The Model Arab League is a student leadership development program created by the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations. It is a simulation of an international organization, the League of Arab States, which has 22 member countries.
Julie O’Hara, senior political science major, won the Outstanding Delegation Award, while Solane Nemera, senior political science major, and Sydney Brazil, junior philosophy major, won the Distinguished Delegation Award.
“Winning an award was a huge surprise because Solane Nemera and I were in a committee with very talented and prepared delegates,” Brazil said. “I thought we did a great job, but it was still a shock to win an award at my first Model Arab League conference.”
Brazil and Nemer represented Egypt on the Special Council on Women and Children, where they spent a majority of time discussing the impact of displacement and conflict in preventing children from accessing a stable education and evaluating ways in which the Model Arab League can reduce the number of children who are out of school.
“The amazing thing about the Model Arab League is that you are debating about very relevant issues,” Brazil said. “Negotiating with other delegates and working on draft papers really gets your adrenaline pumping, while passing a resolution that offers a potential solution gives you such a sense of accomplishment.”
More than 20 UA Little Rock students participated in the conference. They met with the Egyptian Consulate to help them prepare to represent Egypt during the conference. UA Little Rock students also represented Kuwait and Morocco.
“I applied for Model Arab League because it sounded really fun,” Brazil said. “I have always been interested in international relations and was curious as to how diplomacy worked. My experience thus far has been so amazing. I’ve made new friends, learned about a part of the world I wasn’t very familiar with, and improved my presentation and critical thinking skills. It has added so much value to my life through awareness of issues in other parts of the world and truly awesome friends.”
Students who competed in the Bilaterial Model Arab League include Anna Aguilar, Mariam Bouzihay, Nora Bouzihay, Sydney Brazil, Angela Burton, Colin Davies, Landon DeKay, Molly Edwards, Ravan Gaston, Jorge Gonzalez, Dorothea Greulich, Leon Kockaya, Faith Madkins, Kristen Miller, Claire Mitchell, Solane Nemera, Jonathan Nwosu, Jessica Olson, Julie O’Hara, Hope Roberts, Madison Rogers, Makell Swinney, and Issac Thomas.
UA Little Rock students will next compete in the National University Model Arab League Conference April 4-7 at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.