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by Justine Hudock
Student Community Engagement
Knovva Academy

Tara Ossiani
Head of State, Japan
2020 Model G20

“I would invent a more sustainable and more accessible food distribution system,” mused one of just five Exceptional Ministerial Delegates awarded at the close of this year’s Model G20 Virtual Summit. “Particularly for those who are malnourished within developing nations in order to help solve food insecurity, while benefiting the environment and local economies.” This is Tara Ossiani, reflecting on how she would approach the creation of a better world. Off the bat, we know that Exceptional is the only word that she could be properly awarded with.

Tara is a sophomore attending high school in Boston, Massachusetts: Knovva’s own turf. Elected Head of State for the Japan delegation, the self-described “severe classic literature nerd” is doing her severe classic literature nerd city proud. Tara’s favorite authors are all staples for the New England setting of her education. She cites Oscar Wilde, Lord Byron, and Jane Austen as among those favorite wordsmiths, and what else but Austen’s enduring love story, Pride and Prejudice, as her favorite novel.

A virtue that certainly should have been encouraged in George Wickham, Tara reflected on the wisest thing anyone ever told her. “Success and happiness,” she said, “are the best revenge; realizing that helped me to divert all of my frustrations into working hard to become the best version of myself.”

Unlike the Regency Period scoundrels that antagonize the literary worlds of her favorite writers, Tara has world-brightening, productive, non-evil goals —  one might even say.

“I plan to study the sciences, particularly bio-chemistry as it’s something I’m really into!

“As somebody who also passionately does Model G20 and Model UN,” she continues, “I plan on studying international relations and foreign affairs as well. In terms of the college experience, I’m really looking forward to meeting people from all over the world and making international friends.”

“I want to work very hard to achieve the best scores in the IGCSE (International General Certificate of Secondary Education) exams, and to do the same for the IB (International Baccalaureate).”

If you’re out of breath just reading about Tara’s aspirations, you won’t be surprised by her favorite quote, from the statesman and founding father Thomas Jefferson: “I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.” Tara is certainly creating her own luck by the barrel.

Her favorite class is chemistry. Her favorite food is the Burmese dish Ohn no khao swè (noodles, chicken, and chili in coconut milk broth; “it’s super good!!”). Her favorite color is yellow — it’s bright just like her future.

We loved to have her at this year’s summit. This is what she loved about being with us:

 

Model G20

Looking ahead, how do you hope to use the skills and experiences you’ve gained at the Model G20 Summit in your career?

For the future, I hope to use the skills I gained from this summit by employing my improved communicative and leadership-based abilities. During the summit, I really learned how to be a strong leader – which is not just limited to instructing people on tasks, but is listening to the needs of your team and motivating everybody to work hard. In my career, I will take this into account so I can keep in tune with my employees and encourage them to be the best they possibly can.

How do you feel about the quality of the conversations and response from your colleagues and instructors?

I felt that the conversations I was having with my colleagues and instructors were of a very high quality – I found myself engaging in fruitful debate with people whose ideas were so creative and well-thought out, that it made the conversations during the summit so encapsulating. Whilst working professionally with my colleagues and having those professional conversations, what was an added bonus was the fact that they were people who I could also have a fun and casual conversation with. This really made our working dynamic more cohesive.

How has Model G20’s take on pandemic education aligned with the values that drive your own education on pandemics?

I believe that on the whole, MG20’s take upon pandemic education provided a different and insightful viewpoint which was new to me. My prior education on pandemics didn’t consider the role of a nation in the specificity of managing pandemics, and focused more on the impact upon the people of the nation. I really enjoyed the new perspective I received upon pandemics and public health, as it allowed for me to see the bigger picture and consider every aspect in doing so.

What is the single feature of the summit that exceeded your expectations?

A feature of the summit which exceeded my expectations was the meticulousness and the great lengths that the Knovva staff members went to in order to make this a truly rewarding experience. It’s clear that so much hard work was put into crafting every facet of the summit, from the background guides, to the logistics of slack, to selecting excellent speakers, everything was so well-thought out, especially considering the fact that it was all virtual!

What about Model G20 do you think would benefit any person, if they were to attend?

I think that the collaboration skills learned from Model G20 would benefit any person if they were to attend, as the teamwork with other delegates is such a pivotal role in the summit. My teamwork skills have definitely been improved as a result, and so have everybody else’s. The collaboration skills instilled in me as a result of the summit aren’t just limited to Model G20, but are applicable in every context, as collaboration is a skill which is absolutely required for success in the future.

 

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