Clark team places 11th of 210 at Harvard Model UN Conference

Clark's Model UN team celebrates their success. From left: Yohan Senarath, Shahryar Alamgir Khan, Justin Raphaelson, Jessica Chung, Tamar Gzirishvili, Nicholas Hyman; kneeling is Samer Said.

The Clark University Model UN team placed eleventh out of 210 competing colleges at the annual Harvard National Model United Nations (HNMUN) Conference, held in Boston on February 16-19. The Clark students also won an outstanding delegate award and three honorable mentions.

Twenty-eight students from Clark participated in this prestigious event along with Yale University, University of Chicago, University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University, Princeton University, George Washington University, Columbia University, West Point Military Academy, and other colleges from around the world.

“For a small university, Clark has made a remarkable name for itself nationally and internationally via the Harvard conference and other conferences in the Model UN circuit, often being featured in the top 10 national rankings,” said Srinivasan Sitaraman, associate professor of political science and faculty adviser to the Clark Model UN team.

The Clark delegates represented India, which is “considered to be the mouthpiece of the developing world,” said Clark sophomore Yohan Senarath. 

Senarath ’14 earned the Outstanding Delegate Award in the Historical Security Council. Three delegations were awarded honorable mentions: Samer Said ’13 and  Nicholas Hyman ’13 in the Security Council; Jessica Chung  ’12 and Tamar Gzirishvili  ’13 in the World Health Organization; and Justin Raphaelson ’13 and Shahrya Alamgir Khan ’14 in the Disarmament and Security Committee.

Lawrence H. Summers, professor at Harvard and former U.S. Treasury Secretary, gave the keynote address. He speaks and consults widely on economic and financial issues.

The Clark Model UN Program is a realistic simulation of the activities of ambassadors and representatives of different member nations who serve in the different agencies of the United Nations. Students assume the role of ambassadors or special UN representatives of the various member nations. They participate in live simulations of the UN Security Council, Economic Social and Cultural Council, and Special Middle East Summit. The Clark Model UN Program is sponsored by the Political Science Department and the Clark University Student Council. Professor Sitaraman has been the faculty adviser and instructor of this active learning course since fall 2003. 

Since its founding in 1887, Clark University in Worcester, Mass., has a history of challenging convention. As an innovative liberal arts college and research university, Clark’s world-class faculty lead a community of creative thinkers and passionate doers and offer a range of expertise, particularly in the areas of psychology, geography, urban education, Holocaust and genocide studies, environmental studies, and international development and social change. Clark’s students, faculty and alumni embody the Clark motto: Challenge convention. Change our world.