Shared ideals found at U.N. Youth Assembly

Sayaka Oe at United NationsA UW Bothell student who attended the United Nations Youth Assembly found that other young people around the world care deeply about many of the same things that are valued at the University, such as sustainable technology and advancing women’s rights.

“Equity and Inclusion for a Sustainable Future” was the theme of the assembly attended by Sayaka Oe, an international student from Japan, seen on the left of this photo of the assembly.

The assembly, held Aug. 9-12 at the U.N. headquarters in New York City, challenged 1,188 delegates from 112 counties to achieve an inclusive and sustainable future where no one is left behind.

Those ideals connect with Oe’s studies in community psychology and passion to help refugees. Some time after graduating in June, Oe plans to return to Japan and work with the International Rescue Committee to increase the number of refugees that Japan accepts.

Sayaka OeA transfer from Cascadia College, Oe decided to attend college in Washington after a weeklong visit to Ellensburg as a 15-year-old on a sister-city exchange. Oe’s interest in the United Nations evolved from hearing someone from the U.N. speak in Japan and from talking with her grandmother and other women who lived through World War II.

“I listened to how they survived. It had a huge impact on me and who I am,” Oe said.