Model United Nations makes its mark

Park expands government based clubs


Lex Lee

Club adviser Emma Engebretson speaks to students about Model UN March 1. This was the club’s first in-person meeting this year.

Layla Mickelson

After many years with limited government related extracurriculars, Park students have stepped up and started a new program involving diplomacy and international relations.

After participating in the Youth in Government program this past fall, club leader senior Amira Abdirahman said Model UN is a great chance for students to explore current issues surrounding various countries.

“Model United Nations is an opportunity for students all across the state to get together and be diplomats for a country of their choosing and represent a country on issues impacting our globe that affects us as citizens,” Abdirahman said. 

Club advisor Emma Engebretson said that the introduction of Model UN at Park was led by students.

“It was mainly student driven,” Engebretson said. “We had Youth in Government (YIG) and Amira has said she wanted to start YIG and then keep going with Model UN because YIG is in the fall and Model UN is in the spring.”

According to Abdirahman, Model UN is a continuation of YIG because of the positive feedback the program gained from members.

“Sebastian and Isaac (the other club leaders) talked about wanting to start YIG,” Abdirahman said. “We saw an opportunity to get Model UN going too because we saw so much success in YIG.”

Engebretson said that there is a new rule for the program that she hopes will change about in the future.

“It’s (Model UN) being capped at 25 people. It would be great if next year we would be able to expand Model UN past 25 students,” Engretson said. 

Club member sophomore Miles Johnson said that hearing the club is capped can be disheartening to hear. 

“I feel like it is really discouraging for some people that want to come to Model UN and now feel like they can’t do it,” Johnson said. 

Engebretson said that it shouldn’t affect any students yet because they haven’t reached their limit. 

“We are just reaching 25 people and our registration deadline was 2/28. So I don’t think we are actually going to go over 25 students,” Engebretson said. “If we have had more students that wanted to join I do think that it would affect the other students.”

According to club member sophomore Arun Ferran-Sapatnekar, Model UN will be an exciting and new experience. 

“I thought it would be an interesting experience to have and also it is a good thing to have on your resume,” Ferran-Sapatnekar said. 

Engebretson said that Model UN can be a good way for students to find people with similar interests, while learning about new passions.

“It’s a great way for students to learn how to advocate for themselves for all issues and what they are passionate about,” Engebretson said. “It’s a great way to build community with other students and people that are also interested in being global citizens and learning about the world.”

Abdirahman said that the competition isn’t only work but there are also multiple chances to create new connections. 

“For the competition we are gonna stay overnight in a hotel and there are opportunities to have fun,” Abdirahman said. “It’s not solely just the conference all day, at night you can go out with your friends or make new friends from across the state.”

For more information about Model UN, reach out to Emma Engebretson in room C373.