The eyes of many nations

Tracy Deutmeyer

Adviser Wayne Osborn said students in the United Nations Association are forced to view the world from someone else’s eyes.

Osborn said about 10 of the club’s students participate in Model UN Conferences each year and represent a country other than the United States.

Students from each university choose a nation and research the country’s status in issues ranging from human rights to the arms race to world health. Students from the Iowa State chapter join different committees and represent that nation on the committees.

“The students are trained to think like international diplomats,” Osborn said.

Osborn said the United Nations Association of the United States helped start the Model Conferences. He said students who were involved in the collegiate association often organize the Model UN Conferences.

“They get so turned on by these conferences as students they run their own Model UN Conferences after college,” Osborn said.

He said people run the conferences on a strictly volunteer basis.

He said ISU students traveled to St. Louis this spring and Chicago last fall to participate in the three-day Model UN Conferences.

“The best thing about the conferences is meeting people from other schools,” said Becca Goodhue, chapter president.

Goodhue said the best thing about the association is that it brings students from many different countries together. She said many of the association’s students are also from different disciplines.

“That’s a very special thing about the club,” she said.

In addition to the conferences, the club participates in the Veishea parade, where students carry flags from different nations. This year Osborn said there were more than 30 people who carried flags in the parade, but he said they would like to continue to add more people each year.

Osborn, who is also president of the Ames United Nations Association, said the group also hopes to have “brown bag lunches” next year and invite international students to the lunches to “discuss international conflicts.”