.

If you have been provided with the following items, they must be returned to the North Star Rotary Youth Exchange Office in new condition:

  • Youth Exchange Blazer
  • Youth Exchange Trading Pins


If your airline ticket has been purchased: Any agent fees sustained will be deducted from your refund.  If it is non-refundable, the ticket amount and any associated agent fees will be deducted from your refund.  Your refund will be sent to you when the airline has credited our account with Travel One.  This takes approximately 4-6 weeks.

Your future begins here!

Apply now and prepare for an unforgettable year abroad with North Star Youth Exchange.