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Hunter’s Model UN Team Wins Distinguished Delegation Prize At National Competition

Competing against more than 5,000 students from across the U.S. and the world in the National Model UN Competition, Hunter’s Model UN Team racked up several top prizes, including the Distinguished Delegation Prize for their portrayal of Somalia.

The competition, sponsored by the National Collegiate Conference Association and supported by the UN Department of Public Information, took place April 17-23 at UN headquarters and the Sheraton and Marriott Hotels, all in New York City. The National Competition is the largest college-level Model UN in the world.

In addition to representing Somalia in the General Assembly - and winning the big prize - the  Hunter team won an Honorable Mention for their representation of the Dominican Republic in the General Assembly. Also, several individual Hunter team members received peer awards, which were voted on by all student delegates.

In their work in the General Assembly and in various committees, the Hunter team produced resolutions on numerous topics including debt relief for developing countries, clean water and sanitation in the African continent, and access to health services for women in conflict and post-conflict situations. Among the committees and groups they worked in were the Intellectual Property Organization, the UN Environmental Program, and the Organization of American States.

The Hunter team’s two head delegates, who worked for weeks to prepare the team for the conference, were enthusiastic in their praise for their fellow students. Head delegate Yevgeniy Feyman lauded Hunter’s “talented and motivated team” for “the work we’ve accomplished,” while co-head delegate Katherine Salinas expressed great pleasure at “getting to know every member of the team and learning a great deal from all of them.” And Hunter’s senior head delegate, Jesus Perez, who stepped down from his role on the team to serve on the Secretariat of the National Conference, guided 300 student delegates through the process of drafting a 22-page Final Document on matters of nuclear security. Perez’s assignment for the Secretariat included addressing the General Assembly about the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, which led him to say: “Giving a speech from the same podium that world leaders use to address the international community is both humbling and really cool.”

Professor Pamela Falk, who teaches the Model UN course along with other political science courses at Hunter, called the conference “a great success for the Hunter team,” adding: “Their tireless efforts paid off!”

The Model UN Competition culminated in a General Assembly Plenary Session at UN headquarters, where delegates sat in the seats of the countries they represented and voted on resolutions that the student delegates had drafted in their committees.

Hunter’s Model UN Team is now looking toward the coming semester. Hunter students interested in joining the team are invited to visit and to attend the Hunter College Model UN Open House and information session on May 11 at 11:10 am at Roosevelt House, 47-49 East 65th Street.

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