Why Not Study Abroad As A Rotary Foundation Global Grant Scholar?
District 5890 Global Grant Scholarships Committee Co-Chairs:
Jenna Buscemi - Click here to email Jenna
Our Rotary District 5890 Global Grant Scholarship Committee Co-Chairs are here to help scholarship applicants and the Rotary clubs to learn more about the application process.


Gwen has Master’s Degrees from both the University of Wyoming, her home state, and Colorado State University, and is currently a third-year PhD student at Baylor College of Medicine.  She plans to attend the University of Western Australia in Perth on her scholarship and is interested in pregnancy and pre-term birth.  “Preterm birth (PTB) is the leading cause of infant death and early life disabilities and is responsible for 36% of deaths in infants under the age of 5.” 
Click here to learn more about Gwen.
(Above, our 2024-2025 Rotary Foundation Global Scholar, Gwendolyn (Gwen) Hummel)
While our committee has selected Gwen in December 2023, we are pleased to announce that District 5890 will once again sponsor $30,000 Global Grant Scholars for the 2025-2026 Rotary year. 
In August 2024 all details, deadlines and the application for the 2025-2026 Scholarship will be sent to all District 5890 Rotary clubs and also posted on our Rotary District 5890 webpage.
  Global Grant Scholarships support graduate-level study for career-minded professionals and are required to qualify under one of the seven Areas of Focus established by The Rotary FoundationAlthough it is not required in the Global Grant structure, the District Foundation Leadership Team has decided to retain the ambassadorial nature of the scholarship program in District 5890. 



general qualifications:

  • The academic program must be located in a foreign country.
  • The applicant must complete a District 5890 Global Grant Scholarship Application and submit to their local Rotary club for consideration.
  • The scholar must have selected the university that he/she wants to attend.
  • The scholar must be studying within one of the Seven Areas of Focus established by Rotary International.
  • The academic program must be no less than one academic year.
  • The program must be a graduate level program only.
  • The 2024-2025 scholar must begin his/her academic program during the 2025-26 Rotary year.
  • The applicant must complete all required reports during and after his/her scholarship time.
  • The applicant should submit as detailed a budget as possible of the expected expenses for the scholarship period, including details of any other scholarships and/or sources of funding.
  • The scholar must outline a service project in their study country (it will be discussed during the district interview) and execute the service plan in the study country during scholarship time within the Seven Areas of Focus, if the tuition and living expenses do not exceed USD$30,000.
  • The scholar may NOT be (1) a Rotarian; (2) an employee of a club, district, or other Rotary entity, or of Rotary International; (3) the spouse, a lineal descendant (child or grandchild by blood or stepchild legally adopted or not), the spouse of a lineal descendant, or an ancestor (parent or grandparent by blood) of any person in the foregoing two categories.
  • The scholar should live in the vicinity of approved study institution, preferably in the host district, so that he/she can participate in the Rotary club and district activities of the host district.
  • Additional terms and conditions are outlined in the District 5890 Global Grant Scholarship Application.

Rotary's Seven Areas of Focus

The following are the study areas as established by The Rotary Foundation and Rotary International.  Scholars must plan to pursue a course of study in one of the seven areas of focus spelled out by Rotary International (RI), and their graduate-level educational goals should support this career interest. 
       3.  Water and sanitation
       4.  Maternal and child health
       7. Environment

A New Focus on Service Learning

If the total cost of a Scholar’s academic fees and living expenses do not exceed USD$30,000, they must complete a service project in their host community.  This project must be presented at the District interview.  If accepted, the scholar must take the initiative to make contacts in his/her host country and secure funding for the project. The service project MUST fall within the scholar’s study area, and thus within the above Seven Areas of Focus. 

A good service project should:

  • incorporate local Rotary clubs and Rotarians
  • serve a specific population within the host community
  • plan for public relations, press releases, and community announcements within the host community and at home
  • be documented and photographed
  • plan for funding options or incorporate fund-raising
  • cover a need within the host community based on local feedback and appropriate research
  • be measurable and sustainable
  • reflect an interest of the scholar while meeting a need within the host community
  • meet the 4-Way Test of ethical standards

General Timeline for Selecting a  Scholar (all dates will be posted in August 2024)

August - The scholarship materials and application will be made available to the club presidents. Clubs then should develop a committee for interviewing and selecting a candidate. Clubs will conduct interviews based on a schedule that fits the needs of the clubs. Clubs must select one candidate and notify all candidates of selection at the appropriate time.
October – Deadline by which clubs must see that all application documents are received by the District Global Grants Scholarships Chair.
December - District interviews will be held in Houston, Texas for scholars wanting to begin study in 2025-26.  If the candidate is unable to be interviewed in person that day, the applicant might not be eligible to receive a scholarship.
January  – Global Scholar Elect Training Seminar (GSETS) in Houston.  This seminar is for the successful candidates from the interviews.  Attending this seminar, or one in another state, is mandatory prior to beginning the scholarship year.
Funding for scholarships will be determined based upon availability of District funds year-to-year.

