2020-2021 High School Membership

Membership applications for the 2020-2021 academic are now open! Questions? Reach out to Eric Bumbaca at ebumbaca@wacphila.org

Interested in joining as a Member? Want to learn more? You can view a recording of our virtual High School Welcome Back Program that took place on September 17, 2020 to learn about all our exciting 2020-21 program offerings! 

Program Updates for 2020-2021 Academic Year

Simulation Programs

The Council is excited to announce that the 2020-2021 Simulation Programs will be offered  in a virtual setting. 

The 2020 International Student Summit - A Model G7+5 Summit: Restarting the Global Economy Post COVID-19

Mirroring the Council’s legacy educational simulation programming based on traditional global issues forums, the 2020 International Student Summit, titled Restarting the Global Economy Post COVID-19, will be a virtual simulation conference that centers around efforts to restart and reshape the global economy post pandemic. Simulating a gathering of the world’s seven most advanced economies, as well as five of the world’s fastest growing economies, student participants will be tasked with charting an equitable and sustainable future for the global economic system.

Students will assume the role of political and economic leaders from one of twelve participating countries (France, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom, Japan, United States, Canada, Mexico, India, South Africa, Brazil and China), and will be tasked with researching the economic, geographical, and cultural underpinnings unique of their society.  Students will analyze the economic fallout resulting from the pandemic, debate the complexities of restarting the global economic machine, and ultimately, ideate new, sustainable, and just economic systems moving forward.

* Platforms Required: TBD;
* Duration: Full-day conference program (9 am – 1 pm);
* Program Offering: Offered once;
Preparation level: High - Students must commit to doing several hours of research on their assigned country and committee role ahead of the full-day, virtual simulation event

2021 Global Economic Forum

The 2021 Global Economic Forum will focus on the ongoing global climate emergency, and potential solutions to the evolving crisis. The program is scheduled for March 2021, and more information will be released in the coming months. 

* Platforms Required: TBD;
* Duration: Full-day conference program (9 am – 1 pm);
* Program Offering: Offered once;
Preparation level: High - Students must commit to doing several hours of research on their assigned country and committee role ahead of the full-day, virtual simulation event

Speaker Series

Education Speaker Series (NEW for 2020-21)
The Council is excited to announce a new Education Speaker Series tailored directly to high school student audiences. This Series, scheduled for the last Wednesday of every month, will bring academics, policymakers and policy practitioners directly to your students through an immersive, virtual speaker platform. Students will have an opportunity to hear directly from influential thinkers, and will have the opportunity to engage directly in a Q&A session with those speakers. Access to these speakers is complimentary with a High School Membership. More information on future speakers will be updated in the coming weeks! 

In addition to the newly announced Speaker Series, and as one of the top public policy forums in the nation, the Council will continue to offer access to it’s influential podium programs. Beginning in March 2020, the Council’s podium programs were moved to an online, webinar format and schools with a 2020-2021 High School Membership will continue to have access to these amazing speaker programs. 

*Platforms Required: TBD; Duration: 1 to 2 hours;
* Program Offering: One Speaker Series event each month, typically the last Wednesday of every month;
* Preparation level: Light - Students are not required to do any preparation in advance, but are encouraged to read the speaker’s bio and come with 1 or 2 questions

Student Debate Series

Student Debate Series (NEW for 2020-21)
Borrowing off both the success of the Council’s first ever virtual Summer Global Leadership Seminar for high school students and the Council’s Great Debates legacy podium speaker series, we will be offering a new virtual debate series for member high schools. In response to a timely debate prompt, students will be divided and assigned to one of two groups (affirmative or negative) and hone their research, writing, strategic thinking, and public speaking skills in the form of a virtual debate with their peers. The Council will provide accompanying topic and group-specific resources for students to review prior to the virtual debate.  A panel of judges will utilize a detailed rubric to choose a winning side and students will have the opportunity to earn individual awards based on their debate participation and performance. 

*Platforms Offered: TBD; Duration: 2 hours;
* Program Offerings: three times: October, February, April;
* Preparation level: Medium - Students should anticipate reading a short set of pre-vetted resources from the perspective of their assigned debate group prior to participating in the virtual debate

iThrive Sim Programming

iThrive Sim partnership with iThrive Games Foundation (NEW for 2020-21)
The Council, in partnership with iThrive Games Foundation, will offer iThrive Sim Programming: a series of innovative, virtual simulations that are facilitated through a web-based, device agnostic platform. The first of these simulations is Lives in Balance: a six-participant role-play where students serve as U.S. government officials who must decide when and how to reopen the economies of four Southwestern states during a global pandemic. They contend with conflicting information from multiple sources including experts in infectious disease and commerce, and the voice of the people. The information changes quickly and forces students to advocate their positions, negotiate, and compromise to take care of both their constituents and the nation.  Additional iThrive simulation opportunities will be available to teachers and students throughout the academic year.

* Platforms Required: iThrive web-based platform (accessible via internet browser) and Zoom or Google Meet (TBD);
* Duration: 1.5 hours which includes an introductory session, 47-minutes of gameplay, and a short debrief;
Program Offering: Scheduled directly with WAC Education Staff, multiple offerings available;
* Preparation level: Light - Students are not required to do any preparation in advance, but teachers are encouraged to utilize provided resources to extend learning.

Why Join?  The World Affairs Council of Philadelphia is a non-profit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to informing and engaging people of all ages on matters of national and international significance.  The Council’s education programs aim to:

  • Expand students' knowledge of and engagement with global affairs topics such as world geography, cultures, economics, languages and international relations;
  • Increase students' ability to understand and recognize emerging transnational issues from a range of perspectives;
  • Help students develop the critical thinking, problem-solving and leadership skills, as well as confidence needed to succeed in a competitive global economy; and
  • Enhance students' opportunities to work creatively and collaboratively across local and global borders.

If you have any questions about the Council's education programs or securing a 2020-2021 High School Membership, please reach out directly to Eric Bumbaca, Director of Student Programs, at ebumbaca@wacphila.org

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