|MSU Texas Model UN team wins recognition in NYC|
For the third straight year, the Midwestern State University Model United Nations team earned recognition at a competition that draws students from around the world. At the collegiate Model United Nations Conference April 14-18 in New York City, the MSU Texas Model UN team won a Distinguished Delegation Award, the second highest honor awarded at the competition. The team also won four individual awards.
“Considering that over half of the attendees are typically from outside the U.S. and from much larger schools than MSU, this accomplishment indicates that MSU Texas students are leaders among their peers at the international level, said Dr. Steve Garrison, Chair of Political Science and Model UN adviser.
Model UN is a learning simulation in which students role-play the delegation of a country in the United Nations. MSU Texas represented Estonia. Students serve on various committees organized by policy area, and they are charged with developing solutions to existing global problems such as combating micro-plastics in the ocean, or financing development in the developing world, among other situations.
The team was comprised of students from all six colleges, and Garrison said that this multi-disciplinary make up was instrumental in the team’s success. Theatre major Dean Hart served as head delegate.
In addition to the honors won by the team, MSU Texas was also one of six delegations invited to ask a question of keynote speaker Franz Baumann, U.N. Special Adviser on Environment and Peace Operations. “This is the first time student delegations were given this opportunity,” Garrison said. “Dean’s question addressed the challenges of countering climate change in the international arena. In addition to assertively asking this question in front of 3,000 students, Dean also developed a question that the keynote speaker wanted to explore, and probably received the most in-depth response.”
In addition to representing a country, students create position papers – documents representing a country’s position on key policy questions. Four position papers received awards. Political science majors Laramie Walton and Shelbi Stogdill won in the First General Assembly committee for their work on arms control issues. Management major Federica Bove and finance major Hanna Gebel won in the Second General Assembly committee for their work on financing development in the developing world. Premed biology major Sal Capotosto and radiology major Camille Khan were awarded for their work on gender mainstreaming in peacekeeping operations on the C-34 committee. Engineering major Crege La Ronde and early childhood through grade 6 major Dana Eipper were recognized for their work in the U.N. Environmental Assembly on controlling the proliferation of micro-plastics in the oceans.
Garrison said that to be successful, the team must be present and actively involved in the proceedings. Achieving a Distinguished Delegation Award indicates that in each committee, MSU Texas team members were actively involved in each step of the proceedings. “The student commitment at the conference is amazing,” Garrison said. “The proceedings begin with breakfast and typically do not end until well after midnight. This recognition is a significant accomplishment given the global level of competition.”
Associate Professor of Political Science Linda Veazey also advises the team.
Team members and their majors are:
Federica Bove Management
Salvatore Capotosto Chemistry
Georgia DuBose Biology
Dana Eipper Early Childhood-6
Autumn Fredline English
Hanna Gebel Finance
Dean Hart Theater
Camille Khan Radiology
Crege La Ronde Engineering
Anika Proctor Global Studies
Shelbi Stogdill Political Science
Hannah Strong Biology
Amanda Threlkeld Accounting
Grace Tsichlis English
Laramie Walton Political Science
Brendan Wynn Mass Communication
(back row, l-r) Laramie Walton, Crege La Ronde, Brendan Wynn, Shelbi Stogdill, Anika Proctor, Steve Garrison (adviser), Salvatore Capotosto, Georgia Dubose, (middle) Dean Hart, Grace Tishclis, Federica Bove, Hannah Strong, Dana Eipper, Linda Veazey (adviser), Autumn Fredline, Hanna Gebel, (front) Camille Khan, and Amanda Threlkeld.