May 1, 2012
For Immediate Release
University Marketing & Communications: Mike Rigert (801) 863-6807
Written by: Cheryl Kamenski (801) 863-6351
A group of Utah Valley University students from the College of Humanities & Social Sciences comprised the University’s first delegation to participate in the Model United Nations Far West Annual Session, which took place April 20-24 in San Francisco.
The conference simulates the United Nations to provide an environment where students can better understand the structure and procedures of the organization.
To be eligible to serve on the UVU delegation, students were required to take a Model United Nations class taught by Geoffrey Cockerham, UVU History & Political Science assistant professor, during fall semester last year. The students then submitted an application for the seven available positions.
“The College of Humanities & Social Sciences is committed to providing engaged learning opportunities for our students. We are immensely proud of Dr. Cockerham and his team of students,” said Frederick H. White, associate dean of the college. “Their effort in applying what they have learned in the classroom for a professional conference is indicative of the practical, academic activities taking place at UVU every day.”
Each participating school represents a country or member state. UVU was assigned to represent France. Delegations are required to submit a country profile, policy papers and resolutions prior to the conference.
Due to the overall quality of the documents the students submitted, the UVU delegation was one of four countries, along with Ecuador (Miriam College, Quezon City, Philippines), Cambodia (Metropolitan State College, Denver) and the Democratic Republic of Congo (San Jose State University), asked to address the opening plenary session. The delegation selected student Paulo Macote Ambrozio to deliver the speech.
“What makes this particularly amazing is that our team did so well at our first Model United Nations competition,” said White. “I think this illustrates the commitment of our faculty, staff and students in the educational process.”
The UVU representatives also received a meritorious delegation award for its overall performance. Other members of the UVU team included Jesler Molina, Mara Orchard, Robert McMurray, Jordan Greene, Mary Shurtz and Richard Portwood.
The conference included colleges and universities in the western United States in addition to schools from Ohio, Indiana and Illinois as well as two from the Philippines. Overall, there were 90 delegations, 35 colleges and universities and approximately 500 students that participated.
To prepare for the event, which this year focused on “Cutting the Gordian Knot: Addressing the International Community’s Greatest Problems in the Twenty-First Century,” the students studied United Nations operating procedures, the issues on the agenda, the position of their assigned country on those issues and the relationship of their country to others in the region.
During the session, participants had to adhere to rules of procedure, negotiate with other delegates and attend caucuses. In addition, they were required to produce policy statements and at least one resolution regarding an issue in their committee.
UVU Model U.N. delegation, (l-r): Paulo Macote Amrozio, Mara Orchard, Robert McMurray, Jesler Molina, Richard Portwood, Mary Shurtz and Jordan Greene.