The JSC Model UN Club gives students interested in international diplomacy and politics a chance to get an in-depth look at another country. In advance of an annual conference bringing together Model UN clubs around the world, club members research a particular country that they will represent at the conference. In past years, JSC students have studied Lithuania and Eritrea. For the 2016 conference in February — the third year JSC students are participating — the club members are researching and representing the Bahamas.
Professor David Plazek explains the benefits of Model UN: ”It’s a classic example of experiential learning. It’s one thing to learn terms and theories in the classroom; it’s a completely different experience to participate and be actively involved outside the classroom and work hand in hand with people from across the globe. Students get out of their own ‘national box.’ Once they see and meet people from other countries and work with them face to face, they learn that ‘Wow, we’re a lot alike. We’re all participating in this together’’ It breaks down barriers. There’s a strong academic focus, of course, but the students have fun, too. There are dances at night, and they get to meet students from all over the world.”“
Participants are assigned to the mock U.N. General Assembly or to committees, economic and social councils, regional bodies, specialized agencies such as the Security Council, or the press corps. They researched, debated and voted on a wide range of resolutions and issues, including decolonization, the status of women, criminal justice, regional issues, disarmament, international security, sustainable development and more.
The annual Model UN Conference has, for more than 60 years, brought together undergraduates from across the world for mock sessions and hands-on learning about the United Nations and its 193 member countries. Students are accepted on the basis of a one-page paper they submit as their application.
This year’s JSC participants are Ester Nkuli, Catherine Church, Aggie Fredette, Jennifer Many, John Dabrowski, Jacob Rogenski, Paul Massey, and Zachary Shuttle.