Model European Union

BGSU students again successful at Model European Union

Stefan Fritsch (left) and BGSU Model EU team members (left to right) Jose Muro, Austin Richards, Linda Brandt and Andrea Danziger at the competitionBGSU students successfully participated in the 2015 Model European Union (EU) simulation, hosted annually by the University of Pittsburgh’s European Union Center of Excellence, on Feb. 27 and 28. During the two-day simulation at the 20th Century Club, the BGSU students (representing the U.K., Luxembourg and Latvia) had to discuss and negotiate subjects ranging from the EU’s handling of the Ukraine crisis to Great Britain’s possible retreat from the EU as well as the growing rise of right-wing parties across Europe. The team returned home with a top award for its performances.

Austin Richards, an undecided technology major from Parkersburg, W.Va., and Jose Muro, an accounting/economics major from Venezuela, won a top award for representing Great Britain. Andrea Danziger, a political science major from Mason, Ohio, represented Luxembourg, and Linda Brandt, an international studies/history major from Germany, represented Luxembourg. 

According to Dr. Stefan Fritsch, political science department and academic adviser to the group, this high-impact learning experience allows students get a taste of the difficult choices that political decision-makers face as well as the complexity of the negotiating process itself.

“The challenge lies in trying to find compromises that help to solve the problems, yet are acceptable to each country,” he said. Moreover, “the whole exercise provides students with the opportunity to improve a variety of skills, such as oral argumentation, interpersonal communication, negotiation tactics and strategic planning. All of those can later be applied in many professional settings.”

The Model EU performance was observed and judged by a panel of professors from the participating universities, including the University of Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh-Greensburg, Duquesne University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania and BGSU. Students were judged on their knowledge of specific issues, their accurate representation of their country’s interests and their diplomatic negotiating skills.

In Fritsch’s opinion, “all our students did an excellent job.”