Throughout her college career, senior public health major Isabela Barriga has made a point of being involved on campus. She says doesn't need to be abroad to get the global experience as a University of Maryland student.
Barriga decided to combine her passion for public health with her interest in global affairs and joined the campus branch of Half the Sky, a group emphasizing women's health globally. She also currently works with the Bahá'í Chair for World Peace as a research assistant and was a youth delegate at the United Nations (UN) twice.
Barriga, who is also minoring in international development and conflict management, said her minor sparked her involvement on campus.
"I am especially interested in peace and conflict, so I was trying to find ways to participate with that here since I'm not abroad," she said.
Her work with the UN, though very impressive, didn't end with being a youth delegate twice. Barriga decided to take initiative and make knowledge of the UN accessible to university students.
"It [UN] really sparked my interest in global issues and led me to want to a create a United Nations Association at UMD," Barriga added.
The creation of a UN Association chapter at the University of Maryland has been a process Barriga has been working on since the fall 2015 semester.
"My interest came from my general interest in people," Barriga said. "I love learning about different cultures and different people. It's cool that we live in a globally interconnected era. I hope that people will be interested to join. It's a good opportunity for people to go from just learning about the UN to actually doing," Barriga said. "It's important because you can't just ignore the global society."