Mercy’s Model UN Team Wins Highest Honor at National NY Conference

Mercy University Model UN team at NY conference

Mercy University Model UN delegation at New York conference.

Mercy University’s Model United Nations (U.N.) team distinguished itself once again at the 2024 National Model United Nations (NMUN) competition, earning the Outstanding Delegation Award— the highest honor. Additionally, the Mercy team received two Outstanding Position Paper awards, showcasing the quality of their preparation and research. The conference took place from April 1-5, 2024 in New York City. 

The Mercy team has won awards at every Model U.N. conference they have attended over the past 11 years. In November 2023, the team was named Outstanding Delegation and won two Outstanding Position Paper Awards at the National Model U.N. conference in Washington, D.C.

“Our students served as a delegation representing Ireland at the annual New York City event amidst thousands of passionate students from over 100 schools,” said Stuart Sidle, dean of the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences. “These awards underscore their dedication, diligence, and diplomatic acumen.”

The Model UN competition is a simulation where student teams must serve their nation's interests while also solving world problems by collaborating with other teams through multilateral diplomacy. The delegates were judged on professionalism and diplomatic values, analysis of issues, advocacy, and relevant resolutions, among other things.

Sidle added that these accomplishments not only underscore the proficiency of the Mercy team but also reflect the invaluable guidance provided by their energetic and dedicated faculty advisor, Michiko Kuroda.

Prof. Kuroda has been a core faculty member of the International Relations and Diplomacy Program in the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences since 2013. Her teaching is based on her 30 years of experience working at the United Nations. Since 2014, Prof. Kuroda’s students have participated in Model United conferences, bringing outstanding awards to the Mercy team.

“The Mercy Delegation was constantly active in diplomacy,” said Kuroda. “They were always engaged, giving interesting speeches, skillfully negotiating with other delegations, settling issues, drafting resolutions, and networking.”

Receiving these awards indicates that the Mercy delegation had a top 10% performance among the delegations, Kuroda explained. She credits the team’s outstanding performance with their use of three learning principles: focus, strive for excellence, and teamwork.

“It required a lot of hard work and dedication, but we felt prepared and confident when it came time for the conference,” said student delegate Luna Tejedor ’24, who was the head delegate at both the New York and Washington, D.C. conferences. “I am incredibly grateful to have shared this experience with such hardworking and passionate individuals.

“I'm really proud of our team,” said student delegate Marius Larsen. “It was a pleasure and an honor to participate at a conference with 2,000 students that were so insightful and curious on the world's pressing issues.”

“Winning the outstanding delegation award was a testament to the dedication and hard work of our entire team. It was an exhilarating moment that underscored the importance of persistence, teamwork, and a deep understanding of the complexities of international relations,” said student delegate Rawad Jehi.

“This was my first conference, and I didn't know what to expect,” said student delegate Melissa Ledesma. “Our class environment is what made the experience so memorable.”  

Tejedor agrees. “Professor Kuroda's dedication to the team and each student's success is truly remarkable. Without her guidance, I would not be the person I am today. I would encourage anyone to participate in MUN, regardless of their major, since they will have the privilege of learning from one of the most experienced and knowledgeable professors I have met.”

Mercy University Model UN in action at New York conference