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Students Participate In Model UN

Girls wearing sarongs, berets and flowers in their hair sat next to boys wearing tropical-print shirts and straw hats.

Wednesday, January 24, 2001

Girls wearing sarongs, berets and flowers in their hair sat next to boys wearing tropical-print shirts and straw hats.

No, Halloween hasn’t arrived early. The students were wearing the native dress of the countries they were representing as a part of the Model United Nations project.

Sixty five students – members of the Talented and Gifted programs of Chesapeake, Rock Hill and Fairland – attended the Model United Nations at the Ohio University Southern Campus Tuesday. The students represented 19 countries including Argentina, Great Britain, Libya and the Republic of Sierra Leone.

Each nation was represented by two to four students who researched the country and presented a United Nations resolution based on issues facing that particular country. The delegates from each country then voted to pass or fail the resolution.

"It took us forever to find current information on any topic because Great Britain has so much history," said Kristen Berry, a Fairland High School student.

Berry said Great Britain has a history that spans back to Roman times and has changed forms of government several times.

At one point, she said, the country ruled over most of the known world.

"We had to research a topic many times to find the most current information on it," Berry said.

The resolutions ranged over a variety of topics, from conservation and preserving endangered species to disarmament, reducing poverty, improving education and eradicating disease.

Linda Dickess, gifted coordinator with the Lawrence County School Systems, said that the students started working on their project three months prior to the event. Three weeks before the event, the students exchanged resolutions so they could research the other countries and the resolutions they proposed.

"They needed the extra time to research the topics," Dickess said. "Because the students have access to the Internet, they have a wider range of research available to them."