Young Professionals


Young Professionals are members of UNA-OC, who are focused on Career Development to make them tomorrow’s leaders.

The Young Professionals Program (YP) offers opportunities to interact with like-minded individuals and gives young professionals a unique forum in which to learn more about current international issues, the UN, and the work of UNA-OC. The YP program fosters leadership, networking, organic mentoring, and professional development opportunities for all YP members of UNA-OC.

To become a UNA-OC YP member is a two-step process. Select Orange County Chapter in the Membership Details. Please follow the below instructions:

  1. Click on the link to become a UNA-OC member UNA-OC Membership Sign Up

  2. Click on the link to become UNA-OC YP Member UNA-OC YP Membership Sign Up



Whether it is in a local community chapter or on the National Council, UNA Young Professionals are encouraged to take the next step and become a leader for UNA-USA. Members of our Young Professionals network have the unique opportunity to acquire and develop tangible leadership skills, knowledge, and experience that can be applied later in their careers. Our Emerging Leaders Fellowship is offered twice per year for young professionals interested in developing these leadership skills with their UNA chapter.


With a network of nearly 200+ UNA-OC Chapter, UNA Young Professionals meet like-minded individuals and thought leaders at UNA-USA signature networking events such as the Global Engagement Summit at the UN Headquarters in New York City or at the UNA-USA Leadership Summit in Washington D.C

Professional Development

Young Professionals have the opportunity to participate in our informative UNA-USA webinar series. Webinars include special information sessions about career opportunities at the UN, the U.S. Department of State, and other internationally-focused NGOs. Webinar recordings are available on the UNA Forum. We encourage all those interested to attend our Events, Member, and Young Professionals meetings in order to learn more about how the UNA-OC functions and how you can get involved in our wonderful Chapter. (Time and locations vary)



With the diverse background of YP members, we provide young students/ early career professionals in Orange County mentorship to achieve their dreams in professional life.

Resume and Cover Letter Building

We offer services of building and critiquing resumes and cover letters for those who are searching for employment/ academic admission.

Sustainable Life Contribution Series

We give a platform to our members who have made/ are making contributions towards achieving UN Sustainable Development Goals for Orange County. They share their plan of action with metrics and progress so far.

On-Demand Workshops

We are eager to develop the youth of Orange County by helping them in any way possible. For the same, we arrange on-demand workshops depending on needs e.g., presentation skills, public speaking, personal finance, etc.


Ankush Subhashrao Gadekar

“I strongly believe that education makes a positive difference in the world when it creates curiosity in your mind to learn anything and be a lifelong learner as opposed to just giving you definitions, laws, theorems, and facts. I want to contribute to making quality education accessible and affordable”

Ankush is our Director of Youth Engagement. He holds a Master of Engineering degree in Global Automotive and Manufacturing Engineering from the University of Michigan, a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from MIT, Pune, and an Associate’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from GP, Yavatmal.

Email ID-



Trinh N. Pham – YP Director 2021

I am honored to be a member of the United Nations Association – Orange County Chapter. The valuable experience with UNA-OC helps me to become inspired to change the world.

Joining UNA-OC is a life-changing journey that helps to develop confidence in leading others, a stronger awareness of global issues, and a chance to make new friends from around the world.


Autumn Melody Thomas- YP Director 2018

I’ve always had an interest in international peace work and human rights but didn’t know exactly how I would like to pursue the career in actuality. Getting involved with the Young Professional Program allowed me to explore a plethora of relevant international issues and involve myself in a variety of ways.

The experiential learning process ultimately led to my taking on a leadership position on the UNA-OC board of directors, chairing several committees, and getting involved with affiliate member organizations. My involvement helped solidify the future path I wanted to take and led to my acceptance to University College London’s Master of Science in Global Governance and Ethics. Immediately upon graduation, I was recruited to work on ensuring sustainable UK environmental policies remained in place amid the UK’s exit from the EU in 2020 and continue to strive for a future in international peace work. I highly recommend the YP Program to anyone interested in international relations, peace work, or any type of civil service career; the work is meaningful and impactful locally and beyond.

Lisa Nguyen – YP Chair 2016

Serving on the UNA-OC board and representing the Young Professionals Affinity Group as its chair provided me with experience that I continue to value today. By working alongside my fellow board members to establish chapter goals and objectives, I learned not only about strategic planning processes, but also how to collaborate, bring differing opinions together, and create a shared vision and goals. Most importantly, it provided me with the incredible opportunity to meet like-minded individuals across the region, state, and country. As a young professional who has moved to other parts of the country, I know that I can always find a network of friends who are committed to supporting the work of the UN.

