Wilde readies for exchange in Bolivia
Veronica Wilde decided when she was in sixth grade that she wanted to be an exchange student in a foreign land. Now, the Seward High School junior is headed to Bolivia in August for a year as a student ambassador in the National Rotary Youth Exchange through the Anchorage club.
Wilde started planning for an exchange in her freshman year by doubling up on her class load, and once she knew she had enough credits to skip a year, she researched the various exchange programs and settled on Rotary. “I chose Rotary because I felt as though the selection process made it more of a challenge, and that it was a tighter, more diverse group of young individuals that had future goals in international business.” said Wilde in an e-mail interview. “Rotary has done several things. The biggest one being helping fight polio. That make me proud to say I’m a Rotary Exchange ambassador.”
In Santa Cruz, Boliva Wilde will live with three host families. She has met one of the families, the Cadarios. With them she will have a 16-year-old sister, a 17-year-old sister and a 19-year-old brother. However, the 17-year-old sister will be in Kenai as a Rotary youth ambassdor.
She will attend a Roman Catholic school with almost 3,000 students, and currently she feels that language is her biggest challenge.
“I’m looking forward to bring able to experience something that is bound to change my views on certain things, broaden my horizons, and learn about an entire new world. I want to graduate and go to college to pursue a degree in journalism and spend my life traveling and writing. So being able to get a taste of I want my future to be at such a young age is a privilege.” said Wilde.
When asked about Wilde and why she was selected for the exchange, District Youth Exchange Director Tom Martin said, “It was her interests and abilities. She’s an outstanding young lady,” and added that other Rotarians did most of the interviewing and reviewing of applications. He said the Alaska district, which also includes Russia east of the Ural Mountains and the Yukon Territory of Canada, works with 17 or 18 countries on the youth exchanges. Information about the program is online at www.ye5010.org.
To help finance her exchange Wilde will hold a Dessert Night and Silent Auction from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, June 9 at Hotel Seward. The fee is $10 in advance and $15 at the door. The fare includes an all-you-can-eat dessert buffet with desserts prepared by Amy Mow and Judy Odhner, coffee and punch. Tickets are available from Veronica Wilde, 491-1161 or email@example.com, or Jackie Wilde 491-0029 or firstname.lastname@example.org.