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Rotary Club of Bendigo Group Study Exchange History

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In 1963 District 9800 first became involved in the notion of sending a group off -shore to study vocational and cultural aspects.

PDG Frank Newman, from the Rotary Club of Melbourne, led a five week study tour to Papua New Guinea.

The five participants from varying occupations had the objective to study the life, activities and aspirations of the people of Papua New Guinea.

 It is likely that this program was the forerunner of what we now know as the Rotary International Group Study Exchange program. (GSE)

In 1965 GSE was adopted by the Rotary International Foundation as an official educational program. 

The Group Study Exchange (GSE) Program of The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International is an educational exchange which promotes international understanding through person-to-person contact.

The programme provides for teams of professional men and women aged 25-40 to exchange vocational visits between paired Rotary Districts in different countries.

It has a highly competitive selection process.

This becomes evident when we consider that in the 41 years the RCB has been involved in the programme we have nominated 5 members of our Club to be Team Leader with just 2 being successful and nominated 12 community candidates to be Team Members with just 5 being selected.

In 1965 the first District 9800 GSE team went to Canada led by Rtn.John Nathan.

Rotary Club of Bendigo involvement in GSE programme began in 1973when our Club member, Rtn Bruce Reid, was selected as Team Leader to D 278 Ohio USA.

1978 the Club supported the successful selection of John Esnouff to be part of the team to North America D640

1984 the Club supported two candidates (Colin Fraunfelder and Dennis Higgins) to be part of the team to Texas/New Mexico.

Dennis Higgins was successful in being selected as a Team Member.

1989. Nominated Gerard Scanlon to be a team member to the USA but he was not selected.

1990. Nominated Rtn David brown to be Team Leader to Pennsylvania USA but he was not selected. 

1992. The Club interviewed two community candidates for team member but resolved not to put forward their applications to District.

1997. Nominated two Club members for position of Team Leader to Indonesia but both were unsuccessful.

1998 Nominated a Club member to be team Leader to D1090 Berkshire England but they were unsuccessful. 

In 2005 the Club nominated Lisa Martin (Latrobe Uni) to be a team member to New Mexico but she was not successful.

In 2012 the Club supported two applicants, Briana Cowan and Jacinta Lean, to be part of the outgoing team to D5230 California USA.under the leadership of PDG. Greg Ross. Both were selected. In 2012 the Club also proposed our member Rtn. Tom Seddon as leader for this team but in the final analysis he had to yield to past DG. Greg Ross.

In 2013 the Club was again successful in having Elizabeth Nuttall selected to be part of the team to D1080 Cambridge UK under the leadership of Rtn. Julie Mason. (who is to be our DG in 2015/16)

In 2014 the Club successfully supported our own member Rtn Phil West for the position as GSE Team Leader to D 1860 Germany.   

The RCB Club has also hosted 24 incoming GSE teams;

1973             D278 Ohio

1979             Brazil

1980            D 640 North America

1984             D552 Texas/New Mexico

1987             D 141 Finland and another team from Connecticut USA

1988             D 980 India

1989            Austria

1989             D 251 Hokkaido Japan

1990             D736 Pennsylvania

1992              Florida

1993             D 3550 Thailand

1997             Indonesia

2000             D6800 Nth Mississippi

2001             Brittany France

2003             Sweden/Latvia

2005             New Mexico

2006             South Korea

2007             Netherlands

2008             Iowa/Nebraska

2009             Turkey

2010             Spain

2011            D 1080 Cambridge UK

2012             D 1860 Germany 

2014 DG. Murray Verso has advised, despite RI ceasing to endorse/support the GSE programme, that in 2015 there will be a District 9800 GSE Team and it will be going to D6840 in the USA.

(Sth East Louisiana and Sth Mississippi)

Applications for Team Leader close October 3

Applications for Team Member close October 10

The next D9800 GSE Team will leave Australia on March 22nd 2015.


Fossicker  gse article 2014.

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