Model UN

  • The 63rd Session of The Gannon University Model United Nations will convene November 13 and 14, 2015 on the Gannon campus. Founded to promote an understanding of the complex problems of international affairs as well as the purposes and functions of the United Nations, the Gannon Model U.N. will draw together some 500 students representing approximately 40 high schools in the tri-state area. For those who have never participated in such a conference, the Model U.N. offers a challenging education in the dealings among nations.

    In the spring or early fall, delegations are assigned country designations and encouraged to begin to study the issues which will be under consideration at the forthcoming assembly. As much as possible, the students are to learn the viewpoint of the government they are assigned to represent, and are to attempt to speak and vote according to the interests of that country.

    During the fall the member delegations meet in regional blocs, corresponding to geographic and ideological groupings within the United Nations itself, to begin to debate the issues and to formulate strategies for the General Assembly. Gannon advisors may attend these block meetings to assist their organization.

  • History

    Father Joseph J. Barr, Ph. D., then chairman of Gannon College's political science department, founded the Model United Nations. The International Relations Club originated the concept of Model United Nations at what was then known as Gannon College. Eleven high schools in the Erie area participated in the event. In March of 1954, the IRC held the first Model United Nations conference for high school students in the Erie area. Since then the conference has grown to include more than 800 students from 50 high schools in the tri-state area and Canada. 

    Father Barr believed that the U.N. could bring us closer to world unity if every person has faith. For Father Barr, the Model United Nations had two purposes. First, the Model U.N. should give students the opportunity to learn more about world problems, and in particular, to see the different viewpoints and positions which are at work in the United Nations. Second, it should provide experience in organization, leadership, and debate as well as bring together college and high school students to work as a team.

    As participation increased, the Model assembly was divided into regional blocs beginning in 1958. In 1967, a model Security Council was added to the conference. In 1995, a model Economic and Social Council was added. Also, as the attendance grew, the agenda was expanded to include more topics of worldwide interest. 

    Father Barr stepped down as General Moderator in 1968. He left his project in the hands of Dr. James Brasfield, who moderated in the 16th and 17th sessions. In 1969, Dr. Gregor Reinhard took over the responsibility of General Moderator for Gannon's Model United Nations. Dr. Reinhard served as the General Moderator until 1996 when he was appointed Dean of the College of Humanities, Business, and Education. Mr. Paul Foust was named to replace Dr. Reinhard for the 45th annual Gannon Model United Nations, and has served as General Moderator since. 

    Since its inception, 55 Gannon students have served as Secretary General. Among them is Dr. David Kozak, professor and chairman of Gannon's political science department, who served as Secretary General in 1965. Hundreds more college students have served as staff members. Approximately 30,000 high school students have participated as delegates over the years.

    Resources

    • Model UN Brochure
    • General Assembly:   
      1. Combatting Cyber Warfare and Implementing Procedures of Sensitive
        Information.
        1.  Encouraging an Open and Competitive Market for the Extraction and Sale of Natural Resources in 
         
        Developing Nations
        3. Protecting Religious Freedom and Promoting Education to Improve Tolerance to All Religious 
        Beliefs
        4. Creating a Uniform Political Procedure for Distribution and Management of Humanitarian 
        Efforts.
        5. Emphasizing the Need for Healthcare Reform to Prevent the
        Transmittance of Infectious Diseases.
       
    • ECOSOC Topic:
      • A Path to the Future: Prioritizing and Establishing New Sustainable Development Goals Post 2015 Millennium Development Goals.
       
    • Security Council Topics:
      • TBD
       
    • Historical Security Council
    • Country Chart (Contact David Cimino for country assignments at Cimino003@knights.gannon.edu)
    • Position Paper Rubric
    • Logistics
     

    Staff

    Being part of a college Model UN staff is a great experience. Every year a dynamic group of Gannon students comes together to organize one of the oldest high school Model UN conferences in the nation. Although the majority are Political Science and International Affairs majors, other students from a wide range of majors in the arts and sciences also participate. Gannon students, under the direction of the Secretary General, handle everything from public relations to decorating the General Assembly to running the mock committees at the conference. Every year to kick off the conference weekend Gannon officers participate in a flag raising ceremony with the mayor who issues a proclamation for support.

    Contact Information

    Please send questions, comments, and requests to:

    For Faculty Moderator:
    Dr. Anjali Sahay
    Department of Political, Legal, and International Studies

    Mailbox: 3048
    Email: sahay001@gannon.edu  
    Phone: 814 871 5535

    Secretary General (President): David G. Cimino cimino003@gannon.edu

    Assistant Secretary General (Vice President):  Jared N. Wilczynski wilczyns004@gannon.edu 

    Director of Planning and Public Relations: Jared N. Wilczynski wilczyns004@gannon.edu

    ***Any school with at least six interested students is welcome to participate.  All you need is a faculty member who is willing to serve as a moderator.  Don't be afraid to get involved!  We hope to hear from you!