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Monmouth’s Model UN Team Makes Impressive Finish at International Competition

WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. — Members of the Monmouth University Model United Nations team (MUN) made an exceptional showing at Oxford University’s annual Model United Nations contest, held on November 3-5, 2017, in Oxford, England.

All Monmouth University students wrote resolutions and performed well, with three students winning awards. MUN captain Prachi Patel won first place (“Best Delegate”) on an International Court of Justice committee that debated rival claims of genocide in the former Yugoslavia and the legality of a border wall separating Israel and Palestine.

Other award-winning Monmouth students were James Hawk (second place) and Justin Dritschel (third place). Hawk and Dritschel both were delegates on a World Bank committee debating post-conflict economic reconstruction in Syria and Iraq. Their seven-page resolution, with specific policy recommendations ranging from irrigation infrastructure to education to oil, won rare unanimous approval.

Elizabeth Carmines and Pablo Catano competed on an U.N. Human Rights Counsel committee that debated new technology, human rights and refugees. Emma O’Rourke and Liam Coffey were on a NATO committee debating alliance policy to deter Russian aggression in Europe. Liam Coffey co-wrote the lone resolution that passed the committee. Erin Brown participated on a U.N. Development Program committee focused on Natural Disaster Relief Policies; she was part of a coalition that co-wrote her committee’s only successful resolution.

The eight Monmouth University participants — Prachi Patel, James Hawk, Elizabeth Carmines, Pablo Catano, Emma O’Rourke, Justin Dritschel, Erin Brown and Liam Coffey — joined students from Europe, Asia and Africa at the competition.

MUN competitions last three days and consist of thematic committees where students individually write position papers and negotiate policy resolutions. To win, a student must write a resolution, defend it against rivals, and convince their committee of 25 to 40 rival students to pass it. Successful resolutions require extensive research, effective public speaking and critical thinking, and clear, efficient, empirical/data-based writing.

Opening ceremonies took place at historic Christ Church, Oxford, one of the constituent colleges of Oxford University and the closing ceremonies and awards were presented at the Sheldonian Theater, designed by Sir Christopher Wren.

Students have been working with Dr. Kevin Dooley and Dr. Ken Mitchell of the political science and sociology department since September to prepare and research for this competition. Monmouth alumnus and current Oxford University doctoral candidate Sam Maynard helped to mentor the Monmouth MUN team and introduced them to student life at Oxford.

The MUN team is open to all students and no prior experience is necessary. For more information contact MUN student president Prachi Patel (, Dr. Dooley ( or Dr. Mitchell (