Model UN Continues to Shine as #4 in North America

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Home to some of the best Model UN delegates in the country, FIU’s Model UN team has claimed the #4 spot on the college Model UN rankings for the third year in a row.

FIU remains the highest ranked team in Florida and the highest ranked from any public university. This year’s senior class is the first to experience being on a Top 5 team during their entire four-year college career.

“I am humbled by the work these delegates have put into this program and by the work of my predecessor, Ethan Roberts, for elevating the team to new heights,” said Kristen Nyman, program coordinator and a former FIU MUN delegate. “I hope to continue to build on the momentum that he fostered and push this team to even greater heights. The best is yet to come for FIU.”

FIU’s Model UN team has advanced steadily in recent years, as noted in Best Delegate, the organization that ranks Model UN teams based on performance. This year, the team earned more delegation awards than any other team on the circuit. It also received the highest number of total points by any collegiate Model UN team.

“Leading the team to eight delegation awards this year – the most in team history – and winning four best delegate awards in a row are two of the things I am most proud of,’’ said Kevin Markowski, an international relations major who served as head delegate along with Michelle Rodriguez, a psychology major.

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“The best way to describe Model UN is like a game of human chess,’’ Markowski added. “It is all about being strategic, saying the right things and outmaneuvering your competition.” Model United Nations programs bring together universities across the United States, as well as hundreds of college students, with the goal of furthering international awareness and building consensus.

The program builds students’ public speaking, writing, negotiations, critical analysis and research skills. Students gain valuable experience that can make them more competitive in the job market and better prepared for the workplace.

At left: Kevin Markowski, former Head Delegate for FIU Model UN

Delegates typically spend 20 hours doing research and several weeks running simulations in preparation for competition. Model UN conferences are highly competitive but also excellent opportunities for delegates to learn teamwork and put their classroom knowledge to the test.

“Traveling together on these challenging, sleep-deprived weekends was often emotional but always fun,’’ said Rodriguez. “As valuable as Model UN has been, by far the best experience has been my team. I spent two years surrounded by a diverse group of brilliant, passionate people who shared my interests and pushed me to be better.’’

At FIU, the Model UN team is part of the Steven J. Green School of International and Public Affairs.

“It has been an honor to work with the tremendous talent and leadership that we have seen through our Model UN program,’’ said John F. Stack, Jr., founding dean of the Green School. “This team gets steadily better year after year and I am grateful to be a part of their accomplishments.’’

The FIU team attended 10 conferences this year and received recognition at eight of them, including Outstanding Small Delegation at the University of California at Berkeley; Best Small Delegation at Columbia University, Boston University, University of Pennsylvania, McGill University and College of William and Mary; Outstanding Large Delegation at Georgetown University; and Best Large Delegation at Emory University.

In the coming year, the FIU team plans to travel to even more conferences and hopes to double in size. Its sights are set on becoming the #1 team in the country.

“I would like to thank our outgoing head delegates, Kevin Markowski and Michelle Rodriguez, for their selfless hard work and I would like to welcome our incoming head delegates for the 2017-18 season, Michelle Rosario, Syed Adnan and Stephan Horler,” Nyman said. “I am confident in their ability to propel this team with integrity and passion.”

For more information on FIU Model UN or to apply for the team, email Kristen Nyman at modelun@fiu.edu or visit modelun.fiu.edu.