Group Story

UBC Okanagan students experience Model UN conference

Group Story
CategoryStudent
NameLiam Fitzpatrick, Sutheeksan Sunthoram, Emma Houiellebecq, Lina Gomez, Alliance Babunga, Alexa Geddes, Sujitha Shivajothi, Josephine Schrott, Drayson Netzel, Tim Krupa (from left to right)

 

A group of students from UBC’s Okanagan campus has just returned from the Harvard National Model United Nations conference in Boston, Mass. Model United Nations is an international, academic simulation of the United Nations, notes UBC Okanagan student Tim Krupa, who founded the club in September 2011. Krupa, a fourth year science student, was the head delegate for the Harvard conference.

Model UN is the ultimate international relations experience for young political scholars, he adds. At each conference, student groups represent UN member states and discuss global policy to address hot-button issues currently being discussed at the United Nations.

“The goal is to educate participants about current events and diplomacy, unite like-minded students from around the world, debate practical policies, and form tangible resolutions to ameliorate our world’s greatest challenges,” he explains.

And the idea of being involved with international diplomacy is catching on at UBC’s Okanagan campus. Last year, eight UBC Okanagan students participated in the first ever World Model UN to be held in North America. At that event, more than 2,000 students from 270 universities participated — the Okanagan contingent represented Antigua and Barbuda, a twin-island Caribbean nation. This year UBC’s Okanagan campus has delegations participating in three different Model UN conferences in Vancouver, Boston, and New York. In total, 29 students from the Model United Nations Club at UBC’s Okanagan campus will participate in Model United Nations conferences this year.

The first took place in Vancouver in January where 11 UBC Okanagan students represented India, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Krupa was the UBC Okanagan head delegate at the second conference in Boston, which took place February 14 to 17. There were more than 3,000 other students from around the world at that event and they participated in committees representing some 40 different countries.

“Our 10-member delegation represented the Republic of Cape Verde, a small African island nation,” says Krupa. “We actively debated and drafted working papers and resolutions on topics ranging from targeted killings and enforced detainment, sexual violence in areas of armed conflict, and pre-emptive war. It was thrilling to compete against and cooperate with some of the best Model UN teams in the world from the University of Chicago, the University of Pennsylvania, and Yale University. ”

The University of British Columbia’s Vancouver campus represented Uzbekistan at the Harvard conference.

“Model UN forums around the world train the brightest diplomatic students from our generation who will someday be tasked with forming multilateral strategies to address these issues on the actual stage,” says Krupa. “We are leaders who plan to someday serve this community, province, and country.”

The final Model UN conference this academic year takes place in New York City next month where Oliver Eberle, third-year Arts, International Relations student will be head delegate. At the March event, eight UBC Okanagan students will represent the Federal Republic of Somalia. The conference will be held at the official United Nations Headquarters and Eberle is thrilled to be attending.

“We couldn’t be any more excited for the authentic United Nations experience in the real UN Headquarters,” he says. “United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is the keynote speaker.”

The UBCO Model UN Club is actively campaigning to raise awareness of the UN’s current focus in conflicted regions such as Mali and Syria, as well as raise funds and attract sponsors to cover travel expenses. Learn more at UBCO Model UN Club or contact mun.ubco@gmail.com.

Above: UBC’s Okanagan delegation to the Harvard National Model United Nations 2013. Photo by Sara Wahedi.

Latest Stories

Previous
Zahra F at Stanford

UBC International Scholar to Stanford Medical School

An aspiring Epidemiologist, Zahra advocates for first-generation and low-income students
alumni

UBC International Scholar to Stanford Medical School

“[The International Scholar] awards are so impactful in changing the realities of students who come from backgrounds in which higher education is not the traditional pathway to success.” - Zahra F., BSc in Global Resource Systems

From Brazil to the Okanagan

How a volleyball player from Brazil found her place at UBCO
student

From Brazil to the Okanagan

“I feel the instructors at UBC Okanagan are actual mentors if you give them the opportunity to help you and give you advice based on their own experiences.” – Hellen L., Civil Engineering

Experiential learning in Applied Animal Biology

By choosing a degree program that prioritizes hands-on learning Afnan is prepared to take on any challenge
alumni

Experiential learning in Applied Animal Biology

“In my third year I was a field research assistant in northern BC. We lived in camper vans, caught sapsuckers, took DNA samples and released them back into the wild. It was an incredible experience.” Afnan A., Applied Animal Biology

From Applied Science to engineer at Tesla

How UBC gave Andrew the skills he needed to become an engineer
alumni

From Applied Science to engineer at Tesla

"UBC allowed me to have conversations with a large variety of people from different backgrounds and with widely differing perspectives. I made sure to engage in these conversations as often as I could." - Andrew K., Bachelor of Applied Science

Building a strong foundation

As a UBC Commerce student from Slovakia, Andrej is confident about his future
student

Building a strong foundation

"The high quality of education, strong support network, and a myriad of opportunities to get involved in at UBC makes me very confident about my future." - Andrej G., Bachelor of Commerce

A passion for international justice

By getting involved in human rights projects Danilo made UBC is own experience
alumni

A passion for international justice

"UBC’s motto is Tuum Est, which means: It’s Yours, and It’s Up to You. Throughout my time at UBC I have strived to become the best version of myself, to grow, and to make university my own experience." – Danilo A-M., Honours Political Science with International Relations

A home away from his Indonesian home

How Jason has found success within UBC Okanagan’s diverse community
student

A home away from his Indonesian home

"Being able to share ideas in both a classroom and community setting allows me to gain new perspectives." - Jason Samuel Suwito, BSc in Data Science

Finding community at UBC Vancouver

How the Media Studies program helped Jayden discover her place
student

Finding community at UBC Vancouver

"The Media Studies community is a tight-knit group of friends, and I’m exposed to a lot of extremely creative people with an abundance of intriguing ideas and knowledge to share." - Jayden E., Bachelor of Media Studies
next