Many of you are welcoming new students into
your homes this month and moving them into their dorm rooms.
GRSP CONCLAVE - AUGUST 23-25
Students will be attending Conclave hosted by District 6920 at Georgia Southern
University in Statesboro, Georgia the weekend of August 23-25,
2019. The Conclave allows all of the GRSP
students to come together and meet one another for the first time. It's also a
great weekend for GRSP host families, past and present, to share
experiences. During Conclave, students attend educational sessions that
are designed to help them adjust to life in the US and to become
part of their host families, clubs and schools. GRSP Trustees also attend to
receive valuable program updates and training.
GRSP liaisons from Rotary clubs across
the state are strongly encouraged to attend to gain a better understanding of
GRSP and each club's integral role in the experience. All Rotarians are
invited to come enjoy the fun and fellowship at the evening functions
throughout the weekend to support the students, particularly on Saturday night
where the students sing, act in skits, recite poetry that they’ve written, play
musical instruments or dance – whatever their talent.
Please contact your GRSP Trustee for
specific information on the Conclave and/or register at www.grsp.org
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
Plans are already being made by several
of our clubs to host the students on several weekends during the year.
have a brand new sponsor for one of the weekends, the Rotary Club of Columbus. If
the past Conclave in Columbus is any indication, the weekend of September 6-8,
2019 will be a very special weekend.
- The second weekend is scheduled
11-13 in Savannah.
- The North Fulton Rotary Clubs will be hosting the students November 1-3.
- The GRSP Leadership Weekend takes place January 17-19, 2020 - sponsored by the Rotary Club of Dunwoody with help from Gainesville, Buckhead, North Atlanta, Brookhaven and more
- The Rotary Club of Pelham will host March 26-29, 2020
- Camden County will welcome the students April 2-5, 2020
These weekends allow the students to learn more about what it
means to be living in a global society and how they can impact the world. They participate in team building activities, service projects and networking between
themselves and Rotarians. These are great bonding experiences for all who
involve themselves and not just weekends for fun and games. These clubs
work very hard on these weekends and we thank them for their dedication to the
STRATEGIC PLANNING NEWS
The Strategic Planning Committee has
been meeting nearly every other month over the last two years to review the
operations and future of the Georgia Rotary Student Program. Since this
program is a nonprofit corporation, one person cannot make a decision for the
entire organization. It is a democratically operated organization, which
requires a vote from each director, officer and voting trustee. GRSP only
has three business meetings per year. At our January and July meetings, we were
able to get many of our recommendations passed, including approval of a new position called the Director of Development and Outreach. This position will
entail travel throughout all three districts and require close ties with
the Savannah Office. We are also working on a new website that we plan to release and unveil at our Conclave in late August. We have created a new timeline for our host families and have adopted the timeline
for our trustees that District 6900 has been using for over five years.
We have been discussing the lack of
diversity with our student population and the problems that all face with the
escalating costs of higher education. Last summer the Strategic Planning
Committee decided to try something new with selection that could also impact
the costs of the program for a club. The Rotary Club of Dunwoody was asked by the GRSP Board and voted last year to
be the first club to try the new program, based on their strong connections with Oglethorpe University. Since the club had a large
committee focused on GRSP, the GRSP Board voted to allow the Dunwoody Club to
assess the program for the 2019-2020 Rotary Year. Selection would be
delayed until summer when the applications came in to Oglethorpe
University. Dunwoody announced that they were able to offer a scholarship
to a Freshman from Ethiopia and would. The Dunwoody Club will be matching
the funds given by the GRSP Endowment, which cuts their program costs by more
than half. No one can remember ever having a student from Ethiopia.
By newsletter time, she may already have arrived in Georgia with the rest of
the students. There were a few hurtles that the club had to overcome, but
the club had a very strong relationship with the university and a time
commitment from several Rotarians. If your club is interested, please
speak with your trustee to find out the details and get approval from the
Program. This could be a game-changer for your club!!
This year 22 of our clubs
gave more than $50 per capita to the GRSP Endowment (four more than last year)
and will be receiving either an incentive check or a credit, depending on
whether or not they are hosting a student this year. The original purpose
of the incentive program was to encourage clubs to host a student and give
to the endowment. The Endowment Trustees do not believe that this program
has encouraged much additional giving, but the Trustees as a whole believe that
it has and voted to continue the program again; however, the Trustees also voted
to allow a credit to those clubs that are not hosting a student for the
following year to be held in perpetuity until the club decides to host a
student. Because this is an endowment, we have complicated rules from the
IRS; hence, we have complicated rules on the incentive rebate. I do have
a copy of the rules and will be happy to furnish it to you upon request.
A committee will be meeting in October
to determine how much the Endowment will be able to give to assist with tuition
for next year. Representatives from our District always push for higher
assistance than the financial representatives advise, as we believe that it
will enhance program participation and Endowment giving.