Realizing how fortunate she was to go to a well run public high school in Brazil, Bianca Vasconcelos started investigating further what perpetuated the issues at other schools in her country as well as other problems around the globe, eventually throwing herself into Model UN.
“My original interest in the models started because I love to learn and research about politics and diplomacy around the world,” Bianca said. “The issues of my country, of Latin America, and globally because nowadays we have so many problems on our planet that I just want to become a part of their solutions.”
This passion began for Bianca when she started noticing more and more how other public schools in her state did not have the same resources her school had.
“I consider myself an exception,” Bianca said, “because I can see other schools in my state that suffer from violence, that don’t have enough resources, that don’t have basic necessities for all the students, and that can’t get enough food or materials for them.”
These realizations of inherent problems in the system led to Bianca noticing the trickle down effects they can have on individuals and society as a whole. She saw first hand how due to these problems students would give up on their school or their education as a whole and try to find jobs which would lead to many of them going into violence and other harmful activities. Bianca couldn’t help but feel that these young adults should instead be studying and pleaded that “if the government can invest more in their education, all of this could be very different.”
“I have friends that don't have the opportunity to go to a good school, a good place to live, and they don’t have the opportunity to grow even though I see a lot of potential in them,” Bianca said. “They can’t develop that potential because of these lacks in my society. Education is something that I always talk about because a good education is an opportunity for all people to have a profession and academic career and to have good opportunities in their future; to have hope to develop their skills in life.”
Bianca saw the Model UN as the perfect place for her to engage deeply with these issues.
“Using the UN simulations I can discuss these topics, I can learn about this, I can research about this and construct a debate with different ideas, with different points of view,” she said.
That has been part of Bianca’s fascination with LALA as well, where she can engage with people from a variety of different countries, communities, and even ideologies. As she plans to progress to studying political science abroad in the hopes of bringing new perspectives to the table and broadening her vision, Bianca saw the unique opportunity LALA was offering through the Academy and jumped at the opportunity.
“I think this is one of the most important phrases in my life because when LALA says ‘Lead the Change. Be the Change,’ in your country, in your world, we are saying do what you can in your community with the issues that your community faces to further help them develop and change your society, your community, and I am using LALA as one of my steps in that direction.”