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HPU Model United Nations team dominates Germany conference

HPU Munster AwardsBROWNWOOD – April 16, 2018 – Howard Payne University’s Model United Nations team won six awards at the 2018 Münster University International Model United Nations conference, more than any other team in attendance. The conference was held recently in Münster, Germany, with more than 200 student delegates representing 40 nations.

Model United Nations takes current world issues and asks students, who represent various countries as delegates, to try to solve them through diplomatic means. Students learn the art of diplomacy through caucusing, writing position papers and presenting in formal settings, all while following the model of the United Nations. The theme of this year’s conference was “Might Makes Right? Challenging Power and Privilege.”

Bringing home awards for HPU were Lainee Hasty, senior from Runaway Bay, representing South Africa on the United Nations Environmental Assembly; Caleb Kostreva, junior from Clifton, Colorado, representing Kuwait on the UN Security Council; Morgan Andie McCoy, junior from Whitehouse, representing India on United Nations Women Council; Emma Reed, junior from Kennedale, representing the Russian Federation on the UN Security Council; Penny Stehlik, sophomore from Round Rock, representing the Russian Federation on the 4th General Assembly: The Special Political and Decolonization Committee; and Jessica Swonger, junior from Midway, Arkansas, representing El Salvador on the Economic and Social Council.

Hasty, Kostreva and McCoy were each named Outstanding Delegate, while Reed, Stehlik and Swonger received Best Position Paper awards. Also representing HPU were Alex Bingham, junior from Bridge City; Jessica Catlett, senior from Alleyton; Joshua Dykes, senior from Mount Pleasant; and Charles Lewis, sophomore from Boerne.

Dr. Kevin Kelley, associate professor of psychology and chair of HPU’s Department of Psychology and Family Studies, advises the team.

“I am very excited that HPU’s Model United Nations team is bringing strength and expertise to the world stage,” he said. “Six of our 10 delegates won awards, including taking the top two honors on the Security Council. All of our delegates should be proud as we also were able to humbly spread the Good News far and wide.”

Kostreva and Reed led the HPU team as co-delegate and head delegate, respectively.

“As co-delegate for the HPU MUN team, I am so proud of all our delegates and the immense effort put into the conference,” Kostreva said. “So much of our success is because of Emma’s incredible leadership, and I know I speak for the entire team in saying this. While we brought home six awards, we also saw success in other ways, including having one delegate compete excellently in a Spanish-speaking committee!”

Reed also praised team members for their preparation and effort.

“I’m incredibly proud of and thankful for the hard work that this team put into preparing for this conference,” she said. “They all put in hours of research and represented HPU well. This was my sixth MUN trip, and it was possibly the most fun because I was able to travel and compete with a great group of friends! We go abroad so that we can expand our worldviews and meet people from around the world, and that was definitely the focus of this team. The awards are definitely an exciting aspect of it, but I’m more proud of the hard work that was put in by everybody.”

Applications are being accepted for the fall 2018 semester at Howard Payne University. HPU offers a variety of financial aid options. For more information about HPU, contact HPU’s Office of Admission at 325-649-8020 or by e-mail at


Cutline: HPU’s Model United Nations team brought home six awards from the 2018 Münster University International Model United Nations conference. Left to right: Penny Stehlik, Caleb Kostreva, Jessica Swonger, Lainee Hasty, Morgan Andie McCoy and Emma Reed.