Class XIII (2015-2016)

3. GINA KAR-LAY FU

Sponsor Club: Rotary Club of San José Silicon Valley, California, USA, District 5170 

Host Club: Rotary Club of Toowong, Toowong, AUS, District 9600 

Gina is an American of Chinese descent who was born and raised in California. She completed her undergraduate degrees at San José State University (SJSU) where she double majored in Global Studies and Japanese language. While at SJSU, Gina studied abroad for an academic year at Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan. After graduating, she worked at a local non-profit organization where she supported the educational developmental needs of underprivileged children (ages 1-14) from immigrant families. Gina then worked as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ukraine for the next two years. She collaborated with Ukrainian educators to develop new learning resources and strategies for the classroom in addition to implementing other civic initiatives within the community. Upon returning to the United States, Gina joined an online educational platform as a curriculum developer with the goal of bridging the achievement gap in education for over 1.8 million student users in grades K-8 in over 36,000 schools. Gina recently completed her internship at a Chinese ecotourism social enterprise as part of her applied fieldwork experience (AFE) for Rotary and helped lay the foundation for the organization’s new sustainable development program in Zhonglu, a Tibetan village located in the Ganzi Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. As a result of the AFE, she feels she received a valuable opportunity to work for an organization that occupies a unique niche in society during such a dynamic period in Chinese politics. She hopes to use the knowledge and skills gained through the Rotary Peace Fellowship to become more deeply involved with youth development and community empowerment in underrepresented regions. 

Gina enjoys interacting with her community and was a food pantry volunteer. With her two dogs, she also volunteered at a senior citizen home and was part of a reading buddies program. Her other interests include traveling and learning languages. Gina speaks Japanese, Russian, and Cantonese and is currently learning Mandarin and Korean.