CSU, Chico News

CSU, Chico Model United Nations Delegation Brings Home Top Award from National Conference

Date: 04-03-2008

Kathleen McPartland
Public Affairs

For the second time in two years, students participating in the Model United Nations (MUN) course at California State University, Chico won the top award at the national conference held in New York over spring break. The Chico delegation, representing Saudi Arabia, was named the Outstanding Delegation from a field of more than 290 schools.

In addition to the Outstanding Delegation award, six individual students received top awards: Chelsea Schick and John Carter received top awards in the General Assembly First Committee; Aki Matsushima and Sara Haskall in Economic and Social Council Plenary; and Anna Birch and David Vielhaber in the U.N. Relief Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees.

“Every year Chico State’s MUN team performs very well at the conference,” said student Emily Cohen, head delegate. “To take home the top award for two years running is remarkable. The students were tremendous. They outperformed other delegations in all areas, including research, public speaking, diplomacy skills, formal and informal debating, policy writing and overall policy representation of Saudi Arabia.”

This year was a special year for the delegation and advisor, Professor Rick Ostrom, who teaches the political science class that prepares students for the competition. Ostrom will be retiring this year after nearly 40 years of service and advising for the MUN program. Professor John Crosby will be taking over the program beginning in the fall of 2008.

Emily Cohen is the head delegate for MUN, and Kelly Shalk is the secretary general. The officers are Aki Matsushima, Chelsea Schick and John Carter. This is the first time in the history of MUN at CSU, Chico that there have been four female officers and the first time in more than a decade that a female head delegate and a female secretary general have been in charge of the class.

The national MUN in New York is the world’s largest university-level simulation of the United Nations. It annually educates more than 3,400 students (40 percent from outside the United States) about the United Nations and contemporary international issues.

Model U.N. is funded by the Instructionally Related Activities Program, as well as by contributions from the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences and student fund-raising activities.