The sixth grade from West Hartford’s Kingswood Oxford School received an insiders’ tour of the UN courtesy of an alumnus who is now an assistant secretary-general.
When the sixth-grade students from Kingswood Oxford School traveled to New York City on March 1 to visit the United Nations, they were greeted and escorted by a very special host: fellow Wyvern Anthony Banbury ’82, the UN’s Assistant Secretary-General for Field Support.
Most recently, Banbury had been overseeing the UN’s efforts to prevent the spread of Ebola across Africa; over the past decade, he was Director of the World Food Programme, which led humanitarian relief programs across the globe. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Tufts University.
During their visit, the students also met with UN officials from several other divisions, including Fatima Khan of the World Health Organization, Lena Savelli from the Executive Office of the Secretary-General, and Frank Schroeder, a member of the Secretary-General’s Climate Change Support Team.
The students participated in discussions about a number of timely topics, including Syrian refugees, global warming, and world health issues.
The field trip was part of an interdisciplinary project called Passport to our World, in which sixth-grade students immerse themselves in the study of a specific country and then present what they’ve learned to an audience. The project culminates with a Model UN activity; in this case, the trip to NYC.
“The trip helped to demonstrate the way their research plays out in real-life scenarios,” said Sixth-Grade Dean Andy Carr, who organized the trip. “It made their Passport project incredibly relevant and applicable.”