Posted on Sep 02, 2019
It was a cold evening when I left my warm dormitory to go to my very first Rotary night, a networking night to be more precise. I already knew of Rotary, but I had never been to a Rotary event before. Since I had just arrived in Canada, I thought that this would be an excellent opportunity to get to know more people. How wrong I was!! Wrong because I was blessed with so much more than just ‘meeting people’. I was warmly welcomed by Kateri Clark, this year's Rotary Club President and quickly introduced to all the Rotarians and Rotaractors. They made me feel so welcome, and I immediately signed up for membership of the Rotaract (Student) Club of Ottawa South.
I found so many new friends because of Rotaract Ottawa South, and I explored many more places in Canada than I ever dreamed of. We did community service together, had weekly sessions, and lived what Rotary stands for: dedicated service to people. 
But this isn’t the end of the story. As if being a club member wasn’t enough, I also became a committee member of the Adventure in Citizenship Program. This program is organized by the Rotary Club of Ottawa, Canada each year and invites young Canadians from all around the country (it is a big country, so the program is quite large you can imagine) to Ottawa for a few days to talk about the meaning of being a Canadian citizen. Fun fact: I probably know more about Canadian citizenship than most of my Canadian friends now. I met new friends, and it has been a blessing to see so many young people in Ottawa, dreaming of pursuing a career in politics and helping their fellow Canadians in their future. Young people are our future, and these past days have proved to me that young people do care about what’s going on in the world.
This is still not the end of my rotary success story. At the networking night, I met a person who is working together with the United Nations. I told her that working for the UN has always been my dream, and she said that there might be the possibility of an internship in NY soon. A few days later, I talked to a UN Staff member, and he encouraged me to apply for their internship position. Long story short: I applied for the job, and after the whole application process, I got the job. 
I am in NYC now, working for the UN and thinking about this very first networking night and how much I have benefitted from just going to the event: Club membership, being a Committee member and interning at the UN. And all of this while becoming friends with incredible people, all dedicated to making the world a little brighter for our fellow human beings. There are three reasons why I wanted to share this post: First, to encourage my fellow students to be pro-active and to go to events. You will meet new friends, and it might even help you to secure your dream internship. Second, become a member of your local Rotary or Rotaract Club, you will not regret it. Third, to say thank you to the Rotary Club of Ottawa and the Rotaract Club of Ottawa South for a great time and for being like a second family during my time in Canada and to all the people from Rotary who helped me to thrive.
Going to this networking party was literally the best decision I have made in 2019. Thank you again for EVERYTHING.
Regards from NY, 
Max K