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This is a guest blog written by Joshua Pitt, a third-year BA (Hons) Politics student.

I recently attended the BISA (British International Studies Association) model NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) simulation, representing Canada, which was held at the Foreign Commonwealth and development office in Westminster. I got involved with this event after applying to be part of the Bournemouth delegation, where I had to write a short application. I was then selected to be one of three Bournemouth University students, which then began the journey of the months of preparation for the event working alongside my two BU colleagues.

This event was a great experience and one of the personal highlights of the event was being able to work as a “diplomat” within the historical foreign office which provided the valuable feeling of what it would be like to work within government operations.

During the event, we were split into three committees and tasked with coming to a consensus on how to deal with a humanitarian crisis. I was on the head committee called the North Atlantic Council and our task was to work together to make the final decisions on NATO’s support for the nations affected.

All of these different aspects of the simulation gave me valuable experience in working collaboratively with others and ensuring to always take a cooperative approach and attempt to reach a consensus. I also learned a significant amount about the workings of NATO itself and how it is very important in international relations for countries to work together.

People standing together holding a certificate

Josh holding the award certificate

Following the conclusion of the event there was a reception where awards were given for the best delegates in each committee and the best nation delegations for the entire event. As the delegation representing Canada and Bournemouth University, we were awarded with the distinguished delegation award for our performance throughout the day as a delegation. This felt like a great accomplishment because we had spent months preparing for this simulation and the award was an acknowledgment of that. The award was made even more special due to the fact that this was the first time BU had been invited to the event and was a relatively small university with an event filled with larger and renowned universities from across the UK.

Overall this Model NATO simulation was a great experience and will be truly valuable in the future due to the skills I developed. It is well worth attending and I hope to see Bournemouth performing well at the simulation next year.

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