United Nations Day to be held Tuesday in the Student Center


Daily Egyptian file photo

By Kitt Fresa

Various campus organizations and departments are coming together Tuesday to host United Nations Day in the Student Center Auditorium.

The event is an opportunity to “honor the international organization’s work in promoting human rights, social progress and world peace,” according to its flyer.

The effort to organize UN Day was a collaboration between SIU’s United Nations Association, United Nations of Southern Illinois, the American Association of University Women, the International Law Society, the University Honors Program and the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute.


Local nonprofits will have a chance to bring awareness to their causes during a fair that will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Student Center International Lounge. There will be food, prizes and music for those who attend, the flyer says.

At 7 p.m., two keynote speakers will give addresses in the auditorium. One is Melissa Kilby, the director of Girl Up. Girl Up’s mission is improving the lives of girls in developing countries and empowering women to receive an education, according to the flyer.

In a statement about the event, the United Nations Association said Girl Up is crucial in helping women with fewer resources build their futures.

“Through Girl Up’s support, these girls will have the opportunity to become educated, healthy, safe, counted and positioned to be the next generation of leaders,” the statement says.

The second speaker is Geory Kurtzhals, SIU’s sustainability coordinator.

“I will be speaking about … how students as our local leaders can help move sustainability forward at our university,” Kurtzhals said. “I’ll be sharing some of what we have been doing and ways that students can get involved.”

Kelli Tilford, president of the Paul Simon Institute Ambassadors, said community members who want to get involved with the UN should attend.


“A lot of people want the United Nations initiatives to be achieved but they’re just not sure how they fit in it,” Tilford said. “These things help empower the communities to make differences in regards to sustainability and various goals with the United Nations.”

The event is free and open to the public.

Staff writer Kitt Fresa can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @kittfresa. 

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