Model UN headed to New York

For the past 15 years Sonoma State University has participated in the Model United Nations, which introduces students to the world of diplomacy, negotiation, policy development and decision-making.

“The Model United Nations program at Sonoma State University functions as a class and club to educate Sonoma State students about the U.N. and to provide experiential opportunities to learn and simulate U.N. committees,” said Andrew Sousa, a senior and president of the Sonoma State Model U.N. club. 

During the spring of every year, Model U.N. delegates who include 5,000 students from 300 colleges and universities around the world, gather in New York to simulate a role of an ambassador of various countries. 

During the conference delegates get to work on real life issues and create papers that are given to the head of each committee and create a draft resolution that can be voted on.  

The conference teaches delegates how diplomats coordinate and execute diplomacy at the U.N. level.

This year, the Sonoma State delegation is representing Nigeria. Nigeria’s population and economic worth is the largest in Africa. Nigeria also has a seat at the U.N. Security Council.

“This year, SSU will be sending a delegation of 27 to New York, which includes 18 students from the class, seven Model U.N. veterans who are returning for a second or third year, and two head delegates who will assist me at faculty adviser and help lead the group while in New York,” said Cynthia Boaz, professor of political science.

To participate in the Model U.N. program, students must be enrolled in or completed POLS 345: Model United Nations and be a member of the Model U.N. Club, which is a student-run organization.

“The course focuses on international organizational theory, with an emphasis on the institutions, processes and outcomes of the United Nations,” said Boaz. “Because students in the course are also expected to be involved in the co-curricular activities including the conference and the club, they can expect a very well-rounded and demanding but rewarding experience.”

The Model U.N. delegation from Sonoma State has been considered competitive for the past five years at the world’s largest and most prestigious U.N. simulation. 

Boaz’s students have come home with numerous awards, including Outstanding Delegate, Best Position Paper, and several for Distinguished Delegation.

A large number of today’s leaders in law, government, business, and the arts participated in Model U.N. while in college. 

Some examples are United States Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, Chelsea Clinton and actor Samuel L. Jackson.

“Model U.N. is a once in a lifetime kind of experience. The vast majority of students who participate tell me that the experience changed their life. 

It exposes them to perspectives, people, and challenges that they do not commonly encounter in a college classroom environment,” said Boaz.

If students have any questions they can reach any of Model U.N. board members at the following email: sonomastate.mun@gmail.com or directly to Andrew Sousa at sousaa@seawolf.sonoma.edu.

“I believe students at Sonoma State University should join the Model U.N.≠ club, because it is great family of students that share a passion to learn and wish to change how our leaders execute policies throughout the World,” said Sousa. “Our class and club is lead by our political science professor, Cynthia Boaz. She has been a beacon for our program here.”