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Participants of the Academic World Quest Participants of the Academic World Quest

Academic WorldQuest: Engaging High School Students in International Affairs Trivia

Utah Global Diplomacy has been organizing the Academic WorldQuest since 2014, a key component of their youth high school program. This event invites schools to assemble teams of internationally minded students to compete in the state competition, with the winners earning an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington D.C. to represent their school and state in one of the largest international affairs trivia competitions in the U.S.

This year, thirty-four high school students huddled in teams of 3 and 4 to confer in hushed tones about answers to trivia on some of the world's most pressing international issues. Winning the competition meant a chance to represent their school and state on a national platform. The competition was intense, with participants deliberating and answering over 50 international affairs questions for several hours.

Prior to the event, participants were given packets of reading material to brief them on issues covered in the trivia. On the day of the event, participants had the opportunity to hear from topical experts who presented issues in engaging ways. Jackie Rodenbaugh from Wasatch Community Gardens spoke on Combatting Global Food Insecurity, Joseph Brubaker from Kirton McConkie Law spoke on Economic Sanctions - A Double-Edged Sword, Michel Mamo economics professor at Westminster spoke on Country in Focus: Ethiopia, Vincent Carson spoke on Battle of the Century: Autocracy vs. Democracy, and Daniela Larsen Utah Global Diplomacy Board Member and Executive Director of the Hutchings Museum Institute spoke on Securing the Future of the World's Wildlife. Participants were highly engaged with the speakers and asked highly meaningful questions, reiterating their keen interest in the presented topics.

Highland high school's team emerged victorious with thirty five points, just two point ahead of their closest competitor. They are now looking forward to attending the national level competition on April 28th-29th.AWQ_photo.jpgHighland High School team: winners of the 2023 Academic World Quest.

Following the intense competition, participants enjoyed a catered lunch from Global Somali Place of spiced chicken and savory rice. For many, it was the first time trying food from an African country, and they loved it.

The Academic WorldQuest is an excellent opportunity for high school students to engage in international affairs trivia and deepen their understanding of pressing global issues. Click through the slides attached to test your knowledge and see if you can answer all the trivia questions correctly.

If you are interested in getting involved with the Utah for Citizen Diplomacy Youth Programs, please contact Kara Vail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.