North Country Model UN to celebrate 30 years

PLATTSBURGH Harry McManus has finally agreed to speak at an opening ceremony for the Model United Nations summit at NCCS. He is usually a behind the scenes guy, said Emily OHara, one of the two North Country UN (NCMUN) Secretaries this year. Hes an excellent speaker, but hes modest. It is appropriate that he speak this year because we are celebrating the 30-year anniversary of the Model UN at our school. It was 36 years ago when McManus and six students went to their first Harvard Model UN. It was then that he realized what a wonderful opportunity it was and set out organize a mirroring event at Northeastern Clinton Central School. It took some time, but by 1978 NCCS hosted their first NCMUN with McManus at the helm as advisor a position hes been delighted to have held on to ever since. This years event is slated for March 8-10 and it doubles as celebration of the 30th anniversary of the NCMUN. As such, McManus and the two Model UN Secretaries, OHara and Audrey Gillette, are hoping to get the word out to as many of the 350 UN Alumni as possible in hopes of getting them to attend. They are also urging alumni to bring any photos or other memorabilia to share. Our focus is on the alumni. We are hoping to have the display set up by year for everyone to get a look at, said McManus. According to Gillette they also have a few new special events planned for the celebration, including McManus speech, which will kick-off the opening ceremonies at 9 a.m. After 30 years of his hard work we definitely want to appreciate him, Gillette said. They joked that for McManus the biggest challenge may be coming up with some new, updated wittiness to share. With the school budgets constantly being tightened, this may well be the last year for McManus as advisor and it may be the last time NCCS students can afford to go to Harvard or even host the NCMUN. We want to be able to keep the Model UN going at NCCS, said OHara, noting the positive impact it has had on students lives. OHara explained that the Model UN gives the students a sense of awareness of the global issues and what is going on in the world around us. The Model UN is set up similarly to a sporting competition, with six different committees representing legal, political, economic and social issues as well as human rights. Topics of debate will include global warming, illegal immigration, international legal rights, bio-energy, human trafficking, just to name a few. There will also be two prestigious councils set up to represent the International Court of Justice. According to OHara they will be holding two mock court cases, USA vs. Iran and Korea, followed by Israel vs. Lebanon. Gillette shared that this years guest speaker is Dr. Douglas Skopp, a history professor at Plattsburgh State University. To find out more contact Harry McManus at 297-7753 or email him at harrymcmanus@gmail.com

Vote on this Story by clicking on the Icon


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment