World Affairs Council Perspective

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Adam Bisignani, Raven Dupilka, Maddie Stas, and Bianca Pate are all smiles after experiencing the World Affairs Council held in Pittsburgh this year. Each of them wore a nametag around their necks that displayed the group they were in for the simulation part of the Council. Raven was a climate activist, Bianca was a part of a third world country, Adam was a part of the United Nations, and Maddie was a part of the European Union.

Maddie Stas, Staff Member

Being a part of the world affairs council in Pittsburgh was overall a great experience. From the first speaker, to the second we left after the simulation, I was immersed in the passion that the council had for the environment.

The day began with a keynote speaker, Mr. Berlin, giving an overview on the issues of the environment. The entire convention was about environmental solutions for crises. He highlighted everything from the concrete details of known environmental issues, to how the new Trump administration would affect efforts in environmental care.

A main point he had involved global warming. It is a proven fact that global warming is occurring. Summer temperatures have been gradually increasing since 1992.

He also hit on the topic that “The age of renewable energy is here.” Fossil fuels will be used up eventually. And the problem is they take millions of years to replenish. Renewable energy is the more reliable option.  

Trump has stated that he may pull out of the Paris agreement. This could have detrimental effects from an environmental world plan standpoint.

All of the things he said prepared us for the main reason we were chosen to come to the council. The simulation.

When we arrived, Bianca, Raven, Adam, and I were assigned different roles in the simulation. My role was that of the European Union. During the presentation, I sat with kids from schools all over Pittsburgh who were assigned the same group. Our job as a part of the European Union was to meet with other developed countries, and come up with an economic plan that would benefit the environment. Being a wealthy organization, we also had to consider how much of our money we would donate to Less Developed countries. Together we came up with a plan that would 1: benefit the environment the most but also be cost efficient and 2: help everyone in the world not just the US and Europe.

All in all, the simulation and the speaker combined left me with a through understanding about the current environmental issues occurring in our country. This opportunity was particularly rewarding from the standpoint of learning how to communicate and cooperate with others during the simulation. I  was honored to be able to be a part of the rotary club luncheon, where I shared my new input, and to thank the organization for their interest for my education. 

Mr. Mains took the time to take a selfie after the Rotary Club luncheon. Holden Kammerer, Erin Grandgeorge, Bianca Pate, Raven Dupilka, and Maddie Stas shared experiences and collaborative ideas during the luncheon.