Potsdam High School senior attends Havard University Model G20 Conference
Friday, March 2, 2018 - 9:05 am

POTSDAM-- Jennifer Zhang, a junior at Potsdam High School, recently became the first Potsdam student to attend the Harvard University Model G20 Conference, winning the Top Overall Delegate award and an associated scholarship.

The Model G20 Summit was hosted at Harvard University and the Boston Convention Center from February 7 to 11, 2018. The summit was organized by the Harvard US-China Economic Interaction Council, China Education Symposium, Knovva Academy, and GiantBug Foundation.

The first two days of the conference consisted of lectures on international affairs and negotiation strategy from Harvard professors, workshops, research, and team-building exercises. The summit itself was held during the last three days of the Model G20 conference, and consisted of unstructured negotiation time for students to make political and economic deals between countries, in addition to keynote speeches from professors and members of government.

Zhang served as Head of State of Brazil, leading a team of six other ministers. She was one of 33 country delegations.

The process of admission to the Model G20 was a learning experience in itself for Zhang. She was chosen from an international pool of candidates after writing an application essay analyzing a topic of international significance, the infrastructure problem in sub-Saharan Africa. Zhang was interviewed via Skype by the Model G20 organizing committee and admitted as one of 200 students from around the world selected.

Following her acceptance, Zhang fundraised to cover transportation costs and the cost of the conference. Her participation at the conference was made possible by the Potsdam community and financial support by the Potsdam Educational Opportunity Fund (PEOF), the Potsdam Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA), and the Potsdam Student Council.

“Thank you to everyone who helped me get to the MG20,” said Zhang. “Attending the summit was a life-changing experience. I met and worked with hundreds of talented, dedicated high school students from all over the globe. It’s expanded my understanding of how large and culturally diverse our world is. I hope that many more students from Potsdam High School and the North Country will have the opportunity to attend this conference.”