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Middle School wins 4 awards at Model UN

Middle School wins 4 awards at Model UN

If students in Wilbraham & Monson Academy’s Middle School had a say right now, there would be plenty of clean water for everyone in the world.

Four Middle School students – all representing countries in regard to clean water – received awards at this year’s Innovative Model United Nations Conference at Northeastern University in Boston Feb. 28.

Working together, Leah Thorn-Szostkiewicz ’24 and Dakotah Thomas ’26 won a Best Delegate Award for their representation of Germany. Meanwhile, Bao Giang “Cindy” Doan ’24 and Padraig Dunbar ’26 teamed as members from Sweden to win Best Position Paper.

Nine Middle School students, who received helped prior to the event from Upper School Model UN members Jack Perenick ’21 and Liam Etti ’20, attended this year’s conference.

The after-school activity, which was run in conjunction with the National Geographic GeoBee, was coordinated by Madame Fabienne Dubois.


Madame Dubois on why Model UN is important for WMA Middle School students: “Model UN teaches the students about problems in the world; issues in the world. It requires students to dig deeper and reflect on possible solutions. It’s amazing for a Middle School student to be thinking how we can make the world a better place. Also, they have to learn how to speak, debate, write, research, compromise; so many skills are involved in this. I think it’s an invaluable experience for them because we learn so many things.”

Madame Dubois on Leah and Dakotah winning Best Delegate awards: “They did really well. I sat in the room and saw them lead the block to write the resolution. They were well prepared. They understood the procedure really well; they compromised really well. A delegate has to compromise and inspire the other countries to come together and find a solution. They shared the role.”

Madame Dubois on Cindy and Padraig winning an award for Best Position Paper: “Padraig’s and Cindy’s paper was awesome. They worked well together. They did exceptional research on the topic, with solutions.”

Cindy regarding the Position Paper Award: “The position paper was both a surprise and not a surprise. I knew we had a very good position paper, but it was surprising we won. I didn’t think we would because when we did the Model UN a lot of the other delegates had good speeches, so I didn’t think we’d win even though we had a good position paper.”

Padraig on his Model UN experience: “Model UN was really fun, and winning an award for the Best Position Paper was amazing. We worked really hard on it and our hard work paid off. The conference itself was very cool. We did a lot of stuff and it was really fun.”

Dakotah on what she likes about Model UN: “What I like about Model UN is you get to look deeper into issues you don’t see every day, like the clean water issue. In America you really don’t have that problem so a person might not care about it that much. However, in other parts of the world there is a problem.”

Leah on winning the Best Delegate Award: “Winning the award was very exciting because it’s a big honor to be recognized as the best out of everyone in the room.”