Spring 2014 has been a successful semester for the NYU Abu Dhabi students taking part in the University's Model UN. A student-run initiative, Model UN allows students to research current events, propose legislation, and debate policy with their peers in a style similar to that of the United Nations. So far this term, the NYUAD team has attended two conferences and accumulated a number of impressive achievements.
During the Emirates International Model United Nations (EMIMUN) 2014 conference held in Dubai, freshman Anna Serobyan was awarded "Best Delegate" for being most involved in the debates and leading the overall group dynamic. Serobyan, who was part of the Human Rights Committee representing the UAE, said, "I didn't even know the award existed until the final day of the conference, since it was my first international Model UN experience," she said. "I was just enjoying the process of debating and was making connections with my fellow delegates!"
The team continued its regional success on an international scale when they attended the Finnish Model United Nations (FINMUN) conference earlier this month organized by the University of Helsinki in Finland.
Freshman Issa Nasr represented the United Kingdom on the Security Council Committee and was awarded "Most Distinguished Delegate." Fellow first-years on the Social and Humanitarian Committee also received honors — Dhia Fani received the "Best Delegate" award, while Emina Osmandžiković was also awarded "Most Distinguished Delegate." While Nasr has participated in Model UN since his freshman year of high school, this was Fani and Osmandžiković's first conference. Taking some time to enjoy a local pastime, the delegates also held a discussion on Sauna Diplomacy Night — while relaxing in a Finnish sauna.
Serobyan said, "These conferences felt like a trampoline for the team — we are now developing at a high speed, and we are excited for what's next." In addition to hosting on-campus collaborations with student groups, Model UN hopes to continue growing over the next year, to attend more conferences both regionally and abroad, and, ultimately, to host a Middle Eastern conference on NYUAD's new Saadiyat Island campus.
Photo credit: Image taken from Emirates International Model United Nations website. The image used here is a cropped version of the original.