ARDSLEY, N.Y. -- Ian Misrok's political science studies at SUNY Oneonta gained some real life experience when he and 15 other students spent part of spring break at the National Model United Nations Conference from March 30 to April 3.
The Oneonta delegation, representing the African nation of Cote d'Ivoire as one of 28 groups from around the world, was selected to receive the Distinguished Delegation award at the conference.
Misrok, an Ardsley resident in his senior year, said got involved with the National Model conference through Oneonta's political science department.
"As a political science major, I kept hearing about how unbelievable an experience it was and that there was no way I should allow myself to miss out, especially as a senior," Misrok said. "Professor Dr. Brett Heindl kept encouraging students to come to the interest meeting, so I decided to go for it. I had three friends who had previously participated and had raved about their experience at MNUN."
Misrok said he has always been interested in world politics.
"I have always maintained a strong interest in international politics, especially in the United Nations," he said. "As a kid, I was always intrigued with the UN complex and the fact that it's located in Manhattan lead me to look more deeply into its functions."
Seeing the conference as a perfect way to cap off his political science studies and my college career, Misrok and his partner were assigned to work in the General Assembly First Committee (GA1) with a mandate to focus on Disarmament and International Security.
"From the very beginning, my partner and I worked very closely with the delegations from both Gambia (represented by students from Brigham Young University) and Sri Lanka (represented by students from The Netherlands)," Misrok said. "We drafted a resolution together aimed at improving current measures preventing terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction."
The Oneonta team participated in discussions, mergers, and political posturing and Misrok's team's resolution was accepted by the rest of the committee and was declared an official resolution.
"That was the first highlight," Misrok said of the resolution. "The second was when it was announced that my partner and I had won the award for "Outstanding Position Paper." It was so satisfying to realize that all the long hours of hard work that we put into preparing for the conference paid off so nicely."
Misrok's experience at the UN conference may be a real-life experience that lifts him into a career in diplomacy.
"I am interested in international diplomacy and politics," he said. "In the current world climate, including the crisis in Ukraine, international diplomacy has never been more important. Nations need to come together to combat world problems, not try and solve issues single handedly."
Misrok recognized his professor and fellow students for all the awards and accomplishments earned during the conference.
"We won awards for outstanding position papers in three separate committees, two of my classmates were chosen to participate in conference-wide leadership and we were recognized as a "Distinguished Delegation"," he said. "All these awards and honors we received demonstrates how well Dr. Heindl prepared us and how hard my peers and I worked."