Reflections of a CCNY NGO Youth Representative: Interview with Anasimon Takla

Please briefly introduce yourself.

My name is Anasimon Takla. I am a Political Science and International Studies student at CCNY. I was a Youth Representative of the CCNY NGO at the UN during the Fall 2016 semester.

How did you earn the position of Youth Representative of the CCNY NGO at the UN?

I simply applied by sending my resume and cover letter to ccnymodelun@gmail.com

What was it like to represent the CCNY NGO?

It was a wonderful and humbling experience. The CCNY NGO itself is newly formed. The school, however, is one of the most prestigious schools in New York. The experience instantly opens your eyes and makes you comprehend what a great responsibility it is to represent a whole institution from the student body to the staff and faculty to everyone else on campus. Also, City College is not just any academic institution. Being located in Harlem, we were approached several times from activists who not only wanted student or NGO involvement in their causes, but particularly Harlem students whom they believed would add a great value to their campaigns.

What were some highlights of your experience at CCNY?

As a Youth Representative of my school’s NGO, I needed to be acquainted with struggles that CCNY students face daily in order to help shed light on them during the numerous events that future Youth Representatives will be attending at the United Nations. Myself and my NGO colleagues organized a meeting with the school’s Undergraduate Student Government’s President, Safat Chowdhury, the Vice President of Finance, Radwa Ahmed, and Senator Taimoor Arif. We asked them to explain to us the main plights of CCNY students so that we can use our platform to bring awareness to them. A more detailed summary of this meeting can be found here.

What were some highlights of your experience at the UN?

During my many visits to the UN headquarters and while attending several events on different causes as well as weekly DPI NGO briefings, I was fortunate to meet influential leaders, inspiring role models, and tireless NGO representatives eager to achieve their own organizations’ goals. Being a female myself, I thoroughly enjoyed meeting numerous prominent female figures. For instance, it was truly inspiring to attend the Climate Neutral Now event in September and chat with the current and first female FIFA Secretary General, Fatma Samoura. Likewise, it was interesting to hear about the General Assembly’s efforts to combat antimicrobial resistance from Thailand’s perspective through Counsellor Maratee Andamo, representative of the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Thailand to the United Nations. Also equally fascinating was meeting Minister Counsellor Veronica Garcia Gutierrez who spoke about improving women’s issues from the perspective of the Permeant Mission of Costa Rica to the United Nations. The examples of impressive female figures whom I met at the UN are far too many to be listed and this experience has made me more determined to join them in paving the roads for younger girls aspiring to enter the world of diplomacy.

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