The Van Horn Rotary Club had a surprise guest at their weekly meeting Tuesday. Former Foreign Exchange Student to Van Horn, Rasmus Stensbek-Jensen from Denmark was in town visiting John and Vicky Jones who sponsored him as a one of the three host families he had during his high school year here in 2005-2006. Lisa Morton also attended with Rasmus as she was his Youth Exchange Officer and District Committee Member at that time.
Rasmus spoke to the club on his experience in Van Horn and with the District Youth Exchange group of about 20 students from more than a dozen countries. Looking back, Rasmus is grateful for the opportunity and had a great stay here. He participated in Cross Country running and played on the Tennis Team. “Rasumus was a model exchange student”, remarked Morton.
The goal of the program is “to promote the advancement of international understanding, goodwill and peace at the person to person level.” Studying abroad is one of the largest decisions a student can make, and more often than not, the most life-changing decision a student will make.
Ideal Youth Exchange candidates are young, open-minded individuals who demonstrate leadership qualities that will enable them to become excellent cultural ambassadors for their country and the Rotary club or district that supports them. Applicants are not required to be involved with Rotary in any way before applying. Children of Rotarians are welcome to participate but are not given any preference. Students with disabilities are encouraged to apply.
It has been several years since the local club participated in the youth exchange program. A lack of interest from Van Horn students and the necessary funds the club would have to pay for them has been short.
Rasmus is now based in Copenhagen, Denmark and works in Public Affairs with the government. He has also lived in the United Kingdom, Dublin, Ireland, and has done extensive traveling.