International Relations Clubs & Activities

Model United Nations

The Model United Nations Diplomacy Organization (MUNDO) is the newest student club related to International Relations, and features an enthusiastic group of students who enjoy role-play, simulations, and skills development in the areas of public speaking, negotiation, and creative problem-solving. Student-run club activities stimulate global awareness of pressing political, social, and economic issues, promote an appreciation of diplomacy, and facilitate the growth of the international relations-minded community on campus. MUNDO members travel to cities like Charlotte, Cleveland, and Toronto to participate in intercollegiate Model UN conferences and competitions, and they are proud co-sponsors of the annual Human Rights Conference in the spring (see below). Notably, MUNDO provides a valuable community service by helping to plan and moderate an annual Model UN conference for area high school students.

The International Relations Program and MUNDO are proud to coordinate and run the annual High School Model UN Conference hosted by Canisius College. Now approaching its 41st year, this event features approximately 400 delegates from 20 schools in Western New York. The student-delegates come to campus for day-long simulations of the United Nations Security Council, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the Economic and Social Council, and the Human Rights Council, among others. The high-school delegates prepare for weeks in advance to represent their assigned countries with respect to specific global issues. Members of the Canisius community, including faculty and students, are involved in the planning and execution of the event. Awards are given to recognize outstanding student delegations in each of the various sessions. For further information, contact @email.

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International Relations majors build leadership skills and meet other students from around the world by participating in EuroSim, an annual intercollegiate European Union simulation that is held alternately in the United States and a European nation. The conference brings together more than 200 students from dozens of colleges and universities in the United States and Europe. Each conference has a specific theme related to current events, which helps students deepen their knowledge of the European Union and hone their negotiating and public speaking skills. Many International Relations majors participate in this exciting program. For further information, contact Dr. John Occhipinti at @email.

Human Rights Student Conference

Each spring International Relations and its student clubs hosts the Human Rights Student Conference in conjunction with Campus Ministry and other organizations. The conference, which normally lasts one or two days, provides students with a forum from which they may present the results of their research on a variety of human rights issues. Often complemented by an expert guest speaker, the students’ presentations or posters help educate the community about the threats to human rights in today’s world, raising awareness and providing an encouraging message of hope for the future. The conference is open to participation by any student, undergraduate or graduate, who wishes to present his or her human rights related research in a conference setting. For further information contact @email or the Program Director.

Peace Action--Canisius College

The student organization Peace Action is committed to promoting the non-violent resolution of conflict and building a human rights culture in the global community, starting with students on campus, and often coordinated with community organizations that also embrace non-violent methods of positive change. Peace Action engages the campus community with a variety of events and activities meant to draw attention to situations of injustice and attempts by ordinary people, activists, and grass-roots organizations to redress persistent issues. Peace Action's social justice orientation echoes the mission of Canisius College and finds many of its leaders and members in the International Relations program. 

International Affairs Society

The International Affairs Society (IAS) at Canisius College is a student organization based on shared interest in global affairs and world events. IAS has a long history of promoting activities on campus and in the greater community to raise awareness of global issues and international problems like human rights abuses, refugee flows, inequality and poverty, transnational crime, and other threats to global peace and security. IAS is rooted in a common belief that education and action go hand-in-hand; this group truly thinks globally and acts locally. 

In the past, IAS has sponsored or co-sponsored a variety of programs related to global affairs, including the annual Human Rights Student Conference, the Model United Nations programs, and movie nights. IAS also brings to campus guest speakers on global affairs, sponsors IR-related film series, and helps build the community of students with wide-ranging interests in foreign cultures and languages, international history and politics, global travel and study abroad, and activism on issues like human rights. IAS gladly welcomes students from all disciplines, values diversity, and bridges knowledge and activism with respect to global affairs.