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Students Participate, Win Awards at NY6 Model African Union

Seven St. Lawrence University students and their faculty advisors participated at the second-annual New York Six Regional Model African Union, which took place Oct. 21 to 23 at Colgate University. 

The event brought together African students as well as African-studies students and faculty across the NY6 and offered students the opportunity to study Africa and the African Union through simulation. The New York Six is a consortium of upstate New York liberal arts institutions that includes Colgate University, Hamilton College, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, St. Lawrence University, Skidmore College, and Union College.

St. Lawrence students represented Botswana and Liberia, respectively, and were accompanied by their faculty advisors Madeleine Wong, associate professor and chair of Global Studies, and Angela Gapa, adjunct professor of government and African studies.

“This was the first time that St. Lawrence participated in the New York 6 Regional Model African Union, so it was a new experience for all of us,” Wong said. “As their faculty advisor, however, it was an honor and a privilege to work with these students.”

Rutendo Chabikwa ’17 of Zimbabwe, Xaviera Gitau ’17 of Kenya, Ajok (Victoria) Deng ’18 of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Moemedi Rakhudu ’20 of Botswana represented the Botswana delegation, while Yvonne Boateng ’18 of the United Kingdom, Namarig Kram ’18 of Coon Rapids, Minnesota, and Steven Valverde Porras ’19 of San Francisco represented the Liberia delegation.

Through their research, students prepared detailed substantive reports and policy notes for each country and submitted draft resolutions for debate in their respective committee meetings. The students represented the two countries in three committees: the Technical Committee on Economic Matters, the Technical Committee on Social Matters, and the Committee on Peace and Security.

“As a delegate representing a small West African nation, compromise and negotiations with larger countries was critical in promoting resolutions that looked favorably on our interests,” Namarig said. “The conference gave me the opportunity to discuss, and debate security issues currently facing the African continent and their future implications.”

Awardees:

Committee Leadership Award (selected by the committee chairs) to the person that made “the most significant contribution to fostering consensus, capturing the essence of complex issues, and leading the respective Committee and Council toward effective action

For the Technical Committee on Economic Matters – Rutendo Chabikwa

For the Technical Committee on Social Matters – Yvonne Boateng

For the Committee on Peace and Security – Namarig Kram

Outstanding Delegation in Committee Award

This award is voted by all delegations represented in each committee for the delegations they believe contributed to the accomplishments of the Committee/Council

For the Technical Committee on Economic Matters – Rutendo Chabikwa