Rotary Youth Leadership Award Program – RYLA


RYLA participants will equip themselves for success in their academic, career and personal lives by expanding their knowledge of their leadership potential and enhancing their skills in the areas of creative thinking, communication, problem solving, conflict resolution, interpersonal relationships, and group dynamics.  They will also gain a greater understanding of Rotary and experience first hand the meaning of "Service Above Self".

RYLA is a program for young adults - professionals, entrepreneurs, college/university students, who demonstrate self-awareness, leadership qualities, and concern for others.  

Candidates must be 19 to 25 (inclusive) years of age and able to attend the week long program, staying on campus and free of any other commitments during its duration.

Overall Objectives

  • To develop personal leadership and life management skills
  • To use applied learning to build on concepts presented in order to make topics and discussions meaningful
  • To create lasting bonds of friendship and fellowship among participants
  • To support Rotary principles and encourage service beyond RYLA 

In the RYLA program, participants will: 

  • Gain exposure to issues and exchange ideas with talented people like themselves 
  • Learn how to coordinate youth activities and community service projects in their community
  • Discuss creative approaches for resolving family, social and professional conflicts 
  • Meet Rotary decision-makers in their community and learn about other Rotary programs 

Who Can Participate?

The RYLA program is for young adults with proven leadership experience and potential leaders from diverse backgrounds. Whether they are a college/university student or young professional, RYLA provides a unique opportunity to learn, grow, have fun and make new friends. 

The RYLA experience prepares young people to be leaders in their community, profession, and other facets of everyday life. 

Commitment of RYLArians


A Brief Summary
Level One Personal Development and Self-Assessment

To become more aware of what makes us who we are by examining personal style, values, ethics, family traditions, etc.
To work on areas identified by participants to strengthen leadership effectiveness
To learn how to work with and adapt to others’ styles and needs 

Level Two Group Dynamics and Team Development 

To build trust

  • To learn how to work effectively in various group sizes and purposes
  • To apply team concepts to the achievement of goals
  • To understand group dynamics and issues and how to use them to increase leadership effectiveness 

Level Three Organizational Systems and Career Development 

  • To understand contemporary organizational structures, management philosophies and workplace challenges
  • To develop understanding of and competency in the use of leadership and facilitation tools 
  • To consider career choices, fits and options 

RYLA program runs from mid June 

Held on campus at the State University of New York, Fredonia   

For further information see: