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Chesapeake Conference Students Visit The Hague

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The students were part of the first Adventist school delegation to attend The Hague International Model United Nations Conference in person.

Ten students from Highland View Academy (HVA) and Spencerville Adventist Academy (SAA) recently joined other students from the Columbia Union in traveling to the Netherlands to participate in The Hague International Model United Nations (THIMUN) Conference. The trip was organized by Washington Adventist University’s Honors College and marked the first time an Adventist school delegation has attended THIMUN Conference in person. 

The Columbia Union students were tasked with representing Equatorial Guinea during the summit, which simulated real-life United Nations meetings and procedures in attempting to address global challenges. Before departing for the Netherlands, students met with representatives at the Embassy of Equatorial Guinea in Washington, D.C., to learn about the country’s international goals and objectives firsthand.

Jarrod Lutz, SAA teacher and trip sponsor, said he was impressed with students’ willingness to speak up and debate during THIMUN Conference, which often featured committees with hundreds of other students from around the world. “It was amazing to see our students assert themselves with confidence during the meetings, which likely included future kings and heads of state in the room,” he said.

Lutz said the students’ participation was all the more impressive because they missed the first day of the conference after high winds stranded them on the airport tarmac in Iceland for more than 11 hours during a layover.

“Seeing the hundreds of kids from all over the world was such a cool experience,” says HVA senior Brendan Koilpillai. “I will never forget all the connections and friendships I’ve made at the conference and will always cherish these lifetime moments.”

In addition to participating in the conference, students enjoyed opportunities to explore The Hague in the evenings and to visit Amsterdam on a sightseeing trip after the conference concluded, including a meaningful visit to the Anne Frank House Museum. On Sabbath, students participated in the worship service at the local Adventist church in The Hague and spent the day with the church’s youth group.

“The church was very welcoming and friendly,” says SAA senior Jonathan Moats. “It was great to meet believers from all over the world, and to see how God works everywhere.”

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