Sponsoring a Global Grant Scholar

How to Become a Sponsor Counselor & Club

Rotary clubs that want to sponsor a Global Grant Scholar must be qualified under the grant management guidelines and have signed all the documents in the Grants Qualification Package (available online at the District website), before they can do so.
  • Discuss the opportunity with your club President and Board.
  • Promote the opportunity within your area through a variety of media
  • Begin interviews of applicants.
  • Submit one application to the District Scholarship Committee by the deadline in October.
  • Appoint a club member as a Sponsor Calendar

Roles & Responsibilities of a Sponsor Counselor & Club

Before the district scholarship interviews
  • Assist the candidate in completing the district scholarship application and preparing for the club and district interviews.
  • Assist the candidate in creating a realistic scholarship budget, as well as a personal one.
  • Assist the candidate in identifying a service project, if one will be required in the host country.
  • Provide the candidate with a copy of the Terms and Conditions for Rotary Foundation Global Grants
If selected as a Candidate by the District 5890 Global Grant Scholarships Committee
  • At the conclusion of the interviews, the District 5890 Scholarships Committee will select candidates to be presented to The Rotary Foundation to continue the application process. The candidate is not guaranteed a Global Grant Scholarship until the final approval is given by The Rotary Foundation, and all necessary paperwork is completed.
  • The candidate selected by the District Scholarships Committee will then be given a User Name and Password by The Rotary Foundation, with which to access the Rotary web site (www.rotary.org), in order to fill out their Global Grant Application (the Global Grant Application questions are very similar to those on the district Global Grant Scholarship Application).
  • Once endorsed, it is the responsibility of the endorsed candidate and their sponsoring Rotary club to jointly complete and submit the Global Grant Application on the Rotary International web site.  The Rotary Foundation will ultimately determine the final approval or disapproval of the Global Grant Application.
  • The District Committee will assist in identifying an international host club and counselor.  Early contact between the host and international sponsor Rotarians can help facilitate the scholar’s transition in the host country.
  • Identify any relevant application or other deadlines that the candidate may have (e.g., university deposits).
  • Assist the scholar in preparing the Global Grant Application, by helping with proper Rotary terminology, and being sure that the Area of Focus is described fully as to its relevance to their studies, and to the project, if required.
  • “Sustainability” and “Measurability” are key words to remember when describing the scholar’s impact, both while in their host country, and after they return home.
  • There is certain banking information that you will need to provide with this application.  The club must have a bank account dedicated solely to the handling of this Global Grant Scholarship funding. You will need to provide routing information for this account on the web site.
  • You will need several authorizations from club and district officers, both here and abroad, before this application can be filed.

After the Global Grant Application is approved

  • The Foundation provides funds directly to the sponsoring club account, which has been dedicated to the handling of this funding.
  • Clearly communicate payment and reporting schedules to the scholar.Provide the scholar of the approved budget and communicate expectations about eligible expenses (e.g., groceries, yes; liquor, no).  Complete the payment process, along with the host sponsors online.
  • Once the funds have been transferred from The Rotary Foundation, send funds to the scholar based on the previously established schedule.
  • Arrange for the scholar to attend the Global Scholar Elect Training Seminar (GSETS) in Houston during January.  Attending training prior to departure is required of all scholars.  The scholar’s registration fee will be paid for by District 5890. *It is strongly suggested that the scholar be accompanied by the sponsor counselor of the sponsoring Rotary club.
  • Arrange visits to Rotary club meetings, district functions, and other Rotary-related events.
  • Consider supplying the scholar with club banners to exchange while abroad.  An adequate supply of business cards, with the Rotary emblem and their picture, would also be helpful.

During the scholarship period

  • Maintain regular correspondence with the scholar, in order to share news with fellow Rotarians at sponsor club meetings and to enable the award recipient to relate news about the sponsor club to the host club.
  • Encourage the scholar to share concerns or problems experienced abroad.  An award recipient may sometimes feel uncomfortable involving the host counselor in a sensitive issue and will turn to you as a symbolic contact back home.
  • If the scholarship is longer than 12 months, collect interim reports from the scholar for submission to The Rotary Foundation and receipts for expenses of US$75 and more for the retention and reporting requirements for the District 5890 Audit Committee for their scholarship year.

     After the scholarship

  • If possible, arrange to meet and welcome the award the recipient home.
  • Help the scholar arrange speaking engagements at clubs in your district. In addition to giving club members the opportunity to learn about the scholar’s experiences, such events help publicize the Foundation.
  • Ensure that the scholar submits a final report to you, with applicable receipts.
  • Be sure to submit a final report to The Rotary Foundation on the web site within two months of the scholar’s return.
  • Encourage the scholar’s participation in any Foundation alumni activities available in the district in which he/she resides after the scholarship term.
  • Maintain communication with the scholar and keep track of his/her current address.
  • Finally, be strong in follow-up, communication, and p-a-t-i-e-n-c-e.


Complete the worksheet and provide to your club for reference. This worksheet is intended to provide your club with an approximate cost for sponsoring a scholar. What else may be an expense?
Name tag for scholar
Once selected, it’s a nice gift from your club.
Complimentary meal(s) at home club/Send-off celebration
Cost varies per club, and you may invite scholar to many meals.
Scholar’s attendance at District
dinner events, such as the District Leadership Installation Banquet,
All Club Meeting, etc.
Visit district web site (www.rotary5890.org)
for current events.
Scholar’s attendance at District Assembly, District Conference, Rotary Foundation Seminar, etc.
Visit district website.
Business cards for scholar.
Available online.
Send-off gift or travel basket
Not required, but a nice idea.
Rotary District pin
Usually free from your DG.
Several club banners for exchange abroad
Scholar usually brings 10-15 banners from home club.