10 May 2003

Sheffield represented at Model United Nations

Photo: students at the Model UN

The Alumni Foundation recently provided a grant of £720 to enable a team of students from the University of Sheffield to attend the World Model United Nations 2003 conference in Heidelberg, Germany.

The annual four-day conference brings together around 800 students from six continents, to create a simulated UN environment. Most of the world's top universities are represented at this global event. This was the first year that Sheffield has taken part and without the support of the Alumni Foundation this, and future attendance, would have been very difficult.

The 12-strong Sheffield delegation was selected to represent Uganda at this year's conference, engaging in debates and resolution writing in various committees, such as the International Court of Justice and UN Development Programme.

The Model United Nations addressed issues currently being debated by the real UN - providing the world's students with a platform to express their views on pressing global issues. Realism was particularly poignant as the conference took place shortly after the outbreak of war in Iraq.

The Sheffield group included students of many different nationalities, studying a range of subjects, and at different stages in their student careers. All those who attended agreed that the experience had been an excellent and unique opportunity to work with international contemporaries to raise global awareness, foster international relations, and potentially bring together tomorrow's leaders.

"The Model UN was an experience of a lifetime, bringing international students together at a time of global conflict" said Karen Allonby, a 2nd year Geography and Politics student, who hopes to start a career in the UN after graduation.

Four Sheffield students won awards for debating, an outstanding success for the University.