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Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 10:00am

Mariama Darboe `20, International Relations and Diplomacy major, had the incredible opportunity to intern at the United Nations Department of Global Communications, Civil Society Unit in New York City this summer. She provided office support, answered requests from NGO representatives and helped plan the United Nations 68th Civil Society Conference, which took place in Salt Lake City. Her primary role was to organize conference panel discussions and in doing so was in regular communications with dignitaries and other global leaders.

Darboe proved herself to be focused and effective, qualities she attributes to developing at Mercy, and was awarded the unique opportunity to attend the historic conference in Utah. The location was of significance because it was the first time since 1945 that the conference was hosted by a United States government.

Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski hosted the event themed “Building Inclusive and Sustainable Cities and Communities.” Conference participants engaged in thematic sessions such as infrastructure and natural resource use, emerging technologies and innovation, impact investing and building inclusive communities through education. During the closing plenary, President of the General Assembly, her excellency María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés, emphasized how global goals can be achieved through strong partnerships. Darboe described Garcés as, “electrifying and galvanizing.”

From her internship, Darboe learned that, “simple actions can have huge implications for governments and civil society organizations.” Darboe was honored to attend the conference and promote sustainability, climate action and peaceful societies. She broadened her knowledge of social responsibility and is highly motivated to continue to advocate for climate action.

Darboe participated in the Model United Nations Conference in April 2019, which gave her the confidence to pursue the United Nations internship. She is grateful to her Mercy professors, Michiko Kuroada and Eduardo Zachary Albrecht, for their mentorship and guidance that led her on what she deems a “transformative experience.”

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