Nease Hosts 100 Kids in Mock U.N. Meeting
Wilson, Jaimie K., Maraghy, Mary, The Florida Times Union
Sitting behind a 6-inch replica of Brazil's flag, Jennifer
Hoffmann was intense as she frantically scribbled notes before
approaching the podium.
The high school junior was representing Brazil in a mock United
Nations conference Monday. She questioned the credibility of
United States delegates who voted to save rain forests, after a
U.S. military officer announced that American delegates possibly
contracted the Ebola virus while in Brazilian rain forests.
Hoffmann was one of 100 high school students who set out to
protect rain forests and women and children this weekend in a
model United Nations conference Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
The delegates acted as diplomats from 40 countries who worked
together on foreign policy. Six students from Colombia made the
trip to Allen D. Nease High School, which sponsored the event.
The others were mostly from Nease, but included exchange
students from Germany, Bosnia, Ecuador, Spain and Egypt.
In committees of 10, delegates researched problems,
brainstormed solutions and wrote resolutions that were voted on.
The conference was organized through Nease's Latin American
Studies program to promote a hands-on learning approach
cross-cultural understanding for high school students.
To prepare for the conference, students researched their
assigned country using the Internet, libraries and the real
United Nations delegations in New York. They learned the
culture, history and political policies of their designated
country. They also familiarized themselves with global issues,
how the U.N. works and the issues for debate.
For this conference, students looked for ways to safeguard the
political, social and economic status of women and children