Pitt-Bradford held a Model European Union conference on campus Feb. 16-17 for students from six universities.
The international affairs and history/political science program at Pitt-Bradford worked with the University of Pittsburgh European Studies Center and Jean Monnet European Union Centre of Excellence to organize the event.
The Model European Union simulation enabled students to learn about international affairs by acting as representatives of the 28 member states of the European Union. Students debated topics related to migration and terrorism with the objective of working cooperatively to reach joint resolutions.
Issues that were addressed included managing the ongoing refugee crisis and resettlement, combating irregular migration, protecting the external borders, addressing rising nationalism, responding to potential terrorist threats, countering jihadist radicalization, combating returning foreign fighters, and reinforcing EU principles and social trust.
“The Model European Union Conference is a valuable opportunity for students to learn about diplomacy while refining their civic engagement, public speaking, leadership, and negotiation skills,” said Dr. Helma de Vries-Jordan, director of the international affairs and history/political science programs at Pitt-Bradford.
In addition to Pitt-Bradford, participating institutions include Bowling Green (Ohio) State University, Susquehanna University, University at Buffalo (N.Y.), University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, and University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown.
Students prepared for the conference by researching each country's strategic concerns, political context, economic interests and cultural values. They then prepared position papers outlining the country's standpoints on these important regional and global policy issues.
Participants were able to come to a consensus on several resolutions after considerable negotiation.
The following students won the award for best enactment of a country delegation for their role as the delegates of Austria (Nathan Bish and Rowyn Hope, University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg), Finland (Christina Pfeil, Pitt-Bradford), Latvia (Eve Cervenka and Paul Gabrarino, Bowling Green State University), and Poland (Ernest Starzec, University at Buffalo).
The following students won honorable mention for their role as the delegates of Hungary (Lucas Smith, Pitt-Bradford), Luxembourg (Alexander Dove, Susquehanna University), Slovakia (Eric Trexler and Dylan Knapp-Scott, Pitt-Greenburg), and Spain (Andrew Burk and Seth Whittemore, BGSU).
The award for best position paper went to the delegate of Luxembourg (Alexander Dove, Susquehanna).
Other countries which students represented as delegates in the Model European Union Conference include Belgium (Jack Oshei, Pitt-Greensburg), Bulgaria (Sidharath Agnihotri, UB), Croatia (Morgan Dubbs, Susquehanna), Cyprus (Marlayna Wilhelm, Pitt-Johnstown), Czech Republic (Jackie Kong, UB), Denmark (Ezozahon Ismailova, Pitt-Bradford), Estonia (Sophia Lewis, Pitt-Johnstown), France (Megan Cantwell, Susquehanna), Germany (Codi Wilson and Kenneth Reilly, Pitt-Bradford), Greece (Constantinos Landis, UB), Ireland (Brandin Adams and Sara McConnell, Pitt-Greensburg), Italy (Benjamin Walker and Tyler Wellek, Pitt-Greensburg), Lithuania (Bernard Dent, UB), Malta (Nic Bush, UB), Netherlands (Alexa Federice, UB), Romania (Patrick Kammar and Kyle Casey, Susquehanna), and United Kingdom (Evan Bender, Pitt-Bradford).
de Vries-Jordan and Mr. Stephen Lund (University of Pittsburgh European Studies Center) served as the hosts of the conference.
The role of council president was served by Joshua Counselman (University of Pittsburgh), and the role of Secretary was served by students Miles Davis-Matthews (Pitt-Bradford) and Craig Smith (Pitt-Bradford).
Judges were Paul Adams (Pitt-Greensburg), Nick Clark (Susquehanna), de Vries-Jordan, Stefan Fritsch (BGSU), and Collin Anderson (UB).
- Group photo by Wade Aiken