The Monash Bachelor of Arts student, majoring in International Studies and Chinese Language was invited to the UN for the five-day Global Youth Forum, after his essay on multilingualism and global citizenship written in Chinese, won.
Sixty winners – ten from each language of the United Nations – were selected and invited to participate in the Global Youth Forum, which was held in conjunction with Adelphi University.
The forum in New York was an extraordinary experience for Alistair.
“It was fantastic to visit the United Nations in New York, and I feel very privileged to have been able to attend,” Alistair said.
The students, who attended the forum on June 27, presented their ideas to the UN based on the principles of the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI).
UNAI, launched by the Secretary-General in 2010, is a global initiative that aligns institutions of higher learning and research with the United Nations.
The Many Languages, One World essay contest invited students from around the world to compose an essay in one of the six official languages of the United Nations – Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian or Spanish – that was neither the student’s native language nor the language of instruction in the student’s pre-university study.
Many Languages, One World, organised by ELS Educational Services and the UNAI, had more than 4000 people from 128 countries participated in some phase of the contest. Contestants ranged from college freshmen to Doctoral candidates from universities all over the world, and their fields of academic study were very diverse.