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KPU students win four awards at Model UN competition

North Delta student part of winning team
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KPU Photo Pictured left to right; Bobby Gardner, Jemma Heathcote, Lorne Putman.

Three students from Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) won four awards after entering a model United Nations competition for the first time.

“We were ecstatic. KPU has talent that needs to be applied and awarded,” says North Delta’s Jemma Heathcote, president of the KPU Model UN club.

The club was recently revived and is funded by the Kwantlen Student Association (KSA). Heathcote was joined by fellow student Bobby Gardner and Lorne Putman as they represented Germany at the Northwest Small UN held in Portland, Oregon, in February.

“None of us had done university level model UN and the other teams were five times our size with some people having over four years of experience,” says Putman.

The KPU team was competing against some prestigious universities from the United States.

“This experience gave me pride as a KPU student and a Canadian. With hard work we managed to compete with big American universities and come out on top,” says Putman.

“Our win is an important moment for KPU, as we were essentially the underdogs throughout the conference. This was a first experience for all of us, and we were all shocked by the recognition we received,” adds Gardner, who won the Distinguished Delegate and a Position Paper award.

Heathcote also won a Distinguished Delegate award. The team was also awarded the Best Delegation Award.

“It was surprising and well earned. We hope this expands further into the KPU community,” says Heathcote, adding that they used their political science courses at KPU to help them prepare for this competition.

The students hope to enter more competitions and expand the KPU Model UN club.

“Thanks to support back home at KPU, specifically our biggest backers in the KSA, this trip was a successful and meaningful first university level Model UN conference that can hopefully set a precedent for our club in the future,” says Gardner.

-Submitted by KPU

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