Westminster College Professor to Give Keynote Address at Mesa Community College Model UN Conference 


Kurt JeffersonDr. Kurt Jefferson, Director of the Center for Engaging the World and Professor of Political Science at Westminster College, in Fulton, MO will be the keynote speaker at the Mesa Community College Annual High School Model United Nation Conference from 2 p.m.-3 p.m., Friday, February 8.
He will address 150 high school students on how they can utilize their Model UN experience to build a future career via global education.
He will also meet with several college Model UN students at Mesa Community College on Thursday, Feb. 7, to discuss the importance of model UN as an applied leadership experience and tool for personal and professional development.
Model UN is an academic simulation of the United Nations aimed at educating participants about current events, international relation topics, diplomacy and the United Nations agenda. 
Participants role-play as diplomats, representing a nation or non-governmental organization in a simulated session of a committee of the UN such as the Security Council or General Assembly. They research a country, take on diplomatic roles, investigate international issues and debate and develop solutions to world problems.
While the United States has the most comprehensive calendar of Model UN conference events, the concept has been embraced worldwide.
Dr. Jefferson is in the area to help reach out to local high and community colleges in the Phoenix/Mesa area to educate them about Westminster College’s global academic programs such as the Center for Engaging the World’s transnational studies and international studies majors. Westminster has one of the only undergraduate transnational studies programs in America.
While he is visiting, he will connect with alumni and leaders in the Mesa area to educate them about Westminster’s new Mesa campus.
Dr. Jefferson has served at Westminster College since 1993. He currently teaches courses in European and international politics, as well as transnational and international studies. He has served as Chair of the Westminster Political Science Department and Chair of the Social Sciences Division. 
He has authored two books, Christianity’s Impact on World Politics (2002) and Celtic Politics: Politics in Scotland, Ireland, and Wales (2011), numerous scholarly articles, and commentary pieces on a range of topics including European political parties, Russian politics, and Middle Eastern affairs.
Since 2010, he has led the Center for Engaging the World where he helped implement the transnational studies major and connected Westminster College to institutions and governments in China, France, Jordan, South Africa and Turkey. In 2010 he served as Visiting Professor of Global Business and Politics at ICN Graduate Business School In Nancy, France.
Dr. Jefferson holds M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in political science from the University of Missouri-Columbia and a B.A. in political science from Western Illinois University. He is a direct descendant of Field Jefferson, uncle to President Thomas Jefferson.
Westminster College will offer classes at its new campus in Mesa beginning in the fall of 2013.