Amanda Zerby attends United Nations Seminar in New York City

By Taylor Weaver, Staff Writer — Various opportunities for students to engage in learning about the country and its issues are missed due to the fact that most of the students are not aware of them.

Amanda Zerby, senior and president of the Gay-Straight Alliance, was given one of these various opportunities and attended a United Nations Seminar from Feb. 20 to Feb 28.

Zerby traveled first to Washington D.C. and then to New York City with a church group on Feb. 20 to attend the seminar which is offered to many students across the United States.

During the seminar, Zerby was educated on specific topics affecting the United States such as the immigration reform and human trafficking. These issues affecting the United States are something Zerby feels passionately about. She applied to attend the seminars because of this reason.

Zerby applied to attend the seminar by writing an essay. The opportunity is based on first come, first serve basis. Students who apply must also fill out a questionnaire and

are required to learn about the topics prior to attending the seminar.

After she completed these tasks, Zerby traveled to Columbus to depart for Washington D.C.

While attending the seminar in Washington, Zerby met with multiple staff members in the United Nations office and was given information about the building.

After departing from the United Nations office, Zerby visited the Capitol Building and traveled to multiple museums including the Smithsonian and The Holocaust museum. Zerby visited the Vietnam Memorial and the Botanical Gardens as well.

“The Botanical Gardens were beautiful. We need one here in Ohio,” Zerby said.

While in New York, Zerby visited the official international United Nations building.

Although the building is on United States land, the building technically belongs to all 193 nations, or countries it represents, making it international property. The building has 193 different flags that symbolizes the 193 different nations. Inside the building there are 193 pieces of art, one donated from each nation. One of the rooms in the building has an unfinished ceiling that symbolizes that the United Nation’s work is “never finished”.

Zerby then traveled to Harlem and attended an African American church service.

“The ceremony was amazing. There was so much energy and so much life and positivity and love pouring through everything,” Zerby said. “It was so raw and powerful. “

[Updated Aug. 12, 2017: This article has been reformatted for consistency.]