Teen benefits from US forum
Eighteen-year-old Nikita Wade is now a more self-assured, articulate and disciplined person after attending the Global Young Leaders Conference in Washington DC and New York from July 18 to 29.
Wade, who attended the St James Secondary School, and hails from Halton Terrace, St Philip, told the weekend Nation that she was one of the seven secondary school students to participate in the 12-day conference.
Oil giant Chevron-Texaco has been sponsoring the conference for the past three years, and this year underwrote the cost of the programme with a contribution of $25 000.
Wade, who hopes to become a social worker, has been a member of the Emerging Global Leaders of Barbados, a former member of the Interact Club, and a former member of her school’s Student Council.
Giving details of the 12-day conference, Wade said students participated in simulations, town hall briefings and debates that dealt with diplomatic issues.
She also disclosed that participants addressed the issue of genetically modified products and organic foods.
Addressing the issue of confidence building and the ability to speak effectively in a public forum, Wade said: “Everyone did not get an opportunity to speak publicly, but you were given an opportunity to contribute to the presentation made by the spokesperson for your group.”
On the issue of self-discipline, Wade said: “The conference assisted me to be very organised because participants were given a specific time to arise on mornings and specific times for security checks.”
Explaining that participants were drawn from several countries, Wade said the conference “gave participants an opportunity to think locally, act globally and embrace different cultures”.
During the trip, participants were given the opportunity to visit such historic sites as the United Nations Headquarters, Wall Street, the Holocaust Museum, the National History Museum, the Lincoln Memorial, the World Bank and view the White House.
Wade expressed thanks to Barbados Labour Party candidate for St Philip West, Roger Smith, who assisted her in making her trip possible. (PR)