YSU Model Knesset Among Few in North America

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Fifteen Youngstown State University students will participate in a Model Knesset simulation of Israel’s parliamentary process April 10 from 5 to 7 p.m. in the Stadium Club of Stambaugh Stadium on campus.

While Model UN, Model Congress and Moot Court are popular programs across the country, YSU is one of the few universities in North America to hold a Model Knesset simulation, said Adam Fuller, YSU associate professor of politics and international relations.

“The goal of the event is to educate about the deep political, social, ethnic, religious and economic divisions in Israel and what their implications are in the formation of a legislative majority,” Fuller said.

Fuller also said he thinks the Model Knesset is the best way to teach and talk about Israel in the most balanced way possible. “In this exercise, almost every opinion about Israel gets to be heard and represented. All perspectives, both Jewish and Arab, religious and secular, mainstream and fringe, left, right, and center are included in the dialogue.”

Co-sponsored by the Department of Politics and International Relations and the Center for Judaic and Holocaust Studies at YSU, the simulation is the final project of Fuller’s Israeli Politics class at YSU. Each student has been assigned an Israeli political party to represent in a coalition-building exercise based on mock election results.

“As luck would have it, this year’s Model Knesset actually coincides with the real Israeli elections, which will take place two days prior,” Fuller said. “It is the perfect opportunity for our students and the wider Youngstown community to learn about Israel’s political system, the issues of importance in this election, and how Israel’s system functions differently from the American model.”

Bonnie Burdman of the Youngstown Jewish Federation is assisting in the event as co-judge. The event is free and open to the public. Middle Eastern food will be provided.

SOURCE: YSU News Service

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