The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

School Columnists

February 6, 2014

Model U.N. team competing in 'Windy City'

JEFFERSON — The Jefferson Model United Nations team, formerly led by John Patterson, has had a very successful history. In past years, the number of students involved had exceeded 80. The team attended five conferences each year including conferences in Jefferson, Chicago, Kent State University, Youngstown State University and Westminster. Many of the Jefferson delegates brought home numerous awards at each conference, which led to the Model U.N. team being ranked among the top 75 teams in North America. The students did not only gain prestigious awards through this program, they were also able to practice life skills like public speaking, negotiation, problem solving and writing. The hard work of the Model U.N. students paid off because of their efficient work ethic and deeper understanding of the world around them.

Though there are fewer students on the Model U.N. team this year, they are working hard to continue toward success with the guidance of their new teacher, Donald Palm, who is also a history, psychology and world affairs teacher at Jefferson. Palm and the team feel that it is very important to preserve the Model U.N. program because of its successful past at Jefferson and all of the enriching benefits that it provides for the students.

“This program is important to the past and to the future of our school,” said senior Jerod Nunley. “It helps us refine our debating and speaking skills, especially in front of large groups of people. This is a big fear that many people never overcome.”

Senior and six-year Model U.N. student Mason Taylor also commented on the importance of strengthening and expanding the Model U.N. program. He said, “Model U.N. helps to educate the youth on issues going on outside of our small town-issues that affect everyone. It allows us to broaden our views and become more informed and involved citizens.” Taylor also suggested that other students try to get involved with the program, not only to facilitate a growing sense of pride in the program, but to learn a better work ethic and enjoy the intellectual atmosphere of debate.

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