WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — Many people would have some answer to solving their country’s problems if asked, but have you ever stopped to think about what it would be like to be a global ambassador working in real time to solve them?
At Midwestern State University, students are able to get that very feeling and experience when they participate in Model United Nations, and they are thriving as they do so.
MSU students who participate in the Model United Nations organization have the opportunity to solve real conflicts affecting real people, but they must have research, statistics, and facts to do so.
Model UN is a program where college students from around the world act as diplomats and ambassadors to the U.N. for a particular country.
MSU engineering student Crege La Ronde has been a member of MSU’s Model UN organization for several years, during which time he as represented Estonia, Ghana, and most recently The Bahamas at the National Model UN Conference.
“It was about politics and diplomacy, which was something that I was always very interested in,” La Ronde said. “So it seemed like just the perfect opportunity for me.”
While the conference is traditionally held in New York City, the 2021 conference was held virtually due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
MSU won Outstanding Delegation awards for their arguments for helping the Bahamas, the nation they represented at this years conference.
“For a small delegation, we are really good,” La Ronde said. “Most of our ideas which we put in that position paper were actually used and discussed at the conference itself, so I was quite impressed with my partner. She was really able to push forward the ideas and proposals that we had there.”
Team advisor and MSU Political Science professor Dr. Steve Garrison said La Ronde is one of the top award winners in the program’s history as well as the first MSU student to chair a committee at the national conference.
Although La Ronde is an engineering student, both he and Dr. Garrison said that is just proof that the Model U.N. team is for anyone who wants to sign up.
“Communication skills, critical thinking, research, presentation, and it’s forcing them to apply those in a real world setting,” Dr. Garrison said. “As an educator, that’s really the most powerful way to teach something to another student, because they have to go out and actually implement it and put it in place, and that builds life-long lessons.”
La Ronde added that the Model U.N. is a great opportunity to develop relationships with individuals all over the globe.
The experience learning about international diplomacy and the life skills developed while participating in the Model U.N. helps students add to both their college experience and their life experience.
La Ronde said he’s not done with the Model U.N. just yet, and said he will apply for the assistant director position with the national organization after he graduates.