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  • Guest Writer

Two CSN students win award at U.N.

Zach and Sadie collaborated to win the Award of Merit.

On March 12, two Community School of Naples students, junior Zachary Dahlquist and sophomore Sadie Lipman, earned the Award of Merit for their work on the United Nations Convention Against Corruption Committee during the National High School United Nations Conference (NHSUNC), 2023. The students, both serving as delegates from Morocco, researched and reported on corruption and press freedom, arguing for the protection of journalists and free speech and against cyber censorship. They drafted a proposal reaffirming “Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, that every human has the freedom to express their personal opinions without interference, as well as the right to send and receive information through digital media.” Their resolution passed by a vote of 86-14-7.

Established in 1975, NHSMUN is the world’s largest and most prestigious Model U.N. conference for secondary school students. Long recognized for having the best substantive program on the MUN circuit, NHSMUN is known for its diverse, talented attendees, its world-class staff, its highly engaging debates, and its academically rigorous material (from NHSMUN brochure, 2022).

Zach and Sadie were among the 27 CSN students who traveled to New York City to participate in the NHSMUN this year. The group had the opportunity to sit in the hallowed halls of the General Assembly, listening to international diplomats and student activists discuss the complications and hopes involved in negotiating and diplomacy. The CSN students researched, wrote, and debated an array of topics, from international disarmament to the indigenous rights of women in the Amazon. The rigorous work opened their eyes to the world beyond Naples, FL.

The award comes after months of preparation with CSN’s Model U.N. Club (HawkMUNC) and marks the end of a season of local competitions that began in September 2022. During the year, students learned the art of writing a proposal and entering diplomatic discussions to earn support. Being in New York among 4,000 other students from all over the world put this year’s activities into perspective for Zachary, the president of HawkMUNC. “The experience enhances debate. It taught me to develop my international diplomacy skills.”

Sadie, also recognized as Best Delegate for her work earlier this year at Gulf Coast High School’s SharkMUNC, saw the immediate difference in the NHSUNC: “It helped strengthen debate skills. More importantly,” she says, the most significant part of the experience was “meeting people from different backgrounds and learning from them.”

Sadie and Zach have been involved in HawkMUNC since their first years at CSN. They have taken an active role in discussions about free speech and freedom of the press, and their leadership demonstrates their commitment to both the club and its global ideals.


Community School of Naples, the largest PreK-12 independent school in Collier County, was established in 1982. CSN offers a rigorous college preparatory program, and 100 percent of its seniors attend select four-year colleges and universities. The school is located on a 77-acre campus in North Naples.


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