Penn International Relations Conference

Dear Attendees,

It is my distinct pleasure to welcome you to the 2016 Penn International Relations Conference. Sponsored by the University of Pennsylvania International Affairs Association, PIRC will take place on Penn’s campus on February 19, 2016.

PIRC was created to encourage a love of international relations and to foster an awareness of global politics among high school students in the Delaware Valley. At PIRC 2016, students will participate in an educational forum including interactive discussions and presentations from world-renowned professors and experienced undergraduates.

The secretariat and I have chosen “Sustainable Development Goals: the Future of Sub-Saharan Africa” as the theme of PIRC 2016. This year we hope to introduce a greater understanding of the Sub-Saharan African region of the globe in the realm of International Relations by analyzing the area from economical, political and cultural perspectives. Our speakers will discuss both the economic rise of the region and the current dilemmas it is facing. Furthermore, we will also discuss the political diversity and the region’s current interactions with the United States.

Having been involved in the previous session of PIRC as the business director, I have had the chance to see the operational aspect of the conference, and have seen first hand how it grew from two years ago. We hope to build upon the successes of our previous conferences and provide an enriching experience for all those involved. The secretariat and I are extremely excited to bring to you guys a great, fulfilling experience at the conference.

This year, we will emphasize a lot on discussion-based activities and simulations, as we did last year. We envision PIRC 2016 to be a forum for the creation of new ideas to address the modern necessities of the region and the world. Throughout this conference, we will foster an interaction between high school students and Penn undergraduates and faculty in order to gain a greater understanding of the region. We hope the complexity, usefulness and fascinating nature of the conference will motivate students to continue pursuing academics.

If you have any questions regarding conference content, business sponsorships, student participation, or general inquiries about PIRC and the Penn IAA, please do not hesitate to contact me. If you attended last year’s conference, please share your experiences. We love feedback, and if you have any ideas that may be helpful for planning this year’s conference, share it with us! We hope to see you there!


Janice Chung

Executive Director, PIRC 2016