About Us

Peace Through Understanding

The World Affairs Seminar (WAS) is a unique interactive educational program for high school students. The week-long experience provides an opportunity for international students from a variety of backgrounds to discuss issues in a non-threatening environment. They experience new and different ideas and viewpoints brought forward both by their colleagues and by world renowned experts.

Our Mission

Our mission is to build strong international leaders and foster peace and understanding among participants, staff and speakers in an environment of open dialogue where innovative, rigorous academics are offered through programs that focus on global issues.

Through this one-week global issues summer camp, our vision is to enrich high school students with better understanding of world problems through:

  • Exposure to current issues from diverse perspectives

  • Discussion and problem-solving

  • Interactions with youth from other countries

  • Opportunities to develop solutions

  • Platforms from which to present and defend ideas

Who & What We Are

The World Affairs Seminar (WAS) is a unique interactive educational program for high school students, sponsored by Rotary International District 6270. The week-long experience provides an opportunity for international students from a variety of backgrounds to discuss issues in a non-threatening environment. Since WAS first accepted students in 1977, over 30,000 future world leaders have participated. Many have stayed in touch with the friends they made at WAS, even forming business relationships, political contacts and family friendships.

Our vision is to bring better understanding of world problems to young people from around the globe,using current issues as a learning platform. In the course of this study, the WAS provides opportunities for participants to discuss issues with other young people from around the world. Emphasis is on promoting better understanding of the causes of international conflict.  The idea is if the causes are understood and solutions developed in a cooperative environment, problems are more likely to be solved peacefully.

Participants experience new and different ideas and viewpoints brought forward both by their colleagues and by world renowned experts. In small and large groups students discuss information and ideas and put their new knowledge to use. Through public policy simulations they work through the complex interactions of different countries, corporations and organizations to develop their own policy initiative. The university setting provides a college-like experience, including use of the residence halls and campus dining.

Throughout the week students have time for recreational activities.  The seminar brings greater awareness and understanding of the world they will inherit. Critical thinking, negotiation skills and the process of learning about new friends from around the world are all part of this incredible experience.

Our Story 

The World Affairs Seminar (WAS) was founded in 1977 by Professors Dr. Gaylon Greenhill and Dr. Dale Brock. Dr. Brock became the first WAS General Manager. His vision and enthusiasm for the Program were central to its success. He was the embodiment of the dream he had for our world, always ready to learn something new and spend hours listening to the participants, staff and speakers. He believed that we could advance the cause of peace in this world by gathering together to learn from one another. It is his tireless devotion that continues to inspire and motivate all who work as Seminar Staff today.

Dr. Brock died September 2, 2008. A scholarship fund in his memory has been created to honor his efforts and ensure his vision carries forward.

Throughout the last 34 years, the World Affairs Seminar has covered timely and significant topics, including human rights, world hunger, globalization, nuclear arms control, international economics, environmental issues, global health, security, and global leadership, all with an emphasis on ways students can make a difference now and in the future.

The World Affairs Seminar has offered students an opportunity to interact with leaders from government, international organizations, the media, and business. Past keynote speakers include Dith Pran, New York Times photojournalist; Dr. Oscar Arias, former president of Costa Rica and Nobel Prize winner; Giandomenico Picco, former Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations; Dr. Heinz-Gerhard Justenhoven, director of the Institute for Theology and Peace in Germany; and Ed Cardoza, who works for Partners in Health in Boston, MA.


World Affairs Seminar Staff Counselors and Nurses are highly valued and the backbone of the WAS seminar experience. Read More

Give Today

There are multiple ways that you can support the World Affairs Seminar today and into the future. Read More

Board of Advisors

The World Affairs Seminar Board of Advisors is a group of thoughtful, high-profile individuals who lend credibility to this important initiative. Read More


Take a look at some of the people whose generosity helps make the World Affairs Seminar possible. Read More

Board of Directors

The Board of Directors are forward-thinking Rotarians committed to the promotion, advancement and success of the World Affairs Seminar. Read More


The World Affairs Seminar is privileged to have many partners to provide valuable knowledge and experience. Read More


The Wisconsin World Affairs Council, Inc. dba World Affairs Seminar is a 501(c)3 tax exempt educational organization, certified by the State of Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions as a Charitable Organization.

Click the image at right to enlarge and view.

A Rotary District 6270 Initiative

World Affairs Seminar
10600 W. Mitchell Street
West Allis, Wisconsin 53214

Privacy Policy:

The World Affairs Seminar does not share or sell personal information about students or sponsors with any other organization except as authorized by signed release. This includes personal, health, financial, or other information. Information you post on public websites and other accessible media is your responsibility.

Refund Policy:

To receive credit after payment has been made, students, sponsors must notify the World Affairs Seminar in writing that their delegate is unable to attend, or if the sponsor is unable to fill a paid for space at the Seminar. (e-mail is considered "in writing" for these purposes as long as the e-mail is acknowledged as having been received.) Full credit applies if notification is received by April 1; 50% credit if application is cancelled between April 1 but prior to May 21; no credit is available if application is cancelled after May 21, unless extraordinary circumstances such as illness, death exist. All cancellation credits are subject to $75.00 processing fee and must be used within one calendar year. Note: in agreeing to attend WAS, parents and students promise to reimburse their sponsor for the full amount of any loss due to cancellation. WAS offices: (414) 453-4984, or contact@worldaffairsseminar.org.

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