Seraphs Excel at DPI-NGO Workshop “Digital Strategies To Amplify UN Issues”

Story reported by Elizabeth Sheridan ‘20 (Pathways to Peace High School Representative)

On Thursday, December 14, 2017, thirteen Mater Dei Prep students attended the NGO communications workshop “Digital Strategies To Amplify UN Issues”. Students from the Emerging Global Leaders Program (also representing Pathways to Peace) learned how to use more effective methods when advertising non-profit programs. The workshop discussed social media as an integral component of how NGO’s communicate their value, their mission, and their support of the UN’s sustainable development goals. 

Jeff Brez, DPI Director, welcomed the guests in attendance to open the meeting and was followed by a distinguished list of guest presenters. This year the conference was led by Richard Yep, Chief Executive Officer of the American Counseling Association, Karin Orantes, DPI Social Media Team, and Adele Cehrs, CEO and founder of Epic PR.

Throughout the session, the moderators continually brought questions to the Mater Dei Prep students, asking for their opinions and experiences on the topics at hand. Khalil Elamin ‘21 was particularly helpful to one NGO by describing courses of action that could be taken in order to educate younger students on how to properly use technology. The Mater Dei Prep students directed questions that helped the NGO programs learn ways to help promote the United Nations sustainable development goals and were also recognized for their questions and ideas on how to fix problems in the United Nations technological world. Mater Dei Prep students Karen Nortz ‘20, Madison Ducsai ‘20, and Elizabeth Sheridan ‘20 were specifically recognized for their intuitive questions and guidance in leading the discussion towards relevant guidelines to promote the Emerging Global Leaders project, the “Global Education Tool Kit”.

Devon Perrotta ’21 and Rakim Cooper ‘21 found the conference to be very informative and were inspired to help promote the UN’s message of peace.

“I think this was a great conference for students our age to attend because social media is constantly changing in our lives and we need to use it to our advantage. I felt valued as a young person who has fresh ideas on how to use social media and technology to help others,” said Devon Perrotta.

“The United Nations conference taught me that when you try to do something, always remember to try to get a crowd's attention. You don’t want to publish a tweet that people are just going disregard. Instead, you want to be able to spark people’s curiosity and spread your idea to the world. I was very inspired by Adele Cehrs presentation. During her presentation she posted, "You get to write and rewrite how the world sees your NGO on a daily basis." It is saying that you and only you can write what people say about your organization. It represents your organization and if you want to change the world you can,” said Rakim Cooper. 

The Emerging Global Leaders Program is led by Mr. George Anthony, United Nations Pathways to Peace Primary Representative. The conference was a great success for all the Mater Dei Prep students who attended the program. The students learned how to conduct themselves in a business aspect when working with technology and learned skills that they could use in years to come. For more information on the Mater Dei Prep Emerging Global Leaders Program, please visit and click Emerging Global Leaders under the academics tab.


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