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UIS team lobbies for women’s issues at Model United Nations

April 20, 2006

The UIS student delegation to the Model United Nations simulation met with a representative of the Women’s Environment and Development Organization in New York City. The team represented WEDO in the competition.

SPRINGFIELD – Students from the University of Illinois at Springfield lobbied for women’s issues at the national Model United Nations simulation, held in New York City during the week of April 10.  The UIS student delegation participated in the competition as representatives of the Women’s Environment and Development Organization, an international non-governmental organization that works to influence UN policymaking and promotes women as elected officials.

The annual event, the largest college UN simulation in the country, challenges university teams to accurately represent a country or NGO that participates in the United Nations. This is the 10th straight year that UIS has fielded a delegation at the national competition.

Team members Driss Elakrich, Steve Ettinger, Michael Montney, Nikki Overcash, Kevin Parker, Lara Roemer, Nick Roman, Noah Siegel, Brandis Stokes, and Evan Wilson conducted research and trained for the competition throughout the past year.

Senior and second-year team member Siegel said that representing WEDO challenged the team to educate themselves and other delegates on how global issues like poverty and pollution disproportionately affect women and children around the world.

Siegel was among four UIS team members who received recognition for their performance at the simulation. Overcash, a graduate student in the English program, was selected Rapporteur of the Commission on the Status of Women; Elakrich, a graduate student in Public Administration, was elected Chair of the Security Council; and first-year delegate Ettinger's committee voted him most masculine delegate to represent a women’s organization.

Head delegate Roman said that of the four national MUN delegations he has been part of, this team was the best.  "Everyone played the game well and had fun doing it," he said. "I've been involved in Model UN since high school and I’ve never seen such a cohesive group as ours. Nobody at the conference had a better time than we did."

Support for the team's participation in the MUN competition was provided by UIS' Division of Student Affairs.

For more information, contact Liz Moran, MUN assistant advisor, at 206-7889.

    The University of Illinois at Springfield, one of three U of I campuses, is a small, public liberal arts university that offers 42 degree programs – 21 bachelor’s, 20 master’s, and the Doctorate of Public Administration. UIS has a special mission in public affairs and service and is known for extraordinary internships, a wireless campus, extensive online offerings, and a commitment to teaching.