Along with the amazing experiences Auburn’s KUNA group had at the convention March 3-5, they also had many outstanding students participate in multiple roles and even received awards for their service. KUNA (Kentucky United Nations Assembly) – is a 3-day experience in Louisville that provides students with a greater appreciation for our global community through hands-on involvement with international issues and solutions. The conference is geared toward developing students’ international consciousness through role-play as they represent one of the members of the United Nations!
Both as a group, and individually, students worked hard to present and argue resolutions based upon their representation as Russia. Serenity Metcalfe was one of those students. During the conference, she campaigned to be elected the KUNA 2016 Secretary General. While running for this position, she spoke in front of over 800 people on her ideas about how to solve world hunger, gender inequality in education, and poverty, increasing awareness for these important global issues.
Sarah Cassady participated in the Security Council, a group of 23 students that go into in-depth debate over resolutions involving global security. After contributing to these discussions, she was the only ambassador to receive the Outstanding Security Council Member award. She was invited to return to the conference next year to serve as the President of Security Council, a first for Auburn’s KUNA organization.
Lyndsey Gregory had the honor of serving as a committee chair, where she led and directed committees, the backbone of the KUNA conference. Lyndsey won an Outstanding Ambassador award.
Jordan Moberly was chosen to be parliamentarian; her responsibilities included managing resolutions and resolution sponsors, and controlling when people were allowed to enter or exit the committees.
Elizabeth McGinnis served as part of the media corps, who took pictures and videos throughout the conference, wrote articles to post on social media, and created a slide show that was presented to the entire general assembly on the last day.
Our resolution sponsors, Micah Page, Michaela Tackett, and Calloway Bills, presented their idea to solve the territorial issues surrounding the Arctic Ocean. They altered the current agreement to expand a country’s exclusive economic zone to 350 nautical miles and set the Arctic Ocean aside as a global trade route for when the ice in the Arctic melts. Their resolution could have potentially prevented a global conflict and economy crash.
As KUNA students, we all owe Mrs. Tina Owens a huge thank you for making it possible to attend KUNA. It’s the place where we learned to use our voice and speak up for what we believe in. It is the place where we learned that it is good to succeed, but it’s okay to fail first. But, more importantly, it’s the place that changed our lives. It takes a special person to devote as much personal time to helping their students succeed as Mrs. Owens does. So, thank you, Mrs. Owens, for changing our lives forever.
Now a few words from our graduating eighth grade Auburn KUNA class…
“Changing the world. That is what KUNA is. When I started this club 2 years ago I did not know how much of an impact it would have on me. I did not know that I would eventually speak in front of over 2,000 people in my YMCA career. I did not know that I had a voice. Because of KUNA, now I do. So far, I have passed 2 bills and 1 resolution. I have also run for Secretary General. If it was not for Mrs. Owens I would not have a voice. Thank you Mrs. Owens for giving me a chance to change the world.’’
“KUNA showed me a glimpse of the world without leaving the state. KUNA showed me that I could change the world, that I could actually make a difference. Every person at that conference brought a piece to the puzzle that is the world’s problems. Not just one person can change the world, but when you bring together a group with a cause, no matter the age, you can reform the world. I have Mrs. Owens to thank for giving me the voice that speaks out for those who can’t speak for themselves. Thank you KUNA for changing my life.”
‘’Honestly, KUNA has helped me a lot. KUNA has given me a voice. KUNA gave me friends from different schools. KUNA gave me knowledge of the world. It showed me problems of the world and how we can fix them. It helped me better understand the United Nations. Thank you KUNA for giving me all of these things that have helped make me a better person!