On Wednesday, June 2nd, 9 of our students headed down to Massey University to take part in a mock United Nations Global Summit. The event was hosted by the faculty of Social Science and entailed a full day scenario-based exercise where you ‘role play’ as a member of the UN Security Council.
Holly took on the role of Egypt, Nate was representing the United States, Jemma got to play the role of Russia and Hannah got to embody Uruguay while our other students got to play the roles of other various countries.
Holly Explained the session ran as a real life Global Summit would, there was no real structure to the meeting, people would talk over one another, you would have to raise your card to speak and wait for the chairperson (also Hannah) to call out your country.
Learning that not all countries are considered equal was a real eye opener explained to the group. In the United Nations Security Council, they have “the big 5” countries. The United States, Russia, France, China, and the United Kingdom. These Countries have “Veto” powers to overrule decisions that are potentially better for the overall economy but can cripple an ongoing agreement or agenda of your own country.
Jemma explained that they were given a scenario of a civil war breaking out in South Sudan and ongoing information about current events happening in countries all over the world that would impact what they were discussing and how it would change outcomes. Jemma also got to re-enact the 1960 Assembly meeting where Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev pounded his shoe on the bench to get the attention of the room.
“We thought the idea of the event was to learn how to cooperate for the better of the world. However, what we ended up learning was how hard it was to coordinate and collaborate with other countries when everyone has their own agenda” Hannah explained.
Jemma has a real keen interest in Sociology at Massey and Hannah is a big History buff, while Holly has a passion for ecology and making the world a better place for future generations. The rest of the group were wanting to understand the reasons behind why the world is moving in the current direction. Quickly learning what is better for the future and the world as a whole is not necessarily what is decided.