Rachel Sanchez – YP Director 2015

My involvement with the UNA-OC provided the opportunity to hone my leadership and organizational skills, improve my public speaking, and expand my knowledge of international affairs. Each has proven essential to both my success as a graduate student at Georgetown University and my current role as a Donor Liaison and Coordination Officer at the United Nations Migration Agency.

-Rachel Sanchez, International Organization for Migration (IOM)

The campus chapters aim to unite young individuals and support the work of the UN. On campus, you can find our club hosting events and fundraisers, tabling to raise awareness on our most relevant issues, partnering with other clubs, and connecting with like-minded individuals and organizations with the intention of promoting and supporting the UN’s work and strong USA-UN relations.

We encourage students of all majors to join. If you are interested in international affairs, opportunities for professional growth, opportunities for travel, networking, or creating meaningful change on a local level then this club is for you!

Click here to volunteer for University Campus Chapters in Orange County


  1. California State University, Fullerton

    • President: Stephanie

    • Email:

  2. SOKA University

    • President: Emma

    • Email:

  3. Chapman University


Start a Campus Chapter


Uphold the mission of UNA-USA:

All chapter leaders should read, understand and abide by the policies and procedures outlined in Chapter Handbook.

Organizational Structure and Membership:

  • Recruit and maintain at least ten members

  • Engage a team of at least 3 chapter leaders to help you organize. President, Advocacy Chair and Membership Chair are required postions.

  • Create a chapter email address for UNA-USA communication.

Campus and Online Presence:

  • Host 2 community-facing events a school year on your campus that highlight the importance of the UN.

  • Establish an online presence by creating a chapter social media account or website.


  • Complete the end of semester reports to maintain active chapter status.



 Determine if a UNA-USA Campus Chapter is right for you:

There are plenty of ways to engage with UNA-USA, and it is important that you understand the expectations and requirements of becoming an official UNA Chapter. UNA Campus Chapter is expected to have a sustainable and long-term presence on its campus over a number of years. Applying to be a UNA Chapter means ensuring proper leadership and leadership transition. Please read this page carefully before completing the Chapter application.

Step-by-step process:

  1. Fill out the chapter interest application to start the conversation with the National Office.

  2. Recruit a team of 3 chapter leaders to help you organize. Please refer to this page for the chapter leadership structure

  3. Have at least ten students activate their free UNA-USA membership at

  4. Talk to your school student center about becoming a recognized group on campus and choose an on-campus advisor

  5. You’re officially a campus chapter!

If you do not have the time to commit to starting a new community chapter, consider getting involved in a nearby UNA Community Chapter.

*A member of our team will review your application, and you will be contacted via email with the next steps and/or approval.

Model UN is a simulation of the UN General Assembly and its other multilateral bodies where students perform an ambassador role while debating topics such as gender equality, climate action, global health, and more.

It provides educational resources that will connect students with world issues at the forefront of UN policy debate. Simulations place a group of individuals in the shoes of diplomats, challenging them to think and speak about global issues from the perspective of another country’s ambassador. It is an interactive way to learn about the UN while practicing important skills such as decision-making, effective communication, and critical thinking.

Click here to volunteer for Model UN Chapters in Orange County


UNA Orange County Chapter is creating a database that builds a bond between all MUN chapters, of all levels and ages, in Orange Country; a space where the MUN chapters of Orange County can collaborate with one another, express their diversified goals and missions and ultimately convey the importance of Model United Nations to all residents in not only their communities but in all of Orange County as a whole. Our vision for this database is nothing short but revitalization— we wish for it to be a place of collective enthusiasm and innovation where a young and prospering generation of leaders can forge a bond between the past and present and spread their notions on global affairs and tangible compromise between foreign powers. 


Uma Miskinyar

Uma Miskinyar, a member of the Tesoro High School graduating class of 2024, holds the position of Model United Nations Lead for the UNA-UNC Orange County Chapter. Uma is the Secretary General of my high school’s Model United Nations program, President of the Speech & Debate team, head photographer of the school newspaper, and founder of an on-campus bipartisan organization that focuses on finding the common ground with geopolitical issues. Uma has had the privilege of interning for both republican and democratic politicians where she gained a wide array of perspectives from both sides of the spectrum. 

Email ID:



Youth 4 Sustainable Orange County (Youth4SOC) is an initiative that aims to activate young people to contribute toward the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for Orange County by 2030. Activating youth will happen in three stages: Awareness, Understanding, and Action. The core of the initiative is to drive action by young people to create a better world and move beyond the traditional role of advocacy.

Click here to volunteer for Youth 4 Sustainable Orange County