OC students represent Spain and the UK in Model NATO delegation
A delegation of Okanagan College students recently returned from a cross-Canada adventure where they took part in a unique exercise, to represent Spain and the United Kingdom in the Carleton Model NATO, participating in the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) and the Military Committee (MC).
Student representative Dandara Peraro de Sousa reflected on the experience, “Model NATO was a great learning experience, I met incredible students from OC and universities in Canada, and now I understand better how NATO works and its role in current politics.”
Despite facing unexpected obstacles, the team of students - Dandara, Alexander Riches, Charles Jones, and Foion Meeks and Professor Rosalind Warner pulled together for a full day of participation in Model NATO, an event held at Carleton University that simulates NATO decision making. The delegation had the opportunity to hear from guest speakers discussing Canada's role in world events and tackled issues such as energy, partnerships and security challenges faced by NATO countries.
The EAPC addressed three critical issues: European Energy Security, Eastern Flank Partnerships, and Caucasus Security Challenges. After a full day of deliberations, the Committee prepared a final consensus communique.
The Military Committee, which consists of the Chiefs of Defense (CHODS) of all NATO member countries, discussed issues related to NATO's defense and security, including security measures in the North, challenges of cybersecurity, and security along NATO's Eastern Flank. They also engaged in 'wargaming' using a variety of scenarios and crisis challenges.
In addition to the Model NATO, the delegation also had the opportunity to tour Canada's new Senate building and Parliament Hill.
Political science student Alexander Riches said it was a great experience. "Model NATO was an illuminating event for anyone hoping to learn more about the realities of modern international politics. I would recommend any political science students to take up this opportunity."
Professor Rosalind Warner expressed her gratitude to the Government of Canada’s Canadian Defence and Security Network MINDs Collaborative Network Research Grant for making the event possible and funding the OC delegation's trip. She commended the OC students for their professionalism and preparation and stated that the event was enriching and provided valuable real-world experience that can be applied to their academic and professional pursuits.
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