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Bush School Students Selected for National Delegation to UN Commission on Status of Women Conference

May 07, 2018

Bush School students in front of the UN flag

Bush School students Metra Mehran, Erin Prejean, and Zein Haikal attended the 62nd session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in New York City as delegates of Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF). The CSW62 took place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from March 12 to 23, 2018. 

WILPF is an international nongovernmental organization (NGO) established in 1915. The organization’s mission is to end and prevent war; ensure that women are represented at all levels in the peace-building process; defend the human rights of women; and promote social, economic, and political justice. The Bush School students were among eleven students from around the country selected to attend the United Nations CSW. Dr. Valerie Hudson, who holds the George H. W. Bush Chair at the School, nominated Mehran and Prejean; Haikal was nominated by Professor Andrew Natsios, who directs the School’s Scowcroft Institute for International Affairs.

“The delegates are selected through a competitive process open to any student enrolled in an institution of higher education,” said Hudson. “I introduced the program to our students in 2017 and am delighted that three from the Bush School were selected this year.”

Conference attendees had a work schedule of eight to nine hours a day, including briefing sessions and training on leadership, feminist actions, and advocacy. They also learned about the structure of the United Nations and how it interacts with NGOs, civil society, and other activist groups. Evening sessions provided time for discussion and reflection on the students’ experience.

“We are very grateful for the High Impact Education (HIE) funds that made their practicum with the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom possible,” said Hudson. “This experience offered our students a unique opportunity to learn about the opportunities for women to participate in key international issues.”

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