CHAMPLAIN — Justin Trombly was eager to enter the very first Harvard Model United Nations essay contest.
“I’ve always had a passion for writing,” said the Northeastern Clinton High School senior and president of the school’s Model U.N. Club.
It was that passion, along with his imagination and knowledge of the contest topic — human trafficking — that earned Trombly the inaugural first-place award in the competition enter by a total 70 students from around the world.
“I was ecstatic,” he said. “I didn’t think I would come out on top.”
Though Trombly could have submitted a research-based essay, he opted instead to write a fictional narrative from the point of view of a child witnessing people being stolen from their homes by “grinning savages.”
The piece is “gritty and rather unsettling,” he said, but “that’s the effect I was trying to create ... because that’s the only way that you’re really going to draw attention to this issue.”
The day before the conference, which took place earlier this month, Trombly learned he was one of 15 contest finalists, and as a result, was invited to meet a victim of human trafficking, an experience he called “interesting and moving.”
‘MOMENT TO REMEMBER’
Two of Trombly’s fellow club members, seniors Joel Herzog and Rodney Grimshaw, also earned accolades at the conference, taking home an Outstanding Delegation Award for their representation of Italy in the European Union Committee.
The pair, along with delegates representing Greece, Cyprus and France, wrote one of two resolutions proposed to the 54-person committee on the topic of the European Neighborhood Policy.
Their proposal, which dealt with expanding the union to neighboring countries, was ultimately chosen and passed by the committee.
Herzog noted that while he knew he and Grimshaw had done well and might be awarded for their efforts, he was hesitant to get his hopes up.