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Global Scholars Meet with UN Deputy Secretary-General

The students were honored to meet privately with Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed.

On a crisp fall afternoon, the Global Scholars visited the United Nations, where they had a private meeting with Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed.

The Purchase College Global Scholars Program (GSP) is a four-year co-curricular program designed to bring together like-minded students from across academic areas to develop skills in intercultural communication and create a forum for globally focused, interdisciplinary collaboration.

The group posed questions on topics ranging from poverty to gender equality, as well as sustainability and climate change. They asked for advice on what they could do to make a maximum impact to help solve the world’s problems.

A tour of the UN rounded out the truly extraordinary experience, and the students were profoundly grateful for the time spent with Mohammed.

Mel Efrus ’22 (photography), a member of the inaugural cohort of Global Scholars, introduced the group to Mohammed as “thoughtful, curious, passionate leaders who represent a diverse array of backgrounds and directions.”

“The Global Scholars Program invites undergraduate students to expand their minds and dig deep into their global interests, paying attention to how they can be proactive in the world they want to live in,” Efrus adds.

The GSP seminar classes focus on the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. “This creates space for each Global Scholar to learn about and lead discussions on topics they are passionate about and align with their program of study,” says Efrus.

To demonstrate their diversity, as Efrus concluded the group introduction to the DSG, members took turns describing themselves with a single word: bi-cultural, Dominican, South Asian-American, first generation, queer, Asian American, curious, insightful, photographers, painters, artists, and anthropologists were among those words shared.

Mohammed provided the keynote address at President Milagros Peña’s inauguration and spoke at the 2022 Commencement as a SUNY Honorary Degree recipient.