September 11, 2013
Alma College’s success at the national Model United Nations competition in New York City has resulted in a U.S. State Department invitation to help with the preparations for the national Model UN conference in India.
Professor Derick Hulme and seven students leave for New Delhi on Oct. 2 to attend India’s national Model UN Conference, which will feature 350 to 400 Model UN competitors from 80 schools.
“We have enjoyed great success, but this takes it to a new level,” says Hulme. “This is an incredible honor to represent Alma at the national conference in India. This experience will open opportunities for our students to be recognized and chosen for important internships for decades to come.”
While they won’t be competing, the Alma students will help organize the conference, prepare briefing materials, and engage in online conversations with teachers and students from India. The Alma team also will conduct on all-day orientation for conference staff, delegates and teachers.
Following the competition, the Alma team will conduct a post-conference debriefing and a Model UN forum to talk about best practice with the teachers and the most experienced student delegates from India.
“The State Department designed this as a public diplomacy initiative to try to strengthen the younger generation’s appreciation of the importance of international organizations and multilateral diplomacy,” says Hulme. “India is becoming more economically capable and is one of the most populous countries in the world. It is in the interest of the United States to engage young people in countries like India and show them the importance of working collaboratively with people around the world.”
Alma College’s Model UN team has won top honors at the U.S. national competition in New York City for 17 consecutive years (1997-2013) — the longest active winning streak of any college or university in the nation. Alma College’s all-time 32 “outstanding delegation” awards are the most of any college or university in the 90-year history of the conference.
“The State Department learned about our success in New York and invited us,” says Hulme. “The students attending from Alma are an extremely talented group. They will represent Alma College in the very best way.”
Alma participants include Caroline Asiala, Bay City junior; Lauren Engels, Livonia junior; Michelle Jerezano, Honduras senior; Emily Johnson, Commerce junior; Kara Nic, Vicksburg junior; Maggie Peacock, Batavia, Ill., senior; and Aleia McKessy, Charlotte junior.