United Nations Youth leader.
Ashley Stuart
Get to know Ashley Stuart,
Political Science and History

What exciting things have you been up to at uni?

Last year UC sponsored me to go to the Harvard National Model United Nations in Boston. There were 3000 university students from 70 countries. I was put in the International Security and Disarmament committee where I represented Norway. It was challenging to debate global issues using the policies of a foreign country and disregarding my personal views towards the issues we discussed.

Sounds like a big deal!

It was an amazing opportunity, being the sole UC representative in the New Zealand delegation at the oldest and most prestigious model United Nations conference in the world. It was an experience that has been invaluable for my personal and career development.

Sounds like you’re passionate about international relations?

I am. My passion has led me towards being the President for UN Youth Canterbury and running the United Nations Youth Club at UC. We connect students who are interested in careers in international relations. We create events for them, host keynote speakers and give students the opportunity to volunteer for our organization and learn about foreign policy and international relations.

How has the clubs scene helped you personally?

I come from a small town on the West Coast where everyone knows everyone. At uni suddenly there’s thousands of students, but when you get involved in the clubs it doesn’t feel so big after all. I've been able to make friends and meet new people through the range of social, academic and sporting clubs I have got involved in. I've made connections that will benefit my career as well.

"There’s an amazing student atmosphere and it’s academically supportive as well."

What do you like most about your study?

I'm really passionate about the topics we talk about. In politics you get to study things that aren't usually discussed in day-to-day life and are really interesting and relevant to global society. That inspires me to research more and think more widely. The classes themselves are very interactive. It’s easy to form relationships with your peers and lecturers which makes it easier to succeed.

Where do you hope your degree will lead?

My passion for international relations has inspired me to become a global citizen. I want to work for the United Nations or a non-governmental organisation particularly focusing on human rights and education equality. I’d like to make a difference through improving education in developing countries.

How is UC helping you get there?

UC has helped me grow as an individual. There’s an amazing student atmosphere and it’s academically supportive as well. Here, your lecturers truly want you to achieve great things.

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