Pace University student Shade Quailey ’15 representing Italy in a simulation of the Human Rights Council at the 2014 Geneva International Model UN conference.

This blog post is from Shade Quailey ’15, a Head Delegate of the Pace University New York City Model United Nations program who graduated this May. It reflects on what she learned about herself and the world in her time as a Model UNer. We are very grateful for her leadership of the program, along with her fellow Head Delegates, last year.

My participation with the Model UN program impacted my academic career immensely both inside and outside of the classroom. When I first switched my major to Political Science during the summer before my junior year, one of the first courses I registered for was POL 303A: International Organization (Model UN). I was told this course would be difficult and that I should wait a semester, but I was up for the challenge. Switching majors and taking an upper level course during indeed a challenge, but it was one I never regretted.

Now that I have graduated, it brings me both joy and sadness to reflect upon the past two years. Joy, because I am grateful and happy to have had this experience. Sadness because, simply, it has come to an end. I have learned so much about diplomacy, international relations, the UN, the countries both the team and myself represented, and most importantly, myself. Coming in as a freshman I would have never imagined becoming a Political Science major or participating in the Model UN team, but they have both happened and I am graduating happier than I would have been had I not followed my interests and passions.

Through Model UN, I was able to participate in conferences in Washington, D.C., Geneva, and Oslo, where I represented Denmark, Italy and Saudi Arabia, respectively. I have strengthened my skills in public speaking, research, writing and negotiating, which helped me with other courses and especially my internships. Whenever a potential employer interviews me, one of the first questions they ask me is about my Model UN experience. Even when I attended the Law School Forum, representatives from schools complimented me on my Model UN work and eagerly told me how it would benefit me in law school should I decide to do moot court or similar activities.

Becoming a Head Delegate was definitely one of my proudest moments on the team. Dr. Matthew Bolton and the Head Delegates (then, Elena, Jackie, Katie and Kelsey) were extremely involved in helping me transition into the Political Science major and successfully participate in my first two conferences in Washington, D.C. and Switzerland. I truly admired them and was grateful for all of their help. This inspired me to run for Head Delegate myself once positions opened up. It was gratifying to know my experiences and skills I picked up would be useful to incoming Junior Delegates. Being a Head Delegate further allowed me to develop and strengthen teaching and editing skills, among others.

It has been an honor to not only be a part of the Model United Nations team and experience all of the wonderful opportunities it has given me but to have also served as a Head Delegate for my senior year and give back to the team. I look forward to taking all of the skills I developed during my involvement with Model UN as I move on to the next step of my life.