Model UN participates in St. Louis

Jessica MacIntosh

Ten students traveled Feb. 23-26 to St. Louis to participate in the Model United Nations.

Missouri Southern’s delegation went into this year’s conference as Mexico, the country they represented at the conference Nov. 20-23 in Chicago.

“This is the first time they have attended both conferences with the same country,” said Dr. Paul Teverow, professor of history. “Once we learned that next fall is going to be the Mexico semester at Missouri Southern, we thought let’s try for St. Louis as well.”

The group’s choice of what country they would represent is determined in a lottery.

“Depending on where you are in the lottery, you may get your first, second, third or in the case of Mexico, it may have been our fifth choice,” Teverow said.

Teverow, who has been sponsoring the group for 20 years, said Model United Nation’s main objective is to play the role of the U.N. member states and debate important global issues.

“Those global issues vary according to the agendas set for each conference each year,” he said.

The starting point is to learn about the issues of the country.

“You really have to learn what the terms are,” he said. “Then you have to learn why it is an important issue in the world today.”

Teverow said it is then important to find out what has been done for the country’s issues.

“You have to know what the U.N. and other international bodies have done in response to this, what has been done, what hasn’t [and] what remains to be done,” he said.

The group focused specifically on the foreign policies and the economy of Mexico in which the issues have a direct impact on the country.

“We learned what some of them do,” he said. “You want to learn what stance your country may take on the issue.”

He also said it is important to learn about other countries.

“Even if you are not interested in international relations, I think there is something for any student no matter what their major,” Teverow said.

Teverow said looking at problems from another person’s perspective is important.

“I think Model UN is perfect for that,” he said. “It helps you understand how someone in a different situation than you may look at a problem. There are different solutions; solutions that make sense to them.”

Katie Hargrove, sophomore international studies major, has been participating in Model United Nations for two years and worked with it in high school as well.

“I started in high school because it was an easy way to get exposure to the U.N. setup because that’s what I want to do later on,” she said. “And also just learning about the issues that are involved with international relations.”

Participating on the second committee, Hargrove’s topic was the “Implementation of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development.”

“We started out researching our topic,” she said. “Once you understand your topic, you move into what Mexico’s position would be.”

While in the committees, they wrote resolutions to solve problems over a certain issue.

“You try and pass them through your committee and make sure you have a consensus,” Hargrove said.

Caleb Gallemore, junior international studies major, who has been participating in Model United Nations for two years, had the topic of “Eradicating extreme poverty and hunger: Millennium Development Goal One.”

“The competition is much more domineering and cut-throat than you will ever see in the real U.N.,” Gallemore said.

He said the delegation performed “very well.”

Gallemore and Jeff Erman, junior English major, received an honorable mention in the General Assembly Third Committee.

Hargrove said the delegation had a lot of fun.

“This year’s conference is really good,” she said. “We all got along really well.”

“My group this year did just a fantastic job,” Teverow said. “It’s been gratifying for me to watch students undertake the preparation for this even though almost every year they’ve done it they haven’t got any academic credit for doing so.”

The delegation will be representing Nigeria for fall 2005 semester and Greece in spring 2006.

All students are welcomed to join Model United Nations. For more information, students can contact Teverow at 625-3114 or e-mail at [email protected].