D.U.L.C.E.: Student Initiatives Take Shape as 20 Anniversary Year Shifts Into High Gear

The October Diplomacy United Leadership and Communication Exchange (DULCE) meeting saw student leaders and faculty conduct their monthly forum in the Dean’s Conference Room of the Walsh Library, a difference from the Diplomacy Room in McQuaid Hall, the typical space where meetings are held. This change in scenery, which was originally unplanned, can be likened to the School of Diplomacy as a whole, which is always evolving in response to the ever-in flux circumstances of the world in an effort to adapt to the challenges of today in order to prepare students, faculty, and staff for the challenges of tomorrow.

Dean Andrea Bartoli opened the meeting, emphasizing this spirit of change by stating that the School of Diplomacy is not just closing the chapter of the last 20 years, but also beginning a new 20 years of memory making, transformation, and success. This new chapter will help shape the school, as Dean Bartoli stated, “for those who have not even been born yet.”

Bearing this new beginning in mind, a number of updates were provided regarding a handful of initiatives DULCE announced at the organization’s September meeting, namely the Liaison Initiative, which aims to strengthen diplomacy-related organizations for the purposes of improving the extra-curricular opportunities for diplomacy students.

Following these updates Mark McGuire and Michelle Perez spoke about an event that they are working on to run a cocktail night which allows current undergraduate and graduate diplomacy students to connect and network with alumni of the school. Michelle also spoke about the Graduate Diplomacy Council’s efforts to host an event entitled: “International Dinner – Mexico” which was designed to bring students together to enjoy each other’s company for a meal, the profits of which would go toward the victims of the September 2017 Central Mexico Earthquake.

James Zvirbulis provided an update on the Undergraduate Diplomacy Student Association (UDSA) Rise Against Hunger project, stating that the organization has raised $1300 toward its $3000 goal, money which will be used to pack thousands of meals for those less fortunate.

Eva Rian also brought up an issue of a shortage of diplomacy student tutors at the Academic Resource Center (ARC) after which Michelle Perez, a member of the Sigma Iota Rho Honor Society, agreed to assist Eva by incentivizing members to sign up as student tutors and providing assistance in the meantime until the new tutors are in place.

DULCE Facilitator, Mark McGuire, then provided an update on a meeting of his with Sergio Vieira de Mello Endowed Visiting Chair Joao Honwana in which Mr. Honwana offered to reach out to a number of his U.N. connections to facilitate a range of on-campus events featuring U.N. personnel from the Department of Political Affairs (DPA). Mark followed this introduction up with an informal poll of present students to gauge where exactly within DPA interest for such events lay. After a preliminary result was realized, the group decided that a poll would be sent out to DULCE members to sample a wider segment of the diplomacy student populace after which Mark and Mr. Honwana would work to bring the officials to campus.

Dr. Benjamin Goldfrank, the current Department Chair of the School of Diplomacy, iterated that he encourages students to take advantage of his office hours to provide feedback on their diplomacy classes so that the faculty can ensure that students are receiving the best education they possibly can.

Judy Koren also mentioned that there will be an event, sponsored by UDSA and UNA as part of Human Rights Month, which will take place on November 7 in the Jubilee Auditorium.

Senior Associate Dean Courtney Smith also spoke about the effort being made to feature President of the United Nations General Assembly Miroslav Lajčák on campus in December, making Seton Hall the first university to officially host President Lajčák.

Dean Bartoli also spoke about his desire to speak more at length about the Global Action Against Mass Atrocity Crimes (GAAMAC) state-led initiative at the next DULCE meeting to explore the endeavor further.

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