On March 24th, the 2016 Pine Manor Model UN team completed their conference in New York City. This year the team represented Senegal – a west African country that has embarked on an ambitious program of social and economic transformation. We were particularly honored to represent Senegal, as it is the home of several PMC alums. Plus, sisters Fama (’05) and Sokhna (’06) Ndiaye participated in the Model UN in 2005.
Our delegation reflected both Pine Manor and the United Nations – the team had students from Korea, China, Japan, Mexico, and Guinea, as well as the US. They joined nearly 3,000 other college and university students from around the world – from China, Korea, Ecuador, Guatemala, Germany, Canada, France, Italy, Iraq and Thailand (to name a few) as well as from the US.
The challenge of the Model UN is to authentically represent “your” country’s interests in a complex and dynamic environment, in which a desirable result depends on collaboration and creative problem solving. Our team members drafted sections of resolutions, sponsored resolutions, addressed very large committees, and made careful and important decisions about who to work with and what to press for. In each of the committees the PMC delegates succeeded in helping to create at least one draft resolution that contained the ideas and actions that were most important to Senegal.
On Thursday morning the team entered the General Assembly Hall of the United Nations itself and took the seats of Senegal to vote on the resolutions passed in their GA committees. This is a special and unique experience that few people can have.
What did we accomplish? The concrete actions that PMC delegates supported were important both for Senegal and for the global community. These included:
- Proposing increased education for farmers and small communities as a key ingredient to slow deforestation.
- Creating programs supported micro-finance as one element to increase funding for sustainable development.
- Providing greater oversight of UN Peacekeeping missions, especially insuring that they respect local customs and religions.
This year we are tremendously grateful for the financial support of the College’s friends and alums. Their generosity provided the underlying capacity for the trip and enabled the students’ own additional fundraising. BTW: it is not too late to pitch in! Just go to the PMC Online Giving page – Be sure to write “Model UN” in the Comments box!