The McDonnell International Scholars Academy traveled to New York City, March 9-12, 2014 for their annual spring break cohort trip.
One of the biggest highlights for the scholars’ trip on Tuesday, March 11, was the round-table discussion with United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The McDonnell Academy cohorts of 2012 and 2013 were escorted into the United Nations Headquarters, photographed by the UN official photographer and ushered into a private meeting room, along with Chancellor Mark Wrighton and director of the McDonnell Academy, Professor James Wertsch. After listening to opening remarks from the Secretary-General, the scholars posed several questions ranging from the inclusion of additional countries to permanent membership in the UN Security Council, to possible UN solutions regarding climate change and global warming.
Mr. Jon Epstein, President and CEO of Fila USA, and a member of the McDonnell Academy External Advisory Committee, was instrumental in organizing the scholars’ visit with Mr. Ban ki-Moon, and the tour of the UN Headquarters that followed. During the tour, the scholars were able to sit in the audience seats of the UN Security Council and look out onto the meeting floor. They were encouraged to take photographs and participated in a question and answer session with the UN guides.
The scholars enjoyed a comprehensive schedule during their trip, including meeting with former Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Mr. Paul Volcker, Deputy Foreign Editor of the New York Times, Mr. Michael Slackman and touring the 9/11 Memorial with Mr. Joseph Daniels, a Washington University alum and President and CEO of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.