Team Rider Wins First Prize in Model United Nations National Competition

Rider’s Model United Nations (UN) team won an Outstanding Delegation Award – the conference’s highest honor – at the 2022 Model UN National Conference in New York City.

“Only the best-prepared teams win this competition prize,” says Dr. Barbara Franz, Rider’s Model UN Educational Advisor. “We compete against teams from universities all over the world.”

Rider’s team has also won three Peer Delegate Awards. Political science freshman Christina Natoli and junior Andrew Bernstein received the award for their work on the First Committee of the General Assembly. Grace Kohansby, double major in political science and global studies, and Tray Ferguson, second major in political science, were honored for their work with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. Sophomore Paola Carlesso, a Global Studies double major in Spanish, and junior Devon Shaw, a political science major, also received a Peer Recognition Award for Outstanding Leadership on the UN Women Committee.

The team, led by Shaw students Ryan Leighton and Katy Timari, has been named to represent Hungary this year.

“Our delegates had to defend the positions of the Hungarian government regardless of their personal beliefs or identities. It was a big challenge for our delegates,” says Leighton, a double major in history and political science who is attending his third Model UN conference. “The conference always gives delegates an idea of ​​how fun, messy, frustrating and fruitful global politics can be.”

Leaders made sure Rider’s team was up to the challenge.

“Rider University takes Model UN very seriously,” says Shaw. “We spend the entire semester in a course comprised of simulations, teaching students all the ins and outs of the lecture. We also host a mock conference, a one-day event where we invite other schools to our campus and simulate the entire conference. »

The team award continues Rider’s successful legacy of participation in Model UN. The University has received the Outstanding Delegation Award more than a dozen times over the past two decades.

“Our team’s long history of success encourages all of our team members to hold themselves to a high standard,” says Timari, a double major in political science and health care policy. “While it can be stressful at times, it’s also encouraging to know that there was a long streak of success before you could help keep going.”

The team was rounded out by Grace Auer, a double major in economics and international business; Nico Cappuccino, junior major in history; Maria Castillo, second-year political science student; Preston Hicks, computer science major; Mark Immordino, political science major; Brianna Kovach, first-year political science student; Elissa LiBrizzi, first-year political science student; Maheen Mumtaz, Junior Major in Political Science; Chris Simon, sophomore in music education and double major in vocal performance; Andreja Vujasinovic, junior double major in political science and finance; and Nina Weber, junior global studies and double major in political science.

Rider was a founding member of the National Model United Nations competition and has attended every conference since 1967.

Beyond recognition, students also develop skills in teamwork, leadership, writing, and public speaking. “Being part of this team is, for sure, one of the most meaningful learning experiences and the most valuable and practical experience of their student career at Rider,” says Franz.

Earnest L. Veasey