By Judy Koren
The Undergraduate Diplomacy Student Association (UDSA) is an on-campus club offered to undergraduate students in Seton Hall’s School of Diplomacy and International Relations.
UDSA’s primary objective is to serve the student body by aiding in the growth of ambitious young student leaders. Through mentor-ship programs and skills workshops, UDSA also aims to help open up opportunities to its members. Led by Junior Chloé Whitewater, UDSA’s first female president, alongside Sophomore Vice President, Sophie Thon, UDSA follows a path-finding initiative that aims to serve every diplomacy student.
Given UDSA’s close relationship with the Deans and staff of the Diplomacy School, student engagement and high standards of academic excellence have the opportunity to be elevated. The Pathfinding initiative aids every student in three different areas: career building, academic achievement, and social involvement. The first—career building—provides an additional source for students to be more aware of upcoming career fairs, how to work with LinkedIn, and most importantly, opportunities for valuable interaction with Dr. Ruby and Mr. Younger.
The next academic achievement is to encourage students to meet with their professors and/or tutors in order to ensure that they remain on track with the high speed of the Diplomacy School’s rigorous curriculum. This part of the path-finding initiative also works to eliminate the intimidation factor that can restrain students from seeking help.
UDSA’s executive board proactively researches scholarships for all students looking to expand their academic knowledge.
The final part to UDSA’s pathfinding initiative is social involvement. Although academics and networking for potential internships are incredibly important, developing fruitful relationships with other students in the ever growing School of Diplomacy allows for participants to feel like they are more involved in a community. Developing connections with other students permits all members to increase their competitiveness, while also encouraging others to push themselves out of their comfort zone and into a higher academic standing.
UDSA also takes pride in collaborating with other campus chapters to strive for a greater cause.
Since all clubs are working to better themselves and the campus, diversity is key towards success. UDSA views their many partnerships as a way to increase diversity and vibrancy on campus.
Rotaract, a club that works to better the Seton Hall campus and South Orange community, recently partnered with UDSA to increase the success of “Rise Against Hunger (RAH).” RAH aims to package and distribute meals to developing countries worldwide no matter the domestic crises that may be plaguing the people of the nation. UDSA and Rotaract plan to pack 10,000 meals in April to distribute to those in need.
At the most recent executive board meeting, members reviewed plans for the spring semester. UDSA has many fundraisers planned to get the word out about the up-and-coming chapter. Set for March, UDSA and Rotaract are collaborating on “The Amazing Race” to help fundraise for RAH and spread the word about the organizations work on and off campus. Missions like “The Amazing Race” are to help UDSA become a more philanthropic club, as their goal is to help freshman and sophomores navigate their way through college.