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ASIS student speeches at UN conference

Nervous

The third year student International Business and Management Studies was very nervous in advance, but eventually had the time of her life in New York City. ‘We stayed in the luxury Sheraton hotel, directly on Broadway’, Olga writes enthusiastically in an e-mail. ‘I was facing all this important and interesting people I have previously read and studied about and I got to meet them and talk and work with them!’

The Ukrainian girl does the ‘Double Degree’ exchange program from ASIS, at the Western Carolina University (WCU) in North Carolina, USA. Since January she is a member of the ‘Model UN Club’ of WCU. ‘This club of students discusses the weekly news and politics’, Olga explains. ‘It’s like we are “playing UN”.’

Slovakia

When the annual General Assembly of the UN in New York City approached, the ASIS student was chosen to represent WCU together with five other students from the ‘Model UN Club’. ‘Every student debate club “plays” a country; we were Slovakia. A lot of students from the big, prestigious American universities walk around there at the UN, trying to promote themselves.’

Olga worked daily around the clock, participating in workshops and smaller conferences, debating mostly about the worldwide financial crisis. ‘We had to work out a protocol about how Third World countries could survive the crisis. I suggested reforming the whole system of rich donor countries giving money to the poorer countries.’

Boundless

The ultimate moment was when Olga held her speech at the Great Assembly podium, in front of the 192 representatives of the UN nations. Her speech was even broadcasted on national television. ‘I presented my plan to help poor countries survive the crisis. My protocol got accepted by the majority of 131 nations in favor and 61 opposed. It has been taken by the UN to be discussed in upcoming official sessions of UN Councils.’

Olga ended her Spring Break in bed with a cold, but according to her it was worth it. Her ambitions are, literally, boundless. In spring 2011 the ASIS student wants to do her graduation internship at the UN. ‘This event has also led to me getting some potential positions regarding my graduation internship at the UN and even employment possibilities in the future.’ The sky is the limit! [LJ]

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