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Martins Gives Keynote Speech At Model UN Conference

More than 300 students participate in debate

The Sewanhaka Central High School District “SIDMUN” Model UN conference was held last weekend from April 20-22. The annual conference is an eagerly awaited forum by students who debate world issues during a daylong conference moderated, developed and chaired by high school students.

Senator Jack Martins visited Model UN committees, listened to debates and helped open the “SIDMUN” Model UN conference at Floral Park Memorial High School (FPMHS). The conference hosts Floral Park Memorial, Sewanhaka, Carey, Elmont Memorial (EMHS) and New Hyde Park High Schools.

The conference is named after retired teacher and Model UN founder Lee Markus. Martins spoke to more than 300 student participants.

The conference featured different Model UN committees chaired by students from the participating high schools. The conference opened with a Model UN breakfast.

Martins met with students from all the schools and discussed their particular committee assignments. Issues debated at the conference ranged from censorship to women’s rights.

The opening forum for SIDMUN featured Secretary General Jahan Mirchandani of FPMHS, welcoming the students to the conference and offering his observations on his Model UN experiences throughout the years. Lee Markus discussed the leadership roles and his perspective on Model UN and how it has impacted the lives of luminaries such as Chelsea Clinton, Ryan Seacrest among others.

Martins talked about the skills that students develop being a part of Model UN.

“The subjects that you will debate are the very issues that our diplomats tackle each and every day,” Martins said. “The ability to debate, make a point and work together with others with very different perspectives and values will serve all of you very well in the future not only your career but in daily life.”

During the Model UN conference, Martins visited all of the committee room and listened to the debate being put forward by the different countries being represented. Floral Park Board of Education Trustee Dave Fowler and Model UN students joined him.

Martins also had a special meeting with the delegation from Portugal, which was represented by the students at EMHS.

“Model UN is such a fantastic program in the Sewanhaka Central High School District,” Martins said. “Watching our future leaders come together to solve problems and forge solutions by using informed, intelligent persuasion was a delight to watch.”