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Meet your Director, Walter Dodson!

Walter is a junior majoring in political science with a minor in philosophy. This is his third year participating in UCMUN. Last year he was the director of the International Law Commission, and two years ago he was an assistant director for the UN Development Programme. Although he did not participate in Model UN as a high schooler, Walter is very passionate about UCMUN due to his interest in politics and international relations. While at school, he works in the UConn Office of Community Outreach as a driver. When not at UConn, Walter skis in the winter, sails during the summer, and makes social change with his time at UConn. You can also find Walter in Boston taking in a sunset at Fenway Park with his squad. He is looking forward to spirited debate and insightful thoughts on the pressing issues in today’s heated international climate. Please contact him with any questions at walter.dodson@uconn.edu.

 

Meet your Topic Specialist, Gabriella DeBenedictis!

Gabriella is a junior journalism and communication double major who hopes to someday be a political reporter. This is her third year in UCMUN, having served as the topic specialist for UNHCR last year, and as an assistant director for UNEP two years ago. Outside of UCMUN, Gabriella is a staff writer for The Daily Campus news section, a member of Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, and a member of Disney at UConn. In her free time, she enjoys visiting New York City, listening to Broadway music, and watching too much Netflix, late night TV, and CNN. Gabriella is super excited to serve as the topic specialist of UNESCO! If delegates have any questions or concerns, they can reach her at gabriella.debenedictis@uconn.edu.

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Topic A: Expanding Internet Access in the Third World

The past 40 years can be considered “the age of the Internet,” an explosion of knowledge and interconnectedness that has spanned the globe. In modernized nations, one cannot go a day without accessing the Internet in one form or another.  This goes to show how important the Internet has been in the growth of nations, both in size and influence. While our world becomes ever more connected and dependent on the Internet, nearly half of the global population does not have access to it.  This severely hinders the ability of those people to be members of the global virtual community and bars them from the same economic prosperity enjoyed by the other half.  The question remains, in order to secure peace and prosperity around the globe, how can UNESCO help bring the benefits of the Internet to the rest of the world?

Topic B: Protecting Muslim Rights Around the World

The Islamic faith is the second most populous religion in the world, with roots stretching back to the seventh century common era. In recent years, Muslims have come under increasing attack, as members are often being ostracized from their communities because of their faith. Examples of this mistreatment have been seen around the world, whether it be with clothing requirements, prohibition of movement, or destruction of holy sites.  UNESCO is tasked with maintaining peace through cultural acceptance and tolerance.  As a committee we must find a way to protect the rights of Muslims to freely practice their faith and preserve their culture around the world.